Netroots Nation 2012 list of panels shows that they are serious in a pushing the proper socio-economic-political direction of the country. More importantly it provides the factual basis for the reasons we should adopt a progressive direction with fact based themes.
One of the panels I most wanted to attend was titled “Why the Fed is the Most Important Economic Issue You Know Nothing About”. The panelists were Lisa Donner (FinancialReformNow), Matthew Yglesias (MattYglesias), Karl Smith (@ModeledBehavior), & Mike Konczal (@RortyBomb). Every single person on this panel was very knowledgeable on our current economic system. Every single panelist understood that the current banking sector has failed America.
Most bloggers and activist that have invested their time and money to come to Netroots Nation are coming to network with other bloggers and activists. Most importantly they want to leave learning and increasing their knowledge on relevant subjects. Most importantly they want a call to action that means something to working middle class Americans.
When I attended this panel I wanted to learn exactly what the title of the panel implied. Most importantly I wanted to hear a consensus on a progressive direction going forward that we could coalesce around and blog around to make Americans aware of the reasons we would need some drastic change in our banking/financial system.
While all the panelists knew the most inner workings of our failed banking/financial sector, they all continued to nip along the edges for solutions. In effect not one person in the audience was hearing anything they had not heard before or did they see a drastic change in direction needed to stop the middle class bleeding.
I asked in frustration (In video starting at 16:44) why we were playing the game on the Republicans’ turf. I also stated our banks should be state controlled and that our current system allowed the banking/economic system to pilfer the middle class. I will elaborate on these later. Suffice it to say, many attendees applauded simply because they finally heard someone in the room, not the panelists, take a progressive stance for the middle class, something we should have expected from a Netroots Nation panel.
Lisa Bonner seemed to agree though she seemed a bit hesitant to go full progressive by suggesting alternatives. To my dismay, Matthew Yglesias in his answer to my question used a classic Republican talking point used to kill discourse on progressive solutions by saying he is not a fan of Socialized banking (there answers start at 18:28).
While it was evident that this panel is intelligent and knows the material it was a disappointment for most attendees that I spoke to specifically because it seemed that instead of pushing a necessary progressive agenda in the banking and financial sector, they decided to go to bat for our current failed banking and financial sectors.
When Karl Smith suggests that we try to convince Ben Bernanke to effect quantitative easing to ease the pain of the middle class I knew I could no longer consider this panel one where a new direction would be given. In effect he was saying we need to beg someone who should be working for us to do well by us.
The failure of our economic system on our working middle class can be seeing in the charts. They are irrefutable. Moreover it restarted with Reaganomics, supply side economics, voodoo economics, or whatever you want to call it. The deregulation of the banking sector is complicit as well.
I wrote the book “As I See It: Class Warfare The Only Resort To Right Wing Doom” to highlight in laymen’s terms the genesis of our demise and what type of solutions we must have, the perfect balance between the individual, the government, and the corporation always with a biased towards the individual. Our current economy is designed for wealth extraction from the many to the few. We allow the richest to get richer without providing a service or product. We allow the design of financial instruments whose sole purpose is to make a profit from money, not a product or service. These are the concepts that should have been expanded on in a panel of this type to give our Netroots Nation marching orders to humbly educate the masses so that they would vote progressives into office that will pass laws to support the working middle class.
Liberals and Progressives sometimes do a great job of earning the elitist title when most of our followers do not in the least fit that model. Until we start feeling the working middle class pain, talking to them as opposed to talking at them, and enlisting them as being part of the solution as opposed to solely dictating solutions, the Republican Democratic Blue Dog Plutocracy will continue to clean our clock.