July 7th, 2010
06:00 PM ET

Answer to reforming Wall St. another 68 govt. studies?

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

It's a joke… it's not funny… but it's a joke.

When it comes to reforming Wall Street, Congress decided a big part of the solution is ordering up studies. Lots and lots of studies.
[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/images/07/07/art.wall.st.jpg caption=""]
CNNMoney.com reports the Wall Street reform bill - which passed the House last week, and will likely pass the Senate soon - orders various government officials to conduct 68 studies. 68.

The topics of these studies include ethical standards for financial planners, short selling, improved insurance regulation, private student loans... making it easier to sue lawyers, accountants and bankers who help commit securities fraud and on and on and on...

Lobbyists for the financial sector insist that since the bill is so far-reaching, it requires more studies... adding that it's better to take time to do a study than to make a quick decision and get it wrong.

That's one explanation. But don't kid yourself. Ordering studies is what politicians do when they don't have the guts to make difficult or unpopular decisions. See the general theme of studies is to delay or kill - it's a strategy taught on K Street - that's where the lobbyists make their home.

The worst kinds of studies are those that don't require any follow-up or deadlines - and many of these in the so-called financial reform legislation are in that category.

And if you'd like to know how much all this so-called studying will cost - don't bother asking. Congress didn't appropriate any money for the 68 studies nor did they break down how much these 68 studies will cost. It is past time for the revolution.

Here’s my question to you: Is the answer to reforming Wall Street another 68 government studies?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

Randy writes:
No. But it's the answer to lulling the public to sleep while the Congress and their corporate masters walk away with our Treasury. Do we need any more evidence that the game has been rigged since FDR?

Carol in Northampton, Massachusetts writes:
As an erstwhile managing director of one of the largest banks in the world, I welcomed as many studies as possible. That would give me plenty of time to makes gobs of money, unfettered by annoying regulations.

Reid writes:
If we don't vote a complete (that means, total) change of Congress in November, we deserve everything we get – including more "studies".

Tammy writes:
How much studying does it take to figure out that bankers and traders on Wall Street are greedy and corrupt? I'm pretty sure it's a no-brainer. Maybe they should conduct a study on how fed up Americans are with their huge bureaucratic bought-and-paid-for government. I'm sure the results would be mind-blowing.

Jason writes:
Congress should authorize a study that examines the utility and feasibility of a nation firing an entire inept and cowardly elected assembly through a quick online vote. I can't say I have a plan for their immediate replacement but if we woke up tomorrow and there was no Congress, how many of us would really notice?

Phil in Florida writes:
Jack, we all know that Congress is OWNED by corporations and Wall Street. They MUST NOT hinder the money getting to the rich. Having "studies" makes it LOOK like they care.

Tim writes:
I'll have to study that and get back to you.

Filed under: Government • Wall Street
soundoff (143 Responses)
  1. John from Alabama

    Jack: Government studies do not have the force of law. Regulations need to be changed so Wall Street bankers want go wild, again. We need federal laws in the area of financial sector and energy policy. We need a Congress which wants to accomplish things not just say "no." Outcomes are positive measures that can judged on effectiveness. Over site is a responsibility of Congress.

    July 7, 2010 at 2:04 pm |
  2. David Thomas Bronzich

    Another round of money wasting, federal studies is just what we need! Eventually, the economic stimulus of keeping thousands, nay, millions of federal employees busy with work will trickle down to the retail level as those employees buy new cars and washing machines!

    July 7, 2010 at 2:05 pm |
  3. Al Bledsoe

    No. Because there will have to be a study of the studies. You know, like we are doing now.

    July 7, 2010 at 2:05 pm |
  4. Rick McDaniel

    No, the answer is not having the Congress on the take, from Corporate America.

    July 7, 2010 at 2:08 pm |
  5. Joan Buch

    The laws have all been there for protection for many years – studies are about rhetoric. They look at Americans as being dumb, when in fact the truth is Washington is beyond stupid.
    This ADM & Congress in power since NOv 2006 is crooked.
    How many have gone to jail over the fall of 2008 Crash? NONE. The laws are on the books however.

    July 7, 2010 at 2:14 pm |
  6. Charles, Lansing, Michigan

    The only way to reform Wall Street is to reinstate all of the laws pertaining to Wall Street from 1998 to the present that were repealed by Congress or ignored by the Executive branch. Banking, Investment and Insurance must be separated so that they cannot feed off of each other and become "too big to fail".

    July 7, 2010 at 2:15 pm |
  7. Larry,Springfield,Ohio

    Jack,The answer to reforming Wall Street is to vote out everyone in office.

    July 7, 2010 at 2:15 pm |
  8. Rick Medina,OH


    The Glass-Steagel Act worked fine for 50 years before Clinton and Bush watered it down. We don't need 68 studies to simply bring it back.

    Medina, OH

    July 7, 2010 at 2:18 pm |
  9. Bert Oak View, CA

    To reform Wall Street, we need to stop rewarding failure. If a company does not do well, the management should not make money for failure. Maybe they should even have to pay back shareholders out of their own pockets.

    July 7, 2010 at 2:19 pm |
  10. Minesh - Troy, MI

    Jack, this is not Wall Street reform – it is government takeover.

    July 7, 2010 at 2:22 pm |
  11. Jan - Lancaster, PA

    Studies? We don't have to study it to know there is a problem. Politicians need to listen to experts that have studied the Great Depression and are familiar with what works. If we need a bigger stimulus program... then we do. Along with that we need industry.
    We need to bring back the regulations that were in place before the Administration's in the last 30 years started dismantling them. This country progressed well before the so called "free market" was allowed to manipulate the markets, grow to big to be controlled, and the extremely wealthy no longer contribute to the country through taxes. Too big to fail is a problem, NAFTA as it currently exists is a problem, politicians unwilling to fix the problems ... are a problem.

