To do this, I think that OWS movement would need to write out a formal pledge. People on the ground can collect signatures and contact info. We can also create an online site where people can pledge. Anonymity may be of importance to some, so perhaps we can create a system that allows people to pledge without divulging their identities.
I would like to stress that I am not trying to instigate a bank run, which would be devastating to our economy. Our demands should be reasonable and we should give the banks sufficient time to implement the changes. The time should also suffice for the industry to brace itself should a bank decide to not comply.
As for what these demands should be, I have a couple of suggestions:
1) We make a list of the bank employees primarily involved in the decisions to invest in the opaque and ultimately toxic investments that led to the financial crisis. We then request that these individuals be replaced.
2) That they open up their books to an independent audit. In this audit we will verify that assets can and are being valuated accurately and that predatory lending is not once again prevalent.
3) Complex derivatives be segregated from federally insured capital.
4) That banks must retain some of the risk when securitizing loans, not just punt it off.
Some of these suggestions have been brought up in the Dodd-Frank bill, but naturally it is receiving quite a bit of resistance. Nonetheless, I believe they are reasonable requests.
I am open to other suggestions and am willing to put my paltry bank account and two credit card accounts on the table. If enough people are willing to do the same, we can generate a tremendous amount of pressure for these banks to finally make some meaningful changes.
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