This article is a revision of my previous article about Newsweek’s expose of possible corruption at the DOJ. When taken in conjunction with Peter Schweitzer’s article in Breitbart’s/Big Government it has merit and I want to reflect that here.
Not one top finance exec has been brought up on criminal charges since the economic collapse reports Newsweek, which explored the topic in an explosive inestigative piece [at least for Newsweek] – “Why Can’t Obama Bring Wall Street to Justice?” by Peter J. Boyer, reporter, and Peter Schweizer, contributing writer.
The one thing I do agree with the OWS about is the corrupt relationship between Wall Street and D.C.. Unfortuntely, this article spends some time leaning into class warfare with insinuations about Mitt Romney I could have done without and which were unnecessary. I don’t often like the opinions of Peter Boyer but Peter Schweizer is the contributing author from Breitbart who brings a interesting perspective.
Newsweek shouts from Obama’s Tower of Babel and anything they publish must be examined closely.
The Newsweek reporter wrote that financial-fraud prosecutions are down despite Obama’s tough talk about going after Wall Street. To paraphrase, the article said it will be easy to frame Romney as a Plutocrat and Republicans as pawns of the wealthy. They add that Obama’s federal prosecutions of healthcare and civil right’s fraud are way up. That could lead some readers to the conclusion that Obama is better than them.
For me, it leads to the conclusion that this is what the administration cares about as they pick and choose what they will prosecute.
Newsweek is unhappy with white-collar Holder and Goldman Sachs. The Holder piece is interesting because Peter Schweitzer, the contributing writer’s hand can be seen here.
Schweitzer is a Breitbart writer and had a piece out yesterday which was actually explosive, called, Unprecedented: Top DOJ officials were Obama bundlers With Wall Street Ties. Obama said Wall Street was responsible for the worst economic collapse since The Great Depression but his DOJ appointees, his fundraisers, are Wall Street guys. The one everyone knows about is Eric Holder who worked for Covington & Burling law firm representing Big Banks. I’ve already reported on him.
The other three listed by Schweitzer -
- Associate Attorney General Thomas Perrelli: a managing partner at Jenner and Block law firm, whose clients include Merrill Lynch, Perrelli stepped down from his number-three position at DOJ in March. A former member of Obama’s National Campaign Finance Committee, Perrelli bundled $500,000 in campaign contributions.
- Deputy Associate Attorney GeneralKarol Mason:Karol Mason of Alston & Bird previously chaired the firm’s public finance group. She also bundled $500,000 for Obama. Holder awarded her a “Distinguished Service Award” for her work at the Department of Justice. Now, after almost three years at the Department of Justice, she has returned to Alston & Bird to work on their real estate finance and capital markets group…Keep reading…
- Associate Attorney General Tony West: West was a partner at Morrison and Foerster law firm, whose clients include MF Global, Merrill Lynch, Morgan Stanley, and Bank of America. West was also co-chairman of Obama’s campaign and, according to the San Francisco Chronicle, “was instrumental in helping the candidate raise an estimated $65 million in California.” Formerly the head of the DOJ’s Civil Rights Division, West is now number three at the DOJ and bundled $500,000 for the president’s campaign.
The following information from the Newsweek article was posted by Reuters but the article elaborates -
Some who heard the president’s State of the Union speech thought they discerned a hidden purpose behind his new “special unit”–the Residential Mortgage-Backed Securities Working Group, as it would be called. The day before the president’s speech, state attorneys general from around the country met in Chicago with Justice officials to discuss a proposed national settlement with five major banks, including JPMorgan Chase and Bank of America, over questionable foreclosure practices. The administration was pushing the settlement, as were the banks. But a handful of attorneys general were resisting the settlement, believing it gave too much away to the banks–including protection from mortgage-related investigations that were still unfolding. These holdout state officials were supported by a coalition of activists, who argued that the banks would never make meaningful concessions–such as the reduction of principal on underwater mortgages–unless they faced the threat of investigation.
One of those activists, Mike Gecan, of the Industrial Areas Foundation, says he was disheartened when he heard Obama’s speech, and the news that New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman would be co-chairing the new “working group.” Schneiderman, who is in the tough-guy mold of his predecessors, Eliot Spitzer and Andrew Cuomo, had been a leader of the state holdouts; now, Gecan feared, Schneiderman had been co-opted by the Chicago Way. “I’m from Chicago, I’ve seen this game played my whole life,” he says.
We know how that worked out with a meaningless deal that is partly paid for by US!
Newsweek gets their digs in while pressuring the White House to put some head honchos on trial -
It may be, as the attorney general points out, that Wall Street was greedy, stupid, and immoral, without actually breaking any laws. But the powers of the Justice Department are immense, and a more aggressive prosecutor surely could have found cases to make. Black, the UMKC professor, says the conduct could well have violated federal fraud statutes–”securities fraud for false disclosures, wire and mail fraud for making false representations about the quality of the loans and derivatives they were selling, bank fraud for false representations to the regulators.”
If there is one thing Wall Street is not, it’s stupid and the stereotyping and generalizations are concerning. Are people incapable of saying “some on Wall St.” Not everyone on Wall Street is evil.
Newsweek might be right about the lack of aggressive prosecution, especially given the fact that Holder can be very aggressive when he chooses to be. Holder’s DOJ picks and chooses unfairly. Take a look at their refusal to prosecute the case against the Black Panthers or his refusal to uphold certain laws he doesn’t like.
The Newsweek article complains with feint indignation about Obama’s donations from Wall Street while insinuating that Romney is a liberal as they slide in a crack that Bain Capital employees are switching to Romney as a “friendly alternative to Obama.” They also get to say that Obama’s Wall Street donations are down which works with the Obama re-election 1% gibberish.
Through last fall, Obama had collected more donations from Wall Street than any of the Republican candidates; employees of Bain Capital donated more than twice as much to Obama as they did to Romney, who founded the firm. By this spring, however, resolution had come to the GOP contest, and Wall Street could see a friendly alternative to Obama. While most of Romney’s contributions so far come mainly from the financial sector, Obama’s donations from Wall Street have dropped sharply.
The Newsweek article is supposed to be an investigative piece but there is a lot of rehashing of public information with a whole lot of opinion. Newsweek wouldn’t know an investigation if Sherlock Holmes dropped on their heads. While I don’t like the class warfare slant of the Newsweek piece, it contains truisms which are better explained in Schweitzer’s article in Breitbart/Big Government. I applaud Peter Schweitzer for bringing some reality to Newsweek. Peter Boyer deserves credit for going where no man has gone before at Newsweek.
Read here: Daily Beast/Newsweek