April 1, 2013 - In the early days of his brilliant career as legal journalist and commentator, Anthony Lewis, who passed at age 85 on March 25, referred to a vision of the Supreme Court that served as his touchstone:
“[W]hen the channels of opinion and of peaceful persuasion are corrupted or clogged, these political correctives can no longer be relied on, and the democratic system is threatened at its most vital point. In that event, the Court, by intervening, restores the processes of democratic government; it does not disrupt them . . .”
March 11, 2013 - Within recent months, two media events captured the attention of many Americans: the premier of the Spielberg movie “Lincoln,” showcasing the 19th century federal government’s ability to end our nation’s crime against humanity; and, the airing of the PBS Frontline series “The Untouchables”, showcasing the inability of the twenty-first century federal government to prosecute those responsible for our nation’s largest financial crime spree.
Now, the public watches mindless budgetary slashing of federal regulatory agencies – already underfunded and understaffed – charged with enforcing civil and voting rights and financial laws. And this “sequestration” proceeds at a time of widespread attempts to suppress people of color’s ability to cast ballots in federal elections, and financial fraud and abuse robbing and cutting the savings and assets of tens of millions of Americans.
August 28, 2012 - Many wonder why Federal regulatory precincts are so quiet several weeks following discovery that the London Interbank Offered Rate (LIBOR) had been rigged for years to benefit a handful of the world’s largest banks. Experts estimate damages to the economy can be measured in multiples of trillions of dollars. But, where are the expressions of horror and outrage, and other hot air emissions from the people’s elected representatives in Washington?
May 11, 2012 - Will Goldman or JPMorgan sell questionable Chinese stocks to Americans? Our story questions how American investors can legally protect themselves from spurious Chinese stocks sold to them by American banks.
April 4, 2012 - To-date, the presidential primaries have studiously avoided reference to the unfolding catastrophe brought to the American public just four years ago by the financial services industry. The political issues contested thus far bring to mind Hunter Thompson’s reporting of the 1972 election campaign: “This may be the year when we finally come face to face with ourselves; finally just lay back and say it — that we are really just a nation of 220 million used car salesmen with all the money we need to buy guns . . .”
(See: “Fear and Loathing: On the Campaign Trail, 1972,” by Hunter S. Thompson)
Nov. 11, 2011 - The spectacular fall and bankruptcy of Jon Corzine’s MF Global Holdings within clear sight of mostly inactive regulators reminds us that “the system is still far too vulnerable and the work of regulatory reform far from finished,” to quote a NEW YORK TIMES editorial on the subject. But, how to continue regulatory reform in a world in which one House of Congress is controlled by anti-regulatory zealots and existing regulators are too often afflicted by chronic DC/NY revolving door syndrome?
June 15, 2010 -- Economist Robert Kuttner, money managers, law professors and state securities regulators among those calling upon Congress to restore investor justice now.