Win one for the gyppers: Banks' current playoffs eerily like the NFL's
New York's still the champ, Carolina is shaken but remains a strong contender, Pittsburgh's a major player, Cleveland's a major disappointment, and Detroit doesn't even exist — that's not the National Football League we're talking about but the U.S. banking industry standings.
As the country plunges toward the New Depression, there are parallels between the NFL teams' fight for playoff survival and the banks' fight for just plain survival.
Well, not just "plain" survival. The current shakeout and consolidation of the banking industry will leave fewer banks standing, but those that survive these playoffs are sure to get payoffs of billions in bailout money from taxpayers.
Let's get right to the playoff race. Check out the this morning's Wall Street Journal story "Two Cities Lose 'Hometown' Banks: Votes in Cleveland, Charlotte Are Signs of Industry Change." Under that mundane headline, reporter Dan Fitzpatrick makes like NBC football anchor Dan Patrick. This restructuring of the banking industry seems almost exciting in the reporter's play-by-play:
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Boston, incidentally, is the country's fifth-largest banking center, which is about where the New England Patriots are in the NFL playoff mix.
Not that the two wealthy industries are exactly parallel. San Francisco is a major banking capital, for instance.
One major difference: The football teams, even the lousy ones, have fans.
Meanwhile, of course, both industries depend heavily on public subsidies while remaining insufferably arrogant.
Hard to believe, but the bankers are even greedier than the team owners. The banks that have already gotten bailouts provide proof. See 'IT'S OUR BILLION$, BANKERS' in this morning's New York Post:
Don't ask questions. Just gimme the money. That's what a bank robbery is.
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