Greed is not good: Real-life Gordon Gekko backs Sanders for 'velocity of money' stance

Money never sleeps for Senator Bernie Sanders. © Carlo Allegri
Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders, fresh from his upset win in Michigan, received an unexpected endorsement from a real-life symbol of Wall Street greed.

Asher Edelman, who inspired the Gordon “greed is good” Gekko character in Oliver Stone’s Wall Street films, was asked who he supported for president on CNBC’s Fast Money program.

“Bernie Sanders, no question,” he responded quickly, to the surprise of others on the panel.

Considered one of the Godfathers of Wall Street, Edelman explained that the democratic socialist from Vermont is the straight-forward choice, given his economic platform.

“When you have the top one percent getting money, they spend 5-10 percent of what they earn,” said Edelman. “When you have the lower end of the economy getting money, they spend a 100, or 110 percent of what they earn. As you’ve had a transfer of wealth to the top, and a transfer of income to the top, you have a shrinking consumer base, basically, and you have a shrinking velocity of money.”

Put another way...

“Bernie is the only person out there who I think is talking at all about both fiscal stimulation and banking rules that will get the banks to begin to generate lending again as opposed to speculation,” added Edelman, who made a name for himself in high end investments between the 1960s and ’80s.

Sanders quoted the fictional Gekko in a January speech in New York, when talking about Wall Street.

“Greed is not good,” he said, paraphrasing Michael Douglas’ iconic line “greed, for lack of a better word, is good”.

Gekko joins the 170 economists and financial experts who believe the Sanders plan for Wall Street reform is realistic, contrary to claims by his opponent Hillary Clinton and the mainstream media that suggest otherwise.

“In our view, Sen. Bernie Sanders’ plan for comprehensive financial reform is critical for avoiding another ‘too-big-to-fail’ financial crisis,” the 170 wrote in a joint letter. “The Senator is correct that the biggest banks must be broken up and that a new 21st Century Glass-Steagall Act, separating investment from commercial banking, must be enacted.”