Episode 22

Rebecca Stops a Crash

In December, about a month after the election, Rebecca gets a handwritten, hand-delivered message informing her that the banksters are preparing to crash the economy to weaken her just as they weakened Obama. She picks up her phone and finds the number from which Larry Summers called immediately after the election.

Rebecca: Hello, may I speak to Larry Summers?

Voice: There is no one here by that name.

R: He called me from this number less than a month ago. Please tell him that the president-elect of the United States is on the phone and I will find him one way or another.

(silence)

Summers: Hello, Rebecca, this is Larry. What can I do for you?

R: You can organize a meeting of all the main insiders who are planning to crash the economy to weaken me like you did Obama. Please make sure this meeting happens BEFORE the crash. I will make it a priority, so please just tell me where and when.

S: I have no idea what you’re talking about. There is no such group, and they wouldn’t listen to me if there were.

R: If I don’t hear from you in three days, I will start a massive, public run on the banks. I will announce that the economy is about to crash and will advise folks to take their money out of the banks while they still can. Let me know where and when.

A few days later, Rebecca walks into an apartment on Fifth Avenue to find six men representing the  most powerful oligarchy in the world. The room is silent and tense as Rebecca sits down in a large, comfortable chair. She begins, “Thank you for being here today. I trust I’m talking to decision makers who can influence the behavior of the large banks, is this true?”

Summers: “These are the men you want to talk to. There are others, of course, but this is the group I was able to gather on short notice. I assure you that if this group agrees to something, they will be able to get it done.”

R: “Thank you. I have it on good authority that you and the men and organizations you work for are planning to crash the economy before or as soon as I take office in order to weaken me like you did Obama. Before you do that, there are a few things I want you to know.

   First, I am not your enemy. No matter who is president, you and your capitalist economy are living on borrowed time, and you know it. You can only squeeze people so hard before they revolt. You believe you can control or kill them and protect yourselves with your military and your militarized police, but you vastly underestimate the power of grassroots rage. If a violent explosion comes, I will use all my influence to make sure that your underpaid thugs shoot you rather than people who live in their own neighborhoods. I am well aware that you are making plans for a bloodbath, but you have no idea how bad it will get if you let it happen. I am your only hope of making the changes that must be made without massive, broadly destructive violence that will certainly extend even to you.

   Second, unlike most people, I don’t hate you. You’ve played and could continue to play a valuable role in US and global society. I see you as men who are currently making this planet uninhabitable, but you are also men who could save us, if you decide to do so. I want to work with you to build a world that even you will find more comfortable, more secure, and more enjoyable than the world you live in now. I can help you do this if you let me.

   Third, I cannot and will not allow you to dominate our planet the way you do now because you are an imminent threat to all of us, including yourselves. You are here today because you know I could destroy your banks and the whole economy in a day, and I can make you the hated villains behind all the subsequent misery. You also know that I would hate to have to do that. In fact, if you and I go to war with each other, we will bring the whole system down so fast and so furiously, the worldwide chaos could even lead to the use of nuclear weapons, and you want to avoid that as much as I do. So you and I need to work out a way to get along.

   Fourth, we need to solve certain environmental problems that are intensifying every day. As you well know, your competition for wealth and power is preventing the cooperation we need to address global warming, acidification of the oceans, radioactive contamination, contamination by other toxic waste, and the end of the petroleum era. I am here to assist the transition from the current civilization of power to a new civilization of love. You have no idea what this means, but I assure you that I am the best chance you have for survival, not just for you but for your children and their children, for the entire human family. I assure you as well that I cannot save you by myself. I am essential to the transition, but so are you. I can’t do it without you, and you will not make it safely without me.

   Fifth, I have talked about all of this with several of my most trusted collaborators. If you kill me, in fact, if I even happen to die of any cause in the next few months, the ARP will take my death as an act of war and will respond accordingly. The names and faces of the men and corporations that we believe are behind you will be all over the Internet. Warrants will be out for your arrest, and you better hope the police get you first.

   Sixth, if you decide not to go to war with me, I will expect you to participate fully, transparently, and in good faith in the decision-making processes I organize. For example, one of the first problems we will take up after my inauguration will be the healthcare system. I expect you to attend the sessions and help to solve the problems that emerge. You will be free to say whatever you want to say. You will be free to defend for-profit insurance companies, but you will have to be truthful and do your best to achieve the best possible solution not for your portfolios but for our country. And healthcare will just be the beginning.

   Finally, I strongly advise you to begin now planning how you will use your power and wealth to reduce inequality, reduce collective stress, reduce violence, and restore a healthy social and physical environment. After the great depression, Roosevelt saved capitalism by taking a lot of money from your predecessors and giving it to the people in the form of social security, unemployment compensation, and 15 million government jobs. You need to be thinking along those lines because you will be much better off in the end if you are seen to be voluntarily working toward universal wellbeing. Please don’t make us fight you every step of the way. Please be the leaders you are and lead us to a brighter future.

   These are the points I wanted to make. Thank you very much for your attention. Do you have any questions? (silence) I understand. I think I’ve given you a lot to think about, and I suspect none of you can respond until you’ve had a chance to talk with each other and with the others who should be part of these decisions. Am I right? (silence) OK, I’ll leave. I’m available any time, and I’m sure I’ll hear about your decision before you tell me.

 

A week later, Rebecca receives a handwritten, hand-delivered note informing her that the banksters have decided not to crash the economy. The writer thanks her for her intervention. Later that day, Larry Summers calls.

S: Hi, Rebecca. That was a gutsy move last week. I’m afraid we’ve all been underestimating you. There’s still some dissension in the ranks, but most of us know you’re right about the writing on the wall. In fact, you’ve made it possible for the more progressive of us to shift from total competition toward a focus on collective survival. We can blame it on you and the new superpower at your command. We will not go to war with you. I am not sure how well we’ll be able to cooperate and support you, but many of us will be doing our best.

R: I can’t tell you how happy I am to hear this. You’re the ones who will make or break the transition. I know there’ll be plenty of fights along the way, but I’ll be fighting for you as much as for anyone else. I’ll be fighting to solve problems, not to win. I hope you’ll fight in the same spirit.

S: I just hope the problems can be solved. If so, I’m sure you’ll help us get there. Call any time if you need something from me.

R: Thank you, and the same goes for me. Take care.

S: Bye.

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