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Sun Feb 10, 2013, 11:06 AM

Execs off the hook at S&P

Source: Los Angeles Times

Execs off the hook at S&P

The federal and state lawsuits against S&P are well and good, but no people are on the hook in these cases. What kind of deterrence is that?



You may have heard last week about a couple of big lawsuits brought by federal and state governments, alleging that the credit rating agency Standard & Poor's concocted a fraudulent scheme that contributed to trillions of dollars in investment losses and the cratering of pretty much the entire world financial system.

Those are serious charges, and the federal government's demand for $5 billion in penalties isn't peanuts. Yet there's something bloodless about the lawsuits, for the simple reason that they don't point the finger at any particular person who was responsible for these dastardly doings.

For example, you won't find the name Harold McGraw III anywhere in the court papers. Who?

McGraw was chairman, chief executive and president of McGraw-Hill, S&P's parent company, in the period at issue, 2004 to 2007. (He's still in place today.) Did he profit from S&P's wrongdoing? Let's assume so: he not only owns 10 million company shares but received $44.5 million in compensation over those years, according to corporate disclosures. Did he know or care about what was happening at S&P? One would hope so because it was by far the most profitable domain in his empire, contributing an average of more than 70% of McGraw-Hill's operating profit.

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Read more: Link to sourchttp://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-hiltzik-20130208,0,1163345.columne

28 replies, 2738 views

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Arrow 28 replies Author Time Post
Reply Execs off the hook at S&P (Original post)
kpete Feb 2013 OP
valerief Feb 2013 #1
awoke_in_2003 Feb 2013 #21
L0oniX Feb 2013 #2
alfredo Feb 2013 #3
Angry Dragon Feb 2013 #4
Cirque du So-What Feb 2013 #5
Fuddnik Feb 2013 #9
Cirque du So-What Feb 2013 #11
alfredo Feb 2013 #14
elleng Feb 2013 #17
RickFromMN Feb 2013 #22
alfredo Feb 2013 #23
sulphurdunn Feb 2013 #6
Fuddnik Feb 2013 #7
BadgerKid Feb 2013 #8
Hugin Feb 2013 #10
bucolic_frolic Feb 2013 #12
alfredo Feb 2013 #15
valerief Feb 2013 #13
elleng Feb 2013 #16
fasttense Feb 2013 #18
snot Feb 2013 #24
elleng Feb 2013 #25
triplepoint Feb 2013 #19
Octafish Feb 2013 #20
dtom67 Feb 2013 #26
dotymed Feb 2013 #27
Theyletmeeatcake2 Feb 2013 #28

Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 11:12 AM

1. Anyone need more proof these execs own the country, govt and all? nt

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Response to valerief (Reply #1)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 11:13 PM

21. Wall Street runs this country...

the show in DC is just bread and circus to keep us entertained.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 11:32 AM

2. Crime pays. n/t

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 11:33 AM

3. They first went with a civil suit because it is easier to prove.

Costing them money is costing them what is most dear to them.

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Response to alfredo (Reply #3)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 11:40 AM

4. They will not change until they spend at leat 5 years behind bars

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Response to alfredo (Reply #3)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 12:22 PM

5. As heartbreaking as paying fines may be for them

incarceration is still far, far worse. I'm too lazy to look it up today, but I've read that when white-collar crime is punished with incarceration, it has an inhibiting influence upon other potential white-collar criminals - more so than any other type of crime, including those that may earn the perpetrator a trip to death row.

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Response to Cirque du So-What (Reply #5)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 12:48 PM

9. Heartbreaking?

They laugh all the way to the bank when the shareholders pick up the tab.

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Response to Fuddnik (Reply #9)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 01:00 PM

11. 'Heartbreaking' was meant ironically

as I know the possibility of fines are of no consequence either to the officers of the company or to the shareholders, who made out literally like bandits in spite of the paltry fines that may or may not be imposed.

