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book club > A Fighting Chance by Elizabeth Warren

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message 1: by Jimmy (last edited Nov 05, 2014 12:25PM) (new)

Jimmy I thought I would post my notes for this book. Feel free to comment or read the book and share ideas. Here are my review notes:

What a great woman, what a great Senator. I feel guilty for every credit card I own. At least I have money in a small credit union.

When people were declaring bankruptcy, it was for 3 reasons in 90% of the cases: 1. Medical problems, 2. Job loss, 3. Family breakup. The Fox News types tried to portray them as lazy cheaters.

Banks could make more money by giving credit to people who were in trouble. Those families became targeted by banks.

Banking industry backed bills were already promoted in Congress before Ms. Warren had a chance to fight back because she did the research. Banks hid behind jargon and gibberish to make the problem more complex.

Banks brought in there own "facts" with "independent" studies.

Banks teased people to buy homes with "deals."

Examples of phone calls from sales people show outright lies.

I understand Too Big To Fail, but the problem was that we didn't get anything in return. We needed to control the money, make regulations, help the people who needed it.

The banks cut back on small business lending, foreclosed more mortgages, and bought out other banks. Shame on them and on us for listening to the nonsense from the right wing.

"Good regulations create an opportunity for good businesses to thrive."--Joseph Kennedy, Sr.


message 2: by Mark (new)

Mark | 785 comments Jimmy - This is a great book, and I have elsewhere proclaimed my immense admiration of Warren. Unless this has previously been designated a group read, may I consider it a nomination for entry in the forthcoming poll to choose new book club selections?


message 3: by Jimmy (new)

Jimmy Why not. I think everyone should read it.


message 4: by Shelley (new)

Shelley | 48 comments Elizabeth Warren not only can write, but is also, I think, the best political speaker on the scene today. If you haven't googled her most recent speech about rolling back rules for banks, it's...almost thrilling.

Shelley
http://dustbowlstory.wordpress.com


message 5: by Mark (last edited Dec 26, 2014 01:03PM) (new)

Mark | 785 comments You're right, Shelley, Warren is spectacular. Her speech to the Senate can be found here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e3I5wt...

I love this part:

You know, there's a lot of talk lately about how Dodd-Frank isn't perfect. There's a lot of talk coming from Citigroup about how Dodd-Frank isn't perfect. So let me say this to anyone who is listening at Citi: I agree with you, Dodd-Frank isn't perfect. It should have broken you into pieces.


message 6: by Jimmy (new)

Jimmy I agree with Too Big To Fail. Here are the two ways to solve the problem and both should be used:

1. Break up the too big to fail banks into smaller banks.

2. Write solid regulations that prevent failures.


message 7: by Mark (last edited Dec 28, 2014 02:58AM) (new)

Mark | 785 comments Jimmy wrote: "I agree with Too Big To Fail. Here are the two ways to solve the problem and both should be used:

1. Break up the too big to fail banks into smaller banks.

2. Write solid regulations that preve..."


You're absolutely right, Jimmy. That's what we need. But the solid regulations we had to prevent these acts of outright gambling with depositors' money have all been repealed. Glass-Steagall in 1999 (an act of utter predation of Biblical proportions), and now provisions of Dodd-Frank. And these banks fully intend to do it all again -- gamble with derivatives, lose depositors' money, demand federal bailout from taxpayers, steal two trillion dollars -- wash, rinse, repeat. And they have thoroughly penetrated the executive and effectively own most members of Congress (Warren representing a rare exception). The Republicans now control Congress, and although some of them hypocritically professed to oppose the last bailouts, they're really even massively worse than the Democrats (which sort of goes without saying), and they're the ones who sneaked the trashing of Dodd-Frank into the budget reauthorization.

As a wholly-owned subsidiary of the banking industry, I don't think Congress is going to write any new legislation that is not of the form, "go ye forth and loot some more." So I guess the question is, how do you get rid of the sock puppets for banking (and other) lobbyists, and reinstate an actual democracy, and de-program the brainwashed, seppuku-committing idiots on the right who automatically vote Republican, in any case? I don't have an answer.


message 8: by Jimmy (new)

Jimmy Nor do I. Facts don't work.


message 9: by Mark (last edited Jan 01, 2015 12:29AM) (new)

Mark | 785 comments Jimmy wrote: "Nor do I. Facts don't work."

