Thursday, April 22, 2010

Markets - incorruptible gods, unless they are not

Indisputable evidence that self-regulation leads to disaster, one more example:
From McClatchy Newspapers, Apr 22/09
WASHINGTON — A Senate panel investigating the causes of the nation's financial crisis on Thursday unveiled evidence that credit-ratings agencies knowingly gave inflated ratings to complex deals backed by shaky U.S. mortgages because of the fees they earned for giving such investment-grade ratings.

The Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations will . . . introduce email records in which executives from Standard & Poor’s and Moody’s Investors Service acknowledge compromising the integrity of ratings in order to win business from big Wall Street firms.

“They did it for the big fees they got,” Sen. Levin told reporters on Thursday . . .
BC Liberals believe that commerce and industry should be managed through self-regulation. Accordingly, they now do minimal inspections and auditing of forestry, mining, petroleum and other industrial sectors. They also gutted the ability of the civil service to enforce environmental laws. Public guardians have been terminated and sent home.

We have numerous examples that prove deregulation is bad public policy, particularly in matters financial and environmental. There are zero examples showing routine self-regulation to be wise and workable public policy.

Update:

When politicians aim for deregulation, they can eliminate the departments that conduct oversight, or leave them in place to pretend that oversight continues. The Bush Administration specialized in the latter, often by appointing heads of agency who were unqualified and philosophically opposed to  objectives of the organization.

The remaining employee re-purposed their activities. Apparently, at the SEC, porn helped to pass time between pay cheques.
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2 comments:

  1. Dereuglation is ruining the province of British Columbia, a little bit at a time.

    Greed seems to exist everywhere - both in and outside of business. Self regulation just does not work and the conflict of interest scenario is something that Campbell won't even acknowledge.

    My experiences with the new (2005) BC Sewerage System Regulations has left me with a very sour view of both Campbell and his policies and government. The more I researched, the more crooked and biased everything became - with the homeowner getting no protection. My benifits were three years of my life ruined - with some health concerns directly related. An extra and unnecessary bill or payment of around $20,000 - for something I neither wanted or needed. I was told that litigation would be the answer to my concerns and complaints. As a pensioner I am not able to afford the protection that sure be there in the first place.

    The same is happening elsewhere throughout industry. The government is doing the "cowardly shuffle" and running away from accountability, responsibility and cecrtainly doesn't lead by example.

    A most timely piece Norm, and a warning to the complacent people who think that this government is looking after the well being of British Columbians - NOT !!!

    ReplyDelete
  2. I wish to know more of how the sewerage system regulations affected you adversely. There is a coalition of mainly health oriented public interest groups who believe that regulations are in need of urgent reform.

    I've been doing a little research on another example of a citizen being harmed financial by actions of bureaucrats who were not even required to make notification:

    A property owner and her family from Vancouver Island are up in arms over a $35,000 bill she was held responsible for after her land was registered as a heritage site.

    Read more: http://www.cbc.ca/canada/british-columbia/story/2010/04/19/bc-diggingbill.html#ixzz0m42GwQuL

    I will write more about these subjects if I can detail other examples. Persons with information or suggestions can email me privately.

    ReplyDelete

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