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According to the Collins English Dictionary 10th Edition fraud can be defined as: "deceit, trickery, sharp practice, or breach of confidence, perpetrated for profit or to gain some unfair or dishonest advantage".[1] In the broadest sense, a fraud is an intentional deception made for personal gain or to damage another individual; the related adjective is fraudulent. The specific legal definition varies by legal jurisdiction. Fraud is a crime, and also a civil law violation. Defrauding people or entities of money or valuables is a common purpose of fraud, but there have also been fraudulent "discoveries", e.g. in science, to gain prestige rather than immediate monetary gain
*As defined in Wikipedia

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Here's A Rant for You, Goldman Sachs

There are rants that are worth listening to, or reading.  Here is one by Matt Taibbi:

Goldman Non-Prosecution:  AG Eric Holder Has No Balls
By Matt Taibbi - Rolling Stone
. . . .
No, the real reason this wasn’t surprising is that Holder’s decision followed a general pattern that has been coming into focus for years in American law enforcement. Our prosecutors and regulators have basically admitted now that they only go after the most obvious and easily prosecutable cases.
If the offense committed doesn’t fit the exact description in the relevant section of the criminal code, they pass. The only white-collar cases they will bring are absolute slam-dunk situations where some arrogant rogue commits a blatant crime for individual profit in a manner thoroughly familiar to even the non-expert portion of the jury pool/citizenry.

In other words, they’ll take on somebody like Raj Rajaratnam, who stacked his illegal insider trades so brazenly and carelessly that his case almost reads like a finance version of Jeff Dahmer tripping over bodies in his Milwaukee apartment. Or they’ll pursue Bernie Madoff on the tenth or eleventh time he crosses their desk, after years of nonaction, and after he breaks down weeping and confessing. Basically, if someone backs a dump truck up to the DOJ and unloads the entire case, gift-wrapped, a contrite and confessing criminal included, a guy like Eric Holder might, after much agonizing deliberation, decide to prosecute.

But here’s the thing: most of the crimes Wall Street people commit involve highly specific, highly individualized transactions that won’t fit Eric Holder’s bag of cookie-cutter statutory definitions. That is not the same thing as saying they’re not crimes. They are: the crimes of the crisis period were and are very basic crimes like fraud, theft, perjury, and tax evasion, only they’re dressed up in millions of pages of camouflaging verbiage.

Or, even more often, the crimes have also been sanctified in advance by “reputable” law and accounting firms, who (for huge fees) offered their clients opinions that, if X and Y are signed in accordance with Z, and A and B are stipulated by the parties, and everyone’s sitting Indian-style and facing the moon when the deal is agreed to, then it’s not fucked up and illegal when Goldman Sachs tells you it’s a co-investor in your deal when it’s actually got $2 billion bet against you.

Read the whole rant here


JEHR said...

It is
difficult to see the positive side of wealth inequality unless you happen to be
a member of the 1%.  However, if the inequality
continues until all the wealth is transferred to the top leaving the bottom 99%
without the means to do much more than sustain themselves with the basics—food,
shelter and clothing—then action will happen. 
When the rich accumulate vast stores of wealth, they do not need to
purchase consumer goods as they have the ability to supply their basics many
times over.  The wealthy concentrate their
money on purchasing luxury items and on making their money make more money
through derivatives, hedging and other market activities.

There will
be little demand for any consumer products so that local manufacturing will
become moribund.  Importations of cheap
Chinese manufacturing will decrease.

When the
wealth disparity has reached its zenith, probably at the same time that climate
change peaks, then the real need for survival will become apparent.  The rich will, at first, do better than the
working or poor people but eventually money won’t buy the basic needs even for
the richest among us.

The need
for co-operation will grow.  The climate
and weather will become more and more severe. 
Insect-borne diseases will increase. 
Rare diseases will become endemic; e.g., ebola, dengue fever, and so on.

As time
goes on and as food becomes scarcer, the rich and poor will become indistinguishable.  Climate change will bring us first fires and
drought.  Methane gas will poison the air
above the Arctic and Antarctic.  The
warmer oceans will cause more evaporation. 
Rains will become more monsoon-like over the northern part of the
globe.  Fresh water will become scarce as
glaciers dry up; drought will further decrease the fresh water supply.  Rivers will dry up.

We must not
forget that the nuclear meltdown in Japan has presented further dangers to
human kind, animals and plants. 
Radiation has been released into the air, the soil and the ocean.  Some insects have already shown signs of
genetic mutation near the nuclear site. 
The ocean already has a huge sea of pollution and plastic travelling the
ocean currents causing harm to sea life.

Unless we
seek alternative sources of energy and unless the resource wealth is shared
properly amongst us all, the probable outcome will be horrendous.

We are in
the world together; we need to make our first job the protection of the
environment.  Even economic job creation
can consist of environmental protection and sustenance actions.  Whether we live through a disaster scenario,
or take action now to nurture the environment, each individual in the northern
hemisphere will have to decrease his/her personal expectations of ownership and
wealth accumulation.

Wealth will
have to be redefined as sustainable living and having fewer “things.”

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