It would be easy to cheer as the Obama administration seeks to take down Goldman Sachs. After all, Goldman Sachs has become a proxy for Wall Street, since so many of the old icons no longer exist or have been consumed as a result of the 2008 credit crunch.
But do not cheer too quickly this time. As even the NY Times now is admitting, the actual civil charges against Goldman Sachs are far from clear cut.
Civil charges by the government can bring down an entire organization for reasons having nothing to do with the charges. As we speak, there is a clamor in Britain for the government to cease doing business with Goldman Sachs as a result of the charges.
Expect the same thing to happen here, as Democrats ratchet up the crisis atmosphere to get a quick vote on financial regulations which would give the government vast powers over the financial services industry. As I documented yesterday, the Goldman Sachs charges are being politicized for the administration’s purposes.
It’s the health care fiasco all over again. A manufactured crisis with an identifiable demon.
As tempting as it is to say “to hell with Goldman Sachs,” remember the saying about “first they came for ….“
Goldman is not the first they came for. This administration already has emasculated the entire private health insurance industry, brought the health of hundreds of millions of people under its regulatory control through Obamacare, and demonized as racists and extremists law-abiding patriotic Americans who spoke out for individual freedom and constitutional federalism.
The pharmaceutical industry was evil until it cut a deal and bought advertising in support of Obamacare, and doctors were greedy — as they performed unnecessary surgeries so they could bill more — until the AMA joined the Obama chorus. One center of power after another fell in line in the year-long push for Obamacare.
If the administration gets its way on cap-and-trade, the government will control through regulation virtually all industry through industry’s lifeblood, the consumption of carbon-based energy.
State autonomy also is dwindling, and those who point out that the federal government is limited to enumerated powers are derided as “Tenthers.”
There are few remaining entities which can stand up to the overweening encroachment of the federal government.
Taking down the leading, and in many ways last remaining, Wall Street powerhouse will remove yet another center of private industry power.
The serial removal of centers of power outside the federal government in Washington, D.C. is a worrisome trend which becomes more difficult to reverse as the dominoes fall.
Don’t wish too hard for the demise of Goldman Sachs. Because Goldman Sachs is not the end game.
Update: Michelle Malkin on the tangled web, All the president’s Goldman Sachs men.
Goldman Sachs Suit The Latest Crisis Not To Be Wasted