    July 7, 2010 at 2:25 pm |
  12. Richard Oak Harbor, Wa

    The most important reform in America is needed for the U.S. financial system and its historic institutions. The consequences for making wrong choices is huge beyond measure so must be done with calculated precision for the best future outcome possible. If it takes another 68 government studies to get it right then that's what should happen.

    July 7, 2010 at 2:31 pm |
  13. Tom, Avon, Me, The Heart of Democracy

    Dream on. Wall Street will always be coming up with ways to rip off the public and until Congress makes each new scheme illegal, the con men won't be prosecuted. As long as there is a Wall Street, it will have to be kept under the microscope.

    July 7, 2010 at 2:32 pm |
  14. Dennis north Carolina

    This is one phoney way to stall and protect big business.

    July 7, 2010 at 2:33 pm |
  15. Kathie

    just what we don't need–money wasted on "studies". reform wall street by removing the inept CEOS who created this mess and get rewarded with millions in bonuses, new CEOs who make no more than the president, no bonuses, no more bailouts, no more "too big to fail", accountability for pathetic job performance

    July 7, 2010 at 2:34 pm |
  16. Ed from California

    No! Just implement The Glass-Steagall Act again, and be done with it!

    July 7, 2010 at 2:35 pm |
  17. JOE CE

    There is a pretty good Bill pending, pass that and then move forward. The studies are a waste but typical unchanged politics.

    July 7, 2010 at 2:36 pm |
  18. sam delray beach fl

    More so long as wall steet lobbyist pay more money than you

    July 7, 2010 at 2:37 pm |
  19. frank

    Want to kill something in DC, do a study. Or hope the party against it gets elected next time around.

    July 7, 2010 at 2:38 pm |

    why do you generalize to imply that one is exclusive of the other? Why not both?

    July 7, 2010 at 2:38 pm |
  21. Jayne

    68 government studies means they don't want to reform Wall Street. If you want to deter, delay or outright stop something, appoint a commission to study, study, study until the end of time.

    July 7, 2010 at 2:43 pm |
  22. joe m

    great, spend 5billion to solve a 5millon dollar problem. washngton does not know how to solve any problems without conducting every possible study first. in the end, they implement solutions based on these studies, and the catch is the solution has nothing to do with the original problem to begin with.


    July 7, 2010 at 2:44 pm |
  23. Russ in PA

    End the FED and end the bail outs. Wall Street and the large banks will not "behave" until they have to live in a free market system. Until those two steps are done, we might as well hand over all of our own assets, and give up.

    July 7, 2010 at 2:50 pm |
  24. Rob in Brooklyn

    for God's sake , yes lets spend more wasted money on more studies , What the hell is wrong with these people ? Pay me I'll be a study for you

    July 7, 2010 at 2:50 pm |
  25. Melissa

    You mean the studies that the Republicans insist on happening so the Democrats are forced to give in because of Republican fear mongering? Yes, apparently they do need to happen because its the only way the Republicans will agree to any regulation of their rich buddies on Wall Street.

    July 7, 2010 at 2:57 pm |
  26. Mike in Denver

    Studies do not create reform. The only way to reform something is to actually make changes. Since that would mean damaging the relationship our representatives have with their sponsors, I will not be holding my breath.

    July 7, 2010 at 3:00 pm |
  27. lance

    Wall-Street is a scam. It's all based on a lending-tree/ pyramid... You borrow 100 dollars from someone and promise to return it with say 50% interest... 2 days later you give them 150$. But during those 2 days you had to go around and make similar promises to many people and keep a payment schedule in order to pay people on time... all in all, It's a Berny Maydolf. Eventually you get stuck and owe allot... Bernie went to jail... but he "only" "stole" 50 billion dollars... the small-time crook get's punished. The big-timers have all of our money and we don't want to be inconvenienced with taking our money back... Wal-Street does the exact same thing that Maydolf did... Privatized banking was originally banned from America in the beginning... and it needs to be that way again.

    You want to reform wall-street? why? I say shut it down, seize all their assets and "redistribute" "OUR" MONEY back into our hands... Then we can actually pay our mounting bills... We owe wal-street nothing...But wal-street owes us every single penny they stole from us.

    July 7, 2010 at 3:03 pm |
  28. Dave, Brooklyn, NY

    When a fool, excuse me, politician, doesn’t have a clue he forms a committee to study the problem, no matter how obvious it may be.

    But no, the answer is NO. Replace all the regulations that were in place prior to Reagan deregulation, period. That will solve the problems. And while we are at it, we may as well dismantle the DHS and fire its useless head.

    July 7, 2010 at 3:06 pm |
  29. JENNA

    Is the answer to reforming Wall Street another 68 government studies?

    Whose asking for the studies? That is the real question.

    If it is the GOP then they are up to just more OBSTRUCTIONISM.

    If it is the Democrats then it may take that to clean up all the mess left by the GOP.

    Roseville CA

    July 7, 2010 at 3:20 pm |
  30. Johnny C (Los Angeles)

    If you are a banker that is the perfect answer ... how many more years will this endeavor go on without any real actionable activities?

    The Banking and Funds managing institutions are laughing all the way to bonus land ... well, I guess someone needs to be able to buy those million dollar yachts that are still being manufactured.

    July 7, 2010 at 3:20 pm |
  31. Richard Green


    Heck no!
    A 3 minute internet search could give any gov't person the roadmap for reforming Wall Street (if they were truly interested). They could start with enforcing the Sherman Anti-Trust Act and re-instating Glass-Steagle. Follow that with a review of executive orders that weakened regulations and review the performance of all Bush appointed employees and lobbyists embedded in financial regulatory agencies.

    San Clemente, Ca.

    July 7, 2010 at 3:21 pm |
  32. Geri

    You have to remember Jack, it's government studies that create jobs for the eggheads in D.C., otherwise they would all be out of work and on unemployment like the rest of the 25% unemployed and underemployed. And it's going to get worse. I read this morning that more corporations are going offshore now, fearing the tax increases that will go into effect 1 January 2010.

