Steve Fraser, a TomDispatch regular, is the author of the just-published Mongrel Firebugs and Men of Property: Capitalism and Class Conflict in American History. His previous books include Class Matters, The Age of Acquiescence, and The Limousine Liberal. He is a co-founder and co-editor of the American Empire Project.
It was Karl Marx who first observed that high finance is “the Vatican of capitalism.” How right he turned out to be.
After an absence of well over half a century, Wall Street is back, center stage, as the preferred American icon of revulsion, a status it held for a fair share of our history.