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Consumer Financial Protection Gone Awry

Star Parker on

The crises of recent years tend to erase from memory those that preceded them.

One, as you may recall, was the financial collapse of 2008 -- a collapse deemed by many as the worst since the Great Depression.

That collapse swept into power a government like the one we have now -- the White House and both houses of Congress controlled by Democrats.

Newly elected President Barack Obama appointed then-Rep. Rahm Emanuel as his chief of staff, who made popular the saying, "Never let a serious crisis go to waste."

Indeed, the new Democrat administration followed this advice and used the financial crisis as an opportunity for a major expansion of government.

Democrats wasted no time to ascribe the financial collapse to business greed and insufficient regulation of banks and other financial institutions. In 2010, the 2,300-page Dodd-Frank Act was passed -- with no Republican votes in the House and three in the Senate -- adding 400 new regulations on financial institutions.

 

Included in this tsunami of new financial regulation was the creation of a new independent agency -- the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. The agency, originally the brainchild of Sen. Elizabeth Warren, was conceived with her view, shared by Democrats on the far left, that disparities in financial results between different communities must be due to racism and discrimination. So, needed, in their view, was an all-powerful bureaucrat in Washington to level the playing field.

Now our financial institutions -- banks, securities firms, credit unions, payday lenders, etc. -- fall under the purview of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and must submit to its scrutiny and oversight.

The CFPB has just announced sweeping new changes in its "supervisory operations to better protect families and communities from illegal discrimination"

Firms must make available to CFPB "their processes for assessing risks and discriminatory outcomes, including documentation of customer demographics and the impact of products and fees on different demographic groups."

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