Capital Offenses

Capital Offenses

Business Crime and Punishment in America's Corporate Age

Book - 2016
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"The lead prosecutor of the Enron investigation explores modern-day business crimes and the complex laws that govern corporations, discussing the depths of the issues involved and the art of the loophole,"--NoveList.
If "corporations are people too," why isn't anyone in jail? In the race to maximize profits, corporations can behave in ways that are morally outrageous but technically legal. In this book, Samuel W. Buell draws on the unique pairing of his expertise as a Duke University law professor and his personal experience leading the investigation into Enron--the biggest white-collar crime case in U.S. history--to present an in-depth examination of business crime today. At the heart of it sits the limited liability corporation, simultaneously the bedrock of American prosperity and the reason that white-collar crime is difficult to prosecute--a brilliant legal innovation that, in its modern form, can seem impossible to regulate or even manage. By shielding employees from legal responsibility, the corporation encourages the risk-taking that drives economic growth. But its special legal status and its ever-expanding scale place daunting barriers in the way of investigators. Detailing the complex legal frameworks that govern both corporations and the people who carry out their missions, Buell shows that deciphering business crime is rarely black or white. He illuminates the depths of the legal issues at stake--fraudulent practices like Ponzi schemes, bad accounting, insider trading, and the art of "loopholing"--showing how every major case and each problem of law further exposes the ambivalence and instability at the core of America's relationship with its corporations. An expert in criminal law, Buell examines the limits of too-permissive or overzealous prosecution of business crimes. Capital Offenses invites us to take a fresh look at our legal framework and learn how it can be used to effectively discipline corporations for wrongdoing, without dismantling the corporation.--Adapted from dust jacket.
Publisher: New York : W.W. Norton & Company, [2016]
Edition: First edition
ISBN: 9780393247831
Branch Call Number: 364.16 BUELL
Characteristics: xx, 296 pages ; 25 cm


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Dec 26, 2016

This book is a complete crock, an apologia for white collar crime, for Wall Street and the banking cartel!
Essentially, the author, Buell, parses EVERYTHING! His mission is to make the reader believe how monumentally difficult it is to prosecute any and all financial fraud, carefully avoiding any mention of stacked juries, selected [and crooked] judges, or - - with the advent of online databases of Westlaw and Lexis Nexis, the manipulation and contrived case law, precedents, et cetera (the last the reason the full force of the American government was brought down on the heroic Aaron Swartz).
Buell, naturally, dissembles on why the bankers weren't prosecuted for the economic meltdown [2007 -- 2009] and fraudclosures, ignoring the fact that dozens of laws were broke, many millions of times, while citizens' financial and economic lives were destroyed; clearly this is NOT a nation of laws!
If the reader were to read this book side-by-side Ferdinand Lundberg's book, The Rich and the Super-Rich, they would wish Buell to be tarred and feathered and run out of town. If they read this book concurrently with David Dayen's outstanding achievement, Chain of Title, they would wish Buell to be burned at the stake, and justifiably so!
[The entire mortgage meltdown was based upon illegal activities to the max: two centuries of fundamental property law was repeatedly violated, plus the contracts [PSAs or Pooling Securitization Agreements] were likewise repeatedly violated, thus rendering the entire debate nonsensical - - no laws were upheld, and the aforementioned violated their tax structure completely [REMIC].
MERS, or Mortgage Electronic Reporting System, and the company overseeing it, MERSCorp, were and are illegal in its operation, set up by the shyster firm, Covington & Burling, which was why, in that leaked email to a newly elected President Obama, he was directed by Citigroup to appoint Covington & Burling's point man, Eric Holder, to be his attorney general [to interdict any prosecutions of the banksters].
This author mentions Rajat Gupta as the wunderkind of McKinsey and Wall Street, and suggests he wasn't given a very long jail sentence as he was such a grand fellow but, while citing Ms. Raghavan's book [The Billionaire's Apprentice] Buell fails to mention Gupta's atrocious background as mentioned in her book: he made his big bucks at McKinsey by promoting the offshoring of millions of American workers' jobs, and with each job so went a piece of the American GDP!
Giving this book two stars as it is such a superior propaganda tract or work of pure disinformation; David Cay Johnston should be ashamed of himself for blurbing this heinous stuff! [In Seattle, there's a global corporate firm - - an impressive array of antennas on their building's roof, for instantaneous worldwide communication - - where one of the partners is or was a climate denier blogger. A common failing among attorneys is that they believe themselves to have been trained in higher level reasoning, which many of them have disproven - - Buell is yet another example of this!]


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