Here's an interesting idea that does not rely on government but can put pressure on the big four banks that just robbed us blind, threw so many out of work and are now refusing to make loans to people who need them: take your money out of the big banks and place it in community banks, ones that were not responsible for the meltdown. You can find local alternatives here. Just because Arianna supports the idea should not dissuade you. Her argument makes sense:
The idea is simple: If enough people who have money in one of the big four banks move it into smaller, more local, more traditional community banks, then collectively we, the people, will have taken a big step toward re-rigging the financial system so it becomes again the productive, stable engine for growth it's meant to be. It's neither Left nor Right -- it's populism at its best. Consider it a withdrawal tax on the big banks for the negative service they provide by consistently ignoring the public interest. It's time for Americans to move their money out of these reckless behemoths. And you don't have to worry, there is zero risk: deposit insurance is just as good at small banks -- and unlike the big banks they don't provide the toxic dividend of derivatives trading in a heads-they-win, tails-we-lose fashion.
Maybe readers will immediately see some unintended consequences of this, but I can't see any at first blush.