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Guest Post: How White Collar Crime Became The "Business Model" Of Corporate/State America

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Submitted by Charles Hugh Smith from Of Two Minds

How White Collar Crime Became the "Business Model" of Corporate/State America

Today and tomorrow we publish an important essay by C.D., a correspondent in law enforcement.

White collar crime is now the "business model" of Corporate/State America. The Status Quo does not just incentivize pathological behavior, it is itself a pathological system. CHS

Let's start by identifying the different types of white collar crime (WCC). One is WCC involving individuals against companies (e.g. theft of property from a company) and the government (e.g. Medicare fraud) and the other is WCC of individuals within companies (e.g. MBS debacle) and the government (e.g. taking bribes to favor contractors) against people in our society.

The latter is typically punished and prosecuted less frequently or not as severely than the former for different reasons, one of which is the bias to protect the institution and sweep things under the rug. For instance, a person is allowed to resign, but they're not prosecuted, so that bad press doesn't come down on the institution or the supervisors of the criminal actor.

The last type of WCC is person against person (e.g. credit card number thefts) outside of any business or government entity. This last type is usually the domain of organized crime in its typical sense (i.e. the Mob, Mafia, etc.), but organized crime can also be part of the other categories, which is why they are pursued relentlessly by law enforcement agencies. However, some people may not include organized crime in the definition of WCC.

The difference between these types of WCC is who the crimes are committed against. If you commit a crime against the government, a business, especially a big business, or the moneyed classes, you're screwed (typically). For example, Madoff was prosecuted quickly and punished severely, because he largely ripped off rich people.

However, many of his victims were not victims in the truest sense, because they knew he was running a scam. They were just hoping that some other sucker was going to take the fall and not them. Many of the investors knew Madoff's returns were impossible in the absence of fraud. Contrast that with the bankers who, via their politically connected banks, ripped off numerous pension funds and homeowners through various scams and none of them have been prosecuted.

White collar crime is prevented first and foremost by adequate controls/procedures/policies within a company that are enforced by management and the board (That's assuming that they are not the origin of the criminal behavior). Companies do not often prioritize risk controls, because their focus is on making money and providing a service/making a good.

When an organization becomes extremely large, it is very difficult to adequately manage it to prevent problems (I find it funny that big CEOs often say they need their huge payouts because of all of their responsibility, but when something goes wrong, the come up with all sorts of excuses that remove the blame from themselves).

The next thing is implementing a well-thought out regulatory scheme that has an adequate number of competent regulators that are free to do their job with a minimal amount of political interference. The last thing needed is a criminal justice system that prosecutes and punishes white collar criminals as harshly as they do blue collar criminals.

In the case of crimes within the government, there are also needs to be adequate controls. Indeed, WCC in government is probably the most pernicious, as the actors can use the power of the government to cover up their crimes and prevent prosecution. The old adage, "Who guards the guardians?", comes to mind.

There are a number of cultural and governmental impediments to prosecuting WCCs. One of which is the corrupting influence of money to neuter regulations and to co-opt politically appointed regulators and prosecutors.

Another is perception. Wealth in our country is equated with royalty or a high station in society, so people have a hard time seeing the white collar criminal as the deviant that he is. People have a hard time wanting to punish someone who looks nice, has nice clothes, drives a nice car, lives in a good neighborhood, went to a prestigious school, belongs to exclusive clubs, etc. vs. someone who does not have those things. If you're poor in this country, that's almost a crime in and of itself to some people.

Conversely, rich people have all sorts of credibility, whether its deserved or not. Why should I listen to an actor about a topic that's not related to acting? Sure, he may have some interesting things to say, but he shouldn't be given automatic credibility on the subject and yet many people do just that. Romney became rich bankrupting companies and selling their assets and yet people look to him to "run our economy"? What politician can ever say that they can run an economy? The Soviets tried to do just that and look what happened to them.

Another reason WCCs may not be prosecuted is that individuals, organizations, governments, and even society at large may be vested in the criminal activity either wittingly or unwittingly. Let's take an example of a large company that is disposing of hazardous waste illegally. In this case, a powerful executive wants to make a name for himself as a cost cutter that improves the earnings per share of the company and decides that he will have his subordinates illegally burn the hazardous waste in kilns at the factory, rather than having it disposed of properly.

One day, a kiln blows up, because it's not meant to burn hazardous waste, and the explosion kills a worker. According to the law, there are a number of serious crimes that have been committed, but in this case, nobody, including the company, is prosecuted. Why? Vested interests.

So who are the vested interests?

1) The employees who did the burning or who knew of the burning. If they blew the whistle or refused to do it, they'd be fired or they may have thought that by doing the practice, they're helping the company to stay in business and thereby helping their fellow workers.
2) The managers and executives who got bonuses, stock options, perks, promotions, or just kept their jobs based upon the cost savings.
3) The board that received their fees and didn't ask too many questions.
4) The shareholders, including pension funds, who see their stock price and dividends go up.
5) The members of the community, including other businesses, who benefit by having a large company in their area.
6) The politicians who depend upon the company for campaign donations (bribes?), community services, employing their constituents, etc.
7) The customers of the company.
8) The press that depends on the company for advertising revenue.
9) The government itself that depends on the tax revenue that the company generates directly and indirectly (and in the case of banks, the selling of the debt on which the government depends to finance its spending).