No, you're 100‰ right. That was the whole point of Drew Westen's The Political Brain: The Role of Emotion in Deciding the Fate of the Nation. Facts never work with The Republican Brain (another good book on the subject). I think Democrats have to start ruthlessly manipulating the emotions of the Republican base in a mind control counterinsurgency operation. It's horrible to say, but they're otherwise completely inaccessible.


message 10: by Lorin (new)

Lorin | 9 comments It's good to see a discussion about reaching the very emotionally led conservative mind. As you both agree, facts don't work, as they simply quote far right opinions as facts.

I look forward to more discussion on this, but can't add much to what you two have posted. I've read a few books on this subject and about conservatives, but will put 'The Political Brain' on my list.


message 11: by Mark (new)

Mark | 785 comments Lorin wrote: "It's good to see a discussion about reaching the very emotionally led conservative mind. As you both agree, facts don't work, as they simply quote far right opinions as facts.

I look forward to... will put 'The Political Brain' on my list. "


Thanks, Lorin! I think that is the defining book on the subject, and you won't regret reading it.


message 12: by Joseph (new)

Joseph Robbins (leer03) | 34 comments Just finished reading "A Fighting Chance." Very good autobiography! The one take away that will stick with me for years to come when I think of Elizabeth Warren and her book will be that the system is rigged and so is our democracy. This,however, does not mean it has to be. The Warren/Brown pact is a great example of taking money out of politics and should set an example for Democrats and Republicans for years to come.


message 13: by Mark (last edited Feb 26, 2015 07:43PM) (new)

Mark | 785 comments Lee wrote: "Just finished reading "A Fighting Chance." Very good autobiography! The one take away that will stick with me for years to come when I think of Elizabeth Warren and her book will be that the system..."

You are spot on, Lee. The system is rigged, and we long ago ceased to have anything resembling a functioning democracy. What I've been screaming about three times a day for five months on the primary chat thread (to the point of echolalia), has been "electoral nullification." If there's any dispute, it's only in the extent of it, not in whether it exists. Does it "have to be" thus? That's really the ultimate question, the one about which we've been strategizing intermittently since before the November Cataclysm. it would be helpful to have your further exposition on the "Warren/Brown pact." I realize we do have this thread, long ago designated for discussion of Warren's book only, but that also means that notifications of posts made here will be sent only to the relatively few members who have frequented it previously. If your post (and mine) don't attract further discussion in this venue, and it's all right with you, I'm going to copy them to the "Reality-Based Chat." I'd also very much appreciate any other thoughts you have (on any topic related to liberal politics), which might receive much more attention on that primary chat thread. Thanks for your comment!


message 14: by Shelley (new)

Shelley | 48 comments When I get discouraged by the overall political scene, I decide that I'm going to give money only to Elizabeth, and then let her use it to leverage whatever power she may have.

Mark, thanks for the link to her speech.

Shelley
http://dustbowlstory.wordpress.com


message 15: by Mark (last edited Apr 15, 2015 08:50PM) (new)

Mark | 785 comments Shelley wrote: "When I get discouraged by the overall political scene, I decide that I'm going to give money only to Elizabeth, and then let her use it to leverage whatever power she may have.

Mark, thanks for th..."


I'm delighted to see you back, Shelley, and I definitely understand your impulse to give your money to the only candidate who completely engages your passions, and whom you feel you can trust. Since Warren is not (at present) a declared candidate (and still asseverates insistently that she absolutely will not run), I'm not sure exactly to which entity you can contribute, but I do not doubt she has a nominal fund for her next senatorial campaign (in 2018) and must be allied with and supportive of any number of progressive PAC's. In any case, I'd very much appreciate it if you'd repost your message here to the main chat thread (for much greater exposure, and to join the ongoing discussion in that venue: for a further explanation, see my comments to Lee in message #13 on this thread). Thanks!


message 16: by Jimmy (new)

Jimmy I think it's a great idea to donate to Ms. Warren's senate campaign, Shelley. Like Mark said, it's early, but she is worth keeping in there. Some day she will be at the head of a committee and be the scourge of crooked bankers.


message 17: by Shelley (new)

Shelley | 48 comments Thanks, Mark. I'll try to figure out how to do what you said! I'm a little slow when it comes to blogs/Internet.

