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Sunday, December 4, 2011

Sixty Minutes Transcript, Prosecuting Wall Street segment, and a question.



Kudos to Sixty Minutes for printing out the actual transcript of the Prosecuting Wall Street segment. (it's 8 pages long.) This makes it much faster and easier to find important quotes and content than having to wade through the actual video segment. A very nice, time saving gesture from 60 minutes.

Here is a quick transcript edit from two different news articles, see if you can spot the irony. 

From 60 Minutes.... (Quote is on the final page at the end)
Kroft: The perception. I mean, it doesn't seem like you're trying. It doesn't seem like you're making an effort. That the Justice Department does not have the will to take on these big Wall Street banks.


Breuer: Steve, I get it. I find the excessive risk taking to be offensive. I find the greed that was manifested by certain people to be very upsetting. But because I may have an emotional reaction and I may personally share the same frustration that American people all over the country are feeling, that in and of itself doesn't mean we bring a criminal case.

Kroft: If you had said two years ago that nobody was gonna be prosecuted on Wall Street for the subprime mortgage scandal, I think people would think, "It's not possible."

Breuer: Sometimes it takes a number of years to bring these cases. So I'd say to the American people, they should have confidence that this is a department that's working hard and we're gonna keep working hard, so stay tuned.


....Especially when mortgages were securitized and sold off to investors, he said, senior bankers turned a blind eye to shortcuts...

...One memory particularly troubles Theckston. He says that some account executives earned a commission seven times higher from subprime loans (versus) prime mortgages. 

So they looked for less savvy borrowers — those with less education, without previous mortgage experience, or without fluent English — and nudged them toward subprime loans.

These less savvy borrowers were disproportionately blacks and Latinos, he said, and they ended up paying a higher rate so that they were more likely to lose their homes. Senior executives seemed aware of this racial mismatch, he recalled, and frantically tried to cover it up.

Theckston, who has a shelf full of awards that he won from Chase, such as "sales manager of the year," showed me his 2006 performance review. it indicates that 60 percent of his evaluation depended on him increasing high-risk loans.
End of New York Times Quote.

So isn't that enough to prosecute?

Wouldn't a mass wall street plea deal offer right now cause hundreds of wall street executive rats to come running and confess their crimes rather than be found out later and possibly receive a sentence that will be much much longer?
How about a Wall Street ad by the Justice Department, "Wall Street Bankers, confess your illegal activities now and receive a sentence that will only be 25% as long as what it will be if you wait until you are found out, tried and convicted. Confess now and get a 2 year sentence, wait, and you will get no less than 8 years - guaranteed". 

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