    Geri Mead, Ok

    July 7, 2010 at 3:28 pm |
  33. Tom Mytoocents Fort Lauderdale, Florida

    The only changes required are accoutabilty in theObama Cabinet government. The attack on 9/11 ,the financial colapse, oil spill and uncontrolled borders are a result of unbridled capitalism in concert with a corrupt government down loading porn at $260.000.00 a year salary. Absolutely the best, brightest and most corrupt in history.

    July 7, 2010 at 3:39 pm |
  34. Jerry Jacksonville, Fl.

    They couldn't get it right if they did sixty eight thousand studies. There are just to many lobbyist stuffing the pockets of congressional members with thousands of dollars to get anything done worth a damn.

    July 7, 2010 at 3:40 pm |
  35. Meg from Troy

    No, the answer is legislating the needed reform so that all Americans can benefit from a vigorous and improved economy. Studies just cost money–and put off the decision-making process. Congress is playing roulette with our future–another reason why I won't be voting for any incumbent candidates this fall.

    July 7, 2010 at 3:40 pm |
  36. southerncousin

    I think it is quite symptomtic of what is wrong with government at all levels. They really have not got a clue as to what to do, from the president on down.

    July 7, 2010 at 3:40 pm |
  37. Bizz Quarryville, Pennsylvania

    When you threatened to reform Wall Street and you are a member of Congress, you stand a good chance of having a large chunk of your campaign funds being cut off. So the next best thing to do is pass a bill that will study reformed on Wall Street instead of passing a bill that will keep Wall Street honest. This is a very good example of our gov't being controlled by lobbyist who carry around Congress in their pockets like Don Corleone in the godfather.

    July 7, 2010 at 3:48 pm |
  38. R

    Only 68? How about if we do away with 68 lobbyist from the financial sector and call it even.

    July 7, 2010 at 3:48 pm |
  39. Gerry

    No reform.... Money talks, B.S. walks. Politicians, lobbyist and money. No changes on how Wall Street doess business. We'll get lip service and watered down legislation but nothing with any teeth.

    Ash Forkm Az.

    July 7, 2010 at 3:55 pm |
  40. Jerry Johns Creek, GA

    The best way to correct Wall Street is to make certain that all of the players have a significant amount of their own fat in the fire. It is easy to make risky errors when you're playing with someone else's money. The whole derivatives and credit default swap crap that has gone would be totally different if the dealers had to put a significant (>50%) share at stake in the bets they are making.

    July 7, 2010 at 3:55 pm |
  41. Richard Fairview, Texas

    I don't think there will ever be enough studies conducted by congress to satisfy all the politicians with lobbyists hands in their pockets. This is simply another way for Washington bearcats to raise money around election time. By calling for studies the politicians will have plenty of time for palm greasing. In the mean time the American tax payer is on the hook for what ever these studies end up costing regardless of how worthless the studies might be.

    July 7, 2010 at 4:04 pm |
  42. chris

    how much did this waste in taxpayers expense and as important what came out of it the studies??

    July 7, 2010 at 4:07 pm |
  43. Lori - PA


    Why are 68 studies needed when everyone knows what problems plague Wall Street? The answer is to come up with a comprehensive reform bill and then pass it. The federal government can't afford not to.

    July 7, 2010 at 4:11 pm |
  44. Mike, NH

    No Jack. i spoke with Obama and he agrees. He's going to commission a study to see what studies we don't really need.

    July 7, 2010 at 4:13 pm |
  45. Birddog in Mississippi

    Wall Street's contributions to Democrats, who are the ones passing the bill, are down 65%. That tells you all you need to know – the bill has teeth. Sixty-eight studies or not, the lobbyists did not win this one.

    July 7, 2010 at 4:14 pm |
  46. Michael, Alexandria, VA

    No, of course not. The question is, did any of these studies serve as a substitute for action? If so, then the answer is campaign finance reform so Wall Street lobbyists can't remove needed reforms.

    July 7, 2010 at 4:14 pm |
  47. Tara McKinney, Texas

    I don't think that politicians who are allowed to receive political contributions from firms that they are suppose to police and study makes any sense at all. That is like putting the weasels in charge of the hen house.

    July 7, 2010 at 4:18 pm |
  48. Rob in NC

    Sure, then we can have a study to study the studies that studied the studies. There is no sense in studying what the average American thinks; they don't make enough donations to the campaign:). Rob in NC

    July 7, 2010 at 4:19 pm |
  49. Mark, Oklahoma City

    If this creates jobs for people doing the survey, why not? It's obvious that Obama doesn't know how to create real jobs so maybe this is the best he can do.

    July 7, 2010 at 4:23 pm |
  50. Bob Kobs

    The key lies in firing all Repugs and blue dog dems from Congress and the senate. Send the corrupt thugs home, then you can reign the corruption and greed on Wall Street.

    July 7, 2010 at 4:35 pm |
  51. Ray E. (Georgia)

    Well Jack,
    There is an old saying out there from decades past that if you want to kill something give it to a committee.

    In Football if the team don't win it's Kill the Coach.

    In Politics it's blame everybody but the culprits. No policitian is going to place the blame where it belongs, in this case, the people. I think it's called Pass the Buck. Heaven forbid it is the Pogo Rule.

    I will study the issue, and see if I can come up with a better answer.

    July 7, 2010 at 4:40 pm |
  52. Ed from MD

    It's hard for gambling addicts to admit they have a problem. It's hard for criminals to see the errors of their ways. Proverbs 4:19 The way of the wicked is like darkness; They do not know over what they stumble. 10,000 studies would never change Wall st. in any meaningful way.

