Yves here. Bill Black continues to heap well-deserved scorn on efforts to defend New York Fed president William Dudley’s revealing performance in Senate testimony last week. In its efforts to pretend that the New York Fed can’t possibly be expected to regulate, the Grey Lady goes beyond the usual hoary canard that jailing banksters is just too hard (as in trying to say that what they perpetrated didn’t break any laws, when plenty of writers, such as Charles Ferguson, long form in Predator Nation, and yours truly, among plenty of others, have cited both legal theories and fact sets that show the reverse). The additional bogus claim is….drumroll…that keeping banks out of criminal and improper conduct is somehow inconsistent with making sure they “operate successfully”. In other words, the Times is effectively saying that banks have become so dependent on criminal and near-criminal conduct as profit sources that regulators dare not deprive them of that out of fear of weakening their financial performance.
By Bill Black, the author of The Best Way to Rob a Bank is to Own One and an associate professor of economics and law at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. Originally published at New Economic Perspectives
Peter Henning, in his self-bowdlerized Dealbook feature he branded as “White Collar Watch” (note his deletion of the word “crime”) has come up with an article that illustrates that the New York Times is clueless about bank regulation. The good news is that once the fundamental error in their understanding of banking regulation is corrected the supposed dilemma that the Henning claims has placed the New York Fed in a terrible “bind” disappears.
The title of Henning’s November 24, 2011 article has morphed during the course of the day into “Fed’s New ‘Cop on the Beat’ Role Put it in a Bind.” The title exemplifies three fundamental errors. First, the role of federal financial regulators as “regulatory cop on the beat” is not “new.” It has always been our paramount role as financial regulators. Second, Henning’s columns was prompted by William Dudley, the NY Fed’s President’s testimony before a Senate banking committee subcommittee in which he expressly refused to function as the “cop on the beat” our Nation vitally needs. Third, were Dudley to embrace the role of “cop on the beat” and perform it properly he and our Nation would escape the desperate “bind” we are in – not create a “bind.” Henning’s article tries to support the three errors encapsulated in his title in the reverse order, which I will track.
Henning’s False Dilemma: Prosecuting Banksters is Essential to Effective Regulation
Henning begins his argumentation by asserting a false dichotomy that frames his entire article.
The issue is how the Fed will balance the conflicting roles it plays as an overseer of the banks, protecting them to ensure they operate successfully, and as a law-enforcement agency charged with pursuing misconduct.
Even if one knew nothing of banking, the statement fails the minimal test of logical consistency. 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.
Henning’s statement is not correct, our mission is not to ensure that banks “operate successfully.” That will often be beyond anyone’s capability, and it is the wrong concept. Banks fail and they should fail. That is why we have the power to place them in receivership. Banks start out with such pathetically small amounts of capital that when the controlling officers are looting the bank it will typically be insolvent within weeks. It is vain to think that regulators, creditors, or shareholders can “ensure that [banks being looted] operate successfully.”
What the regulators must do is to ensure that the bank is promptly placed in receivership before it can grow rapidly and spread its frauds through the system by creating a Gresham’s dynamic. But Henning’s false understanding of a financial regulator’s mission does not affect the basic point. We greatly aid our supervisory effectiveness when we serve as vigorous “regulatory cops on the beat.” The twin roles are complementary, not “conflicting.” Indeed, the only way to be an effective supervisor is to be an effective “regulatory cop on the beat.” Success in each role is indispensable to success in the other role.
Henning Knows that Dudley Refused to Serve as the Regulatory Cop on the Beat
Henning’s article accurately reports Dudley’s refusal to take on the elite bank frauds.
At a hearing on Friday before a Senate subcommittee looking at how the Federal Reserve Bank of New York has dealt with Wall Street banks, the New York Fed’s president, William C. Dudley, said that his agency ‘is not like a cop on the beat.’ Instead, ‘It’s more like a fire warden.’
Henning’s article even indicates some of the problems with Dudley’s “fire warden” metaphor.
The vision of the New York Fed ushering people out of the building during an emergency preparedness drill is unlikely to instill confidence among those who remain fearful of what the Wall Street banks can do to the economy when they ignore the rules.
