THE SENATOR FROM MASSACHUSETTS, BY WAY OF OKLAHOMA

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A Fighting Chance, by Elizabeth Warren (Picador, 2015, New York, NY, 377 pages).

Book Review by Dennis Moore

July 19, 2015 (San Diego’s East County) - Elizabeth Warren, the senior senator from Massachusetts, a former Harvard Law School professor and an expert on economic issues, as well as the author of nine books, including All Your Worth: The Ultimate Lifetime Money Plan and The Two-Income Trap: Why Middle-Class Parents Are Going Broke, has written an insightful book that should resonate with us all; A Fighting Chance.

Warren is widely credited with developing the idea for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, and she helped set up the new agency as an assistant to President Obama, which is reflected in her writing and thinking throughout this book. As chair of the TARP Congressional Oversight Panel and as the senior advisor to the National Bankruptcy Review Commission, this background makes it clear why many thought that Warren would be a strong challenger to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in the campaign for President of the United States.

As a child in Oklahoma, Warren yearned to go to college and become a teacher – an ambitious goal, given her family’s modest means. Yet, by 1995, she was a distinguished law professor with a deep understanding of why people go bankrupt. And then came the call that changed her life. Would she come to Washington, D.C., to help advise Congress on rewriting the bankruptcy laws? This New York Times Bestseller, answers that question.

Thus began an impolite education in the bare-knuckled ways of Washington. She fought for better bankruptcy laws and lost. She tried to hold the federal government accountable during the financial crisis but became a target of the big banks. She hatched an idea for a new agency designed to protect consumers and was denied the opportunity to run it. Warren gives the how and why in this thorough accounting of her life, A Fighting Chance. In this passionate, funny, rabble-rousing book, Warren shows why she has become a hero to all those who believe that America’s working families deserve a fighting chance.    

Setting the tone in Warren’s well written and insightful book, is a passage titled; The Game Is Still Rigged, which states: “And now that I’ve been in the United States Senate for two years, I’ve had a chance to see it up close and personal. More than ever, I am convinced that the game is rigged. There are a thousand ways to describe it:

  • Wall Street bankers crashed the economy in 2008, and now they’re making millions of dollars more than they did before the crash. Across the country, workers did their jobs honestly and carefully, but 8.7 million men and women were laid off during the Great Recession and the average family is now making less than before the crash.
  • When the recession hit, the federal government loaned trillions of dollars to the biggest banks in the country, quietly and out of sight, at interest rates near zero. At the same time, the federal government loaned money to college students at interest rates that were more than ten times higher than those offered to big banks – giving the government tens of billions of dollars in profits made off the backs of students.”

In further regard to Senator Warren's disdain for Wall Street bankers, recently as a member of the Senate Banking Committee, Warren took Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf to task at a hearing and excoriated him by stating that he should resign and that he should be criminally investigated. This was in the aftermath of Wells Fargo being fined $185 million for corporate malfeasance.

United States Senators Elizabeth Waren (D-Mass.), Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), Jack Reed (D-R.I.), Robert Menendez (D-N.J.), Bernard Sanders (I-Vt.), Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), and Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii) recently sent a letter to Department of Labor (DOL) Secretary Tom Perez and Wage and Hour Division Administrator David Weil requesting that DOL investigate whether Wells Fargo violated the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) with respect to its account executives, bank tellers, branch managers, and customer service represetatives. See attached and reference letter here.

Senator Warren is relentless in her pursuit of wrongdoing by the banking industry, and in particular, Wells Fargo. She followed up with her Senate Banking Committee hearing with Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf, after he did indeed resign, with the attached letter to Steven Sanger of Wells Fargo here.

This sounds a bit cynical, and perhaps the reason why Senator Warren decided against running for President, despite the popularity she had generated throughout the country for her views. After reading her book, and in hindsight, I can better understand why Senator Warren decided against running for President. She was going to need President Obama’s support, and with her and the President having some serious differences with the international trade deal known as the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), it became clear that she was not going to get that support. President Obama was actually quoted as saying regarding TPP: “I love Elizabeth. We’re allies on a whole host of issues. But she is wrong on this.” Senator Warren countered, by stating: “The Obama Administration says I am wrong – we shouldn’t worry about TPP. So why can’t the American people read the deal?”

A Fighting Chance says a lot about the character of Senator Warren, and if not now, perhaps at some future point in time she might rethink her run for President. This is an insightful book that gives us a clear view to the inner workings of politics and government in Washington.

Dennis Moore is the Associate Editor of the East County Magazine in San Diego and the book review editor for SDWriteway, an online newsletter for writers in San Diego that has partnered with the East County Magazine, as well as a freelance contributor to EURweb based out of Los Angeles. Mr. Moore can be contacted at contractsagency@gmail.com or you can follow him on Twitter at: @DennisMoore8.

 

 

Comments

Wells Fargo chief to forgo $45 million over scandal

Wells Fargo & Co. Chief Executive John Stumpf will forfeit compensation worth about $45 million as the bank tries to appease angry lawmakers and regain the trust of customers amid the still-unfolding scandal over fake accounts, according to a story today in the Los Angeles Times.

Senator Elizabeth Warren to Wells Fargo CEO: "You should resign"

Facing off with the CEO whose massive bank appropriated customers' information to create millions of bogus accounts, Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., had sharp questions Tuesday for Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf. She said Stumpf made millions of dollars in the "scam," telling him, "You should resign ... and you should be criminally investigated."

 

Senator Warren also Tweeted: "You should resign. You should give back the money that you took."