    July 7, 2010 at 4:42 pm |
  53. JM of South Brunswick, NJ

    Too many cooks make the soup worse. There must be way to address how Wall Street, like BP, was incentivised by the government to cut corners. That, unfortunately, is the farthest thing from our President's mind.

    July 7, 2010 at 4:44 pm |
  54. Phil in Port St Lucie, Florida

    Jack, we all know that Congress is OWNED by corporations/wallstreet.
    They MUST NOT hinder the money getting to the rich.
    Having "studies" makes it LOOK like they care.
    Jail all of them!

    July 7, 2010 at 4:44 pm |
  55. honest john in vermont

    Wall Street and th Banks contribute heavily to Congress and the President. Does anyone really think ANY real reform will happen? We will need a Great Depression for that to maybe happen since our current economic myasmia is not enough.

    July 7, 2010 at 4:50 pm |
  56. Alex in Gig Harbor, WA

    Hell no, Jack!!! Justice delayed is justice denied. Financial reform should have passed back when the economy was in shambles to prevent a repeat of the shenanigans that caused the collapse. By now the perps are enjoying their ill-gotten gains while Wall Street looks for more ways to screw us!

    July 7, 2010 at 4:52 pm |
  57. Bertina

    What do you think any Republican congress would be doing right now? Not reforming wall street at all.

    July 7, 2010 at 4:53 pm |
  58. Sandra Williams

    Sure, Jack, and about 50 or 60 Congressional Hearings...no one has any intention of doing any real reform. The answer is in eliminating greed and reinstilling integrity in America.

    July 7, 2010 at 4:53 pm |
  59. Kim S. Dodge City, Ks.

    It is definitely not the answer, but it is almost a sure bet no real reform will ever see the light of day.

    July 7, 2010 at 4:59 pm |
  60. Dee in Woodstock GA

    Of course not, Jack.

    But what would you have the Congress do? Bite the hand that feeds (and feeds and feeds and feeds) it?

    July 7, 2010 at 5:14 pm |
  61. Paul D. Zammit

    These studies are just a scam. These politicians requesting them are pretending to be looking for answers but are just waiting until the short term memory of the people and the press kick in before they make the unpopular decision the lobbyists tell them to make.

    July 7, 2010 at 5:15 pm |
  62. Jeff in Houston

    No. The answer is common sense regulation and jail time for the greedy pigs that destroyed this nation's economy. But it is hard to send someone to jail when they paid for your campaign.

    There will never be justice for the American people as long as businesses own the government.

    July 7, 2010 at 5:16 pm |
  63. Lance, Ridgecrest, Ca

    Jack, remember when Obama said "A commission is just a way of saying, I don't have a clue, and I'll get back to you, maybe"? Wonder when the people are going to wake up to the fact that this man doesn't understand anything except spend, spend, spend, and make more promises he can't possibly keep. The passing of a law by Congress, that requires 68 more studies before anyone understands the impact of the law, tells me the idiots in Congress who voted to pass it need to be fired. November please hurry!!!!

    July 7, 2010 at 5:17 pm |
  64. Ken In California

    Wall Street took us to our economic knees over a year ago in the face of laws and regulation. Like everything else the laws are there, just like immigration, Congress refuses to enforce them. Now go study that.

    July 7, 2010 at 5:17 pm |
  65. Ralph Sato

    The momentum to reform Wall Street has been lost due to the loss of Ted Kennedy's seat in the special election in Massachusetts. Robert Byrd's recent death will further crimp attempts to pass the financial reform bill in the Senate. I would like to see the Senate pass the current reform bill, but I have to reluctantly admit that Russ Feingold is right about the weak bill that was crafted by Chris Dodd and his Republican colleagues in the Banking committee. Wall Street is about to celebrate their victory in stopping attempts to pass an effective financial reform law in Congress.

    July 7, 2010 at 5:18 pm |
  66. Gregory Tripp, Mechanicsburg, PA

    Studying the issue is not the answer. Not the right answer anyway. I never expected anything more than lip service from any politician in D.C. anyway. They are all in the pockets of Wall Street. Democrats are surprisingly more beholding to Wall Street Fat Cats than Republicans for some reason, but both parties are recipients of mega campaign contributions from these $50,000 suits. The only way reform will come is when we cut the financial ties and make politics completely publicly funded, that means no PAC money, no special interest money, no lobbyists. That means we shall not see any meaningful reform in my lifetime. Look at the joke that the D.C. politicians call health care reform. The only thing that did was force a lot of small businesses out of business and increase the income of the already rich insurance companies. It's enough to make you puke.

    July 7, 2010 at 5:22 pm |
  67. frankie

    The answer to reforming Wall Street is for the Republicans in Congress to quit stalling the reform of Wall Street.

    July 7, 2010 at 5:25 pm |
  68. Alan - Charlotte, NC

    The answer to reforming Wall Street is to get rid of all their flunkies in Washington and start running an honest system for a change. FAT CHANCE!

    July 7, 2010 at 5:28 pm |
  69. Cy Gardner

    Wall St. doesn't need studies, they need grand juries. The
    American people are angry because every thing rich people want to do that used to be considered lying, cheating, swindling and immoral is now legal. Did they conduct a study when they made it legal for Wall St. to market securities that they didn't understand and didn't believe were worth much? Did they conduct a study when the insurance companies had the right to take your money for 30 years and then dump you when you got cancer? Did they conduct studies of what safety regulations would be needed for drilling a mile underwater... Oh, wait, they DID conduct studies for THAT.... AND IGNORED THEM!!!!!! What lying garbage will they come up with next? cy from arlington, va

    July 7, 2010 at 5:28 pm |
  70. Andrew- Regina, SK, Canada

    Now I'm starting to understand why Canada is deep in black while America is deep in red, these studies are just a waste of paper and are going to prolong what you guys desperately need. And even if they did all of them in a short amount of time, there's a high chance that by then the politicians who prefer the very free market of pure capitalism would smother congress and kill the bill. So in short, no.

