“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. 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.”
-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.
That is the question asked by Gretchen Morgenson and Louise Story in today’s NYT, In Financial Crisis, a Dearth of Prosecutions Raises Alarms: “Why, in the aftermath of a financial mess that generated hu”ndreds of billions in losses, have no high-profile participants in the disaster been prosecuted?”
It is a theme that Matt Taibbi hammered on back in February in Why Isn’t Wall Street in Jail?.
The Times piece today is a huge 4,000 word column, highlighted by a graphic comparison of the S&L crisis, where over 1000 bankers went to jail, and the current situation.
click for huge graphic
In Financial Crisis, a Dearth of Prosecutions Raises Alarms
Gretchen Morgenson and Louise Story
NYT, April 14, 2011 http://www.nytimes.com/2011/04/14/business/14prosecute.html