Economics and Finance: THEFT AS A LEGAL PROFESSION

You know, it’s a stunning Vancouver Fall day today. Just perfect. And I am not personally—at least at this precise moment—affected in full as so many others are, by the so-called economic crisis. So while houses are foreclosed in the millions on families all over the States, and the dollar loses more and more value, and work hours per family unit continue to increase over the decades, as does debt in general, my thoughts are simply armchair thoughts. Quality of life in Canada, for so many—not all—remains, in comparison to most of the world, shockingly high. To be born here, into my family, is profound and inexplicable good fortune.

In the previous blog, I wrote:

And I would like to be more bold than usual. Is it not literally criminal that the group of leaders around the Federal Reserves (the main one and off-shoots (Geitner, NY Fed)) and companies leaders from Goldman Sachs are not at least brought up on charges (and some are, in different places) in the name of certain legal terms like fraud, negligence, malfeasance, theft and so on?

Here’s a little back up from an economist—I know, I know, breaking my own rule (as to where the Left goes wrong, getting the government they decry and detest to impose regulations) in a different way: Don’t get a broken profession (economics) to back your economic theory. Nonetheless, Laurence J. Kotlikoff, professor of economics writes:

Whether or not Goldman is innocent, fraud in the industry didn’t arise because banks were too large, too leveraged or too interconnected, although this greatly exacerbated the financial fallout and this needs to be fixed.

The fraud arose because large parts of the finance business decided to make money the old fashioned way: by stealing it. When you issue liar mortgages, rate CCC assets as AAA, insure the uninsurable, pay yourself massive and fully undeserved bonuses, shop for compliant regulators, and bribe politicians to change rules—that’s theft, plain and simple.

I don’t have a full answer myself, to be sure, but I don’t fully agree with Kotlikoff, either. The system appears to allow for or at least encourages this massive and unrelenting thievery—perhaps it’s the nature of the monetary system, the endless printing of money, or access to manipulation for those elite ‘club’ members, or deregulation and all the things Kotlikoff said, or certain kinds of regulations on a diseased situation, all combined with human nature, or something deeper, I don’t know. The article is here.

Here’s to wisdom, wherever it may be found,

Pete

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One Response to “Economics and Finance: THEFT AS A LEGAL PROFESSION”

  1. philip mccormack says:

    Petesy, Not long ago you said if they did not know what they were doing, how come my Dad did-years ago? Now you know-THEY JUST LIED-and carried on a system of fraud that has and will continue to remove the savings, pensions and capital of the working class. It will get worse, fiat money will be revalued (stolen) world-wide in the not too distant future. Love Dad. Your other article on Inside Job FILM was on the money-I hope it’s not fiat.
    Love Dad.

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