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The Message of Brown-Vitter

Since the crisis, old-fashioned banking has come back in fashion. Loaning money for more than you pay for it turns out to be a better business model than running to the casino -- who knew?

The bill comes up just as the big banks are trying to get bigger on Main Street, expanding their branch networks in major markets, running ads talking about how friendly they are to small business. Yet it forces these same banks to argue that high capital requirements, or a break-up, would hobble them in competition with other large global institutions. See the contradiction?

The bill may be a non-starter, but it's a great reminder that, regardless of what the financial networks and big financial sites based in New York may think about Wall Street, the rest of the country has neither forgiven nor forgotten what went on in the last decade.

You can wipe off that grin, I know where you've been, it's all been a pack of lies, as Phil Collins wrote 35 years ago in a song about his first divorce, "In the Air Tonight." It's pretty much how much of America feels about the big banks. It's a bipartisan feeling.

That's the message of Brown-Vitter.

At the time of publication, the author had no investments in the six big banks mentioned here.

This article is commentary by an independent contributor, separate from TheStreet's regular news coverage.

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