NEIL BAROFSKY is sounding off beyond his new book Bailout and creating a media firestorm along the way. It’s a very good thing.
Barofsky was a former federal prosecutor who became the special inspector general for TARP. He was appointed under Pres. Bush, then Obama kept him on.
He’s run into wall after wall inside government, because his idea of what needs to happen versus the cozy cronyism that keeps people in their government jobs or climbing the Wall Street ladder collided.
Government officials, he says, eagerly served Wall Street interests at the public’s expense, and regulators were captured by the very industry they were supposed to be regulating. He says he was warned about being too aggressive in his work, lest he jeopardize his future career. – Into the Bailout Buzz Saw
More from the an interview with financial writer wizard Gretchen Morgenson, from the end of July:
“So much of what’s wrong with Dodd-Frank is it trusts the regulators to be completely immune to the corrupting influences of the banks,” he said in the interview. “That’s so unrealistic. Congress has to take a meat cleaver to these banks and not trust regulators to do the job with a scalpel.”
Finally, Mr. Barofsky joins the ranks of those who believe that another crisis is likely because of the failed response to this one. “Incentives are baked into the system to take advantage of it for short-term profit,” he said. “The incentives are to cheat, and cheating is profitable because there are no consequences.”
Despite all of this, Mr. Barofsky ends on something of a positive note. Meaningful changes to our broken system may finally come about, he writes, if enough people get angry. His conclusion is this: “Only with this appropriate and justified rage can we sow the seeds for the types of reform that will one day break our system free from the corrupting grasp of the megabanks.”
The second video below gives you an idea of what’s going on in Washington and inside the big two political parties. It’s yet another example of why I question the idealistic notion that this is a country by and for the people anymore, asking at the top of this site “We the People?”
We simply don’t own our country anymore and neither electing Obama or Romney will change that fact.
The more troublesome question, with no pleasant or easy answer, is what can be done about it?