On the latest episode of The Trews, British comedian and social activist Russell Brand attacked “the people in our society who exploit us — massive transnational banking corporations.”
Brand is particularly irate over learning that banking conglomerate HSBC helped its clients “dodge millions in tax.”
“The real exploiters — the people who are really stealing from us — have carte blanche to sneak around, because [the media] doesn’t give it the same focus and attention,” he said.
“Remember,” Brand continued, “HSBC laundered money for Mexican drug cartels. Did anyone ask, ‘Well, should you be laundering money for Mexican drug cartels?’ No. ‘Are you going to be doing anything about it?’ Also, no.”
“This is the same thing they said when the stock market crashed,” he said. “‘Are they going to give the money back?’ No, they’re going to take it from people on benefits, from disabled people.”
Brand then discussed the fate of Stephen Green, who oversaw HSBC during this scandalous era, but was nevertheless made Baron of Hurstpierpoint by British Prime Minister David Cameron.
“Isn’t that amazing?” Brand asked. “After a decade of corruption and lying and treachery and skullduggery, he was promoted to the House of Lords under David Cameron. Because lying and treachery and skullduggery are not a problem if you’re doing it in the right area.”
He then compared the fate of Stephen Green to that of the English lower-class, many of whom rely on government subsidies to survive.
“When we’re talking about ‘these people are leeching’ and ‘these people are stealing,’ why does our focus always fall on the most vulnerable? Why are we not focusing on Wall Street, the financial district, the city? Because those feelings of antipathy — that fear and anger and righteousness — why are we focusing them on the most vulnerable?”
“There are legitimate targets for those feelings,” Brand added. “There are the people in the city who have ripped us off. There are the people in the government who don’t represent us. There are sitting politicians that have had sex with children.”