    July 7, 2010 at 5:28 pm |
  71. Overby from Melbourne

    All these bozo's do is have meetings and hearings so they can feel some false empowerment and get on camera so it looks like they're actually doing something to earn their money. But, we all know it's a bunch of crap. Vote'em all out and get new people in there.

    July 7, 2010 at 5:33 pm |
  72. Cy Gardner

    Will someone study how long humans in America can keep losing jobs and freezing salaries and still afford to pay for housing, insurance and energy? No one want to hire anyone over 50 now, will someone please study where I will work when they raise the retirement age to 70? And please, a study to find out where all the money the CEOs make is going? Are they sending it to China? Are they heating or insulating their homes with cash? And maybe a study to find out what the Republicans have to offer America besides more tax cuts for the rich and NOOOOOOOOO!!!! cy from arlington, va

    July 7, 2010 at 5:33 pm |
  73. chris brown fl

    jack we only need one very simple bill to straighten this whole mess out if you lose the peoples money and 401k'S then you become an indentured servant until paid back I'll bet you'll see the risk greatly reduced

    July 7, 2010 at 5:35 pm |
  74. Craig in Illinois

    Jack the answer to reforming Wall St. is like reforming the mob, it will never happen.
    The lobbyists need 68 more studies? The only thing the lobbyists need are some BP tar balls and feathers, then they can study how to make jet fuel and fly on their own.

    July 7, 2010 at 5:39 pm |
  75. ed in ri

    The sheeple of this country, on both sides of the fence, are being "duped" by the people that they elected to deal with these issues.
    Wallstreet will "always" win the outcome of the alledged discussions, because they own the politicians! Connect the dots, and realize that corporations are in absolute control of "once upon a time" America!

    July 7, 2010 at 5:41 pm |
  76. Rev. Dr. Ken New Baltimore

    That creates "new" jobs. Isn't that same thing Mr. O did with Oil Spill. While states were anguishing and asking for help or at least the ability to help themselves, the Admin. said "We have to study the situation." It doesn't take a rocket scientist to see oil coming to the surface and to the shore. The Admin. claimed 134 skimmers were on the gulf, when only 33 were. Someone should study that discrepancy. When Obama wants to block something, he studies it. Then he hires someone to study the studies etc. etc. etc. New Jobs, Right!

    July 7, 2010 at 5:50 pm |
  77. MIke in TX

    It's called lobbyists and campaign donations on one side and donation protection and cya on the other. Have you ever looked into the cya of even minor purchases in the govt? Awhile back, I watched in amazement at the 2 1/2 year effort to respond to a RFQ, and the repeated followup questions in order to try and sell 5 small phone systems (no installation required) that anyone could walk into local businesses and buy over the counter.

    As for funding the studies Jack we have tens of thousands of educated, well intentioned, hard working govt. employees at our disposal. Although that effort would be stopped by the lobbyists of all the consultant companies that are willing to answer questions for the next couple of years to charge the taxpayers a few hundred an hour times a few hundred staff to tell us what we already know.

    It's not a political or party issue Jack just the way things work.

    July 7, 2010 at 5:56 pm |
  78. Kris Miller, Sparks NV

    It will only be refreshing the congress and senate when the senate and congressmen who have had two years os service....If ALL OF US band together avd VOTE THEM OUT in November!! Then we can say our government "is for the people and too the people of the USA". If we don;t get the old stones out in 2011...we should then past a two year limit on all these plush jobs.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:04 pm |
  79. Don Desaulniers (Belleville, Canada)

    Jack. Remember when the financial crisis hit. No one could clearly explain even what derivitives were, let alone how they could adversely affect the stock market or bank balance sheets.
    How can the government be expected to fully understand the ramifications of any new Wall Street reforms?
    As well, getting any consensus on what reforms are truly needed, and which ones will hurt America, will be impossible, given all the special interests.
    This may be one instance where doing nothing by studying the matter to death may actually be the wisest course of action.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:10 pm |
  80. Cliff Glass - Rego Park, New York

    No, Jack – a government study is a euphemism for greed with Congress extracting more lobbying money.
    Reform is only possible through term limits and the public financing of campaigns. The problem is that the pigs currently at the trough would need to propose that legislation.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:11 pm |
  81. Ron in Sequim, WA

    The only study needed is the close monitoring and enforcement of existing regulations. We already have all the laws, statutes and regulations we need to keep Wall Street et.al in check all we have to do is enforce them! (kind of reminds one of that pesky immigration issue …)

    July 7, 2010 at 6:11 pm |
  82. Richard

    Another waste of money and time from a government who will obviously give slack to those who fund their elections.If funny how most politicians are former lawyers,the devils advocate and now they claim they are going after those who commit fraud.Really.Isn't that like shooting a dead horse?Where were these laws when people were losing their retirements and homes?fraud has always been against the law but I guess we need financial reform to enforce a law that should of been enforced to begin with.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:12 pm |
  83. Randy

    No. But it's the answer to lulling the public to sleep while the congress and their corporate masters walk away with our treasury. Do we need any more evidence that the game has been rigged since FDR?

    July 7, 2010 at 6:12 pm |
  84. Melvin Dunn - Florida

    Don't censor me Jack! Actually agree with you that these studies are meant to destroy the bill!

    July 7, 2010 at 6:13 pm |
  85. reid

    If we don't vote a complete (that means, total) change of Congress in November....we deserve everything we get. Including more "studies" and grandstanding.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:13 pm |
  86. Gigi Oregon

    No! They don't enforce the laws now that we have. It will not bring help for 95% of the people. If a grocery store is robbed and an arrest is made. They end up in jail. If corporate America robs you, they get bailed out. We (95%) know they should be in jail. But the government bails them out. And you would trust them to have studies. It's just another way to make them (various government workers) richer. Wouldn't it be nice if we the people could vote on this issue. But we can't vote out lobbyist. Wouldn't it be nice if we could vote in a flat and fair tax. But we can't do that. We are insurance and tax poor so we can't even buy our Representatives to work in our favour. Lobbyist are even choosing our candidates that we can vote in.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:14 pm |
  87. Jeremy from Michigan

    No. The answer is: term-limits for our leaders. The system is perverted by special interest and/or lobbyist's with lots of money to buy politicians.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:15 pm |
  88. Chris S.