All of these interests can bring pressure on the prosecutor(s), who then decides that it is the community interest to not prosecute and to push for a civil resolution. The executive who made the decision may be forced to resign or be fired, but that's it. Who knows, he may even get a nice severance package for his trouble.

What if the community is national or global in scale, because the corporation we're discussing is a multi-billion dollar conglomerate? Well, now we have systemic problems, because if this corporation can out-compete others by committing crimes, the others will join in to save themselves (and possibly make a lot of money in the meantime).

Undoubtedly, many of the actors will justify it to themselves by saying that "Everyone is doing it" or "It's just the culture." In the absence of a sound regulatory structure and serious criminal consequences, we will get a crime wave. It's inevitable. The risks have to outweigh the rewards of criminal behavior; it's not rocket science. (Copyright 2012 C.D.)

Tomorrow, Part 2: "White collar criminals in our big banks and corporations have turned otherwise legitimate businesses into vehicles to commit numerous crimes."

 

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Tue, 07/17/2012 - 12:47 | 2624686 Winston Churchill
Winston Churchill's picture

Or it just might be Holder ,whose law firm specialises in WCC

defence, rainmaking for later on.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 12:56 | 2624733 Precious
Precious's picture

Those godammed Russians and Chinese are so corrupt ...

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 15:14 | 2625315 DaveyJones
DaveyJones's picture

yes but I'm proud to say that our corruption uses more energy per transaction 

Wed, 08/01/2012 - 03:32 | 2667863 icetears
icetears's picture

this is the easiest approach. I really like it. I am sure that I will use it.

free games online

enjoy dress up


Tue, 07/17/2012 - 12:48 | 2624692 WhyDoesItHurtWh...
WhyDoesItHurtWhen iPee's picture

Rules and laws are for little people (muppets).

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 12:50 | 2624700 WhyDoesItHurtWh...
WhyDoesItHurtWhen iPee's picture

So are elections.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 12:53 | 2624715 WhyDoesItHurtWh...
WhyDoesItHurtWhen iPee's picture

and paying taxes.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:03 | 2624769 Precious
Precious's picture

The new dance jive of 2012 ... The Perp Walk.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:12 | 2624811 Nothing To See Here
Nothing To See Here's picture

and mutual funds

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 12:49 | 2624694 MsCreant
MsCreant's picture

"Romney became rich bankrupting companies and selling their assets"

He's perfect!

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 15:08 | 2625278 Dr. Acula
Dr. Acula's picture

Is this statement is referring to Bain Capital?

There's nothing wrong with liquidating a company and distributing its factors of production to others. Especially when the new owners can use those factors more efficiently than the former owners did.

 

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 15:21 | 2625333 DaveyJones
DaveyJones's picture

yes and recent evidence suggests that large capital / capitol is only interested in free and efficient markets

almost as much as disclosure

The only thing as bad as Obama is Romney

the gangrene has spread throughout the host

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 16:32 | 2625762 MsCreant
MsCreant's picture

Let me rewrite that for you so you follow me:

"There's nothing wrong with liquidating a country and distributing its factors of production to other countries. Especially when the new owners of the country can use those factors more efficiently than the former owners of the country did."

He's perfect I tell you, perfect!!!

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 17:53 | 2626080 DaveyJones
DaveyJones's picture

you mean there's a difference?

 how's the garden?

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 18:30 | 2626193 MsCreant
MsCreant's picture

No garden yet, drainage not resolved. We have been abandoned by 4 contractors now. We have one coming on the 30th. We shall see. The last one said the job was too big for him after he started it. He has handed me off to this one. I think it should work.

Hulk put out a link, Back to Eden. Very inspiring techniques being used there. I am planning on woodchipping my whole front yard.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 23:59 | 2626950 Hulk
Hulk's picture

Glad you had a chance to watch that !

Wed, 07/18/2012 - 00:36 | 2627031 MsCreant
MsCreant's picture

We really are helping each other here green one!

Wed, 07/18/2012 - 16:38 | 2629751 DaveyJones
DaveyJones's picture

holy cow, 4 contractors. Is the drainage problem related to the (new) terrain slope I was concerned about?

Back to Eden covers some classic permaculture truths that folks all over the earth are rediscovering by observing and duplicating nature - no till, natural elements as a rich deep compost and mulch layer for nutrient, animal and insect life and water conservation.   

Fukuoka is a true permaculture ground breaker

 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ft0ylk4sU5M 

Geoff Lawton does amazing amazing work as well all over the world but a lot in the middle east with water challenge

Is your wood chipping to create a mulch for a fertile base?