Henning does not explain the extraordinary nature of Dudley’s refusal to have the NY Fed take on the CEOs leading the control frauds. 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. In addition we have the world’s largest banks and bankers leading the two largest financial frauds in history – the Libor and FX conspiracies – plus banks helping fund one of the most violent drugs cartels (Sinaloa) in the world, genocide in Sudan, and (the U.S. government believes) Iran’s development of nuclear weapons. They also manipulated commodity prices, conspired with the ultra-wealthy to evade taxes, rigged municipal bond bids throughout the U.S., and led the massive sale of grossly inappropriate financial products to millions of people in the UK.
In the face of this devastating criminal recidivism produced by the refusal to prosecute senior bankers, what even Dudley agrees is a corrupt culture dominating Wall Street and the City of London, and the immense criticism of the Fed, the Department of Justice, and the Serious Fraud Office it almost defies belief that Dudley would openly reject taking on, better yet, jailing banksters leading the frauds. The question I have been asking for eight years is “what would it take for the anti-regulators to take fraud seriously?” It appears it will take another Great Recession.”
As an added feature, Dudley demonstrated his startling indifference to stopping fraud by elite bankers in his testimony before the Senate on November 21, 2014 while the American Society of Criminology was holding its annual meeting and we were presenting panels on the 75th anniversary of Edwin Sutherland’s speech announcing the concept of white-collar crime and during “International Fraud Awareness Week” (Nov. 16-22, 2014). Dudley was observing the NY Fed’s traditional “International Fraud Indifference Decade.”
Henning Knows that Enforcing the Law is a Long-Standing Regulatory Role
Henning knows that we, the S&L regulators working with the FBI and the Department of Justice, stopped a raging epidemic of mortgage fraud in 1983-1987, deliberately burst a regional real estate bubble, and prevented the debacle from reaching the point that it drove even a minor recession. He also knows that we produced the most successful record of prosecuting elite white-collar criminals in history. CNN quoted Henning about this point.
It wasn’t until the Savings and Loan crisis of the late 1980s, and the many prosecutions that followed, that prison terms for professional perps started to pop, said Henning.
Henning should also know that we drove “liar’s” loans out of the S&L industry beginning in 1991, shortly after they were first created (The loans were not yet called “liar’s” loans by the industry in our era.) With the benefit of hindsight from the current crisis, where the anti-regulators took no effective action for over a decade against the three fraud epidemics despite our experience and copious warnings, Henning also knows that we saved trillions of dollars and prevented a Great Recession precisely because we exemplified the phrase “regulatory cops on the beat.” Again, this complemented our successful reregulation and resupervison of the industry rather than “conflicting” with it.
The good news is that Henning’s supposed dichotomy is false – regulators that make it a priority to remove and aid the prosecution of elite, fraudulent bankers are vastly more effective than those who do not make holding the elite frauds accountable a top priority. The bad news is that Dudley, Henning, and Dealbook cannot understand this point. The even worse news from Dudley and the Obama administration, which the NYT has scrupulously avoided informing its readers, is about Dudley’s admission at the Senate hearing that the Obama administration deliberately blocked the prosecution of elite bank frauds. Fortunately, the Huffington Post made Dudley’s confession its lead.
“We were not willing to find those firms guilty before, because we were worried that if we found them guilty, that could somehow potentially destabilize the financial system,” Dudley said. “We’ve gotten past that and I think it’s really important that we got past that.”
Senator Brown’s office, however, has released a video and transcript of the exchange with this language:
[Dudley:] “the argument that was made a year ago or a year-and-a-half ago was that large financial institutions could not plead guilty to crimes because this could destabilize those institutions, which could lead to problems.”
Anyone “regulator” who thinks that giving elite, fraudulent banks and bankers immunity for leading the most destructive epidemics of financial fraud in history “stabilizes” “large financial institutions” should resign today and never be allowed to hold a position again in government or any financial institution.
Our paramount mission as financial regulators was to protect the financial system and the Nation from the elite frauds. Dudley has now confessed that an entire administration tried to appease the elite frauds and protect them from accountability. 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.