A Fighting Chance

I speak solely about Ms. Warren's title "A Fighting Chance", as reviewed by Dennis Moore. I believe that Mr. Moore has given those interested in Ms. Warren's career just enough of a taste to whet interest to know more about what she has to say on a variety of issues. As for Ms. Warren herself, I believe she should be judged on her intelligence, keen insight, and accomplishments rather than from the standpoint of personal opinions regarding her racial heritage, which continues to be a "hot button" issue in this country. Thank you, Dennis, for this review. --KB Schaller

California lawmakers assail Wells fargo in hearing!

Members of Assembly panel grill regional bank executive in Calabasas while calling for reforms to curb abusive practices, according to a story by James Rufus Koren in the Los Angeles Times on Wednesday, October 12, 2016. members of the Assembly's banking committee attacked Wells Fargo for allowing as many as 2 million unauthorized accounts to be opened. Earlier, Senator Elizabeth Warren at a Senate Banking Committee hearing, calling on Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf to resign, which he did shortly thereafter. Wells Fargo esecutive David Galasso at a hearing on Tuesday called by the Assembly's banking panel, said that the bank is reviewing accounts created as far back as 2009, but abuses appear to have started before then.

VICE-PRESIDENT ELIZABETH WARREN!

Yes, I realize that this might be a bit presumptious, but after seeing and listening to Senator Warren and Hillary Clinton this morning on MSNBC campaign together in Ohio, they seemed to be a perfect fit. Senator Warren gives Hillary Clinton balance in her pursuit of the White House.

VICE-PRESIDENT ELIZABETH WARREN!

Yes, I realize that this might be a bit presumptious, but after seeing and listening to Senator Warren and Hillary Clinton this morning on MSNBC campaign together in Ohio, they seemed to be a perfect fit. Senator Warren gives Hillary Clinton balance in her pursuit of the White House.

A Fighting Chance, by Elizabeth Warren

I will start off by first saying that Elizabeth Warren should run for President. Dennis review tells us about her humble beginnings and her ambitions. His review gave us just enough to pique our interest in her book, and to arouse our curiosity in the woman. I think that I will enjoy reading her book, and especially the passage entitled - The Game Is Still Rigged- . And I totally agree with her when she stated that: "Wall Street bankers crashed the economy in 2008, and now they’re making millions of dollars more than they did before the crash. Across the country, workers did their jobs honestly and carefully, but 8.7 million men and women were laid off during the Great Recession and the average family is now making less than before the crash". I was one of those who was laid off when Wall Street bankers crashed the economy in 2008, and I think Elizabeth Warren is the only one who really critically addressed Wall Street bankers, by letting the outsiders (people who never worked on Wall Street) know exactly the "goings on" by these Wall Street bankers. I think that she is a force to be reckon with, and I certainly will not describe her as a fraud, however, I think that she is a strong political voice that needs to be heard. Jacqueline Carr Author - A Selected Few Just For You

JOE BIDEN SECRETLY MET WITH ELIZABETH WARREN SATURDAY

Vice President Joe Biden secretly met with Senator Elizabeth Warren Saturday, according to reports out of CNN, possibly assessing his chances of running for President. CNN said it was "the biggest indication yet" that Biden could be feeling out his chances. Bloomberg called it "a sign that Biden is courting influential members of the party before announcing his intentions."

Elizabeth Warren

A woman FOR the People. She is one of the brightest people in Washington. Calling her a fraud or a fake? Have you met George W? That was 8 years of "Stupid Takes the Reins, and Hides the Evidence." What do the GOP and the GOP followers/voters have against intellect? Fraud and fake? I didn't hear her say anything about weapons of mass destruction. Did you? Thanks for printing this, Mr. Moore. Your articles always attract my interest.

Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf Called to Account

As Senator Elizabeth Warren is a pretty vocal member of the Senate Banking Committee, I am sure she will have some strong words for Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf at a scheduled hearing tomorrow, regarding the order for Wells Fargo to pay a fine of $185 million for corporate malfeasance.

FAKE

Official Native American name: Faux-cahontas

Washington is again calling a top banker to answer.

The Senate Banking Committee has summoned John Stumpf, chief executive of Wells Fargo & Co., to testify about the bank's alleged sales-practices misdeeds after it agreed last week to pay a $185 million fine and enter into an enforcement action with regulators, according to a story by John Carney in the Wall Street Journal. Mr. Stumpf told The Wall Street Journal in an interview Tuesday that he is prepared to "share Wells Fargo's story" at the hearing.

 

His testimony will be the first from a big-bank chief under fire since 2012. Back then, the committee brought in J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. chief James Dimon to explain his bank's "London whale" trading losses, in which the company lost more than $6 billion.

 

Mr. Carney of the Wall Street Journal points out in his story that the banking committee now includes Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D., Mass.), the architect of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and perhaps the toughest critic of big banks on Capital Hill. She was one of the first lawmakers to call for Mr. Stumpf to testify and has already described Wells Fargo's alleged misconduct as "a staggering fraud" in a CNN interview, according to Carney.

FRAUD

the woman is a fraud .. from her so called indian heritage to her love of the little guy. ask her about her time flipping properties or her own fortune ... no she is a fraud and as big a danger to the Republic as obama

Senator Warren is relentless towards Wells Fargo

Senator Elizabeth Warren is relentless in her pursuit towards wrongdoing in the banking industry, and in particular, Wells Fargo. Despite her efforts in the Senate Banking Committee hearing to get Wells Fargo CEO John Stump to resign, which he did in fact, she would later send a letter to Steven Sanger, Chairman of the Wells Fargo Board, stating that was not enough.

Wells Fargo wants suits heard out of court

Wells Fargo & Co. is trying to keep dozens of customers suing over bogus accounts opened by its employees out of court, saying they agreed to resolve any disputes in arbitration when they began doing business with the bank.