Absolute power corrupts absolutely, and in a world where the gap between the powerful and powerless grows wider each day, corruption in political and economic institutions spreads much faster than shame.
I'm all for cracking down on political corruption and the insidious ways in which money subverts our democracy. But even within this category of wrongdoing I can think of plenty of bigger fish to fry than John Edwards.
When bankers think they can get away with rampant fraud and get paid very well to do it, they'll do it. Robert Rubin's best defense is that he really isn't all that bright -- he's either an idiot or a criminal.
Wachovia Bank is accused of laundering $380 billion in Mexican drug cartel money, and is expected to emerge with a slap on the wrist thanks to a government policy which protects megabanks from criminal charges.
Will Goldman survive the assault? Will the threat of criminal charges being pursued against the world's leading investment bank spill over onto others on Wall Street? Is the criminalization of the crisis underway, or is all this just a maneuver?