    You're right Jack, we should pass laws without understanding the cause of the problem...brilliant.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:15 pm |
  89. Tim

    I'll have to study that and get back to you.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:15 pm |
  90. Maria Houser Conzemius

    No, we don't need another 68 studies. My answer to this kind of nonsense to throw all of the bums out of office! How stupid do these people think we are, anyway?

    July 7, 2010 at 6:15 pm |
  91. SmithtownNY

    Aw come Jack. Surely you remember how well Congress worked in the Bush Administration? How many studies do we WISH they did before spending over 700 billion dollars to find the weapons of mass destruction in Iraq? That wasn't guts, I think this country has gotten OVER that definition of guts... IMHO.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:15 pm |
  92. calaurore9

    As an erstwhile managing director of one of the largest banks in the world, I welcomed as many studies as possible. That would give me plenty of time to makes gobs of money unfettered by annoying regulations.

    Carol Colitti Levine, Northampton, MA

    July 7, 2010 at 6:15 pm |
  93. michael

    We need more than 68 studies of the border
    we need more than 68 studies of the gulf

    July 7, 2010 at 6:15 pm |
  94. Beverly

    Forget Wall Street, how about all the unemployed who had their benefits end!!!! What is going to happen to their familes.. The Congress needs to pay attention to the unemployed. Wall street will keep doing what they have always done, make mega bucks to fill their pockets, regardless of any study or congressional law,

    July 7, 2010 at 6:16 pm |
  95. Roger Leman

    Very simple to fix.
    Just reinstate the Glass-Steagle act, which worked so well for 70 years.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:16 pm |
  96. Dan

    i thank that BP needs these studies wallstreet may be the big topic but they arent destroying our beachs

    July 7, 2010 at 6:16 pm |
  97. Richard

    It is a joke Jack, studies are what Congress does when they lack the anatomy to do what's right.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:16 pm |
  98. Sal from Boston, MA

    jack, I'm going to have to study this in depth before i answer your question. Got a hundred thousand for me?

    July 7, 2010 at 6:16 pm |
  99. Laura Palfrey Murphy

    Yes, it is way past time for the Revolution. Should I schedule a meetup? It beckons to the fight we are battling against cannabis. 20,000 studies, most done by the government and they still say there is not enough research. You are right on the money. It is nothing more than a delay tactic. And I find it painfully ironic that the cell phone advocates say more studies are needed after the 10 year study was released. In the meantime, their product is legal while brain tumors are killing people. Vote em all out.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:17 pm |
  100. Woody


    I agree that congress can't do anything, but demeaning studies is not the right answer. Would you like our congressmen to go into this Wall Street issue without knowing the facts as well their own incompetence. I would bet that Wall St. has done plenty of studies on all of their markets as well as what reforms and restrictions Congress is likely to try and legislate.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:17 pm |
  101. Chris S.

    You're right Jack, we should pass laws without understanding the causes of the financial problems...brilliant.

    Denver, CO

    July 7, 2010 at 6:17 pm |
  102. Donald

    I find it hard to believe that there would be any reason at all, no matter what the circumstance, that 68 studies would be necessary for any kind of government action. Can you say overkill? I feel that this is just a tactic for the Demorats to appear that they were doing the right thing in case that their reforms screw up. Yeah, right!

    July 7, 2010 at 6:18 pm |
  103. Tammy

    How much studying does it take to figure out that bankers and traders on Wall Street are greedy and corrupt? I'm pretty sure it's a no-brainer. Maybe they should conduct a study on how fed up Americans are with their huge bureaucratic bought-and-paid-for government, I'm sure the results would be mind-blowing.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:18 pm |
  104. Kevin McGrath Fredericksburg Virginia

    So let me get this straight; we have been weathering the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression for almost 4 years, and now we need a study to find out what the problem is? It is time for Congress to lead, follow, or just get of the way. I prefer the latter.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:18 pm |
  105. Lynn

    No seems like such a simple answer. But we, the regular folks, don't have the financial means to enforce anything. Greed will always be king on Wall Street, closely followed by Capital Hill. We live in a broken system where right and wrong are judged by the stack of bills you put on the table.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:18 pm |
  106. Jim Blevins

    I really hate to agree with you, but you are right. Studies will be fine to see how well the reforms work, but first we need the reforms.

    Jim, Craig, CO

    July 7, 2010 at 6:18 pm |
  107. Joe

    I think it is the pot calling the kettle black, Jack. They are throwing out time and our money on these studies, just like how Wall Street was quick to throw out our money. The last thing we (on Main Street), need to hear is yet another study. Just fix the problem already!

    July 7, 2010 at 6:18 pm |
  108. Paulette in Dallas,PA

    This 68 study business is ririculous. Implement the findings of the Roosevelt appointed 1934 Pecora Commission. It baically has three tenets:Get rid of Deregulation. Bring back Regulatory oversight and allow them to do their jobs-honestly; infuse the SEC with some powers and allow them to do their job;and finally seperate commercial and investment banking – pass a Glass-Steagall Act II because in 1999 the original one was repealed. We already have the answers all Congress needs to do is ACT instead of pondering and stalling.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:18 pm |
  109. Gary Las Vegas

    I would love to give you an intelligent answer on this subject, but i'm afraid i'm going to have to do some studies. If you get back to me in two or three years, i'm sure i will tell you the studies were inconclusive!!! But, thank you for your input.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:18 pm |
  110. Jeff Form Lakewood Ca.

