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The Lucrative Revolving Door Between Washington and Wall Street --- At What Cost to Ourselves and Our Economy?

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What follows here is a synopsis of a recent discussion between Bill Moyers and Matt Taibbi.  


This week, two United States senators insisted that the Justice Department come clean:   Why are Wall Street's big banks not only too big to fail but too big to jail?   Senators Sherrod Brown of Ohio, a Democrat, and Chuck Grassley of Iowa, a Republican, are outraged that the giant banks violate the law with impunity -- laundering money, cheating homeowners, falsifying information -- every trick in the book.   So they sent a letter to Attorney General Eric Holder demanding to know why the banksters get away with fines instead of jail time.


Maybe they had their anger roiled by "Frontline's" recent report called "The Untouchables."   It described how the Department of Justice has looked the other way for fear that prosecuting the banksters would do even more damage to the American economy than their banks have already done to it.


ELIOT SPITZER:   Justice backed off.


NARRATOR:   Did the government fail?


MARTIN SMITH:   A number of people told us that you, Lanny Breuer, didn't make this a top priority.


LANNY BREUER:   Well I'm sorry they think that because I made it an incredibly top priority.


That's Lanny Breuer the former assistant attorney general in charge of the criminal division at the Justice Department.   A week after the Frontline report, he left his post and is now expected to return to private corporate practice -- one more government appointee passing through the lucrative revolving door between Washington and Wall Street.   And listen to this astounding "admission" by Mr. Breuer in which "he" confesses that his lucrative career would be over if he ever prosecuted any of the top people on Wall Street.   I'm almost certain there was, in this video clip, a faked voice-over that was substituted for Mr. Breuer's actual remarks, especially in consideration of his mention of how many asses he has kissed and how many fellow Americans he has "screwed" by way of his actions or lack thereof.   But if Breuer were ever to tell the truth, I'm sure that what he would say would not be much different from what you hear "him' say in this video clip.


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Several years after receiving my M.A. in social science (interdisciplinary studies) I was an instructor at S.F. State University for a year, but then went back to designing automated machinery, and then tech writing, in Silicon Valley. I've (more...)

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