Real regulators uphold the rule of law and hold even the most elite criminals accountable. Anti-regulators and their media apologists crafted the myth that our system would be endangered if we had a rule of law. Logically, that can only be true if they believe our system is crony capitalism run by the elite, fraudulent bankers and their corrupt political patrons. If they are correct that our system is crony capitalism, however, then that system must be destroyed and the way to destroy it is to restore the rule of law. The NYT needs to become a leader in restoring the rule of law rather than an apologist for those that betrayed it. The “Justice” department deliberately chose to act in the most unjust fashion possible, and the results are already proving catastrophic for the global economy.
Even Professor Cochrane, the U. Chicago economist that detests regulation, now admits that runs cause financial crises and that runs are typically driven by fraud. “Not for nothing have most runs been sparked by an accounting scandal or fraud.” There is nothing more destabilizing to a financial system than fraud by elite bankers that is immunized by their political allies.
How long will it take Dealbook to report Dudley’s confession about the Obama administration’s refusal to prosecute crimes by large banks and senior bankers and its purported recent decision to end that refusal?
Great post. William “I am the great and powerful OZ” Dudley’s pronouncements, and the NYTimes “megaphone”, need to be revealed for what they are. Bill Black does the take down perfectly. Thanks.
Short youtube scene from Wizard Of OZ for reference:
Oh, I see failure to regulate and prosecute just causes the destruction of the global and national economies based on bankers fraud and greed. But no bind there, we the peon’s can always pick up the pieces, bail the banks out and move forward.
Interesting convergence. The apologia for authoritarian regimes is often presented as a deal, like “We’ll protect you from the bad guys but you have to let us steal from you.” Whether the commies, perfidious Albion, Muslim extremists, street-level drug trade, or dirty hippie demonstrators, the pound of flesh buys you safety from the bogie men.
The lurking evil here is more abstract, distant, and social. The bankers are protecting us from economic disaster, but we have to let them grow rich from obvious scams and schemes. Whether that disaster is more real than the commies under the bed sort of answers itself.
The authoritarian playbook is thin, but they keep making yardage.
Hierarchical structures are desired (not just required, desired) by the human brain configuration, so there’s always going to be some smart-n-savvy alphas leading the dumbasses; it wouldn’t be a human society without this situation being present. We just happen to label them “bankers” and “politicians” now, but those are just vague words used to describe a particular set of brain programming.
But certainly there have been at least much less hierarchical societies.
Hierarchy is very important among chickens.
With 300M people?
Hierarchical structures are desired (not just required, desired) by the human brain configuration, …
I note that you’ve been on this kick for quite some time. Clearly you have read something that leads you to accept this as true. I happen to wholeheartedly disagree, but would like to become familiar with this hypothesis so I could sharpen my rebuttal. How about a few links? From my side, I would encourage you to read Lakoff who presents a significant dichotomy among individuals and groups. Try: Don’t Think Like and Elephant. In fact, I believe that the human quest for justice is larger than his quest for strong leaders – and is quite likely a more virtuous endeavor.
I believe that rather than seeking hierarchical structures to which we can express fealty, and thus prosper, a large fraction of we humans have a highly tuned sense of justice – and injustice. In the video clip Dr. Black offers, Senator Merkley is championing justice, while Mr. Dudley is championing fealty to the hierarchical structure – the big banks. Actually, that’s a tad unfair to Mr. Dudley – he is expressing cowardice (and collective stupidity). You see, Mr. Dudley clearly believes, or believed, that criminal prosecution of mega banks might destabilize the global financial system. Hence, the series of consent decrees with large fines, but no admission of guilt, or even fault. Yet, Merkley presses on – criminal prosecution of corporations does not result in jail time for any individuals. Our sense of justice is offended when the very miscreants that caused our catastrophe pee in gilded toilets, enjoy the fealty of the Dudley’s of this world, and live like kings.
Black is so disgusted with Dudley’s cowardice that he openly encourages his dismissal and permanent exclusion from future federal employment, presenting an argument that: failure to prosecute control frauds is much more likely to encourage rather than discourage future frauds, that the system would recover quickly if prosecution caused a crash (in fact, his reference to the improving economy following his series of referrals for criminal prosecutions during the S&L crisis implies that he believes the economy would improve were the control frauds to be prosecuted), and ultimately concludes that if the system is as corrupt as Dudley’s fears would suggest, like a Phoenix, it needs to crash so it could be rebuilt – and that the rule of law is just the tool to bring about this rebirth.