    No Jack, the answer is not 68 more studies. The answer is 69 more studies so we can study the idiots who are studying our economy which is studying the disappearance of the Middle Class of America

    July 7, 2010 at 6:18 pm |
  111. Luis @ Purdue

    Of course not Jack. Let's just run at them idiotically and scream "I want my country back." Really, what do you propose is done. If they do something themselves all of a sudden "the government is taking over and shoving things down our throats," if they try to do something the right way they get called wimps. What do people want? Let the government work. I don't see anybody attacking the fact that nobody wants to work together in Washington. We got Obama for President. That's it. We got our elected officials up there for a few more months. That's it. Let's tell them to get to work nonstop. TOGETHER we can get our country back on track. Why is everybody so ready to kill each other?

    July 7, 2010 at 6:19 pm |
  112. Paul Wood

    Hell yes! Revolution!

    July 7, 2010 at 6:19 pm |
  113. Jason LaBombard

    Congress should authorize a study that examines the utility and feasability of a nation firing an entire inept and cowardly elected assembly through a quick online vote. I can't say I have a plan for their immediate replacement but if we woke up tommorow and their was no Congress; how many of us would really notice?

    July 7, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  114. Mike Shlasko

    It's no wonder government gets a bad name and a movement as misguided as the Tea Party can take root. It is time to make it clear that government is a good and noble calling with millions of government employees working every day for the good of all. This is of course as opposed to the majority politicians who play to the sound bytes and the lobbyists and spend most of the day practicing their next sound byte in front of the mirror. We need to "study" whether or not our current system for electing a "congress" is still effective in a world where communication in instantaneous and the public does not have time to delve into the details and make informed decisions.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  115. Robert

    You know, I had a relevent question regarding the 68 studies done in drafting the Wall Street Reform Bill, but I thought I'd study it for awhile first to make sure I get it right.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  116. John

    Hi Jack
    The answer to reforming Wall St. is to vote all incumbents out, add an amendment to the constitution giving Congress term limits And if our Democracy & Constitution could speak they would both say "
    Thank you very much".

    John Reuter
    Parkersburg, WV

    July 7, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  117. Zach

    Jack, add one more study and you will understand the symbiosis of Congress and Wall Street.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  118. Nicole

    It depends Jack, who is conducting these "studies"? Are those conducting these studies divided into 38 Democrat and 38 Republican scholars so each side has an excuse to praise or repeal the bill depending on the political climate? I thought we already had the GAO, Dept of Treasury, etc... conducting studies and collecting data for a "fair and unbiased" view of the economy...I guess the Congress needs more studies to defend their jobs.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  119. Scott in Alamogordo

    Hell, no! We need action instead.
    I'm a progressive but my feeling is: "Democrats are stupid, Republicans are evil." This is the stupid part at work.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:21 pm |

    The longer they study, the longer it will take. TILL WE GORGET Then next year they will say they have to study it again. That is why nothing gets done. When it's money in their pocket.They will milk the cow.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:22 pm |
  121. Bob in NC

    The quick study would conclude that 68 studies epitomizes the government's inability to grasp and address problems since they rarely study the issues – so we, as citizens really need to study their adequacy for the post more carefully prior to casting our votes. Time to clean house – and the senate – on November 2nd.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:22 pm |
  122. Nicole

    It depends Jack, who is conducting these "studies"? Are those conducting these studies divided into 33 Democrat and 33 Republican scholars so each side has an excuse to praise or repeal the bill depending on the political climate? I thought we already had the GAO, Dept of Treasury, etc... conducting studies and collecting data for a "fair and unbiased" view of the economy...I guess the Congress needs more studies to defend their jobs.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:23 pm |
  123. Josh from Georgia

    Is the answer to such a profound financial crisis to rush into political decision making that strains to keep up with a 24-hour news cycle? I've known since kindergarten that anger is always faster than reasoned action. It's easy to put the word "study" in quotes and demonize it as another example of government sluggishness, but let's not forget that the reason lobbyists can rely on studies as a delay tactic is that they are such a compelling part of smart government.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:24 pm |
  124. Mitch

    Wasn't one of the recommendations of the 911 Commission Report (a study) one that would have prevented the underwear bomber from boarding that airplane. I bring this up in response to your question because this is a prime example of how study results are selectively implemented. I think this one was the one that called for the full body scan which provoked privacy concerns – and of course cost.
    One of these nights when you bring up the subject of 14th Street lobbyists, you should remind your listeners of the history of 14th Street. It used to be a red light district where you could get anything you wanted – for a price. The neighborhood has changed completely on a superficial basis but not at all when turn the rock over!

    July 7, 2010 at 6:25 pm |
  125. Karl Weaver

    There's nothing wrong in principle in studying what the impact of changes would be before making them. And sometimes a "study" by a bipartisan commission helps give congressmen the spine they need to vote for something controversial or unpopular, but necessary. Unfortunately I share your skepticism here-Wall St. has far too much money and has been lobbying hard to water down or KILL any meaningful reform-which means we will remain vulnerable to another financial panic or collapse again. This problem-the problem of big money controlling our government's decisions-cuts across parties and is maybe the central problem of democracy in our generation.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:25 pm |
  126. Cheryl

    Sounds to me like they want the money from Wall Street for their upcoming campaigns rather than to do the right thing.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:26 pm |
  127. Walt Simpson


    68 studies does seem a bit much. However, I do remember sept. 08 when no one had answers for the economic downturn our economy took. Not knowing had our entire country in on pins and needles. Had the economy really went into a depression, trust me 68 studies would be have been a small irritation, in comparsion to the MAJOR hurt we would have suffered.