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 16:53 | 2625847 Grinder74
Grinder74's picture

Yeah, and the author's grasp of private equity is almost as robust as Obummer's.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 12:50 | 2624699 CrimsonAvenger
CrimsonAvenger's picture

I'm just so damned tired of it all, and failing to see the trigger that will force change. If someone had told me in 2008 that we'd still be humming right along halfway through 2012 I would have laughed, but here we are. I suspect my belief in imminent collapse is fueled by a distinct lack of imagination at the ways they can continue to keep the plates spinning.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:01 | 2624764 Doomer
Doomer's picture

Triggers, hmmm ... how about smaller checks from Uncle Sugar, or money worth less than the paper its printed on?

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:08 | 2624796 CrimsonAvenger
CrimsonAvenger's picture

I don't think it's either one of those. Why should there be smaller checks, if Bernanke can hold interest rates low and keep buying everything the Treasury issues? And we haven't revolted over inflation yet, even though we all know it's a LOT higher than they're saying it is.

If it comes, I think it has to come from outside - we have to lose reserve currency status. Unless someone takes the car keys away, we'll keep driving 100+MPH with no oil in the engine.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:05 | 2624780 pods
pods's picture

To use your analogy:

In 2008 the plates all fell in a heap.  But everyone in the audience decided to pretend the plates were still up there, spinning away. So the jester kept on pretend spinning pretend plates.

That is about where we are.

Our system right now depends on belief.  It is because of this that no fact will change the minds of the people. They have moved our modern economic society into the realm of belief.

When people live daily on belief, there is a great potential for LOTS of people to die.

pods

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:24 | 2624868 Monkeyfister
Monkeyfister's picture

I'm afraid that the trigger will be attached to a high-powered .308. The Wheels of Justice refuse to roll these bastards-- some muppet recently relieved of his wealth is going to take matters into their own hands one day, and start forcing the issue. The Banksters will be lining up to be imprisoned, for nothing more than the security aspect.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 14:32 | 2625119 jumbo maverick
jumbo maverick's picture

The trigger is the gun ownership issue. The ones in charge still don't know what to do about citizen gun ownership. They have done everything possible to make ownership illegal with one exception-mass door to door confiscation.
When you see that you know the trigger has been pulled. They will do it. They have no other choice and it is the final thing standing in their way.
I look for them to confiscate your local police firearms first. This will be the indicator that within a few days if not hours they will come for your guns.
I've already made my decision, no keyboard talk here, that when they come to my house I'm ready. I will stand for something.

They had better be afraid. I'm not. Not one bit.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 14:36 | 2625136 Whoa Dammit
Whoa Dammit's picture

The trigger will be high food prices (from the drought) combined with a bankrupted treasury (due to the high cost of wars). Same as it ever was throughout history.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 23:35 | 2626876 Arthur Borges
Arthur Borges's picture

Yep. Food stamps and welfare are just premiums government pays as insurance against rioting and revolution.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 12:51 | 2624704 MsCreant
MsCreant's picture

In all seriousness, I was telling my husband the other night I am sensing a shift out there on the net. There are more and more articles out discussing the fact that no one is being prosecuted, and why. I am not willing to say the tide will turn because of this, but there is more and more dismay being publicly expressed.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 12:58 | 2624741 GeneMarchbanks
GeneMarchbanks's picture

So you'll have a powwow about it for a couple of days at most and then move on to something else.

Of course, nothing will have been done but everyone will feel better about it and then everyone will resume their criminal day-to-day activity no questions asked.

 

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:03 | 2624768 LFMayor
LFMayor's picture

yeah, Gene, it's great work if you can get it.  Until one day when suddenly it isn't.  Louis 16, Ceascenau, Romanov, Benito.  Ask them how quick it can turn and bite you in the ass.

A quick study of history proves that something happens.  It might be long in coming, but it happens.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:10 | 2624805 GeneMarchbanks
GeneMarchbanks's picture

Alright, if you say so. Maybe we can discuss it presently, or next year it's no rush really.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:10 | 2624753 Widowmaker
Widowmaker's picture

You and your husband should go back about 2 years of Widowmaker's comments for some candid perspective  --  you aint' seen anything yet.

You have lived through the biggest fucking robbery of all time (still going balls to the walls strong), all the way to the oval office Inc., and it will cost Boomer kids/grandkids everything they will ever dream of with exactly zero recourse and nothing to fight for.

I'm sure you and your husband are proud on the sidelines waving little American flags.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:53 | 2624983 UGrev
UGrev's picture

which will make the only thing left worth blood.. to be free.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:00 | 2624754 LFMayor
LFMayor's picture

I agree, i've seen the sea change too.  Luckily it washes something better up, or gets enough people motivated to push and make a difference.

At least it's now being discussed openly, along with other formerly forbidden topics like "flash mobs" and "youth crime". 

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:12 | 2624812 LFMayor
LFMayor's picture

what, too soon?  Are flash mobs still make believe fairy tale creatures, like Eskimos?

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:22 | 2624822 MsCreant
MsCreant's picture

LMAO!!

