I wouldn't bet on it . . . but that won't be because Matt Taibbi hasn't done his best to bring it about. In a hard-hitting article for Rolling Stone, he exposes what he calls 'The Biggest Price-Fixing Scandal Ever'. Here's an excerpt.
You may have heard of the Libor scandal, in which at least three – and perhaps as many as 16 – of the name-brand too-big-to-fail banks have been manipulating global interest rates, in the process messing around with the prices of upward of $500 trillion (that's trillion, with a "t") worth of financial instruments. When that sprawling con burst into public view last year, it was easily the biggest financial scandal in history – MIT professor Andrew Lo even said it "dwarfs by orders of magnitude any financial scam in the history of markets."
That was bad enough, but now Libor may have a twin brother. Word has leaked out that the London-based firm ICAP, the world's largest broker of interest-rate swaps, is being investigated by American authorities for behavior that sounds eerily reminiscent of the Libor mess. Regulators are looking into whether or not a small group of brokers at ICAP may have worked with up to 15 of the world's largest banks to manipulate ISDAfix, a benchmark number used around the world to calculate the prices of interest-rate swaps.
. . .
Though the jumble of financial acronyms sounds like gibberish to the layperson, the fact that there may now be price-fixing scandals involving both Libor and ISDAfix suggests a single, giant mushrooming conspiracy of collusion and price-fixing hovering under the ostensibly competitive veneer of Wall Street culture.
. . .
All of these stories collectively pointed to the same thing: These banks, which already possess enormous power just by virtue of their financial holdings – in the United States, the top six banks, many of them the same names you see on the Libor and ISDAfix panels, own assets equivalent to 60 percent of the nation's GDP – are beginning to realize the awesome possibilities for increased profit and political might that would come with colluding instead of competing. Moreover, it's increasingly clear that both the criminal justice system and the civil courts may be impotent to stop them, even when they do get caught working together to game the system.
If true, that would leave us living in an era of undisguised, real-world conspiracy, in which the prices of currencies, commodities like gold and silver, even interest rates and the value of money itself, can be and may already have been dictated from above. And those who are doing it can get away with it. Forget the Illuminati – this is the real thing, and it's no secret. You can stare right at it, anytime you want.
There's much more at the link. Essential reading for insight into the banking crisis of 2007/08 and what brought it to pass.
Here's something to think about. This isn't Mr. Taibbi's first, or even his second, exposé of corruption in financial circles: but the coverage of all of them in the mainstream media (excluding specialty financial and investment publications) has amounted to a deafening silence. Why is that, do you think? Might it have anything to do with the banksters buying the silence of the media, either with money or with threats? You tell me . . .
It also occurs to me that if the ill-gotten gains of the banksters were to be forcibly retrieved by governments, the sums involved would probably be enough to substantially reduce, if not eliminate, the national debt that currently burdens many nations. That won't happen, of course, because the banksters are in bed with the politicians. Each side covers for the other, and each enriches itself at the expense of the taxpayer. It's a vicious, utterly immoral circle. It's long gone time it was broken . . . but the political parties on either side of the aisle, in this or any other country, are all involved. None of them have clean hands, and none of them wants to interrupt the flow of all that lovely bankster money into their joint and several coffers.
Personally, I'd say it's time to break out the tar, feathers and rope.