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JPMorgan Chase is scapegoat for others’ crime
BY NICOLE BARNARD
Remember the financial crisis back in 2008? Well, someone's
finally getting blamed for it, and that someone is JPMorgan
How would you react to being sued $13 billion? You'd be
upset, for sure, and probably wonder what anyone could have
done to deserve this.
But in three months alone at the beginning of last year, the
financial giant made $5.4 billion according to CNN.
The average American makes a little over $50,000 a year. A
person making this average yearly income would be in debt for
dozens of decades.
But why should JPMorgan Chase be sued when what they
did, in a nutshell, was bail out the U.S. government? Does that
"The bank and the government are arguing over whether
JPMorgan (Chase) should be forced to pay for mistakes made
by Washington Mutual, the failed mortgage lender it bought
during the financial crisis," according to NBC.
So was JPMorgan Chase the right and only group to pin the
"It seems JPMorgan is being punished unfairly for its kind-
hearted assistance to the U.S. government at its darkest hour,"
Mark Gongloff wrote in an article for The Huffington Post.
"That should make JPMorgan and other massive banks far less
likely to come to the rescue in the next financial crisis in Wall
Many Americans disagree with Gongloff's view.
"If you decided to be a part of it, you have to take
responsibility," said first-year Taylor Brown. "They have to
reap what they (sowed) and deal with the lawsuit."
At the same time, Gongloff wasn't exactly sympathetic.
"Before we start playing the world's smallest violin for
America's biggest bank ... it is worth remembering that
JPMorgan ... knew the risks when they bought Bear Steams
and Washington Mutual," Gongloff wrote. "They took the good
with the bad."
Even if the bank took a risk, shifting the entire blame on them
BREAKING: J.P. Moi^^ Ch^e has reached a $13 biUioii
tentative deal with the U.S. Justice Department, (via
2:34 Py -1S Oct 2013
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for a financial crisis they didn't constmct isn't okay.
"My only hope is that the next time a large financial
institution gets into trouble and the government calls a large
bank CEO to help with a bailout that he chooses not to pick up
the phone," said bank analyst Gerard Cassidy to Wall Street's
Even though it isn't fair to be punishing JPMorgan Chase, is
$13 billion enough? It's a hardship, but certainly not enough to
cover a financial depression.
"If JPMorgan Chase is a scapegoat, it is an extremely well-
paid scapegoat," said Mark Gongloff in a Huffington Post
So, let's talk about the money itself.
"The settlement includes $9 billion in fines and penalties
and $4 billion in 'consumer relief,' including home loan
modifications," said a law enforcement officer in an interview
Great — so the people are going to get $4 billion dollars. But
that still leaves roughly 70 percent up in the air. We have no idea
where it's going.
Let's recap: JPMorgan Chase is being sued for bailing the
government out. They're also being sued an absurdly small
amount of money for the company that they are. Lastly, we're
not entirely sure where the money is going.
Overall, this conclusion is far from satisfying.
Wages should not be published
I used to make $8.50 an hour and about
three dollars a night in tips.
But, as we say in the South, "Sweep
your own front porch."
In other words:
ifs none of your
social media startups
Buffer and Sumall,
are starting to publish
businesses seek to
promote equality; the
reality is this violates
privacy and damage^worker repartee.
"I don't really think it's anyone's
business what you make," said Jake (last
name withheld) from Jam's Deli in an
interview with The Guilfordian. Pointing
over his shoulder towards the busy
kitchen, he continued, "It's none of my
business what he makes — and what she
makes — and what he makes."
The problem is, money and camaraderie
mix like oil and water. When employees
know "what he makes — and what
she makes," then it is easy to lose focus
from common goals and focus on salary,
especially in the service industry.
"Out front, the servers make the same
rate, so their thing is tips," said Elizabeth's
Pizza manager lina (last name withheld)
in an interview with The Guilfordian.
"And there have been issues in the past
where one... would get more tables, (but) I
try to pay everyone fairly and haven't had
many coinplamis on that level."
Workers shouldn't be burdened with
this knowledge; it's a manager's job
only to manage workers. Because work
should be qualitative, not quantitative, co-
woikers don't have enough information to
make accurate conclusions about their cp-,;
When I worked in^a chain drug store,
our training videos elaborated on how
they ini/'est so much into theft prevention.
With their numerous resources, certainly
businesses can make sure another type of
theft — unfair wages — can be reported.
Exposing workers' wages is not
necessary when the government,
businesses or nongovernmental
organizations can set up alternative ways
to ensure fair wages, such as monitoring
Although the value of fairness speaks
for itself, what is the value of worker
camaraderie in comparison?
Camaraderie, besides creating a more
pleasant working environment, helps
workers earn higher wages. There is
strength in numbers.
For instance, a Harvard and University
of Washington at Seattle joint study
reported that in the past 30 years, as union
membership plummeted to seven percent,
wage inequality escalated 40 percent. As
unions fell, pay inequality rose.
Workers can'tmake complete judgments
^ about someone else's salary, so a worker is
bound to think at least one of his or her co
-workers is paid too much or too little.
And these judgments cloud
camaraderie, loWer productivity, create
a less' desirable work environment and
disband unity that comes in numbers.
As a local dental hygienist named
Stephanie (last name withheld) said in an
interview with The Guilfordian, "There's
only so many ways you can clean teeth.
We should get paid the same if we do the
same amount of work."
Unfair wages must stop, but not at the
cost of privacy and workers' camaraderie.
In ouier words: sweep your own front
Workers shouldn't be burdened with this knowledge;
managers should manage wages, not the public.
isn t up to
It takes courage to come forth and say, "I
was a victim of sexual assault."
And when efforts toward justice seem to fall
short, there is bound to be an uproar.
Recently there has been criticism of how
the administration has handled cases of
sexual assault. Those who have been sexually
assaulted feel their offenders were not fairly
and properly punished, and consequently, the
judicial process does not at least bring them,
the victims, peace of mind.
Although the administration is following
established policies similar to those held by
other colleges and universities, the student
body still doesn't feel they are being supported
enough on campus with respect to this issue.
It isn't as if the administration isn't trying
to do what it can for the students. We just
hope that the college will continue to take
opportunities to improve.
We have several fantastic counselors on
campus, and to supplement their efforts, a
new "wellness position" has been proposed to
provide additional support to sexual assault
victims, among other duties.
Here, we run into a familiar problem: funds.
Money will be required for this to happen. This
position would be filled in a "better budget"
scenario — a scenario in which the college has
money left over from other things.
This situation illustrates why students are
Some students do not feel adequately
supported by and safe in the institution
where they Aose to seek higher education.
An opportunity has arisen for the college
to provide additional support, but this
opportunity is not given priority. Students
come to conclude that their well-being isn't
important to the school.
Realistically, we know this isn't the case at
Guilford and that the well-being of students
is a top priority. So then, shouldn't a position
like this rank higher than a "better budget"
The college has said that if students have a
concern about the judicial process, the students
should express their concerns. Well, here it is.
We know that both the administration and
students want to help assault victims; they
both want students to get the justice and
support they deserve. But students can only
say and do so much.
In the end, it's up to the administration to
take action and show students that their well
being is of the utmost importance.
Reflecting Guilford College's core Quaker values,
THE TOPICS AND CONTENT OF STAFF EDITORIALS ARE CHOSEN
THROUGH CONSENSUS OF ALL 16 EDITORS AND ONE JV\CULTY
ADVISER OF The Guilfordian's Editorial Board.