Home > Fande = Fact & Evidence, The Economy > Raping and Pillaging the Wall Street Way (metaphorically speaking)

Raping and Pillaging the Wall Street Way (metaphorically speaking)

Looting Main Street

How the nation’s biggest banks are ripping off American cities with the same predatory deals that brought down Greece

MATT TAIBBI

Posted Mar 31, 2010 8:15 AM

EXCERPT:

The destruction of Jefferson County reveals the basic battle plan of these modern barbarians, the way that banks like JP Morgan and Goldman Sachs have systematically set out to pillage towns and cities from Pittsburgh to Athens. These guys aren’t number-crunching whizzes making smart investments; what they do is find suckers in some municipal-finance department, corner them in complex lose-lose deals and flay them alive. In a complete subversion of free-market principles, they take no risk, score deals based on political influence rather than competition, keep consumers in the dark — and walk away with big money. “It’s not high finance,” says Taylor, the former bond regulator. “It’s low finance.” And even if the regulators manage to catch up with them billions of dollars later, the banks just pay a small fine and move on to the next scam. This isn’t capitalism. It’s nomadic thievery.

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