The Chickenshit Club: Why the Justice Department Fails to Prosecute Executives Hardcover – July 11, 2017

Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist Jesse Eisinger paints a blistering account of corporate greed and impunity, and the reckless and anemic response from the Department of Justice and Department of Treasury where penalties and fines were only implemented to create the illusion of enforcement.

To date, no banksters are in prison after the fallout from the financial crisis of 2008 plays out.  CEOs have been granted a license to commit wrongdoing with impunity.   However, the problem goes way beyond banks deemed “Too Big to Fail” to almost every large corporation in America—to pharmaceutical companies and auto manufacturers and our own government.

The Chickenshit Club— is about prosecutors too scared of failure and too daunted by legal impediments to do their jobs while knowing the bankers had swindled trillions of dollars. This book is written from the perspective of what occurred inside the Department of Justice over a fifteen years.   The complex story depicts prosecutorial fiascos, corporate lobbying, trial losses, political favoritism and culture paradigm shifts that have conveniently stripped the government of the will and ability to prosecute top corporate executives.

Under George W. Bush, Justice deteriorated. Budgets were slashed and staffs reduced at the same time as demand for action increased.  Prosecutors today are terrified to file suit, fearing they might lose and have black marks on their resumes (James Comey famously called them chickenshits.) The attorneys in the DOJ have little or even no trial experience to litigate these complex matters.  Everything is a negotiated fine (never paid by the perpetrators) that is written off and designated as a cost of doing business.

If the banks were “too big to fail” in 2008, they are way too big to fail now. The banks and government are no longer interested in the “public good”. The attorneys are more concerned about obtaining work in big law firms after their government experience is established, in order to make millions on the other side. The revolving door between the DOJ and banks makes this one huge social club. The current system is so far removed from their predecessors as to be unrecognizable.   Each decade depicts a new level of depravity among those designated to protect the public.

The book was released on July 11th, 2017 and is definitely worth a read.  Crack the seal on a strong bottle of Whiskey before proceeding- you are going to need it.

Jesse Eisinger is a Pulitzer Prize-winning senior reporter for ProPublica. He is a former columnist for The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal, and the former Wall Street editor of Condé Nast Portfolio. His work has appeared in The Atlantic, The Washington Post, The Baffler, and many other publications. Eisinger was a finalist for the Goldsmith Prize for Investigative Reporting in 2011 and 2015, and the winner of the Gerald Loeb Award for Commentary in 2015. He was named a New America fellow in 2016 and 2017.



5 Responses

  1. There were a few people like Lorraine Brown who went to jail related to robo-signing. Lorraine O’Reilly Brown was sentenced to 40 months to 20 years. I stumbled upon this one because my firm audits all signatures and notaries when we start any foreclosure defense case, and we came across Linda Green.

    It should be a red flag anywhere when one person supposedly signs 2 million documents. What really annoys me about the whole thing is that State courts like New Jersey see the fraud and then try to balance the equity of the Bank in the light of fraud. see
    CITIBANK, N.A. v. KIEGEL,%20N.A.%20v.%20KIEGEL

  2. Please let me nominate a new president for the “Chickenshit Club”.

    Richard Cordray of the CFPB. Despite his handicap of being deaf, dumb and blind, he deserves the honor.

  3. Please call the FBI to tell all these.

  4. Reblogged this on California freelance paralegal.

  5. Chickenshit Club is Right. No exec has been prosecuted for major financial crimes against the American people and the world.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: