William K. Black wrote another scathing article The NYT Thinks Jailing the Banksters Would Cause a “Bind”.
It is critical to remember that the administration did not simply shield the fraudulent banks from prosecution – it shielded the bankers that led the fraud epidemics from prosecution, from civil suits, from serious enforcement actions, and even from having their fraud proceeds “clawed back.” During the entire Obama administration, not a single senior prosecutor, regulator, White House official, or Treasury official resigned in public protest at this assault on the rule of law that once made our Nation great. No greater indictment of their lack of integrity (and competence) is possible. They were tested in the crucible and they all failed.
The “Justice” department deliberately chose to act in the most unjust fashion possible, and the results are already proving catastrophic for the global economy.
Maybe the following numbers from the article will demonstrate what Black means by catastrophic.
We have just seen the three most destructive epidemics of financial fraud in history cause a Great Recession that cost $21 trillion in lost U.S. GDP and over 10 million jobs – and both numbers are far larger in Europe.
This loss of GDP alone dwarfs the accumulated deficit incurred by the US government over its entire history. Yet, all the politicians, Republican and Democrat, seem focused like a laser on reducing the budget deficit. Perhaps this focus is what allows the much larger crimes of the financial sector pass them by in their peripheral vision without them taking much notice.
I am glad to see Bill make the case, again, that punishing fraudulent bank officers is not the same as punishing bank corporations. In fact it is protecting bank corporations from the predations of their fraudulent officers. Assessing huge fines against bank corporations and letting the fraudulent officers keep their loot is exactly what should anger the share holders, employees, and customers of these institutions. Talking about being a bank regulator, Black wrote the following:
If our role were “protecting [banks] to ensure they operate successfully” [it isn’t] then there would be no “conflicting role” in “pursuing misconduct” by the banks’ officers and employees. The opposite would be true – our highest priority essential to “protecting” banks would be to remove criminal bank officers and our second highest priority would be deterring such criminality by aiding DOJ in prosecuting those officers.
The article mentions the Huffington Post story The Fed Just Acknowledged Its Too Big To Jail Policy.
Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.) aggressively questioned Dudley’s claim that the New York Fed had helped end too big to jail with the Credit Suisse case. No human beings are actually in jail for Credit Suisse’s tax evasion scheme — either the Americans who stashed cash in secret, illegal offshore accounts, or the Credit Suisse employees who executed the scheme. The criminal investigation into Credit Suisse, Merkley emphasized, was spurred by a report from Sen. Carl Levin (D-Mich.), not the Fed.
It is good to keep in mind that Elizabeth Warren is not alone in pursuing this failure of the Fed to do its job. Perhaps she makes the most interesting videos, but we need the information from The Huffington Post about who was and who wasn’t at the hearings.
You don’t suppose any of the potential voters who did not come out in the last election were turned off by the failures of the Obama administration’s Department of Justice? The administration could have been aggressively pursuing these criminals at the same time others in the administration and the President himself were pushing health care reform. An entity the size of the federal government can do more than just one thing at a time.