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    • This is by far the best explanation I’ve heard or read re: why no big honchos went to jail for the economic meltdown-down ten years ago. It’s been rolling around in my head for awhile now...

      With all of the wealth-based scandals we’ve seen in the news since 2008 (yet another one surfacing today about wealthy parents buying their children’s admission into elite universities - and I don’t mean through alumni donations), perhaps Holder’s decision to fine the big players rather than prosecute wrong-doing was a serious mistake. But I can also understand the decision to levy big fines rather than risk shutting down these big companies and effectively putting thousands and thousands of innocent employees out on the street.

      Not sure which of those two decisions I would have made...

      [@apm - I’m not seeing many good tags for this post. Got any suggestions?]

    • One of the things I didn’t mention in this weekend’s panel workshop is

      fear of the big ask.

      Readers on social platforms prefer videos, podcasts and articles that are 10 minutes or less to consume. Five minutes or less tends to get exponentially more listens and reads. I therefore assume that a significant portion of my readers are not going to watch/listen/read my links, regardless of the length.

      When I have shared longer duration content, I have gotten people to respond to my conversation anyway by sharing a lot of the highlights. Or I’ll provide a combination of both short and long duration videos and articles in one post so that readers not up for a 40 minute listen can still join in the discussion after watching/listening/reading something shorter.

      Here’s an example of one I did for one of @Chris ‘s conversations from last month.

      The other dynamic is that a lot of the active “conversationalists” here may not have time to listen to the interview until the weekend.

      Like me.

      I like Marketplace podcasts. They do a really great job with their episodes: one of their former producers started out on Ira Glass’s This American Life.

      I will plan to listen to the episode this weekend and then share my thoughts, fwiw. Looking forward to it.

    • It’s a really interesting “special report” - not in the regular line-up, so some people may have missed it when it first came out like I did.

      I am also one of those who can rarely afford to invest the time to listen to something that’s not already on my list, so I totally get it. That’s why I didn’t wrap up the post with a question—it’s painful to have a question just hanging wide open all by itself out there on a platform with no responses. Ha. BTDT. Learned the lesson.

      This report has been in the back of my head bouncing around since I listened to it last week, making me wonder if the financial crash has had even more of an insidious effect than we care to acknowledge (that’s me conjecturing—not part of the podcast). I finally just had to get it off my mind (vent) and move on. It’s not a throw-away post, but I’m also not checking for notifications to see if anyone has responded. 😬

      (The Chickenshit Club reference really is in there and it made me smile. I sat in on a presentation/interview by/of James Comey when he came through on his book tour, so hearing that unexpected anecdote in the middle of the podcast cracked me up.)

      Not every post is shooting for the FEATURED queue. Some posts are meant to just hover in a parallel universe...

    • I really enjoyed reading your response. A lot to unpack and I’ll probably come back to different parts in separate replies: one of the advantages of text-based conversation.😎

      That’s why I didn’t wrap up the post with a question—it’s painful to have a question just hanging wide open all by itself out there on a platform with no responses. Ha. BTDT. Learned the lesson.

      There’s a definite feeling of “I’m pathetic, no one’s answering my question” when you get no responses. But the reality is that nobody really gives a shit about it since we’ve all had posts we liked that were misses.

      Why I shy away from asking a question at the end of a conversation starter is because it often gives you the false impression that you’ve written enough.

      What do you think?


      Remove that question and you see more clearly that your reader deserves more depth or insights shared. Or that a related article or video would be worth tracking down to share.

      Not every post is shooting for the FEATURED queue. Some posts are meant to just hover in a parallel universe...

      I think it’s all the same universe.


    • Great find. I listened on my run tonight. I love Kai Ryssdal, the host. This must have been a hard episode for him to do because it is complicated and he had to track down a lot of people. I was surprised at some of the people who told him no, like Preet Bharara. Anyway, it was great and I learned a lot.

      Speaking of Kai, he and Molly Wood recently did one on The Cambridge Analytica scandal that I added to my list:

    • Thanks for that link, Chris. Interesting show.

      As my mind tends to do, it mashed up that Shoshana Zuboff conversation with the reading I’ve been doing in The Next Mormons.

      I am struck by how everyone is starting to feel very different about privacy these days - even when it comes to church dynamics. I guess that’s a thought I could include in the book review thread...

    • I’m going to go out on a limb here and guess you are an extrovert

      I was extremely shy and introverted up to high school and even university to an extent. But then somewhere in there someone extremely wealthy and successful told me that “talkers rule the world.” What he meant is that if you can’t sell yourself and your ideas then you’re always going to be limited in what you can achieve. I took it to heart and after graduating from university, I took a thousand dollars of my extremely limited savings to go through a Dale Carnegie speaking course. By the end of the speaking course, one of the trainers suggested I should go into sales and invited me to be an assistant trainer for the next session. Twenty years later, I had a sales job and was extremely good at it, beating the record of my predecessor in my first year.

      I can be happy by myself on a big rock at Zion. Or at a party where I literately only know the host.

    • Were you a watcher of the tv show “Bar Rescue.” Not the best in quality television, I’ll admit. (More staged reality television, but it was entertaining.)

      The Bar expert would sometimes talk about the need for a “landmark firing.” Everyone who works at the bar is guilty of goofing off, over pouring, or stealing. But you can’t fire them all—the bar would be shut down for weeks. So you pick someone who’s bad, but not necessarily the worst, and you fire them to send a message to the rest.

      I finally listened to the podcast this weekend.

      I don’t buy Comey’s argument that the prosecutors in the SDNY were chickenshit. Robert Reich in Saving Capitalism talks about the reality of regulatory enforcement in the United States. Popular regulatory legislation will often be passed with bi-partisan support but then Congress will intentionally underfund enforcement budgets. As a result, regulators will often settle for pennies on the dollar: a $10 billion dollar fraud may receive a $100 million fine, meaning the corporation keeps $9.9 billion of the ill-gotten gain.

      My guess is that the SDNY didn’t have the budget to go to trial for all these cases and so they settled for fines that were preferable for the corporations compared to being landmarked.

      That’s the frustrating part of all of these financial crimes: the return on investment is something like $10 for every tax dollar spent on enforcement. If I could, I would quadruple the IRS investigations unit budget tomorrow as a quick way to rein in a lot of the white collar crime that currently goes undetected.