... but "but" should be in CAPS. Like this, "BUT"
Because fraud is a crime BUT ...
* it is worse than theft, because it is a form of theft that tends to be committed by people who already have money, and usually lots of it ...
* it involves two wrongs rather than one (theft PLUS deceit or trickery)
* yet, it is rarely prosecuted by the US government, especially when it is committed by the powerful.
Case in point, from CNN today:
"The Department of Justice announced a civil lawsuit on Tuesday alleging that Bank of America defrauded buyers of mortgage-backed securities by lying about the quality of the home loans involved. The Securities and Exchange Commission also announced a parallel case."
Yes, Bank of America is alleged to have committed widespread fraud against the American people.
The same Bank of America that played a large role in the collapse of the US economy.
From the article:
"Bank of America's reckless and fraudulent origination and securitization practices in the lead-up to the financial crisis caused significant losses to investors," Anne Tompkins, the U.S. Attorney in the Western District of North Carolina, said in a statement. "Now, Bank of America will have to face the consequences of its actions."
Face the consequences? So people are going to prison, right?
Nope, they are being sued, in a civil court. Which means the company will work out a deal, pay a fine, and admit no wrongdoing. Sound like facing the consequences of its actions?
Which brings us back to the beginning of this post. Fraud is a crime. A violation of the criminal law. So how come no one is being arrested, prosecuted, and sent to prison?
The alleged harm caused? $100 million!!!
According to the FBI, the average bank robber, when successful (rarely), gains about $4,000.
Bank of America thus caused the equivalent of 25,000 bank robberies. Twenty-five thousand bank robberies!
And no one from the bank faces prison time. Even though the average bank robber will spend years in prison.
Does the media report this? Nope. Not even on CNN, which to its credit, is covering the case.
All this reminds me of a joke: How come rich people don't rob banks?
They own the banks.