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Friday, March 1, 2024

The New Deal Meets ‘The Wire’

The New Deal Meets ‘The Wire’

By Bryce Covert, courtesy of New Deal 2.0

What does Wall Street have to do with “The Wire“? Roosevelt Institute Senior Fellow Tom Ferguson took to the streets of Baltimore with the Real News Network to explain. There, boarded-up buildings and screaming police sirens demonstrate what happens when communities are left on the hook for bankers’ bets turned sour. Ferguson explains how “collateral damage” accumulated when unaffordable loans that were pushed on the people of Baltimore collapsed and brought down the price of houses around them. He points out that without a steady tax base, no one will make loans to the city, which, like many others, is desperate for funds. “It’s really a Catch-22,” says Ferguson.

What the people of “The Wire” really need are New Deal programs, he proposes. The administration should “move vigorously to put people back to work. You should have seen cranes and construction stuff everywhere,” he says. Obama should have revived the CCC and other programs to get us back to full employment — because as he points out, that’s the only real panacea to get us out of crisis.

And where is Wall Street now? “The invisible hand is just waving goodbye,” quips Ferguson. Watch the full interview:

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