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Forum Post: Why Goldman Sachs, Other Wall Street Titans Are Not Being Prosecuted

Posted 11 years ago on Aug. 14, 2012, 3:49 p.m. EST by Emalm (12)
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

The corruption in the Obama White House is too much.

The Justice Department's decision not to prosecute Goldman Sachs in a financial-fraud probe is another sign of the cronyism that has kept Attorney General Eric Holder from taking action against other big Wall Street firms, says Peter Schweizer.

by Peter Schweizer | August 14, 2012 4:45 AM EDT On Thursday the Department of Justice announced it will not prosecute Goldman Sachs or any of its employees in a financial-fraud probe.

The news is likely to raise the ire of the political left and right, both of which have highlighted one of the most inconvenient facts of Attorney General Eric Holder’s Justice Department: despite the Obama administration’s promises to clean up Wall Street in the wake of America’s worst financial crisis, there has not been a single criminal charge filed by the federal government against any top executive of the elite financial institutions.

Why is that? In a word: cronyism.

Take Goldman Sachs, for example. Thursday’s announcement that there will be no prosecutions should hardly come as a surprise. In 2008, Goldman Sachs employees were among Barack Obama’s top campaign contributors, giving a combined $1,013,091. Eric Holder’s former law firm, Covington & Burling, also counts Goldman Sachs as one of its clients. Furthermore, in April 2011, when the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations issued a scathing report detailing Goldman’s suspicious Abacus deal, several Goldman executives and their families began flooding Obama campaign coffers with donations, some giving the maximum $35,800.

That’s not to say Holder’s Justice Department hasn’t gone after any financial fraudsters. But the individuals the DOJ’s “Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force” has placed in its prosecutorial crosshairs seem shockingly small compared with the Wall Street titans the Obama administration promised to bring to justice.

Will bipartisan outrage boost the decibels in D.C. loud enough for Holder to hear and heed?

Consider the following small-time operators as listed on the Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force website:

• “Three Connecticut Women Charged with Overseeing ‘Gifting Tables’ Pyramid Scheme.” Three women in their 50s and 60s were indicted for conspiracy, tax, and wire-fraud charges. “These arrests should send a strong message to all who threaten the financial health of our communities,” one federal agent declared.

• In March, 2012, the DOJ sent a property appraiser in Washington, D.C., to the slammer for 65 months for fraudulently inflated prices in a scheme to “flip” properties. The scheme was a small-time $1 million operation, a sharp contrast with the billions on Wall Street.

• The DOJ’s “get tough” on financial crime strategy included sending two health-care software company executives to the clink for 13 and 15 years.

• A Florida resident was charged and sentenced to 14 months in federal prison for falsifying documents, thereby resulting in the obstruction of an SEC investigation.

• Five people in California were charged with bid-rigging foreclosure auctions. The individuals have been charged with violating the Sherman Act and could face up to 10 years in jail.

• Federal officials went after 10 people in Las Vegas because they tried to “fraudulently gain control of condominium homeowners’ associations in the Las Vegas area so that the HAOs would direct business to a certain law firm and construction company.”

• The owner of a Miami company got 46 months in prison for creating fake loan applications.

• Four people in Tacoma, Wash., were indicted for conspiracy that caused a small bank to fail. Their crime: making false statements on loan applications and to HUD.

To be sure, financial fraud of any kind is wrong and should be prosecuted. But locking up “pygmies” is hardly the kind of financial-fraud crackdown Americans expected in the wake of the largest financial crisis in U.S. history. Increasingly, there appear to be two sets of rules: one for the average citizen, and another for the connected cronies who rule the inside game.

That could be changing, as critiques of Eric Holder’s lack of financial prosecutions have now come from the political left and right; indeed, battling cronyism may represent one of the rare points of common ground in today’s fractious political environment. As progressive Richard Eskow of the Huffington Post recently wrote: “More and more Washington insiders are asking a question that was considered off-limits in the nation's capital just a few months ago: Who, exactly, is Attorney General Eric Holder representing? As scandal after scandal erupts on Wall Street, involving everything from global lending manipulation to cocaine and prostitution, more and more people are worrying about Holder's seeming inaction—or worse—in the face of mounting evidence.”

Will bipartisan outrage boost the decibels in D.C. loud enough for Holder to hear and heed? We’ll see. He’s got at least three months to get moving.



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[-] 1 points by Cocreator (306) 11 years ago

Citizens Audit Committee, Citizens Arrest Committee, Citizens Court, Citizens Body Politic..Simple Solutions and no more shills..

[-] 1 points by DouglasAdams (208) 11 years ago

Is anarchy an option? The political controversy today is over the economy, healthcare, taxes, jobs and national debt. The national debt is center stage because Republicans want to cut spending to balance the budget and spare future generation’s unsustainable taxation.

The new Republican Romney and Ryan duo have not yet mentioned anything about what they will do about fraud, deregulation, incompetence and corruption that has affected financial sector for over 40 years. They are blaming Obama for the unethical behavior at banks that led to the financial crisis under Bush and is continuing. Why aren't there audits of every agency in the federal, state, county and municipal government? Is the government too small?

The Congress approved Iraq and Afghanistan Wars, Medicare Drug Acts without raising taxes. This launched the United States on a spending spree that will be billed later. Wall St had provided credit for US expenditures, but Congress should have locked the doors to the Wall St casino when $2.3 trillion disappeared from the Pentagon in one year, 2001.

That Pentagon’s accounting failure is such a huge amount of money that it should have shut the government down immediately. How could our governments have been so easily distracted by jets flying into the WTC Twin Towers? Do you realize how much money $2.3 trillion is? If $700 billion TARP was needed to float the banking system in 2008. What would $2.3 trillion do if it is missing? Where could it have gone?

Let’s suppose the endemic government fraud, deregulation, incompetence and corruption are signals that anarchy has already taken over. That explains a lot. Except it is from the top down, not the bottom up. The 1% are among the anarchists and vice versa.

Max Keiser on Currency Wars Global Derivatives http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pSadYgsJ2rQ

Max Keiser on Too Big to Fail http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qiaax9GHFL0&list=PL57A38F2F2E292781&feature=view_all

Rumsfeld Announces $2.3 Trillion Missing


[-] 0 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 11 years ago

the system is "legally" rigged to favor private banks that get money from the fed at low interest and then lend money to the rest of us at higher interest

[-] 3 points by Emalm (12) 11 years ago

This is more than any legal rigging. This is people who broke the law and should be held accountable.

[-] 1 points by jrhirsch (4714) from Sun City, CA 11 years ago

It's the result of a flaw in the structure of our government. The Attorney General as part of the cabinet, should not be under the political influence of the Executive branch.

[-] 0 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 11 years ago

the legal rigging should be held accountable