Sunday, March 30, 2008

Henry Paulson Proposes Big Changes

Henry M. Paulson is the United States Treasury Secretary and a member of the International Monetary Fund Board of Governors. He previously served as the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Goldman Sachs, one of the world's largest and most successful investment banks. Paulson was nominated by U.S. President George W. Bush to succeed John Snow as the Treasury Secretary.

Why do we continue to pick from the same old basket of rotten fruit? Can you say “conflict of interest?” The old adages “consider the source” and "the fox guarding the henhouse" come to mind when I hear of news like this: Sweeping Changes in Paulson Plan.

U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson plans Monday to call for sweeping structural changes in the way the government monitors financial markets, capping a broad review aimed at revamping a system of regulatory oversight built piecemeal since the Civil War.

If even only some of the changes get made, they would represent a major reworking of the U.S. regulatory system for finance. Such an outcome would likely take years and would also require major compromises from an increasingly partisan Congress.

Opposition is already emerging from critics who feel the document nods too far toward deregulation. The revamp process began early last year before the credit crunch and was initially aimed at improving American competitiveness. As such, it's a hybrid that both adds new rules to deal with recent financial woes but also simplifies old structures in a way that favors some in the finance industry.

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