The ongoing thievery in the banking, insurance and real estate industry has ripped the heart out of the economy. As the result of organized financial crime in the financial services and real estate industry, Americans have lost billions of dollars in real estate equity, retirement accounts and investment equity.
An overly friendly regulatory system allowed banks to "leverage", or lend the same funds over and over, leveraging money to impossible heights. Some banks leveraged a dollar up to 20 times or more, and when the system finally crashed, the domino effect reverberated across the board, from banking, to real estate, to investment planning and beyond. No industry is untouched, no city unscathed.
Aided, abetted, and possibly mousetrapped by untold numbers of quantative analysts, "AKA" quants, many of whom are Chinese nationals, the financial services industry created thousands of new investment vehicles in uncharted waters. Now, after the mathematical models of these mystery meat and secret sauce investment vehicles have been found to be tainted, the world's financial system continues to reel from the effects of this financial food poisoning.
Everybody's blaming everyone else. The Republicans blame regulation. The Democrats say there wasn't enough regulation. Industry analysts blame faulty mathematics, and the investors, employees and taxpayers want to put behinds behind bars.
Funny thing. For all of the trillions of dollars in equity and real estate value that was lost, for all of the evidence of collusion, corruption, conspiracy, theft, forgery, document deception and other asserted criminal acts, few have gone to jail.
As one observer of the American condition once said, "The best way to rob a bank is to own one." And, indeed, the insiders have been busy carting off the loot as fast as their fingers could offshore the funds.
The only thing that keeps any currency afloat is the faith of the people using it. This is why many banks and financial institutions don't prosecute the inside thieves and crooks. If people knew the extent of insider fraud and thievery in the credit card industry, in banking, real estate, they'd be up in arms.
Even worse: they would lose faith in the system, and that, we just can't afford. After all, the "dollar" or any other currency is only as valuable as people believe it to be. When we lose faith in the system, the value of the currency drops as well.
Which brings us back to the current situation: just what is it going to take to "get America up and running again?"
There are so many places that these unindicted financial felons infest these days, that we'd need an entire army of financial investigators and prosecutors to ferret them out and send their brethren up the river. Getting rid of them, or at least putting them in a regulatory cage would go a long way to shore up our financial foundations.
While the nation's attention is diverted by the shennanigans on Wall Street, an equally important band of financial miscreants continues along their merry way in the nation's agriculture loan industry. Billions of dollars in land, equipment, livestock and crops continues to be stolen, misappropriated, diverted, or even destroyed, by agencies which are rarely audited, even though billions of dollars in agricultural equipment, livestock and loans passes through their hands.
Long before the current financial crash, the seeds for the financial misappropriation had already sprouted in the nation's farm loan bureaucracy. Aided and abetted by a policy to weed out small-scale farmers, through the manipulation of the loan process,a policy begun in 1972, (see Congressional Record,"Young Executives Plan to Liquidate Farmers," 6-16-1972-6-26-1972), small scale bureaucrats found a nice niche manipulating bureaucratic policy and sometimes fattening their wallets.
Under the guise of making the nation's food supply more "efficient", the Plan laid the foundation for a scheme of driving more than 2 million small farmers out of business by 2000. The plan created a hostile atmosphere, and generated a fertile environment for illegal methods to drive family farmers out of business and has succeded beyond its wildest dreams.
Some call it genocide
With its bias toward corporate farming, the Report said its investigation included, "establishnments that cannot reasonably be called farms and are inconsistent with the Department's farm income mission." (Ibid)