Edit: It happened in my neighborhood. Several cars park on the street. Bunch of folks get out at the same time and start breaking glass and grabbing everywhere up and down the street. They grab crap, get back in their cars, and drive off in sperate directions. We had broken glass the whole length of the block, a sad and overwhelming mess. 

I heard later they made other stops on other streets.

Could have happened anywhere residential, anywhere, you couldn't stop it.

I believe in Flash mobs!

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:40 | 2624931 Optimusprime
Optimusprime's picture

"Folks"?  Black folks, perhaps?

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 14:02 | 2625021 TheFourthStooge-ing
TheFourthStooge-ing's picture

MsCreant said:

...I am sensing a shift out there on the net.

I am not willing to say the tide will turn because of this, but there is more and more dismay being publicly expressed.

I don't know if you've seen it yet, but Kunstler was saying something similar yesterday:

The word lamppost is popping up lately with alarming frequency in connection with the word banker in all kinds of respectable places, and I don't think this refers to, say, men in Armani suits searching for their car keys where the light is shining on the sidewalk after quaffing a few rare cuvee jeroboams of Louis Roederer Cristal. Rather, it seems to suggest a certain unease with the levers of jurisprudence in this republic of grifters, stooges, and bought-off lackeys.

http://kunstler.com/blog/2012/07/the-rising.html

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 14:39 | 2625114 HardAssets
HardAssets's picture

MsCreant - - - unfortunately ZH doesnt reflect the American public (though you may be in another country). At this website we're hit with example after example of massive, systemic criminal fraud. - - Ask most people about any of this, and they have no clue what youre talking about and seem to care even less. I'm no longer optimistic that enough people will 'wake up' to make a more immediate impact. But, there may be some unseen event out there that puts a crack in the confidence that holds the system together. Once people lose confidence in a currency, there can be a rapid transformation of attitude and everyone dumpng the currency as quickly as possible for real goods that might maintain some value. This is known as a 'crack up boom' and its all about confidence. At that point a helluva lot of people will figure things out. - - - The con men are trying to keep their game going as long as possible. People probably arent generally aware - down into their bones - that it all could come crashing down next week, - - or not.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 14:41 | 2625152 sgt_doom
sgt_doom's picture

One hops you are right, but look at the framing in this posting:

"How White Collar Crime Became..."

Problem:  The assumption that white collar crime wasn't always the model!

It's the same false assumption which states, why does America have to support dictators?

Because it is always preferred by the bank/oil cartel, and always has been --- far easier to commit murder and mass murder to steal others resources.

It is the same with people so glibly asking, why don't they legalize drugs?

Because drugs have a high profit margin along with securitized financial instruments, i.e., credit derivatives, etc.

Illegal drugs are untaxed, allow for endless money laundering opportunities, and by keeping them illegal, THEY optimize their profit cycle:  higher profits, use of drugs as currency in other profitable and amoral endeavors, and allows for the cheapest labor when they send those convicted drug users to their privatized prisons.

The simple way to change it would be to vote for an intelligent and moral candidate for the prez, such as Dr. Jill Stein of the Green Party --- but people are still self-deluding about Obama, and the morally-depraved will continue to support one of their own, no matter that he consistently stands before the American public falsely claiming that the Banksters committed no crimes (other than millions upon millionis of felonies, and a whole lot more).

 

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 15:49 | 2625370 DaveyJones
DaveyJones's picture

innevitable really as the corruption like debt grows exponentially.

I relate everything to my gardening now, mostly as a coping mechanism. It reminds me of a permaculture story out on the islands in the Puget Sound. Three brothers bought some neglected land and starting reviving its natural process. At some point, they had a huge infestatation of badgers(?) I think who were eating out a lot of the aquaculture. They were tempted to intervene but held back on principle and after a while and quite suddenly, the badgers were gone, well most of them. Eagles had spread the word and swooped in. Depite the often dispicable and "unnatural" practices of the human system, the larger system will win. It will be sudden and dramatic and not before a lot of damage. I just hope this site and others like it work like a nest in the taller trees, building shelter, skill and perception      

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 12:56 | 2624713 Doomer
Doomer's picture

"... so people have a hard time seeing the white collar criminal as the deviant that he is. People have a hard time wanting to punish someone who looks nice, has nice clothes, drives a nice car, lives in a good neighborhood, went to a prestigious school, belongs to exclusive clubs, etc. .."

Of course, the "people" you refer to are the deviants in attorneys general offices and political office that went to the same prestigious schools and belong to the same exclusive clubs (or wish they did).

Most Americans, I would venture, want to lock these criminals up.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 12:53 | 2624718 Widowmaker
Widowmaker's picture

Let me summarize:

White collar crime is another way to say socialized crime, or incorporated crime, and it fucking pays!  Hence the fucking business model of faggots in pinstripes.

Without enforcement there is no rule of law.

Eat your own ass, America, you earned it with record fucking bonuses for Collusion Inc!