Hence, I hold that your belief that we are all hellbent on conforming to hierarchical social structures is not merely wrong, but dangerous.
I agree that we are hard-wired for justice however if you sit down and ask each person how they would split assets to get justice, one’s just measures would trigger outcries of injustice from others. In my family, sharing brownies can trigger a meltdown… No matter how they get distributed, it’s never fair!
So when you get billions of people operating in complex systems, most just want to focus on their own brownie crisis and delegate the other stuff to supposed experts.
See Erich Fromm’s 1941 book: Escape From Freedom.
“Fromm distinguishes between ‘freedom from’ (negative freedom) and ‘freedom to’ (positive freedom). The former refers to emancipation from restrictions such as social conventions placed on individuals by other people or institutions. …according to Fromm, on its own it can be a destructive force unless accompanied by a creative element, ‘freedom to’ the use of freedom to employ spontaneously the total integrated personality in creative acts. This, he argues, necessarily implies a true connectedness with others that goes beyond the superficial bonds of conventional social intercourse: “…in the spontaneous realization of the self, man unites himself anew with the world…”
In the process of becoming freed from authority, we are often left with feelings of hopelessness…that will not abate until we use our ‘freedom to’ and develop some form of replacement of the old order. However, a common substitute for exercising “freedom to” or authenticity is to submit to an authoritarian system that replaces the old order with another of different external appearance but identical function for the individual: to eliminate uncertainty by prescribing what to think and how to act.”
While this does not mean we are all hellbent on conforming to hierarchical social structures, it does mean that we have to work toward the freedom to be the most authentic and self-actualized person we can be. This can be difficult and intense work and I find it easy to see how, in this world of constant struggling just to survive, it is just easier to let someone else tell us how to live.
(I do agree that we have a large sense of justice and injustice. In some sense that may be what eventually saves us from ourselves.)
Glad to see you’re on board with right-thinking :-) As Gruber noted recently, one can’t always rely on the stupidity of the American people to think correctly without constructive deceit and helpful obfuscation.
Reply to Ella.
Refresh my memory: how did Dudley get to be President of the NY Fed? Who appoints him? Because if it’s the President, we have blatant corruption reaching to the very top. Or, for that matter, if it’s Yellen.
That is, before you appoint someone to such an important office, surely you find out how they plan to exercise it. EG, “How do you see the role of the NY Fed? How do you plan to do that?”
IOW, whoever appointed him meant him operate as he is. The fix is in, and someone plans on a big payoff after they leave office. Maybe even before – is anyone looking into the President’s offshore bank accounts?
“The former title for the chief executive officer of the New York Fed was governor and was renamed to president due to the Banking Act of 1935. Akin to all other reserve bank presidents, the president of the New York Fed is nominated by the Board of Directors of the New York Fed and is approved by the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System. The Federal Reserve Act states that the president of a Federal Reserve Bank is the chief executive officer of the bank in question”
We definitely need to do something. Like the old skit with two old farts sitting in their rocking chairs and one says to the other “One of us has gotta die cause I can’t take it any more.”
I think Professor Black is talking, clearly, about the old caveat “None Dare Call It Fraud.” I think that was it :~/ And what do we do now that fraud has overtaken us? Let’s see: we could have gone on forever if we had not destroyed the planet but we did so climate has become dangerous; the air and water are toxic; pollutants are everywhere and growth has to be stopped in its tracks to maintain sustainability. So: no CO2 = no oil = no growth = no profit = no exploitation = no financial system = no regulation = no money = everyone is confused. But I for one would like some action. Here’s my proposal (which will stimulate a very important industry, a VII): Let’s put all the bankster and fund manager execs in jail. They are all fraudsters or complicit with them. Then let’s turn jails into elite resorts. I mean swimming pools, polo, golf, catamarans, gourmet food, the state of the art in green living, great organic gardens, a science lab or two; perhaps colleges with the best professors; the best medical services including mental services – whatever we want our future world to look like let’s use US prisons to do models of it. And let’s blow old economics out the tail pipe and fund it all with our decision to simply remake society into something that actually works. From prison to utopia.
