Phi Beta Iota: With a tip of the hat to Rolling Stone and author Matt Taibbi, reproducing the entire article was the only way to show the emphasis added by Brother Chuck. Updated to add photo and observe that this particular article is rocketing around the Internet. See also our review of GRIFTOPIA.
UPDATE: Three comments from Facebook:
Robert Smith Socrates became disheartened. Machiavelli was on to something – power corrupts. I suspect that a true and totally transparent democracy of ideas and information are requisite groundwork for an enduring democracy.
Lynn Wheeler In the late 90s, got asked by NSCC (before they merged with DTC) to look at improving integrity of trading transactions (in part because had recently done something similar for payment transactions) … after putting some amount of work int…it was suspended. The comment was that a side-effect of improving the integrity would have also greatly increased transparency and visibility (which apparently is antithetical to trading culture … some x-over with recent RS article focusing on secrecy as a fraud-enabler).
Financial crooks brought down the world’s economy — but the feds are doing more to protect them than to prosecute them
Matt Taibbi. Rolling Stone, 16 February 2011
Over drinks at a bar on a dreary, snowy night in Washington this past month, a former Senate investigator laughed as he polished off his beer.
“Everything’s fucked up, and nobody goes to jail,” he said. “That’s your whole story right there. Hell, you don’t even have to write the rest of it. Just write that.”
“That’s right,” he said, signaling to the waitress for the check. “Everything’s fucked up, and nobody goes to jail. You can end the piece right there.”
Nobody goes to jail. This is the mantra of the financial-crisis era, one that saw virtually every major bank and financial company on Wall Street embroiled in obscene criminal scandals that impoverished millions and collectively destroyed hundreds of billions, in fact, trillions of dollars of the world’s wealth — and nobody went to jail. Nobody, that is, except Bernie Madoff, a flamboyant and pathological celebrity con artist, whose victims happened to be other rich and famous people.
This article appears in the March 3, 2011 issue of Rolling Stone. The issue is available now on newsstands and will appear in the online archive February 18.