 

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 12:59 | 2624735 SWRichmond
SWRichmond's picture

Yes Yes Yes.  This has been called "the conspiracy of interests."  No actual conspiracy required, no secret meetings or taps on the door to get in.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 12:58 | 2624737 steveo77
steveo77's picture

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2012/07/17/business-groups-criticize-obama-over-remarks-about-government-role-in-success/#ixzz20rIiarHb

 

Dabama words were not taken out of context.   He is an arrogant effen prick.

 

"If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen."

 

He said exactly that, and his meaning was clear.   All that business needs is a stable enough operating environment with gov involvement to ensure that the rule of law is executed.  

 

His context is “Big Gov” good, more big Gov more better. 

 

He doesn’t have to fit every definition of a socialist, and really I think all the labels these days are a big part of the smoke and mirrors.    Dabama can’t fix the economy, can’t encourage things to get better, by organic growth, because there are too many effen leeches sucking off the system….so he takes the shot he has to try to prop shit up by wasteful gov spending 

 

He talks of Hoover Dam type stuff (good infrastructure with long term benefits) yet NONE of the spending I have seen in recent years results in those type of good long term benefit infrastructure projects…just shovel ready projects, to shovel the taxypayers money like a temporary crack hit into wastefully spent projects.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:18 | 2624839 Bartanist
Bartanist's picture

Obama is a communist.

What he is saying is that your business and the benefits from it belong to everyone because everyone contributed to it. And, once he gets rid of greed and the need for (enslaving) money and those that keep us enslaved through money, by both government and the banks, I will be willing to listen to him. In the meantime, he is a lying fraud and deserves no respect. His actions speak much louder and much more honestly than his words.

Wed, 07/18/2012 - 00:16 | 2626999 Arthur Borges
Arthur Borges's picture

So far the President has been sending all the right signals to get Mr. Romney elected.

Collusion Inc.?

Maybe.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:18 | 2624842 NotApplicable
NotApplicable's picture

They built a really pretty sidewalk downtown here. All 500 feet of it! Complete with a billboard at either end telling us of how it's going to save us all.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:22 | 2624853 LFMayor
LFMayor's picture

it was the shoulders of the highway here.  about 7 miles of it.  Now it's smoother and better than the fucking road.  I keep wanting to drive on it instead.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 12:58 | 2624740 Colonel
Colonel's picture

"Undoubtedly, many of the actors will justify it to themselves by saying that "Everyone is doing it" or "It's just the culture..."

Or "It's the nature of the beast!" Blah,blah,blah excuses.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:24 | 2624870 NotApplicable
NotApplicable's picture

Realize though, that institutionalized crime displaces productive enterprises leaving them no room to operate a legitimate business.

Case in point: during the last housing boom, if you were an appraiser who wasn't willing to submit valuations within the bubble, choosing instead a longer term measure of appreciation, your phone stopped ringing.

So... what do you do when you too have a mortgage to meet, and a family to care for?

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 12:59 | 2624751 piceridu
piceridu's picture

If you robbed a 7/11 on Monday for $1,500 and get caught on Tuesday and you're punishment/fine is $50, why wouldn't you rob the 7/11 again on Thursday?

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:08 | 2624782 Widowmaker
Widowmaker's picture

"No one would ever see it coming!"

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:06 | 2624783 JohnKozac
JohnKozac's picture

wrong!

 

if you rob a 7-11 you get 2-5 years in jail.

 

If you rob $1.6 billion on Wall Street you get  nice place in Bermuda, a townhouse in Georgetown and a condo in West Side Manhattan.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 17:00 | 2625876 Grinder74
Grinder74's picture

Or if you're accused of robbing by the SEC, even though it is never proven, you just get to blow through your life savings and kids' college savings and then get forced into Chapter 13.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:10 | 2624806 Mad Max
Mad Max's picture

If you robbed a 7/11 on Monday for $1,500 and get caught on Tuesday and you're punishment/fine is $50, why wouldn't you rob the 7/11 again on Thursday?

Because you were robbing a bank instead.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:14 | 2624817 LFMayor
LFMayor's picture

or smoking the 1450 away that you still had?

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 14:46 | 2625178 sgt_doom
sgt_doom's picture

Stop making sense, piceridu!

And if you've got Niall Ferguson, Chris Hayes and Noam Chomsky in your pocket, going around saying that it's "the system" and a "culture encouraging such behavior" etc., etc., ad nauseum, they you'd be really set.

I can't believe I heard that poseur and fraudster Chris Hayes (and no, go back carefully and read everything he's written over the past 6 years, please) in an interview, acting as an apologist for that chronic liar, Fredric Mishkin, formerly deputy gov of the Fed, under Greenspan!!!

Un-frigging-believable!

If it's "the culture" at all those professional thieving, money laundering banksters, then what's the excuse for the Turkish-Bulgarian Mob, the Chinese Triads, the Russian Mob, the Bolivian Corporation, etc. etc.?

What a load of bullcrap!

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:00 | 2624758 apberusdisvet
apberusdisvet's picture

Holder's pardon of Mark Rich and his subsequent elevation as Chief US Law Enforcer is all you really needed to know about the morality of the Obama regime and the overall State of the Nation.  Turbo-Tax Timmie pales in comparison.  

