Global Financial Crisis
The financial crisis of 2007 and 2008 is considered by many economists the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression of the 1930s. The financial crisis was the result of systemic corruption. Due to the crisis incredble amounts of fiat money were created from nothing in order to "safe" the economy. The result was growing economic inequality in favor of the ultra-rich. Never waste a good crisis.
We are in the midst of the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression. This crisis is the latest phase of the evolution of financial markets under the radical financial deregulation process that began in the late 1970s. This evolution has taken the form of cycles in which deregulation accompanied by rapid financial innovation stimulates powerful financial booms that end in crises. Governments respond to crises with bailouts that allow new expansions to begin. As a result, financial markets have become ever larger and financial crises have become more threatening to society, which forces governments to enact ever larger bailouts. This process culminated in the current global financial crisis, which is so deeply rooted that even unprecedented interventions by affected governments have, thus far, failed to contain it.
Governments respond to crises with bailouts that allow new expansions to begin. Those bailouts are payed for with taxpayer money and borrowed money from central banks which print massive amounts of fiat money. That borrowed money will then have to be payed back by future generations which are indebted more and more.
Most people think that the big bank bailout was the $700 billion that the treasury department used to save the banks during the financial crash in September of 2008. But this is a long way from the truth because the bailout is still ongoing. The Special Inspector General for TARP summary of the bailout says that the total commitment of government is $16.8 trillion dollars with the $4.6 trillion already paid out. Yes, it was trillions not billions and the banks are now larger and still too big to fail. But it isn't just the government bailout money that tells the story of the bailout. This is a story about lies, cheating, and a multi-faceted corruption which was often criminal.
We live in a more and more materialistic world and financial crises become more and more frequent and severe. A paper from 1998 already mentioned:Over the last two decades financial crises have tended to occur increasingly frequent. ... When crises are of the self-fulfilling varieties, of course there is a weakness that needs to be attended to. Since most such weaknesses are structural (unemployment, high debt, weak financial and banking systems), the problem cannot be corrected in the short run, during the crisis.
Thanks to globalization and interdependency they affect larger parts of the world and more people. It is not hard to see that the main underlying cause of these financial crises has a lot to do with growing corruption. The causes are structural.
It is now almost five years since the world's financial system was brought to its knees and had to be bailed out by taxpayers at a cost of billions. Millions of people lost their jobs or suffered from lower living standards because of the recession brought on by the financial collapse. Yet almost no bankers have faced legal sanctions for their part in precipitating the crisis.
Elizabeth Warrencriticized the failure of both federal regulators and Justice Department officials to prosecute or otherwise hold to account Wall Street banks and financial institutions despite their long and steady pattern of blatantly criminal activity.Matt Taibbi wrote:Financial crooks brought down the world's economy — but the feds are doing more to protect them than to prosecute them.
Too big to fail and too big to jail
Moral hazard as a result of implicit or explicit government guarantees encouraged overborrowing and excessive exposure to foreign exchange by financial institutions (see McKinnon and Pill (1996) and Krugman (1998)). The essence of moral hazard is that, if things went wrong, agents "rationally expect the government to step in and modify its course of action in order to bail out troubled private firms" (Corsetti, et al. (1999a)).
When governments guarantee the survival or existence of commercial banks then the financial elite in control of those banks will more likely take financial risks. The financial elite expected governments to bail them out in case they would go bankrupt. Related terms are moral hazard, adverse selection, deregulation, bait-and-switch methods, falsification of mortgage documents, shadow banking, subprime lending, etcetera. The main problem is systemic corruption.
In a hastily convened meeting in the conference room of the House speaker, Nancy Pelosi, the two men presented, in the starkest terms imaginable, the outline of the $700 billion plan to Congressional leaders. "If we don’t do this," Mr. Bernanke said, according to several participants, "we may not have an economy on Monday."
Ben Bernanke was the frontman of the FED who pushed for bailout. The power elite use fear as a political tool in order to sell government bailouts to the taxpayers as part of their too big to fail scam. In 2012 financial advisor Vern McKinley explained thata century of public officials making vastly exaggerated claims regarding the effects of short-term government intervention (bail-outs) and of long-term legislative changes, dating from initial passage of the Federal Reserve Act in 1913 through the Dodd-Frank legislation in 2010.
The financial crisis happened because banks were able to create too much money, too quickly, and used it to push up house prices and speculate on financial markets.Even mainstream media like the Economist reported thatIt is clear the crisis had multiple causes. The most obvious is the financiers themselves—especially the irrationally exuberant Anglo-Saxon sort, who claimed to have found a way to banish risk when in fact they had simply lost track of it. Central bankers and other regulators also bear blame, for it was they who tolerated this folly.Jonathan Jarvis created an informative video called The Crisis of Credit Visualized * Each crisis is an excuse for the power elite to create new fiat money from nothing which is then lend to governments who invest some of that money and via commercial banks it spreads further into the economy. What governments don't tell you is that all the loaned fiat money which was created from nothing must be repayed by future generations of taxpayers with interest. The power elite eventually use that newly created money also to bail out their own criminal banks.
A decade has passed since investment bank Lehman Brothers collapsed and the economy spiraled into the Great Recession and a foreclosure maelstrom. Even today, some Americans are still struggling to regain their footing. The worst financial disaster since the Great Depression, the financial crisis wiped out almost $8 trillion in household stock market wealth and $6 trillion in home value. As many as 10 million Americans are believed to have lost their homes, according to the St. Louis Federal Reserve. Ten years on, many Americans still bear the scars of the crisis. Some never regained the wealth they lost in the stock market and real estate. Others, reeling from job losses as the unemployment rate spiked, may be working in new jobs, but they're earning less than they were in 2008. And older Americans are increasingly working past the traditional retirement age as they seek to bolster their assets.
Neil Barofsky revealedthe extreme lengths to which our government officials were willing to go in order to serve the interests of Wall Street firms at the expense of the broader public—and at the expense of effective financial reform.Growing extreme economic inequality in favor of the ultra-rich shows who benefits from each crisis.