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What Truly Happened? The Top Ten Unfinished/Untold Stories of Our Economic Crisis

Posted by Larry Doyle on July 24, 2012 8:23 PM |

With the development of internet applications and various social media sites, do you ever find yourself looking back to see what happened to specific situations or individuals in your past?

I am going to guess most people have navigated back down the road to do just that at least once over the past year or so. Perhaps sometimes you learn what truly happened to people and situations in your past, and sometimes you don’t.

In this spirit, let’s take a break from the daily flow of news and scandals and look back in time.

I would imagine most readers of Sense on Cents have a host of unfinished or untold stories that they would like to learn what truly happened. I know I do.

With far too many people in Washington and on Wall Street working diligently to disguise or deny the real truth from coming out, I welcome listing my Top Ten Unfinished/Untold Stories of Our Economic Crisis . . . 

10. Stephen Friedman: Did the then New York Fed chair and former Goldman Sachs partner engage in insider trading back in 2008 when he purchased a not insignificant amount of Goldman Sachs stock having become aware that Goldman was receiving an injunction of capital from Uncle Sam? Although Friedman was relieved of his duties as chair, that was the end of this story. Why? What should and would have happened if justice were pursued?

9. Darcy Flynn: Recall that in August 2011, Flynn’s story that the SEC had destroyed years worth of SEC documents was the shortest of short-lived bombshells. What was destroyed? What might have transpired if those documents could have been accessed via the Freedom of Information Act? Will we ever know?
Sense on Cents/ Darcy Flynn

8. Tom Lauria: What truly happened between the White House and Chrysler creditors? Tom Lauria, attorney for at least one creditor, accused the White House of threatening his client if it did not back down in the midst of the White House orchestrated restructuring of this automotive company. What really happened?
Sense on Cents/Tom Lauria

7. David Sokol: Did Warren Buffett’s trusted lieutenant engage in insider trading in his purchase of Lubrizol stock for his personal portfolio mere days before recommending that his boss Warren buy the company? Will we ever truly know?
Sense on Cents/David Sokol 

6. Allen Stanford and the Department of Justice: Will we ever learn if Sir Allen was a front for the DoJ in its attempt to penetrate the Central and South American drug trade?
Sense on Cents/Allen Stanford and Department of Justice

5. FINRA’s Liquidation of Auction-Rate Securities: Will we ever see the trade ticket and documentation linked to the sale of ~$650 million ARS by FINRA’s own internal investment portfolio mere months before the entire ARS market froze? Did Wall Street’s self-regulator, FINRA, engage in insider trading/front running in the process?
Sense on Cents/FINRA Is Supposed to Police the Market 

4. MF Global/Jon Corzine: What really transpired between Jon Corzine and the people in MF Global’s back office? This situation has gotten awfully quiet in a very short time frame. You think Corzine is “LOVING” the Libor scandal? No doubt.
Sense on Cents/ MF Global-Jon Corzine 

3. Bernie Madoff: Will we ever know the full story with all its gory details? Was Bernie doing biz with the Russian mob? Was Bernie funneling money to Israel? Was it really a Ponzi scheme? Did FINRA have money from its own portfolio invested directly or indirectly with Madoff? What was the real nature of the relationship between Madoff and Mary Schapiro? So many questions. So few answers.
Sense on Cents/Bernie Madoff

2. Wall Street Robo-Signing and Mortgage Fraud: Did the fraud embedded in the entire mortgage business on Wall Street rise to the level of a RICO violation?
Sense on Cents/RICO Violation-Mortgage Fraud

. . . and drum roll please, maestro . . . perhaps I am showing my bias, but I think the NUMBER ONE UNFINISHED/UNTOLD STORY of OUR ECONOMIC CRISIS is (and I personally do not think this is even close) . . .

1. Did Mary Schapiro et al Lie Verbally and in Writing in the Proxy Statement Used to Form FINRA from the Merger of the Regulatory Arm of the NYSE and the NASD:  This speaks for itself.
Sense on Cents/Mary Schapiro Lied

With these ENORMOUS stories remaining under the rug for now and perhaps forever, do you ever get the sense that we are all bit players in a version of The Truman Show while the real action as expressed in these Top Ten Unfinished/Untold Stories is truly going on behind the scenes? What would you pay to sneak behind the curtain and learn what truly transpired in these situations?

In all seriousness, where are the real legislators, regulators, and investigative journalists in our nation who are supposed to speak truth to power and bring these stories to life?

America will not only survive BUT we will be MUCH STRONGER as a result. In fact, I would venture to say that once the truth of these situations is fully exposed, the nation — having experienced so much — would likely move right along. Given all that we have experienced, is America even capable of being shocked anymore? That said, the full exposition of the truth is necessary if we are to make a healthy economic and national recovery. To that end, these stories must be told and/or finished.

Please share the unfinished/untold stories that you might include in your top ten.

Larry Doyle 

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I have no affiliation or business interest with any entity referenced in this commentary. The opinions expressed are my own. I am a proponent of real transparency within our markets so that investor confidence and investor protection can be achieved.

  • Huckleberry

    In the spirit of Nigel Tufnel, let’s go to 11:

    How large is the American banking cartel’s exposure to a EuroZone collapse? Why were they allowed to borrow at near zero-interest to gamble on European debt after demonstrating their incompetence in 2007-8? What percentage of these losses will be socialized? How will the hacks at CNBC, Bloomberg and WSJ explain this away? Will sideshows like Madoff come to play the role that Goldstein did in Orwell’s 1984?

  • Larry

    I fear we no longer have true journalism particularly the Woodward-style investigations we once did. Global corporate/ intertwined influence, and the 24/7 news cycle, where the latest and greatest buries yesterday’s stories has killed it, along with the demise of newspapers in favor of the Internet.

    This country has long depended upon journalism to balance the playing field, but that influence is dying fast. In your top ten stories, how many we’re actually broke by the regulators? My count is zero.

    • LD

      Larry,

      I partially concur with you. We do not have the investigative journalists of old BUT we do have some fabulous work being done online. The key there is getting the traffic.

      I think that online traffic will grow as people become more and more aware of the sites putting forth good stuff. The info is often sourced from people in the flow of biz but who would prefer to remain anonymous and do not trust the major news outlets.

      In the grand scheme of things blogs and the internet are in the very early stages of development.

      • Larry

        I’m optimistic for the future, and do see a place where a confluence of writers can make a change. My fear is today when we really could use an extended investigative arm, we are faced with a vacuum.

  • coe

    My money is on a different story…how is it possible that many large bank CEOs have become rock stars, rewarded themselves with generational wealth, all the while as the banks’ currencies flounder and underperform, as scandals and illegalities are par for the course, and as they have the unmitigated gall to stand proudly before the analysts and investors and fire thousands of hard working people – essentially destroying their lives?

    Let’s analyze that tragic tale of US banking, LD…the data is there for all to see…this is a story of grand hubris and amorality…and it has infected the banking system in insidious ways…stop the madness…

    • LD

      Chancellor,

      Add it to the list. In afct, given the magnitude of dollars involved along with the unmitigated gall displayed, I think we could make a very real case that this story deserves to be in The Top Three.

  • Bill

    With the current administration, Eric Holder etc., we can rest assured that they will get to the bottom of all of this …..(in about 100 years).






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