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Alternative Market Briefing

Other Voices: 50 proposals for reform and reclamation, in solidarity with the Wall Street protesters and the 99 Percenters

Monday, October 10, 2011

By Dr. David E. McClean, lecturer in philosophy and business ethics, Rutgers University & Molloy College, and Principal, The DMA Consulting Group

Part of the problem was that only in an environment of crisis can the self-regulators galvanize themselves to actions that they couldn't otherwise take. We had Congress pressing us against any of these [difficult reform] initiatives. We had Congress constantly bearing down on the Commission: "Don't take steps which would hurt the firms, don't take steps which would change the way business is being done." ... When Congress sees these scandals taking place ... [it becomes] the latter-day Elmer [Gantry], protecting investors that [it] had abused so badly before.

Arthur Levitt, former Chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission, in a Frontline interview with Hedrick Smith January 13, 2003

. . . There is a tide in the affairs of men, Which, taken at the flood, leads on to fortune; Omitted, all the voyage of their life Is bound in shallows and in miseries. On such a full sea are we now afloat, And we must take the current when it serves, Or lose our ventures.

Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar, Act 4, Scene 3

Introduction to the 50 Proposals Among other things, I teach business ethics at the university level. I have also been a consultant to Wall Street firms for some 20 years, and have worked in various capacities on the Street since I graduated from high school, in 1979. I know a few thi......................

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