At least the reporters at McClatchy are noticing:
Running for re-election, President Barack Obama frequently blames Wall Street and the deep financial crisis it caused for the underperforming economy. He doesn’t advertise that no major honcho of finance has been jailed under his watch for the mess, however.
The lack of a high-profile arrest and trial is all the more surprising given that Obama has tried to stain his Republican rival, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, as a creature of Wall Street.
Past financial crises have always had antagonist. The savings and loan crisis of the late 1980s had banker Charles Keating. The CEO of collapsed energy trader Enron, Kenneth Lay, became the face behind a drive to revamp accounting laws in 2002. Both men were prosecuted for and convicted of financial crimes.
In the aftermath of the financial crisis of 2007-08 and the subsequent Great Recession, there’ve been plenty of scapegoats but no important actor fitted for pinstripes.
Why not? There’s no single compelling answer to that question.
“Some people (in regulatory agencies) believe that the folks at the Treasury and the Fed felt that pursuing chief executive officers would delay the economic recovery and continue to destabilize the financial system,” said John Coffee, a Columbia University law professor who frequently testifies before Congress on securities law. “They had that point of view. Whether they had any influence over the Department of Justice is very uncertain.”
Yeah, very uncertain.
The issue is not the influence of the Treasury Department over the Department of Justice.
Not prosecuting is the official policy of the President. His response to wrongdoing whenever someone connected (CIA torturers and Dick Cheney) or powerful (banksters) is to say that he will “look forward, not back.” (But he’s going balls to the wall prosecuting medical marijuana).
Whether Treasury has influence does not matter. This is the a directive from Potus.
As an aside, McClatchy was just about the only major US news org to treat the run up to Iraq with any skepticism.
What I want, and what a solid majority of Americans want, is some bankster heads on a pike.