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:03 | 2624771 wonderatitall
wonderatitall's picture

well if obama is right and who can refue him and not be a racist, then government is the cause of business and crime ...child abuse, rape and obama the criminal himselfness...

end the blue state facist model of slavery ...now

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 15:49 | 2625489 earleflorida
earleflorida's picture

all political appointments -- nothing to do with qualifications -- 

http://news.muckety.com/2011/06/07/counting-members-of-congress-whose-pa...

pathetic!

Ps. check out links at bottom of page [thy feudalism cometh by virtue of an non-abstaining vassal]

Sorry ...  link failed but inbox gets you there if interested :(

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:01 | 2624762 Piranhanoia
Piranhanoia's picture

settlement without admission of guilt or publicly released terms of the extortion clause.   A crime to hide the crime.  

As long as this is allowed, there will be no justice.  As long as our justice system allows this,  what can they expect?

we have a serious positive feedback loop for recidivism

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:01 | 2624763 falak pema
falak pema's picture

Don Corleone has been the other icon after Rockafella-Henry Ford.

In fact the militarist MIC adventures of USA, AFTER the WW2, fed the myth of white collar crime being patriotic and good american; aka Lucky Luciano in Italy  and Meyer Lansky in Cuba, and those CIA shills who set up the operations in Indochina then, with the Koumintang generals in the  Laotian golden triangle. The beginning of drugs/military machine that then linked up to Afghan popy fields  black morphine sludge being processed and sent on Air free America to Nam when R&R became a big game in 1965 surge. 

Morphine extraction methods [Archive] - Opiophile.org

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 14:48 | 2625195 sgt_doom
sgt_doom's picture

I believe, sir, you are referring to the Financial-Intelligence-Complex, set up during and in the aftermath of WWII.

 

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:03 | 2624772 JohnKozac
JohnKozac's picture

I have to return to school at night for the Executive MBA Fraud Degree. I hope they offer it online soon.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:04 | 2624773 OsirisIsABlackGod
OsirisIsABlackGod's picture

Doublepost, sorry

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:03 | 2624774 OsirisIsABlackGod
OsirisIsABlackGod's picture

I find it interesting that one of the predominant arguments for harsh prosecution of 'street' crimes (dopers, dealers, smugglers) is that their crimes have a negative economic impact which undermines societal fabric or whatnot, but when compared to estimates of WCC its peanuts. We have created a paradigm where crimes of subsistance are treated far worse (and actually prosecuted) compared to corporate crime, where prison rape is common and accepted, and the biggest criminals are the ones in charge. They target poor minorities while trying to turn society into a panopticon, and at the same time the real crimes by any objective definition are being commited 'on our behalf'. How is 30 years in prison for dealing (nonviolently, may I add) cocaine fair, and yet we drop hellfire missiles into residential areas and give people medals for it.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:09 | 2624800 LFMayor
LFMayor's picture

well if cocaine is so harmless and good why aren't you buying it for your kids, or giving it to your little nieces and nephews for Christmas?  You know, helping those poor mistreated dealers subsist and such.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:22 | 2624852 AnAnonymous
AnAnonymous's picture

Well said. Cocaine is lethaler than receiving a hellfire missile on your head.

Signed: an american.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:25 | 2624877 LFMayor
LFMayor's picture

now now. We know that you're pre-disposed to opium instead of cocaine.  Shorter supply lines notwithstanding, it's what got you the cushy computer job via the monkey-eye genetics passed down from grandma.  Who wouldn't have loved Sayrorman longtime if gramps could have gotten out of the opium den for a job.

We know dope is poison.  We watched the Yurp powers spoon feed it to you.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 14:07 | 2625040 TheFourthStooge-ing
TheFourthStooge-ing's picture

AnAnonymous bleated:

Well said. Cocaine is lethaler than receiving a hellfire missile on your head.

Your hypocricy grows tiresome. Go back to humping your yak.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 15:17 | 2625317 akak
akak's picture

 

Go back to humping your yak.

Not a problem --- as everyone knows, once you go yak you never go back.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 15:36 | 2625449 MsCreant
MsCreant's picture

http://shanghaiist.com/2012/07/12/off_the_beaten_palate_yak_penis.php

The "longest" meal

Ba Guo Bu Yi's yak penis comes sliced and swimming in a hollowed-out melon with chili oil and melon hunks (188RMB). You pluck out the segments, which are curled up into the shape of ninja stars due to their contact with the chili broth, and gobble.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 15:01 | 2625241 Dr. Acula
Dr. Acula's picture

>I find it interesting that one of the predominant arguments for harsh prosecution of 'street' crimes (dopers, dealers, smugglers) is that their crimes have a negative economic impact which undermines societal fabric

Actually, drug prosecutions greatly increase the costs of drug manufacturing and hence raise the prices of the drugs. This encourages the addicts to commit serious crimes, e.g. robbery, in order to acquire the drug. Quality control is disorganized and poor; consumers must rely on word of mouth or resort to underground test kits to avoid adulterants or low-quality drugs. Also, due to the "iron law of prohibition", entrepeneurs reduce their costs by switching to inferior and more dangerous drugs, e.g. meth.

