The United States government allocated $349 billion in government-backed loans under the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) as part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act to help small businesses continue paying payroll costs and certain operating expenses. All the money was given directly to the banks to process for businesses. In less than two weeks, we are being told that the money is soon to run out even though many small businesses are saying their banks never allowed them to apply for these funds. Mysteriously, several people have confirmed they have found millions of dollars in their accounts that were not owed to them, making it blatantly clear banks are hiding funds for sinister purposes.
Historically, the major banks have always been given a golden parachute by the federal government despite their irresponsible behavior as the citizens are told they were too big to fail. Just a few short years ago, Wells Fargo committed fraud by creating millions of fraudulent savings and checking accounts on behalf of clients without their consent. If any other business had committed these crimes, their CEO would have been imprisoned and the company would have been shut down. However, Wells Fargo is still in operation.
When Obama was president and the economy was on the verge of collapse, his administration also bailed out the banks even though he created the Dodd-Frank financial reform law. It was supposed to end the problems caused by the large corporate banks who they did not want to fail. This was another smokescreen from federal officials who wanted to appear to be tough on Wall Street’s crimes but didn’t want big banks to suffer the consequences typically associated with felony convictions.
Both JPMorgan and Citi pleaded guilty to criminal federal antitrust violations which are criminal charges. However, HUD’s proposal allowed the lawmakers to turn a blind eye to the banks’ criminal acts, leaving American citizens at additional risk. So, when the billions in the Paycheck Protection program magically disappeared in a flash, I was not surprised.
Small businesses are the backbone of America and are suffering more from the country’s shutdown than the corporate giants. According to the US Small Business Administration, there are nearly 30 million small businesses in the United States who employ nearly half of the US workforce. So, if these funds disappear and are not made available to those businesses who need it the most, half of the workforce will become homeless. Perhaps, this is why the government is now contemplating creating an Emergency Money for the People Act would pay citizens over the age of 16 $2000 a month who make less than $130,000 annually.
Although this is a wonderful idea, banks should still have to do the time for their crimes. Several people have already come forward stating they have found millions of dollars in their accounts that did not belong to them. Of course, the banks will publicly state it was an oversight or data error, however, these “errors” are occurring more frequently at a time when they just received a large amount of money from the federal government. Mark Cuban, the owner of the Dallas Mavericks and Shark Tank small business investor, just stated banks are playing games with small business loans.
The same way every citizen was issued a check or direct debit directly in their checking accounts by the IRS, these funds should have been deposited directly into all registered business accounts that are on file with their state governments. This would have taken the control out of the hands of the greedy bankers and provided the relief our government intended.
If our government won’t protect our small businesses from the criminality of large banks, then the citizens must take matters into our own hands by bringing awareness to what they are doing. You can start by contacting your local US senators, protest on social media, and stop using large banks to finance homes, vehicles, and other large ticket items. Once they start losing money, they will straighten up their act.