Wall Street Wealth Addiction and National Leadership . . . To Where?

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This week we were treated to insight into extensive banking corruption as Wells Fargo fired thousands of employees for creating fictional client accounts and moving client money into such accounts, without permission.  The so-called “cross-selling” and opening of as many as 2,000,000 such accounts, some for non-existing clients, has resulted in the terminations of 5,300 employees — lower level employees, that is.  The CEO and other senior executives?  . . . . Bonused!

Too-Big-To-Fails

 

How’s this for denial:  “There was no incentive to do bad things.”

Those were the actual words of Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf.  No falling on his sword for this guy, . . . it’s the employees’ fault all 5,300 of them.  To give you a sense of how insignificant a slap on wrist Wells Fargo endured at the hands of its bought-and-paid-for regulators, it paid a $185 million fine, having paid Carrie Tolstedt, the executive running the at-fault division, $124.6 million in severance pay in July.  The fine is in effect no more than ‘crumbs’ relative to the $12 billion that division brought in during the second quarter.

The self-serving, deceptive culture that is permeating the mega-banks is frightening, but not more so than the mirroring narcissistic leadership in the Nation’s capital. This self-serving and deceptive leadership, which the too-big-to-fails have engendered in the White House and elsewhere in Congress, continues to feed its addiction to cheap money.  It has exploded its “assets” into the tens of trillions of dollars, just as the Nation’s debt touches $20 trillion.

The culture of wealth addiction was made so much worse when banking and investment houses, as well as control of The Fed, were agglomerated under the sovereignty of a very few, and the whole was provided unrestrained access to taxpayer pockets — taxpayer-subsidized debt and deposits. Presidents could be bought, and Congressmen who couldn’t be bought could be made to cower in fear.  We live in an age of financial “open-season” on the 99%er, the consumer, the average taxpayer.

As many of you know, there is a statute of limitation on bank fraud that affects financial institutions.  The statute is 10 years. 2017 will mark the end of a decade since the putative criminal activities took place bringing about the 2007-2008 financial crisis.  Senior bankers want a compliant Presidency to extend their protection beyond the time limited statute. It is time for pushback against this compliance.

Yes, many Americans who have made millions have earned them.  They may have been lucky, but they earned them.  Others, and too many in the banking industry it seems, have not earned them through innovation, or hard work, they earned them through deception, manipulation of the political system and exploitation of the banking system.

Retired Fed Chief Greenspan, now 90 years old and perhaps feeling that he’s too old to continue feeding nothing but crap to the masses, made a peculiar admission this week.  “It is the worst economic and political environment that I’ve ever been remotely related to. We’re not in a stable equilibrium,” he said. “I hope we can all find a way out because this is too great a country to be undermined, by how should I say it, crazies.”

The very fact that he called it the worst economic and political environment, suggests he is pointing the finger directly at the people who brought this insanity upon us — this Administration, this Congress, and the too-big-to-fails who bought them.

Greenspan complained about government expenditures, “Increased government spending on social security and healthcare are crowding out private investment and leading to slower economic growth” . . . again, who has been responsible? Who is he pointing at?  This Administration, this Congress, and the too-big-to-fails who bought them.

It is high time the “fly-over” population said, “ENOUGH”.

A constituent of the vast baby boomer generation with a career which has been fortunate to know the ponderous corporate worlds, as well as the intimately pressurized, and invigorating entrepreneurial domains of high tech and venture capital, I have harvested my share of mistakes meandering through corridors of enterprise from Silicon Valley, to London and endless, colourful, sometimes praetorian points in between. The voyage has provided an abundance of fodder for a pen yielding to an inquisitive keyboard, a foraging mind, and a passionate spirit. Whether political or business or social or economic or personal, is it not all political? It is a privilege to write, and an even greater privilege to be read by anyone, and sometimes with the wind at my back the writing may occasionally be legible. I do not write to invite scorn, nor to invite respect, but if I get really lucky the writing can stimulate thinking. I also write for the very selfish purpose of animating my own processes, and engaging the best of what life offers. Above all, whether biting fire or swatting shadows, I am grateful to be gifted the freedom to write and publish whatever flows down to the keyboard. To all those who enabled this freedom, and to all those standing guard to preserve it, I am indebted.

3 Responses to “Wall Street Wealth Addiction and National Leadership . . . To Where?”

  1. 1

    Skook

    author

    I listened to the reporting on this fiasco on the radio while driving. Why are employees, who often took money from accounts and opened new hidden accounts under investors’ names and with phony addresses, to escape detection, escaping prosecution? This involves billions of dollars, that people like me who are too tired or naive to keep track of the constant ebb and flow in accounts have lost to this scum. These people need to be serving time along with their supervisors who let this crap go on. I don’t bank with WF, but I have noticed how anxious clerks and junior bankers are to have you increase your connections with a bank. I will see my tax attorney in the morning and he will be earning some of his money by keeping track of these jackasses.

  2. 2

    James Raider

    author

    These people need to be serving time along with their supervisors who let this crap go on.

    Skook, as you know, the senior bankers Own this Administration and that includes the AGs. As we saw, Holder made sure the thieving bankers were protected, then he resigned and went to work for them. . . . . And the seals continue clapping.

    The extent of this Admin’s corruption is broader and more far reaching than any in history.

    The abuse continues everywhere, . . . eg.: Right now, there is gross manipulation going on in the Silver market. Are regulators slamming any heads? Not that we can see.

  3. 3

    Songbird

    I use Credit Care. You can get dental, eye, veterinary care for 0% interest if paid off in the allotted time otherwise 29% interest rates kick in. It works for me because I pay it off. The problem is they are Synchrony aka Wells Fargo is the creditor. I did not ask for one of their credit cards but they sent one to me. Now I need to see if I can get rid of it and keep the Credit Care. I don’t want this Wells Fargo card bloating up my credit ratio. I thought something shifty was going on when they did this.

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