Holder Refutes Obama with “Indictment” of TBTF
Posted by Larry Doyle on March 12, 2013 8:25 AM |
In December 2011, President Obama was interviewed on 60 Minutes and had the following exchange with CBS’ Steve Kroft in regard to behaviors on Wall Street:
KROFT: One of the things that surprised me the most about this poll is that 42%, when asked who your policies favor the most, 42% said Wall Street. Only 35% said average Americans.
My suspicion is some of that may have to do with the fact that there’s not been any prosecutions, criminal prosecutions, of people on Wall Street.
And that the civil charges that have been brought have often resulted in what many people think have been slap on the wrists, fines. “Cost of doing business,” I think you called it in the Kansas speech. Are you disappointed by that?
PRESIDENT OBAMA: Well, I think you’re absolutely right in your interpretation. And, you know, I can’t, as President of the United States, comment on the decisions about particular prosecutions. That’s the job of the Justice Department. And we keep those things separate, so that there’s no political influence on decisions made by professional prosecutors.
I can tell you, just from 40,000 feet, that some of the most damaging behavior on Wall Street, in some cases, some of the least ethical behavior on Wall Street, wasn’t illegal.
Is that right? Not illegal?
Well, with public pressure on this topic of illegal behaviors on Wall Street not having abated one bit since that December 2011 interview, what does the head guy at the Department of Justice have to say now? Eric Holder recently admitted what everybody not bought and paid for by the industry already knows,
In response to a question from Sen. Charles Grassley (R-Iowa), Holder admitted that, effectively, the Justice Department could not fully pursue cases against large and influential financial institutions, out of concern over the collateral damage charges could impose on the broader economy.
“The size of some of these institutions becomes so large that it does become difficult for us to prosecute them when we are hit with indications that if you do prosecute, if you do bring a criminal charge, it will have a negative impact on the national economy,” he said. “That is a function of the fact that some of these institutions have become too large.”
To Wall Street skeptics, the message could not be clearer: The nation’s biggest banks have grown beyond control and must be broken up.
“Holder’s admission makes action – however improbable – imperative,” said Robert Borosage, co-director of the liberal Campaign for America’s Future. “A nation of laws and markets cannot abide huge private financial institutions that are accountable to neither.”
Well, there you go. If that is not THE INDICTMENT that the American people have been seeking, I do not know what is.
The question begs, what are we going to do about the TBTF, TBTR (too big to regulate), TBTJ (too big to jail) banks because the status quo is neither healthy nor productive for our economy or our nation.
I have no 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.