Fooled again


Boy, do I feel like an idiot. I’ve been out there on radio and TV in the last few months saying that I thought there was a chance Barack Obama was listening to the popular anger against Wall Street that drove the Occupy movement, that decisions like putting a for-real law enforcement guy like New York AG Eric Schneiderman in charge of a mortgage fraud task force meant he was at least willing to pay lip service to public outrage against the banks.

Then the JOBS Act happened.

The “Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act” (in addition to everything else, the Act has an annoying, redundant title) will very nearly legalize fraud in the stock market.

In fact, one could say this law is not just a sweeping piece of deregulation that will have an increase in securities fraud as an accidental, ancillary consequence. No, this law actually appears to have been specifically written to encourage fraud in the stock markets.

[…] There are some crazy side-stories that I’ll get to later in the week, including the hilarious influence certain preposterous individuals had in pushing this bill (most notably Steve Case, former co-founder of AOL and a veteran of multiple accounting fraud scandals, who was recruited by both parties to lobby the bill). There are also some remarkable contradictions in the arguments the bill’s supporters made when they pushed for the bill’s passage. Anyway, more on this to come.

In the meantime, let’s just say this is a dramatic step taken by Barack Obama. Nobody should have any illusions about where he stands on Wall Street corruption after this thing. Boss Tweed himself couldn’t have done any worse.

Go read the rest. Charlie Brown, meet football!

6 thoughts on “Fooled again

  1. I wonder if I can NOT vote for BO during the primary? I don’t have the luxury of skipping it altogether, since there’s actually some good primary candidates to vote for, for a change. Kinda like a ‘No Confidence’ referendum??

  2. While I agree with most of what Taibbi says, his assumption about accounting standards is quaint. The second five years of financials will be more reliable? Matt, Enron didn’t just happen!

  3. Funny the usually astute Taibbi started smoking the “Hope and change” crack pipe when Obama pulled a Teddy Roosevelt. Yves Smith rightly called him out on it. I agree OWS did change the conversation about inequality etc. But Obama didn’t respond to OWS. “It is the election season, stupid” to recycle that famous slogan.

    Remember the precious words : he is the more effective evil.

  4. Is Matt aware about how our government works? This bill passed by a veto-proof margin in both houses. Is the President supposed to ignore the clear will of the congress? Do you people really miss the authoritai stylings of BushCo?

    Of course, I’m sure I’m being naive… after all the President is all powerful… bully pulpit and all that

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