On the Lack of Prosecution of Banksters

Here is Elizabeth Warren, Senator from Massachusetts, grilling federal bank regulators at a Senate Committee Hearing titled "Wall Street Reform: Oversight of Financial Stability and Consumer and Investor Protections."  Hmm, that is a lot of words is it not?  Elizabeth Warren is asking these individuals why they have not taken any banks to court.  She is not even talking about criminal court.  How powerful are the banks today that they do not even face civil charges?

The attendees of this hearing were:

1.  Mary Miller, Undersecretary for Domestic Finance in the Unisted States Department of the Treasury.  She was vice president at T. Rowe Price Group, Inc., a financial institution.

2.  Daniel Tarullo, Governor of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System.  He previously was the Assistant to the President for International Economic Policy under Bill Clinton.  He also served as Clinton's representative to the G7 and G8 meetings.  So GATT, WTO, and all that stuff.

3.  Martin Gruenberg, Chairman of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.  He has had finance related positions in the federal government forever.

4.  Tom Curry, Comptroller at the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency.  He has served in various finance related positions in both the federal government and the commonwealth of Massachusetts.

5.  Richard Cordray, Director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.  As Attorney General of Ohio he did not prosecute a single bankster, but relied on suits against banks who are suspected of wrongdoing.  Suspected because no one has brought a single one to court to prove guilt.

6.  Elisse Walter, Chairperson of the US Securities and Exchange Commission.  Elisse was the Executive Vice President of the National Association of Securities Dealers which later became the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority or FINRA.  This is a self-regulatory organization whose self-regulation has been, shall we say sparse?

7.  Gary Gensler, Chairperson of the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission.  He was a partner and later co-head of finance at Goldman Sachs.  He is accused of refusing to properly regulate MF Global.

So there you have it.  Not one of these people, including Elizabeth, has a history of doing anything to help prosecute banksters.  On Elizabeth, recall that she helped found the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (which Richard Cordray currently directs) with Holly Petraeus.  Holly's role in that agency was to send letters to banks who overcharged military families on loans.

I hope some of these people mean well, and Elizabeth and Richard are the two most likely to do anything about the fraud committed by the banks, but I do not see evidence of any action in their past.  Please remember that even under Ronald Reagan, 1,000 bankers were sent to prison.  We are currently still waiting for the first.

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Avatar of RyanRyan
February 20th, 2013  2:35 PM

Welcome to the new feudalism?

Avatar of UncleJimMullingUncleJimMulling
February 20th, 2013  7:37 PM

So four out of seven came from the banking world they are supposed to regulate. Do not get your hopes up.

    Avatar of MyNameIsMeMyNameIsMe
    February 21st, 2013  1:18 AM

    Not to mention the other three have been doing this bank regulating thing forever which means they are probably all chums with the bankers they are supposed to regulate.

Avatar of sarahbsarahb
February 21st, 2013  10:44 AM

Give her a chance, she just got there.