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Friday, January 28, 2011

Panel finds blame for economic crisis, sort of

A 633-page report by the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission finds blame for the economic crisis in America.

The commission "blames a range of obvious culprits: Banks that made reckless bets. Credit rating agencies that endorsed risky mortgage bonds. Government regulators who overlooked danger signs until they threatened the global financial system."

Each of these culprits is a real person who made stupid, risky, and/or criminal decisions. So the commission has forwarded names for criminal prosecution, although no one will say who or how many, since "these are very delicate matters" (forget that if you are arrested for any street crime, your name and photo will appear all over the media).

The commission "concludes that the crisis might have been prevented if banks had been more careful and regulators had asked tougher questions."

Yes, the economic crisis that has led to hundreds of thousands of lost jobs, millions of troubled mortgages, personal and business bankruptcies, trillions of dollars in financial losses, and really untold suffering by so many Americans, was preventable.


Corporate crime is preventable. If we get serious about it.

Interestingly, however, "the commission's six Democratic appointees embraced its conclusions. The four named by Republicans did not; they offered their own reasons for the crisis — and three complained that the conclusions from the panel were too broad."

For example: "One dissent by Republican commissioners blamed a global credit bubble fed by low interest rates. A separate lone dissent pointed a finger at policies that were intended to encourage homeownership. These included the government's support of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac."

My bet is that such partisanship will lead to literally no prosecutions, or few if we are lucky. And no one will ever really be held accountable for what they have done to our nation.

1 comment:

  1. I agree....there will probably never be any people/businesses held accountable for their actions. The rich, white men who make our laws are the people who are breaking them, but they hold the secret to getting out of almost everything- money and power. As we talked about in class, these two attributes account for their ability to make the media the way it is today, to make the laws benefit them the most, and also their ability to basically just do anything they please.
    As Americans, we cannot help but know about the economic crisis that we are in the midst of. However, if we could have a media outlet that was well-known and accurate to let us in on what is ACTUALLY happening, we would have a better chance of making things happen, of getting this nation back on it's feet and making us the powerhouse that we are known to be.