In a blistering confrontation with then-Fed Chairman Alan Greenspan during a 2003 Congressional Hearing (see video below) — five years before the 2008 meltdown of Wall Street — then-Rep. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) revealed why he may be better positioned now to square off against right-wing economics than Hillary Clinton who, twenty years ago,served as a member of the Wal-Mart Board of Directors.
(The Arkansas-based company was a principal beneficiary of President Bill Clinton’s decision to ram NAFTA through on the fast track. And, even now, though Hillary has been critical of a number of the company’s practices, influential members of the Walton family, the mega-billionaire owners of the retail giant, have been very supportive of the Clintons.)
During that 2003 hearing, as revealed by this must-see video compiled by Sanders supporters, the Congressman arguably demolished not only Greenspan, but the fundamentalist market-based economics that remain the centerpiece of today’s Republican Party and at the center of the dispute over new international trade agreements, such as the TPP.
After chastising the Fed Chairman for being out of touch with the needs of ordinary Americans — “You don’t know what’s going on in the real world!” — Sanders unleashed this…
You talk about an improving economy while we have lost 3 million private sector jobs in the last two years. Long-term unemployment has more than tripled. Unemployment is higher than it has been since 1994. We have a $4 trillion national debt. 1.4 million Americans have lost their health insurance. Millions of seniors can’t afford prescription drugs. Middle-class families can’t send their kids to college. â€¦ Bankruptcy cases have increased by a record breaking 23%. Business investment is at its lowest level in more than 50 years. CEOs make more than 500 times of what their workers make. The middle class is shrinking. We have the greatest gap between the rich and the poor of any industrialized nation, and this is an economy that is improving? I’d hate to see what would happen if our economy was sinking.
While Sanders neither mentioned Hillary Clinton then, and no doubt would refrain from anything resembling a personal attack now, his remarks help illustrate why the Wal-Mart-connected Hillary may be ill-positioned to serve as the Democratic Party’s instrument for meaningful economic reform…