    There's alot to said for knowing what you're doing.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:27 pm |
  128. Audrey

    I think we know what is wrong with Wall Street, but what would be the best solution? Conducting studies is a great way to figure out these answers, and it relies on facts and rationality, not politics. Our government should utilize fact-seeking ventures more often, because I am not interested in politics making our decisions, I want what is most effective in improving our situation.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:27 pm |
  129. Jonathan Weston

    Why is it that the majority of us regular citizens see the obvious clear solutions? – Financial reform – no studies are required – Fed Gov sues Arizona – get real and start enforcing our laws – Afganistan – they don't want a western democracy – let's get out and save lives and a ton of money – by the way maybe you hadn't heard – the terrorists are in Northern Pakistan. Fix the economy – easy – stop the devaluation of our nations real estate – Mid east Peace – tell the Israeli's to work it out with the Palistinians – give them a dead line – tell them don't ask them. If only Jack were President!

    July 7, 2010 at 6:29 pm |
  130. ella--oklahoma

    No matter what we do or say everyone wants to have a study on what we have done or said., sounds like to me we really have some silly people running things around here. I for one believe in good old common sense, if it sounds stupid the first time then it's going to sound stupid the last time!!!

    July 7, 2010 at 6:30 pm |
  131. David M Jackson

    It's just more of the same old good buddy behavior that got us here in the first place. Shame on them for wasting our tax dollars, and shame on them for assuming that their constituents are all so stupid that they would buy this as any semblance of reform.

    It is sickening to think that we cannot elect one single man or woman with enough backbone to present real solutions to our real problems.

    Our problems didn't used to be Republican or Democratic, but they are now. Every Republican and Democrat currently serving just stinks.
    I used to be proud to say I was a Democrat, but I give up on these morons. Do we really have to go to war against our own representatives to get any real representation in this country?
    I've begun to think so. They are all wet Jack. Hang 'em out to dry.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:30 pm |
  132. Richard

    Another waste of money and time from a government who will obviously give slack to those who fund their elections.It's funny how most politicians are former lawyers,the devils advocate and now they claim they are going after those who commit fraud.Really.Isn't that like shooting a dead horse?Where were these laws when people were losing their retirements and homes?fraud has always been against the law but I guess we need financial reform to enforce a law that should of been enforced to begin with

    July 7, 2010 at 6:32 pm |
  133. Sam Johnson

    Jack Cafferty You could tell the day that the bill was passed or announced on National tv that there was a problem, you have to watch certain things when things like this happen. Soon as the bill was passed/announced on tv, the republicans where ready to tell on them selves & the democracts that this is not what you think it is America, Now that showed me that there was more to this then what we thought...And to what you said about that we are over due for a revolution, then where is your support that you have the one of the most biggest power's of all & thats TV, Let's Roll Mr. Cafferty or are we scared of what we have to sacrifise & lose.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:32 pm |
  134. Don Desaulniers (Belleville, Canada)

    Derivatives are too complex for politicians to understand. No one could clearly explain what they even were when the financial crisis hit back in 2008.
    You may as well have 68 studies and do nothing at this time. When those studies are completed, I'm sure that they will contradict each other on every single matter anyway.
    Sitting on one's hands is probably the correct government approach for Wall Street reforms. President Obama will be conning us again if he claims to understand what reforms are in America's best interests.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:33 pm |
  135. lockriley

    Jack, it is typically what happens every time lobbyists and congress work together ; which, unfortunately for us happens way to often. Oh, by the way, the cost of these programs is nothing compared to the cost of all the toilet paper consumed by congress when thinking these things up.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:35 pm |
  136. Sally PA

    My question is how does on start a revolution? I've been unemployed for 9 months now and I am sick an tired of all this spending and nothing being done about people like me. I want to work but they put so much pork and BS into every thing they do and then say we have no money. DUH!
    Revolution? I'm in. I want my country back and these people to go away,

    July 7, 2010 at 6:39 pm |
  137. Norm

    This is just more government spending we don't need, a jobs program for lawyers and a protracted paper mill.

    What Americans need now is for to Wall St. and others to invest in THEM with lots of jobs, research and manufacturing that is real and tangible with an outcome that is positive for Main St., not foreign countries.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:39 pm |
  138. Jerry Bishop

    Hello!!!! Lobbyist do not act for the general public, only for special interest groups own agenda. Congress does not want to act as it might affect chances for reelection. Do they think we are so stupid we can't figure this out. In all elections, vote for the guy running for the office not incumbents. New Concord, KY

    July 7, 2010 at 6:43 pm |
  139. Antonio from Washington D.C.

    America needs so much reforming that Thomas Jefferson is weeping in agony!

    July 7, 2010 at 6:45 pm |
  140. Norma from Sugar Land, TX

    Yes! It is! You had it right, Jack – it’s WAY past time for a revolution. But like John Lennon said, “we’d all love to see the plan”. Nobody knows what “the plan” is. Now THAT’S a study we could all participate in and it wouldn’t cost a nickle.

    The problem we’re studying is this: “What should we as Americans do to get the attention of Wall Street and the large corporations who are ruining our economy, sending our jobs overseas, stealing our children’s future, and contaminating our environment. Let’s put our heads together folks and see if we can’t send them a message – ENOUGH!

    July 7, 2010 at 6:47 pm |
  141. Katherine

    No. It's worrisome to read that even scientists don't use numbers expressed in trillions since they're too colossal to manage. So if there are any studies done, I'd suggest an in-depth study about the profound differences between a million and a billion and a trillion.

    Staunton, VA

    July 7, 2010 at 6:51 pm |
  142. Arnold Mi

    Studies of wall street are a waste of time since the ones performing the studies have a vested interest in the outcome of their study. There is only two ways to regulate wall street.
    [1] Stop all trading and allow would be investors to buy the stocks and throw them in a dresser drawer.
    [2] Put a direct tax on wall street to the US Treasury & Social Security Trust Fund.

    July 7, 2010 at 6:52 pm |
  143. ted

    .........I will have to study for an answer..........

    July 7, 2010 at 6:52 pm |