Well howdy-do, what have we here… it’s national Bank Transfer Day and Occupy Lexington’s asking the state of Kentucky to invest in itself:
Occupy Lexington Announces State Divestment Campaign
LEXINGTON, KY – Today in Lexington, the Occupy Lexington General Assembly announced a call to action for all citizens of the Commonwealth and the State Treasurer to divest the General Fund from JP Morgan Chase Bank and move it to a financial institution headquartered in Kentucky.
“We call upon Treasurer Hollenbach to Invest In Kentucky,” said spokesperson Ian Epperson. “The value of the Commonwealth’s General Fund in 2011 was 8.76 billion dollars. Such an account would provide a boost to a Kentucky financial institution, creating jobs right here in Kentucky, right now, in a high paying sector of the economy. The idle funds in the Commonwealth’s account would be used for lending by the institution and would represent a major boost in the availability of credit and investment in Kentucky.”
JP Morgan Chase was a major player in the subprime scandal and received 25 billion dollars from the federal government through various rescue and bailout plans, intended to spur reinvestment and credit availability. In lieu of increasing lending, they paid their executives massive bonuses and lobbied Congress to roadblock substantive reform of the financial industry. Even though they gambled over 30 billion dollars in subprime loans, they paid a paltry 153 million dollars to end an investigation by the Securities and Exchange Commission earlier this year over their exposure to CDOs and the subprime market.
Epperson continued, “While claiming “too big to fail” status, JP Morgan Chase did not let that stop them from acquiring Washington Mutual, the sixth largest bank in the country at that time.”
“JP Morgan Chase does not share the values of Kentuckians and has demonstrated over and over again, that when given the opportunity to make a profit at the public’s expense it will lie, it will cheat and it will not hesitate.”
Occupy Lexington is launching a petition drive to present this demand to the state treasurer, Governor Beshear, and congressional representatives. It is also announcing a call to action to all Kentuckians to pressure their representatives to invest in Kentucky.
For more information, see www.investinky.org.