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View Diary: Too Big to Jail? (158 comments)

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  •  Tens of thousands of cases prosecuted or (0+ / 0-)

    in process.  Let's at least pretend we're fact-based.

    I'm not looking for a love that will lift me up and carry me away. A love that will stroll alongside and make a few amusing comments will suffice.

    by I love OCD on Wed Apr 03, 2013 at 10:15:47 AM PDT

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    •  There's no comparison to the S&L crisis (28+ / 0-)

      as per the NYT:

      But several years after the financial crisis, which was caused in large part by reckless lending and excessive risk taking by major financial institutions, no senior executives have been charged or imprisoned, and a collective government effort has not emerged. This stands in stark contrast to the failure of many savings and loan institutions in the late 1980s. In the wake of that debacle, special government task forces referred 1,100 cases to prosecutors, resulting in more than 800 bank officials going to jail. Among the best-known: Charles H. Keating Jr., of Lincoln Savings and Loan in Arizona, and David Paul, of Centrust Bank in Florida.

      Former prosecutors, lawyers, bankers and mortgage employees say that investigators and regulators ignored past lessons about how to crack financial fraud.

      As the crisis was starting to deepen in the spring of 2008, the Federal Bureau of Investigation scaled back a plan to assign more field agents to investigate mortgage fraud. That summer, the Justice Department also rejected calls to create a task force devoted to mortgage-related investigations, leaving these complex cases understaffed and poorly funded, and only much later established a more general financial crimes task force.

      Here's a link to a graphic comparison.  While the failure to prosecute started under W/Cheney, in true bipartisan fashion, it continued under their successors:
      “This is not some evil conspiracy of two guys sitting in a room saying we should let people create crony capitalism and steal with impunity,” said William K. Black, a professor of law at University of Missouri, Kansas City, and the federal government’s director of litigation during the savings and loan crisis. “But their policies have created an exceptional criminogenic environment. There were no criminal referrals from the regulators. No fraud working groups. No national task force. There has been no effective punishment of the elites here.”

      Even civil actions by the government have been limited. The Securities and Exchange Commission adopted a broad guideline in 2009 — distributed within the agency but never made public — to be cautious about pushing for hefty penalties from banks that had received bailout money. The agency was concerned about taxpayer money in effect being used to pay for settlements, according to four people briefed on the policy but who were not authorized to speak publicly about it.

      There's something really disturbing about the fact that the Reagan administration was far more aggressive aainst financial fraud that the incumbent one has been even though this set of scandals were far more costly.

      Some men see things as they are and ask why. I dream of things that never were and ask why not?

      by RFK Lives on Wed Apr 03, 2013 at 11:11:59 AM PDT

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      •  How did we miss all the deregulation (4+ / 0-)

        AFTER the S&L blowout?  That's the question to answer.  When Congress defunds regulators and passes legislation protecting TBTF how does it work out that Obama and Holder are the bad guys?  I'm curious because they were probably in high school when the foundations for our current clusterfuck were laid.  And both of them are working pretty damn hard to change things, difficult when "insanely stupid" equals "still legal", until Dodd-Frank.  Where were Progressives?   We mostly didn't notice what they were doing.  Most of the anger should be focused on low-info voters maybe?  Or maybe we just admit we screwed the pooch and make a point of not doing that again.

        I'm not looking for a love that will lift me up and carry me away. A love that will stroll alongside and make a few amusing comments will suffice.

        by I love OCD on Wed Apr 03, 2013 at 02:55:46 PM PDT

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        •  I volunteered for and donated to Obama in '08 (10+ / 0-)

          I voted for him again in '12.  Quite bluntly, I don't think that letting the Wall Street crooks who wrecked the economy get off scot free was the "Change" that I hoped for in 2008.

          Are there countless more culpable figures than the president and AG?  OF COURSE there are LOTS of them.  I didn't, however, have their sign in my front yard, nor did my son and I knock on doors for them.

          When you help to put people in office, you expect more from them.  It's not complicated.

          Some men see things as they are and ask why. I dream of things that never were and ask why not?

          by RFK Lives on Wed Apr 03, 2013 at 03:12:13 PM PDT

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          •  So you're mad at them anyway, knowing (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Creosote

            that most of what was done was technically legal, ignoring that the DOJ is prosecuting fraud and winning almost every case, because why?  No time machine?  No retroactive lawmaking?

              What's happening here?  We hate Presidents who ignore the laws if they're Republicans, AND we dump on Presidents who feel bound by law if they're Democrats?  I donated, voted, drove around Texas with Obama stickers, made phone calls.  As a citizen I feel compelled to attend to the political scene, the facts not someone's opinions about the facts, the details that rarely make media waves, and my own judgement.  I study our history.  I look at how change happens in this country, incrementally, and I applaud each stage of change since 2008.  I also hold myself accountable for being too busy to pay attention to Congress 30 years ago, and for ignoring what Reaganomics would lead to.  Not making that mistake again!  I'd like to see fewer diaries about a chained CPI that's not even in process, a few more about the ways Dodd-Frank is being gutted, the CFPB undermined, the financial sector deliberately choking economic growth.  

            Here's a little known fact.  Obama has been streamlining the SBA and increasing funding for small businesses since he took office.  This week someone in the media noticed small businesses are a growing sector, thriving in fact.  They neglected to mention the large part Obama has played, and I suspect that'll be glossed over every time this comes up.  He doesn't grandstand because Republicans are missing this so they're not blocking it.  That's politics now, and we seem clueless despite our anger with RW media and RW politics.  Time to clue in and help.

            I'm not looking for a love that will lift me up and carry me away. A love that will stroll alongside and make a few amusing comments will suffice.

            by I love OCD on Wed Apr 03, 2013 at 05:22:56 PM PDT

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            •  The DOJ is prosecuting fraud and winning every (5+ / 0-)

              case?

              Seriously, references?  'Cause I haven't heard of anyone being prosecuted on a federal level.  I've heard of lots of 'settlements', which aren't a prosecution, aren't an admission of guilt, and generally only return a small portion of the profits that the banks made off of their dirty dealing, and, of course, seal the facts of the case off as part of the settlement.

              •  Look it up. Find out yourself (0+ / 0-)

                how difficult it is to access facts when they annoy the media elites.  

                I'd say go to the DOJ site and search, but that's too easy.

                I'm not looking for a love that will lift me up and carry me away. A love that will stroll alongside and make a few amusing comments will suffice.

                by I love OCD on Thu Apr 04, 2013 at 05:23:10 AM PDT

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        •  We and everyone else (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          I love OCD, lostinamerica

          were busy watching endless reports of Monica Lewinsky's dress, O.J. Simpson's trial, and the story of the latest missing-white-girl.  I imagine there was also a story about a famous actor and actress hooking up, breaking up, or being locked up. NOBODY was reporting on the legislation that broke of Glass-Steagal, and forbade government inquiries into dirivitives trading.

          "YOPP!" --Horton Hears a Who

          by Reepicheep on Wed Apr 03, 2013 at 03:19:09 PM PDT

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