Bankers are the Dictators of the West
We’ve been deluged with reports of how the poor or the disadvantaged in the West have “taken a leaf” out of the “Arab spring” book, and how demonstrators in America, Canada, Britain, Spain and Greece have been “inspired” by the huge demonstrations that brought down the regimes in [the Arab world].
But this is nonsense.
What drove the Arabs in their tens of thousands and then their millions on to the streets of Middle East capitals was a demand for dignity and a refusal to accept that the local family-ruled dictators actually owned their countries.
Goldman Sachs and the Royal Bank of Scotland became the Mubaraks and Ben Alis of the US and the UK, each gobbling up the people’s wealth in bogus rewards and bonuses for their vicious bosses on a scale infinitely more rapacious than their greedy Arab dictator-brothers could imagine.
And that is the true parallel in the West. The protest movements are indeed against Big Business – a perfectly justified cause – and against “governments”. The banks and the rating agencies have become the dictators of the West. Like the Mubaraks and Ben Alis, the banks believed – and still believe – they are owners of their countries. The elections which give them power have – through the gutlessness and collusion of governments – become as false as the polls to which the Arabs were forced to troop decade after decade to anoint their own national property owners.
The Arabs have at least begun to shrug off this nonsense. But when the Wall Street protesters do the same, they become “anarchists”, the social “terrorists” of American streets who dare to demand that the Bernankes and Geithners should face the same kind of trial as Hosni Mubarak. We in the West – our governments – have created our dictators. But, unlike the Arabs, we can’t touch them.
[Excerpt of an Independent article by Robert Fisk]