Dear Mr. Keiser:
Today, the NY Times ran an editorial that opened with this line: “It is a dark day for the rule of law.” They are certainly correct and for the first time in US history the US Dept. of Justice has come perilously close to publicly announcing that a class of individuals is above the law. Specifically, employees and managers at the largest banks now appear to enjoy criminal immunity for even horrendous levels of white collar crime. See http://corporatejusticeblog.blogspot.com/2012/12/lawless-capitalism-and-hsbc.html.
As the NY Times states: “Federal and state authorities have chosen not to indict HSBC, the London-based bank, on charges of vast and prolonged money laundering, for fear that criminal prosecution would topple the bank and, in the process, endanger the financial system. They also have not charged any top HSBC banker in the case, though it boggles the mind that a bank could launder money as HSBC did without anyone in a position of authority making culpable decisions.” See http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/12/opinion/hsbc-too-big-to-indict.html?_r=0. This explanation is senseless. There is no greater threat to the financial sector or to capitalism generally than lawlessness.
At its most basic, the rule of law requires universal applicability. There can be no immunity, and no indulgences handed out by bureaucrats. No person should ever stand above the law.
NYU Press released my new book, Lawless Capitalism, last week. See http://www.amazon.com/Lawless-Capitalism-Subprime-Crisis-Economic/dp/0814776493. The book argues that capitalism needs a more robust economic rule of law to assure a level playing field and rationalized law and regulation. I offer mechanisms for achieving this and demonstrate how the failure of law to curb economic power and channel it productively caused the financial crisis of 2007-2009. Basically, corporate and financial elites subverted law and regulation for profit, at the expense of virtually everyone else. This constituted a type of lawlessness–bending law to their will for profit at the great expense of society.
But, the government’s position today, if the NY Times front page and editorial page, are correct is something more sinister than mere corrupted law. Our governing elites now arrogate the power to place some above the law, no matter how specious the reason. Simply stated, this unprecedented and ill-founded.
The rule of law is dying in America and the people need to know ASAP. I would very much like to appear on your show to discuss this grave development.
If you would like a copy of my book I could FEDEX it tomorrow if you would like.
If you have any questions or comments please do not hesitate to contact me at 847-420-0612, anytime.
THANKS IN ADVANCE FOR YOUR CONSIDERATION.
Professor Steven A. Ramirez
Loyola University Chicago
School of Law