Since the end of WWI, Americans have generally liked to think of themselves as the citzens of the world's most righteous and powerful democracy, but an increasing number of angry American tax-payers now believe that (no matter who has appeared to govern the USA) their country has become a de facto kleptocracy http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kleptocracy
Although he once was the widely-respected Chief Executive Officer, and founder, of America's Countrywide Financial Corporation, Angelo Mozilo (b. 1939) is now a proven shyster who, after making catastrophic commercial decisions, deliberately hid the truth from his company's investors before selling $140 millions of his own shares knowing that their artificially-inflated price was about to collapse.
Any reasonable person reading these shocking facts would assume that Mr. Mozilo would have been stripped of all his stolen wealth and sentenced to a long prison term, but no; he hasn't even had to go to court to face civil charges, let alone criminal charges. Those tireless guardians of America's financial system at the Securities Exchange Commission have decided to allow Mr. Mozilo to hand over just $67.5 millions of his ill-gotten gains and they will drop all securities fraud charges against him (and without him even having to admit any wrongdoing). Oh, and they have also slapped him on the wrists by barring him (at the age of 71) from being a director or officer of a US-registered public company in the future.
The immediate victims of Mozilo's lies previously filed a $600 millions class-action lawsuit against his company. This was settled by the Bank of America which (as part of a wider federal government policy to rescue the global economy from total melt-down) was obliged to buy out Countrywide Financial for $4 billions, to save it from bankruptcy. In other words, the immediate victims of Mozilo's lies were paid off, whilst the $600 millions of losses he caused them, were off-loaded on to all US tax-payers (including Mozilo's victims). Despite the announcement that Mozilo's derisory $67.5 millions payment to the SEC will be used to reduce the huge burden he has inflicted on US-tax-payers, in reality, this relative speck of gold dust will now simply be tranferred to the Bank of America where it will vanish into the largest financial black-hole ever to have existed.
The FBI also began to investigate Mr. Mozilo in 2008, but the US Attorney's Office has (so far) declined to make any comment as to whether he might face criminal charges. Obviously, a deal has been done, but (in 2010) in the 'Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave,' handing over stolen money to the federal administration, to avoid being held to account by the American people from whom the money has been stolen, is apparently no longer considered to be a crime against the Republic.