DOJ – Lazy or Corrupt?

I really don’t know whether the Department of Justice is lazy or corrupt but it is fairly obvious that they are ineffective.

Under Eric Holder the DOJ has pretty much settled on economic penalties rather than conviction of individuals for ‘fraud’.

Examples are abundant in the news.  Virtually all of the big financial firms who used fraud to perpetuate the sale of ‘derivatives’ that ultimately lead to the financial crisis have been penalized via large settlements.  With the settlement the firms actually don’t admit to any wrongdoing, but accept the ‘fine’ instead.

The fines or ‘settlements’ seem huge, in the billions of dollars, but in reality they represent a small portion of the firm’s profits.

Any settlement that does not impose ‘individual responsibility’ or actually ‘bankrupt’ the company has little impact on future actions.  It’s even unclear that the ‘settlement’ is greater than the profits earned from the ‘fraudulent’ activity.

The imposed penalty is likely to be recovered by the company simply increasing their cost to their customers.  This effectively passes the penalty on to the consumer with little or no impact of the companies profits.

How does this incentivize the avoidance of ‘fraud’ in the future?

It doesn’t!

Is the DOJ too lazy to actually prove wrongdoing?  Or do they simply recognize that by seeking settlements instead of convictions they are protecting large contributors to fund raising activities?

If Holder weren’t such a political hack, I would assume laziness which would be consistent with my opinion of government in general.  However, with Holder’s penchant for politicizing the DOJ, I tend to lean toward corruption.

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