Still no major prosecutions in financial crisis

“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.”

But the effect is the same. There doesn’t have to be a conspiracy when it’s right out there in the open. Federal regulatory agencies are too often captured entities of the financial world. They have deliberately been de-fanged and their employees often go to work for the businesses they used to regulate while Congress and the White House do little to enforce the laws or use the bully pulpit.

The big banks effectively are immune from prosecution and they know it. In most countries this is called “corruption.”

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