Previously published on BillMoyers.com.
Attorney General Eric Holder's resignation last week reminds us of an infuriating fact: No banking executives have been criminally prosecuted for their role in causing the biggest financial disaster since the Great Depression.
"I blame Holder. I blame Timothy Geithner," veteran bank regulator William K. Black tells me this week. "But they are fulfilling administration policies. The problem definitely comes from the top. And remember, Obama wouldn't have been president but for the financial contribution of bankers."
And the rub? While large banks have been penalized for their role in the housing meltdown, the costs of those fines will be largely borne by shareholders and taxpayers as the banks write off the fines as the cost of doing business. And by and large these top executives got to keep their massive bonuses and compensation, despite the fallout.
But the story gets even more infuriating, the more Black lays bare the culture of corruption that led to the meltdown.
"The Clinton, Bush and Obama administrations all could have prevented [the financial meltdown]," Black tells me. And what's worse, Black -- who exposed the so-called Keating Five -- believes the next crisis is coming: "We have created the incentive structures that [are] going to produce a much larger disaster."
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