What is even worse is that, where there has been fraud, senior bank execs are going after junior employees and trying to as a minimum fire them for the wrongdoing as in this case for mis selling interest rate swaps which was basically a derivative product with junk fees that the UK banks tried to con their customers with http://www.ltu.co.uk/news_item/386
The senior c-level are hardly likely to send themselves down the perp walk.
Hopefully the younger execs blow the whistle out of sheer self-protection.
I think I can safely speak for the entire Elysium Class when I say that the bankers have suffered enough, and – what this great country needs most is to come together, in the spirit of Furguson, and we simply need to move on, and learn to forgive and, most importantly, forget.
You got that right. Fortunately the Fed is out with a new study that proves that a fish rots from the tail and not the head. See, nothing to worry about.
This fish has a long tail, I presume?
Well said. Bill Black eviscerates NYTimes’ fawning defense of Dudley’s remarks and govt (in)action.
” 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.”
Indeed. And this will go on a while longer, no doubt. It’s important to keep pushing back in the public arena, as this post and NC does. Thanks for this post.
The critters are bipolar because that gets them what they want, positive economic activity feedback, under conditions of trial and error economic misdirection, a duration mismatch of something for nothing, in the event horizon/channel they choose to watch. You are an unknown, because you accept input from other channels, so they rock you, with no apparent result, creating positive feedback between denial and anger, until they implode or accept input from another channel. Draw the circuit.
That’s economic mobility – denial, anger….
Individual talent is that which is rare and valuable in the empire, because peer pressure public education excludes it, with what it calls science, derivative mimicry, ignoring dimensions, which is all Einstein did, and the majority was only too happy to exclude all dimensions beyond the speed of light, to maintain the status quo of artificial scarcity, war. Constants are only constants within an event horizon, of events.
In order for those planets to be orbiting, in what direction must the sun be travelling relative to the universe, with dimensionality? What is time?
Speed, a derivative, is a really stupid metric under condition of quality. Knowledge is the path to death. If you want to be paid in quality of life, change the channel, and, if you look, you will see that you are not alone. When the only tool you have is monetary inflation…labor appears to be the nail.
The bankers chase their own money and hope you will follow. Are you mad at the bankers or yourself, and what does either accomplish?
You are not going to see an ad for labor because labor makes decisions based upon character, which is illegal under empire terms of equality under the law. And any ad for a high paying job is already filled, with a job description written for the intended hire, which you can beat if there is more than one position.
Right now, the remaining empire positions are taken, in a game of last to lose, and the middle class is being squeezed out under conditions of demographic ponzi collapse, as you should have expected. Bankers cannot change their habits, even after they have long since passed over the bubble, so all they can do is inflate away purchasing power.
Why do you suppose blacks are burning down their own economy, while other colors are marching in support?
When you are attacked, everyone beneath you is torched, including the attacker, and you move up automatically, due to increasing pressure on decreasing volume. Mind your business and you will always make the cut, with reverse duration, which is why Jesus said to store your wealth in heaven. Labor removes your costs, discounting the empire and opening a path to the future, over time, granting you economic mobility beyond the empire.
The problem most have is recognizing the core and insulator as one and the same, what the empire physicists look for but cannot find, to save their lives.
Distance over time is a reverse oxymoron.
Perhaps if the people were to render meaningless the ownership “rights” of the stockholders of the NYT and try these reptiles in peoples’ tribunals for complicity in the many crimes they’ve managed to rationalize, the scales would fall from their eyes. I’d count only tearful public confessions, however.
Lying, cheating, and stealing is the mainstay of organized human activity. Some just do it better than others, that’s all.
it’s the wisdom of the market and social darwinism all in one
Outsourced to Vir Cotto.
I would like to make the following suggestion to Yves and associated writers with NakedCapitalism: Since we all know another crash is coming, based on the absolutely titanic bubble in asset prices, can you all start now to assemble some kind of brief showing how banksters can and should be prosecuted for the frauds they are currently committing?