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Response to Cirque du So-What (Reply #11)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 01:49 PM

14. All it takes is one anti government teabagger on the jury to set the Wall st thugs free.

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Response to alfredo (Reply #3)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 02:13 PM

17. Right. Thanks, alfredo.

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Response to alfredo (Reply #3)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 11:57 PM

22. Are you saying there could still be criminal suits against individuals?


I hate to agree with others, but I believe fines from a civil suit will not deter individuals because I believe the corporation will pay the fines.

I fear the individuals will still get bonuses.

Could individuals be held personally liable for the fines from a civil suit settlement?

I suspect trying to send individuals to jail would be difficult.
I suspect proving individuals were criminally negligent or criminally duplicitous would be very difficult.

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Response to RickFromMN (Reply #22)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 12:18 AM

23. I'd say the state Ag's will do the deed. NY's AG is a good Dem.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 12:24 PM

6. Do the crime

pay the fine with other peoples money, rather do the crime do the time and pay restitution is apparently the new standard for top tier corporate felons.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 12:30 PM

7. Is Lanny Breur, Eric Holder, or Mary Jo Scott handling the case?

To be expected.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 12:49 PM

10. CEOs have labor agreements, why don't you? n/t

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 01:22 PM

12. Corporations are people, my friend!

Therefore the people in corporations can't be people

and can't be held responsible.

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Response to bucolic_frolic (Reply #12)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 01:56 PM

15. I will believe in corporate personhood when one gets hung by its wrists, beaten with rifle butts,

then left to suffocate on its own blood.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 01:31 PM

13. Execs OWN the hook. nt

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 02:11 PM

16. Please excuse me if this sounds like I'm making excuses for this misbehavior,

which I don't intend to do; I'm interested in the process, and hope the public can understand what goes into such a case.

The government has to prove its case, and doing so will entail citing and proving specific acts by individuals. We know that S&P is a corporation, made up of individuals who do good and bad acts. The individuals we'd like to see punished must be proven to have been responsible; this is part of the trial process. It will take time. I know that the foundation for this case has been underway for some years.

I expect there are many individuals and individual acts in the developing trial and evidence record, as many acts and decisions occurred during the time period at issue. It would not be rational publicly to name any individuals at this point.

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Response to elleng (Reply #16)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 04:01 PM

18. Well, the Obama administration always has the option to drop a drone on them.

Then there would be no trial process.

I guess that's reserved for people who don't give them campaign contributions and not their good buddies at S&P. Though there's really no way to tell if Al Quada gave them contribution through a PAC or not.

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Response to elleng (Reply #16)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 01:42 AM

24. It's been more than 4 years . . .

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Response to snot (Reply #24)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 01:46 AM

25. The crap's probably been going on for a much longer period of time,

but I do know that this particular matter has been in the works for at least 2-3 years.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 04:47 PM

19. Steal a little, and they put you in jail...

 

Steal a lot, and they make you king.
- Bob Dylan
.
.
.


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Response to kpete (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 04:54 PM

20. Banksters are nothing more than crooks who deserve to spend the rest of their lives in prison.

Government officials who let them off the hook are traitors who deserve prison and more.

SDIs is what William K. Black called Standard & Poor's and its cousins -- Systemically Dangerous Institutions:

http://neweconomicperspectives.org/2011/08/nprs-robert-siegel-interviews-william-k.html

Gee. I'm so old I remember when the Justice Department went after crooked banks and such.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 04:02 AM

26. the government will lose...

They will lose because I believe this suit is charging that S & P gave citi and BoA fraudulent rating on their toxic derivatives. On their own worthless junk. They (the banks) didn't know the assets were toxic? They needed SP to tell them? They are probably the ones who bribed S and P to give them the good ratings in the first place.
they are all crooks. Its not worth even pointing it out anymore...

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 06:35 AM

27. I re-watched

JFK last night.
The prosecutor was convinced that this was a coup de tat of the American Govt.
He was right.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 09:28 AM

28. If corporations are treated as people

Then they can go to jail ,stop earning income ,meet Bendover or suffer the death penalty.......this really is a rigged game !

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