was eliot spitzer wall street’s worst nightmare?

Es­ti­mated reading time is 2 min­utes.

The fol­lowing is ex­cerpted from an ed­i­to­rial ti­tled “Preda­tory Lenders’ Partner in Crime” by Eliot Spitzer, Gov­ernor of New York, in The Wash­ington Post (Feb­ruary 14, 2008)

“Even though preda­tory lending was be­coming a na­tional problem, the Bush ad­min­is­tra­tion looked the other way and did nothing to pro­tect Amer­ican home­owners. In fact, the gov­ern­ment chose in­stead to align it­self with the banks that were vic­tim­izing consumers.

Preda­tory lending was widely un­der­stood to present a looming na­tional crisis. This threat was so clear that as New York at­torney gen­eral, I joined with col­leagues in the other 49 states in at­tempting to fill the void left by the fed­eral gov­ern­ment. In­di­vid­u­ally, and to­gether, state at­tor­neys gen­eral of both par­ties brought lit­i­ga­tion or en­tered into set­tle­ments with many sub­prime lenders that were en­gaged in preda­tory lending practices.

Not only did the Bush ad­min­is­tra­tion do nothing to pro­tect con­sumers, it em­barked on an ag­gres­sive and un­prece­dented cam­paign to pre­vent states from pro­tecting their res­i­dents from the very prob­lems to which the fed­eral gov­ern­ment was turning a blind eye.

When his­tory tells the story of the sub­prime lending crisis and re­counts its dev­as­tating ef­fects on the lives of so many in­no­cent home­owners, the Bush ad­min­is­tra­tion will not be judged favorably.”

Within weeks of pub­lishing this ed­i­to­rial, Spitzer’s “in­dis­cre­tions” with call girls (what Lib­er­tar­ians and Pro­gres­sives alike agree is a “vic­tim­less crime”) were bigger news than the fact that he had ev­i­dence that the Bush ad­min­is­tra­tion had, again, been in­volved in shifting the hard-earned wealth of America into the hands of the we­lathy and the corporations.

That is, Gov­ernor Eliot Spitzer scared the be­jeezus out of Wall Street crim­i­nals and the Re­pub­lican Party movers and shakers and was sub­se­quently NEUTRALIZED.

As the most fa­mous US Ma­rine in the world during the Vietnam Con­flict would say, “Sur­prise, surprise . . .”

Fur­ther reading is en­cour­aged: http://www.truth-out.org/news/item/18290-not-too-big-to-jail-why-eliot-spitzer-is-wall-streets-worst-nightmare

HEADER IMAGE: The “Spitzer Zipper” car­toon at the top of this page is by Pat Bagley is the staff car­toonist for The Salt Lake Tri­bune in Salt Lake City. All rights reserved.

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