TUE, 9/5/2017 – by Lainey Hashorva (Occupy.com)

Remember the things we learned from old movies as kids? Some of the ones I still think of, for some reason, are:

  1. When in quicksand, try to stay still or you will sink deeper into the sucking liquid sand.
  2. When running from flying bullets, always zig zag or move serpentine, throwing the shooter off to avoid getting shot.
  3. If forced to take psych meds to sedate you, hide them under your tongue until the nurse leaves.
  4. If you have terrible stage fright, just close your eyes and imagine the audience in their underwear, or naked.
  5. If you need to rob a bank, make sure the teller can read the note clearly so as to not mistake “I have a gun” with “I have a gub.”

I still keep those important tips in mind to this day, and I must say, I was so afraid of vampires that I always, always slept with my neck covered just in case. Speaking of vampires, it’s time for another walk down the dark basement steps with a candelabra to ask the simple question: “Wells Fargo, Why Are You Still Here?”

By now I’m sure you’ve heard the latest news, though it’s not easy to keep up with this runaway stage coach. We’ve obviously learned that the bank robbers are the bank themselves, and they don’t even need a gub. I mean gun.

Remember when someone needed to be kidnapped or subdued and the bad guy always snuck up behind them with a wadded hanky full of chloroform? This would be a perfectly good thing to do to right now to Wells Fargo by its corporate watchdogs. Wait. Are there corporate watchdogs?

The OCC, Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, is in place as a big bank sheriff, so to speak, though you may at this point assume they are also in the business of “waste management,” defined in their role as follows: The OCC is an independent bureau within the Department of Treasury, whose mission is to “ensure that national banks and federal savings associations operate in a safe and sound manner, provide fair access to financial services, treat customers fairly, and comply with applicable laws and regulations.”

I’m wondering if maybe the government workers over at the OCC are poolside this summer sipping Singapore Slings and playing with their pool noodles. I for one have bankster outrage fatigue.

Last week, yet again, we were informed that yet another 1.4 million customers have been added to the “Defrauded R US” pile over at Wells, that still more are coming, that an investigation into bogus mortgage fees have been imposed on millions of customers, that auto insurance was falsely applied to consumer accounts at outlandish rates, that bank employees were forced at cut-throat horse-head-in-your-bed pressure to defraud customers on every level, that veterans and active duty military had their cars and homes repossessed unlawfully and that their DumDum lollipops are half the size of regular suckers. The executives at Wells must be like Lucy and Ethel in the chocolate factory socking away money to far away banks in Deutschland like fast coming chocolates.

Look, we’ve been over it and over it. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is supposedly fighting for its life, but in reality it is primarily a database for complaints made by consumers about the egregious unlawful endeavors of these big banks. The OCC is in charge of actually reading them their rights, which we all know as well by heart from watching too many detective shows as kids. ”You have the right to remain silent….”

So if individuals move their money from Wells Fargo, the bank will notice, but it’s more like a mosquito in the room at night. On the other hand, if investors move their money it’s like someone robbing the place and knocking over a lamp at 3 a.m. If the powers that be actually stood for consumer protection and legal ethics, rules, laws, enforcement and oversight, we’d be seeing a good old fashioned perp walk like we used to with Stumpf and Sloan in ankle chains and orange jumpsuits.

We’d see the charter or license to practice revoked from this criminal institution crawling with cockroaches like in the old Raid commercials. We’d see flashing cameras and bank executives with brown bags over their heads hiding their faces in shame and preparing for scary communal justice in prison with new roommates that grunt and stare.

One of the definitions of bank regulations regarding a state and national bank states: “U.S. banking regulation addresses privacy, disclosure, fraud prevention, anti-money laundering, anti-terrorism, anti-usury lending, and the promotion of lending to lower-income populations. Some individual cities also enact their own financial regulation laws (for example, defining what constitutes usurious lending).”

Also from the ten commandments “Thou shalt not steal.”

From the medical world, “First do no harm.”

From the all-knowing Wikipedia on business ethics:

“Business ethics (also known as corporate ethics) is a form of applied ethics or professional ethics that examines ethical principles and moral or ethical problems that arise in a business environment. It applies to all aspects of business conduct and is relevant to the conduct of individuals and entire organizations.[1] These ethics originate from individuals, organizational statements or from the legal system.”

The post goes on:

“Business ethics refers to contemporary organizational standards, principles, sets of values and norms that govern the actions and behavior of an individual in the business organization. Business ethics has normative and descriptive dimensions…. The range and quantity of business ethical issues reflects the interaction of profit-maximizing behavior with non-economic concerns. Adam Smith said, ‘People of the same trade seldom meet together, even for merriment and diversion, but the conversation ends in a conspiracy against the public, or in some contrivance to raise prices.'[2] Governments use laws and regulations to point business behavior in what they perceive to be beneficial directions. Ethics implicitly regulates areas and details of behavior that lie beyond governmental control. The emergence of large corporations with limited relationships and sensitivity to the communities in which they operate accelerated the development of formal ethics regimes.[3]”

That being said, where are the ethics, regulations and oversight today to reign in the runaway stage coach? Wells Fargo doesn’t even need to zigzag because no one is chasing it, no bullets are flying, and they still remain too big to chloroform, though we can try.

One thing you could usually “bank” on in the old days was that the good guy would win or the movie would flop. Details would tie up neatly, the girl roped to the train track was always always rescued by the handsome hero just in the nick of time. One of the best bank robbers of all time (aside from John Stumpf, the former CEO of Wells Fargo), John Dillinger, said, “My buddies wanted to be firemen, farmers or policemen, something like that. Not me, I just wanted to steal people’s money!”


Wells Fargo, Wells Fargo crimes, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, forged accounts, John Stumpf, business ethics, Wells Fargo scandal
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