Compare and contrast


In case you were wondering how the banking sector was doing these days after destroying the world’s economy, making life sufficiently miserable for millions, and absconding with an as yet unknown amount of taxpayer subsidies to keep them afloat, followed by a concerted effort by Republicans and Democrats to protect the whole shebang from anything resembling a criminal investigation and lengthy jail sentences. Turns out, having friends in Washington when you’re con job explodes in your face can be very profitable.

The six biggest U.S. banks are projected to post a 35 percent increase in first-quarter profit. That may fail to prolong an 18-month rally in their shares as the firms struggle to boost revenue.

The banks are set to report $19.9 billion in combined net income.

Elsewhere…

The statistics are staggering. According to the Census Bureau, the nation’s poverty rate is at its highest level in decades. More than 46 million people — one in seven Americans — are living below the poverty line, 16.4 million of them children. Another 30 million Americans are just a lost job or serious illness away from joining them. And in the last six years alone, more than 20 million people have joined the ranks of those relying on food stamps to get by.

But I’m sure if we only cut Social Security, Medicaid, and Medicare spending and gave JP Morgan another tax break, that those 46 million folks would be right as rain.

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