Root of the Problem
By: Mark Hyman
By now, America has seen enough of theÂ bad behaviorÂ of the ‘Occupy’ movement protesters.
That aside, it’s easy to understand their frustrations when it comes to theÂ excesses of Wall Street.
But the protesters’ anger is misdirected.Â The causes that led to the 2008 and Â bailoutsbegan in Washington, DC.
The federal government passed measures such as theÂ Community Reinvestment Act, lowered theÂ capitalization minimumsÂ for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and insisted banks give mortgages to people whoÂ couldn’t affordÂ them.
Just likeÂ Soviet planners, Washington politicians thought they could rewrite the laws of economics.
Dodd-Frank, the finance law enacted last year, continues the problems.Â Contrary to the claims of its supporters, the law enshrinesÂ ‘too big to fail.’Â And continuesÂ bank bailoutsÂ – forever.Â Or until this law is repealed.
And speaking of the law, federal regulators who are supposed to enforce it — don’t even abide by it.Â At least five agencies that regulate the financial industry are paying federal employees more than theÂ law permits.
These agencies are:
the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau;
Commodity Futures Trading Commission;
Office of the Comptroller of the Currency;
and the Securities & Exchange Commission.
Nearly 200 employees areÂ paid salariesÂ of $225,000 or more.Â This is more than allowed by law.
In Washington, laws are what the people follow.Â And not the politicians and bureaucrats.
Mark Hyman hosts "Behind the Headlines," a commentary program for Sinclair Broadcast Group.