 

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:08 | 2624798 Bartanist
Bartanist's picture

In the larger and yet smaller scheme of things, each of us is supposedly brought into this world with an innate moral compass that allows us to know right from wrong, good from evil, service to self versus service to others, etc. Mostly our innate moral compass is verified by the observed effect of our actions on others.

Depending on the influences upon us (it is easy to judge not understanding the influences on others) we all rationalize our actions and some very extremely. For example, there is a train of thought (one positted by people such as Cheney) that "man is inherenetly evil" ... or by others that "evil Lucifer" is too powerful to resist ... how convenient if one is committing evil acts! By claiming all men are inherently evil or that someone else is too powerful to resist, one has just given himself a free pass on pretty much everything, while at the same time, maybe inadvertantly, surrendering one's free will (maybe our most valuable possession ... it is not something to be surrendered lightly, if at all.).

... and so on to the lesser rationalizations, such as: "everyone is doing it" ... even while at the same time, internally it feels wrong.

IMO, WCC is simply a manifestation of the human condition swayed by influences that are trying their best to corrupt us and keep us from doing the opposite of the easy and immoral. We are flooded with "greed is good", "sex is the ultimate", "violence is exciting" and "power is to be achieved at any cost". And, why is this? Why are we constantly measured against out lowest possible animalistic attributes.

Is it a test, like a final exam? Is it a learning exercise that everyone must undergo?

And yet, nothing is as it seems and the not-so-carefully crafted veneer falls away upon even rudimentary inspection. Unfortunately people are too busy getting rich, getting laid  or bemoaning their condition to notice.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:14 | 2624821 Benjamin Glutton
Benjamin Glutton's picture

The closer you are to the FED RES money supply the more likely your criminal actions are to have been redefined within the purview of some private regulatory agency.

you do realize most of the financial regulatory alphabet soup are little more than PRIVATE entities devoid of  theoretically impartial government employees...yet the little people are regulated by officers of the court with real guns.

Do you think it's an accident or skill that has wages on Wall Street and NY,NY obscenely high? hilarious!!! Treat those closest to you with dignity or they may turn on you,imo.

 

encore....

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:16 | 2624832 ItsDanger
ItsDanger's picture

Problem is actually that most of the lawmakers and people throughout the legal system are in over their heads trying to understand the financial world at all.  How do you create new laws or prosecute effectively when you dont understand derivatives?   Need to fix that first.  Now, the other angles are more difficult and pervasive in the overall system but thats going to take a major downturn.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:18 | 2624840 Monkeyfister
Monkeyfister's picture

File RICO charges on every man and woman working in Wall Street-- from the Intern in the mailroom, to the Suits in the offices suites. This culture of complete unaccountabilty must stop, or soon enough, those muppets who have had their fortunes stolen by the likes of MF Global and Peregrin are going to start hunting the bastards down in the streets.

There will be much rejoicing.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:24 | 2624847 PulpCutter
PulpCutter's picture

The problem is that the GOP - and in particular the new Tea Party caucus - vote against any regulation of the "financial services" industry and, in particular, slash any funding for the WallSt regulators and prosecutors.  Every time there are budget crunch negotiations, the FIRST item on the table, for the Tea Party caucus, is to cut funding for the WallSt prosecutors some more. 

It started with Bush moving the bulk of the FBI financial services investigations personnel over to 'counter-terrorism', after 9/11.

The laws are meaningless, if there's no one to enforce them.  A handful of government lawyers against the legal staffs of G-S, JPM, etc..

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:55 | 2624994 Tortuga
Tortuga's picture

Man, haven't you heard of Dodd-Frank? Tarp. Sarbanes-Oxley. Goldmansacks, OSHA, EPA, DEA, FED, SOROS PACS, ROVE PACS, UNION PACS. Both parties suck and are on the K street tit.

God Bless America and RICO all banksters, their ho politicians and IMPEACH that liar, Eric Holder.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:21 | 2624850 PMakoi
PMakoi's picture

Greed is psychopathic and justification is another layer of egocentric behavior.  Criminals aren't all "masterminds", but the best of them seem to be.  How can the average guy expect to fight that??  Timothy Leary was probably right, "turn on, tune in, and drop out".

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:23 | 2624859 AnAnonymous
AnAnonymous's picture

Greed is psychopathic

_________________________

Greed is american.

Signed: an American.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 14:17 | 2625072 TheFourthStooge-ing
TheFourthStooge-ing's picture

AnAnonymous, phoning it in, said:

Greed is american.

Signed: an American.

You're not even trying, AnAnon. Even for you, this is a pretty lame effort.

Here it is Tuesday, and you still haven't recovered from your weekend opium binge.

When I see you floating down the gutter I'll give you a bottle of wine.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 15:24 | 2625369 akak
akak's picture

Psychotic and bigoted babbling is AnAnonymousian.