We are constantly told by the Obama administration that they “fixed” TBTF with Dodd-Frank. Even though we know that is mostly false, they did put into place some new measures that are supposed to wind down a bank’s operations and make it possible to break it up. They also supposedly made it more plain what is illegal and what isn’t. Can we not start assembling something now, before the crash to come, to short-circuit and obliterate any more nonsensical arguments that we shouldn’t prosecute banksters for fraud because it is either: a. Too complex and hard to prove, or b. “what they were doing wasn’t illegal.”
I just think it would be more advantageous to use the expertise of Yves, William Black, Neil Barofsky, and others to have a ready plan of attack against the political and financial frauds who refuse to take the losses they’ve incurred and forced us all to suffer with. This would entail taking the frauds that we know are currently in progress (which have changed somewhat from 2008) and show how they are fraudulent and how we can use existing laws (like Sarbanes-Oxley) and Dodd-Frank to prosecute them. I truly believe the shock of the first crash combined with ignorance over the nature of these exotic financial instruments was the only reason why they got away with not prosecuting anyone. If a ready made case is available showing how to prove fraud, and use all of the laws available to prosecute it, it would dry up the swamp of excuse making and non-action we’ve seen from our bankrupt political elites.
Best administer a specific relief for the bind, it might be prosecution and imprisonment, it might be a stern lecture and a slap on the wrist. The dud does have a certain smarmy quality in his body language (thanks to Bush 2 for the insight). But banker behavior recedes before the sad foreign policy failure of the world system.
While I agree with Black, I want to point out a different problem with the administration’s decision to go easy on the banks for fear that a guilty bank would crash the world economy:
Regulators should be targeting bankers, not banks. Banks may be where the money is for big settlements, but bankers are the ones directing the crimes for their own benefit.
Assuming for the moment that the mere criminal indictment of a big bank results in the bank failing and bringing down the global economy–for argument’s sake only–and that everyone could agree in such a case to not indict the banks, that decision doesn’t have any impact on DoJ’s capacity to prosecute the bankers. The stated rationale doesn’t make sense/only makes sense if you embrace the world view that Holder pioneered–the company as the defendant–and are self-blinded to the alternatives.
So read it as not making sense and an intentional corrupt conspiracy to avoid prosecuting bankers, or read it as a type of self-interested self-delusion in the Upton Sinclair sense, but either way the problem was fiction:
DoJ did not ‘have’ to avoid prosecuting the financial meltdown/Great Recession crimes; it simply had to target top bankers, not top banks.
Precisely right! Holder, Breuer, the prosecutor in California (why would banks defraud themselves?) and others cannot, it seems, distinguish between the banks and the bankers. While there may be some logic in not charging the bank (institution) with criminal behavior, there is absolutely no reason not to bring the controlling officers to the docket. I’m sure there are plenty of ethical executives with appropriate banking experience to take the place of those in the C-suite who led the accounting control frauds. Some of the officers of BNP Paribus were forced out, yet the company did not fail. As Prof. Black has pointed out many times, banks (institutions) do not make decisions or commit crimes (regardless of what the Supreme Court says about corporate personhood); it is the controlling officers who make those decisions and commit those crimes. They should be “prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law”.
And, given the obscene amounts of money these officers received from their frauds, returning clawbacks of ill-gotten gains to the institution, I suspect, would make some of the big banks actually solvent.
The article is correct as far as it goes, but it leaves out one important detail: MOTIVATION.
Why does the Times print such bullsh*t? Why does the Fed refuse to regulate? Why does the U.S. Attorney General refuse to prosecute?
Everything in economics devolves to motive. So what is the motive?
The Gap between the rich and the rest.
Without the Gap, no one would be rich. It is the Gap that makes them rich rich, and the larger the Gap, the richer they are. So how do the rich maintain and widen the Gap?
The politicians are bribed via campaign contributions and promises of lucrative employment later. Holder and the Fed are owned by the President and Congress. Is it any wonder they are lapdogs for the rich?
The media are bribed via ownership. Rich people own the NY Times and rich people advertise in the NY Times. Is it any wonder that the Times is a whore for the rich?
The problem isn’t ignorance. It’s motivation. The Times, the Fed and the Attorney General know exactly what they are doing. And they are well bribed . . . er, ah . . . paid for it.