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De facto decriminalization

October 6, 2009 - Mike Maneval

William Black, who served as a banking regulator in the 1990s, is cutting Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner up, saying Geithner is "a disaster" who "has been wrong about everything in his career."

Black, in an interview with Newsweek magazine, was particularly pointed on Geithner's failure to understand his role as a regulator when Geithner headed the New York Federal Reserve and calling the Obama administration's approach to financial regulatory reform as "analytically bankrupt" and too wedded to the status quo. Black, who is now a professor of economics at the University of Missouri at Kansas City, also criticized Securities Exchange Commission Chairwoman Mary Shapiro and Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke as also too reliant on the pipe dream of self-regulation.

"When you screw up the regulatory process, you have, de facto, decriminalized these elite complex frauds," Black summarizes his criticism of tepid responses to the need for regulation by saying, after detailing how the FBI and other agencies were too understaffed to stay on top of investigations.



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