Signed: AnAnonymous

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 15:26 | 2625381 akak
akak's picture

Flagrant douchebaggery is very AnAnonymousian.

Signed: AnAnonymous

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 14:32 | 2625110 Dr. Acula
Dr. Acula's picture

>Greed is psychopathic

No. Greed is an integral part of being human. Even an ascetic who gives up material comforts will greedily seek spiritual experiences and progress.

>justification is another layer of egocentric behavior.

Justifications can be sound, even if they are egocentric.

>Criminals aren't all "masterminds", but the best of them seem to be.

A person with a healthy mind wouldn't act in logically unjustifiable ways. Criminality is surely a defect.

 

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:30 | 2624897 Joaquin Menendez
Joaquin Menendez's picture

In 1974 then governor Ronald Reagan closed the U.C. Berkeley school of criminology while I was a student.  This particular criminology school was famous all over the world and focused on the enforcement of criminal laws concerning white collar crime at the corporate level.  This was not a budget fix.  It should not be a mystery to anyone why, as president, he deregulated the financial industry setting the stage for the current fiasco.  

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:50 | 2624977 Tortuga
Tortuga's picture

The Democrians could have put it back in the last 30 years they have been in control? Yes.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 14:08 | 2625044 Joaquin Menendez
Joaquin Menendez's picture

That event taught me a big-big lesson.  The students reacted very strongly to the closing with massive occupations including the Dean's office.  The riot police were called out but strangely the event was reported as "student unrest" only in all the print media and TV.  The Democrats were completely silent.  NPR did not report what was going on.  I knew, even back then, that both parties were subjugated by the same criminal organizations that, even back then, had a stranglehold on the media.  

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:31 | 2624902 Harrison
Harrison's picture

It's not just high finance, it's fucking everything nowadays. From Comcast refusing to disconnect service to AT&T charging small amounts marked as "taxes" to customers' accounts and pocketing the change to those cocksuckers at TCF Bank ("the customer's fucked!") allowing fraudulent charges against my account.

Hell, my waiter at dinner a few nights ago put an extra charge on my bill (and prompty lost his tip, and I'm going to call my credit card company tomorrow to make sure he didn't try scamming me a second time).

Even more than Obamacare, it's why I'm leaving the country by the end of the year. Where I'm going back to isn't pleasant by any means, but at least businesses aren't constantly trying to screw customers at every turn to pad their margins.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:49 | 2624972 Tortuga
Tortuga's picture

Are you my doppelganger?

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:45 | 2624926 Dr. Acula
Dr. Acula's picture

>individuals, organizations, governments, and even society at large may be vested in the criminal activity either wittingly or unwittingly

One man mugging you at knifepoint on the street is criminal. Likewise, one million people voting to take your property is also criminal.

Our society is steeped in criminal activity, e.g. taxation, fractional reserve banking, and intellectual "property". Meanwhile, innocent activities like blackmail, prostitution, pharmaceutical entrepeneurship, and insider trading are considered "crimes" (see Block's "Defending the Undefendable").

 

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 14:22 | 2625087 toomanyfakecons...
toomanyfakeconservatives's picture

Read it the day it was published. Pot peddlers spend decades in jail while pharamaceutical executives and FDA pencil pushers approve, without consequence, drugs tha kill over 100,000 Americans annually.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:43 | 2624945 aleph0
aleph0's picture

@CHS ... well said.

I'm surprised you didn't mention the "war machine industry"  which is IMO the best example of your list "So who are the vested interests?"

 

 

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:43 | 2624952 bagehot99
bagehot99's picture

Romney didn't get rich bankrupting companies. Nobody gets rich that way unless they are engaged in wholesale fraud and embezzlement like John Corzine or Bernie Maddoff.

Romney got rich buying low and selling high, which is the ONLY way to do it.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 13:47 | 2624963 Tortuga
Tortuga's picture

"may be vested in the criminal activity either wittingly or unwittingly."

You, You, you waffler. No place on the short list for Romney's VP for you.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 14:23 | 2625088 q99x2
q99x2's picture

Max says this all you need: Series 7 License

And you are dumb if you complain about being poor without first giving it a go.

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 14:25 | 2625095 toomanyfakecons...
toomanyfakeconservatives's picture

The crime spree will be coming to an end soon. The MASS ARRESTS of everybody from Brenanke and Obama on down, and the virtual dissolution of the Federal government is coming! http://tinyurl.com/cd5cyjo/

Tue, 07/17/2012 - 16:12 | 2625660 HardAssets
HardAssets's picture

What was that story ?  I'm sure many of you have heard it. It may have been about Alexander the Great, or maybe not:

A pirate was brought up for judgement before the great king. He had robbed, burned, and pillaged throughout the area, burning many vessels & towns and killed many people . He was sentenced to be executed, but was able to give his last words beforehand:

"I do what I've done with a single ship . . . and you call me a pirate."

"You do what I did with a fleet of ships . . . and they call you a king."

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