Monday, April 19, 2010


Two Drivers Asleep At The Wheel

It can't bear repeating too often. Despite the adage about defeat/failure being an orphan, the parentage of the recent economic collapse is clearly discernible:  The names are Bill Clinton and George W. Bush.  In addition to Clinton signing the legislation that overturned the Depression-era Glass-Steagall law that prevented commercial banks from getting into the investment business, it would appear that neither the SEC of "42" or "43" knew the difference between "oversight" and "overlook."  

Josh Marshall's TPM has the details on the SEC's inspector general report on the agency's handling of Texas billionaire Allen "Madoff of the Southwest" Stanford: 
"[T]he SEC's Fort Worth office was aware since 1997 that Robert Allen Stanford was likely operating a Ponzi scheme, having come to that conclusion a mere two years after Stanford Group Company ('SGC'), Stanford's investment adviser, registered with the SEC in 1995. We found that over the next 8 years, the SEC's Fort Worth Examination group conducted four examinations of Stanford's operations, finding in each examination that the CDs could not have been 'legitimate,' and that it was 'highly unlikely' that the returns Stanford claimed to generate could have been achieved with the purported conservative investment approach. 
"Over the next 8 years"!?!?!

Over two administrations, the Fort Worth office conducted these "investigations," and just concluded, nothing to see here, move along...Oversight, overlook? Same diff, right? 

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