With the Divest LA movement, we have an opportunity to not only break away from ethically questionable investments, but to set a new standard for government priorities through the most impactful economic development strategies, including direct lending, in addition to traditional subsidy models.
Investing in Los Angeles, and its residents and businesses, is the best possible use of funds for the City of Los Angeles.
A government held bank can have entirely different priorities from profit driven ventures.
For instance, if the goal is 85% home ownership for our community, and the current level is 43%, why not use the funds of the City to invest in our residents long term wealth and stability by offering below market mortgages to first time home buyers, and refinancing for owners of one home within our City. Our residents are already paying among the highest rents in the country, why not use a City operated bank to leverage that expense into a long term growth and stability strategy that provides a short term investment opportunity, backed by real property, with long term returns for our community members in terms of wealth accumulation, stability and solid community commitment.
With the Bank of Los Angeles, we have an opportunity to make home ownership not only a priority but a possibility for our community members. Considering 75% of the local economy, like the national economy, is based on small businesses, a consumer and small business orientation for the Bank of Los Angeles is a tremendous opportunity to support local economic development as well.
There is no reason why the Federal Reserve could not function in this capacity; wouldn't it be lovely to set an example for the Federal Government to follow, so the next time Wall Street destroys the economy there is another direction to go than subsidy of giant corporations at the expense of taxpaying individuals....