Shelley
http://dustbowlstory.wordpress.com


message 18: by Terry (new)

Terry Amrhein | 24 comments I read A Fighting Chance about a year ago. I first heard of Elizabeth Warren on the PBS radio show. She was expounding on how credit card companies try every trick they can to swindle the public. I thought what a great individual. Someone is trying to help me.
A Fighting Chance is about Warren's run for the US Senate set left vacant by the death of Ted Kennedy and her efforts to get a Consumer Financial Protection Agency placed within the Dodd-Frank Act, a plan opposed by all Republicans. Well she won and we are all better off because of her.
Terry AmRhein


message 19: by Jimmy (new)

Jimmy Senator Warren is a special person.


message 20: by Lisa (new)

Lisa (lisarosenbergsachs) | 424 comments I read the book a few months ago and thought it was excellent. Elizabeth Warren for President! If only...


message 21: by Jimmy (new)

Jimmy The financial crisis was caused by the deregulation of the banking system, Debo, was it not?

How is Paul Ryan going to help with any of the issues you mention? Isn't he just another example of, "Let's help the rich get richer, and if you're poor, then you need to work harder."


message 22: by Jimmy (new)

Jimmy Here's an article about Paul Ryan:

http://www.thefiscaltimes.com/Columns...


message 23: by Jimmy (new)

Jimmy I haven't had a chance to watch the video, but I will make an effort.

I still don't get how someone like Paul Ryan will do anything about this when he is just another tax cuts for the rich politician:

http://www.theguardian.com/business/2...


message 24: by Jimmy (new)

Jimmy I can still remember when Newt Gingrich predicted that Bill Clinton raising taxes would be a disaster for the nation. The opposite happened. And by the way, that bill was passed by one vote: Vice-President Al Gore's tie breaker back in the day when members didn't try to shut everything down.

Here are some articles on the topic. So I'm pretty skeptical that Paul Ryan is the answer to anything:

http://www.theatlantic.com/business/a...

http://www.forbes.com/sites/rickungar...


message 25: by Jimmy (new)

Jimmy Paul Ryan has already undercut Obama at the Paris climate talks. He will not support efforts to reduce carbon emissions. He'd rather have "jobs." This is an insult to science, not to mention the planet. To support Ryan is to support continuing on the same path of climate destruction.


message 26: by Lisa (new)

Lisa (lisarosenbergsachs) | 424 comments I'm sure that someone as intelligent as Paul Ryan has to know that climate change is a real threat. That he's more concerned about undercutting Pres. Obama than trying to save the Planet from destruction is a bad mark on his character.


message 27: by Jimmy (new)

Jimmy A lot of Republicans I know seemed to have a problem getting past Al Gore. They seem to connect climate change with liberal Democrats trying to destroy our economy. It's so ridiculous.


message 28: by Lisa (new)

Lisa (lisarosenbergsachs) | 424 comments They have a problem getting past any Democrat who gets elected. Al Gore is no excuse.


message 29: by Jimmy (new)

Jimmy Debo,

Paul Ryan is leading the charge to derail any climate change legislation. Can you still support him after that?


message 30: by Jimmy (new)

Jimmy Now Paul Ryan is working on repealing the Affordable Care Act. Mr. Ryan will still have taxpayer healthcare for him and his family. What is his plan for the millions who would lose theirs? He knows the President will veto the legislation. It's just one more waste of our time.

How do you react to that effort, Debo?


message 31: by Lisa (new)

Lisa (lisarosenbergsachs) | 424 comments Paul Ryan is an arch conservative and the things he's doing are all the things that he said he would do. They're consistent with his philosophy and shouldn't be a surprise.


message 32: by Jimmy (new)

Jimmy If you get a chance, take a look at Minnesota's economy where they taxed the rich and raised the minimum wage. They have a huge surplus now.


message 33: by Lisa (new)

Lisa (lisarosenbergsachs) | 424 comments I know. I've read several articles about it.


message 34: by Fred (new)

Fred Klein | 4 comments I read this book when I came out. Elizabeth Warren was one of my law professors. She taught Contracts. Brilliant professor. I had a few personal problems with her behavior though.


message 35: by Lisa (new)

Lisa (lisarosenbergsachs) | 424 comments But what did you think of the book? I thought it was brilliant.


message 36: by Fred (new)

Fred Klein | 4 comments When IT came out, not I. I need to proofread better. The book was fine. She’s a smart woman. But I found in law school that she was not inclined to investigate all sides of a controversy before reacting. She is not my choice for president. I also have concerns about how many times she may have claimed to be a Native American in applications we haven’t seen yet.


message 37: by Lisa (new)

Lisa (lisarosenbergsachs) | 424 comments That's not what's being asked. Forget about her outside of the book and again, tell us what you think of the book itself.


message 38: by Fred (new)

Fred Klein | 4 comments I read it a while ago. As I said, it was fine. It was nothing great, nothing memorable.


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