I heartily recommend a book I am currently reading, by Matt Taibbi, called “Griftopia”.
Even though he writes for Rolling Stone magazine (usually not the greatest source for news), Taibbi manages to make some sense out of the enormous confidence swindle that was AIG, Morgan Stanley, Alan Greenspan, credit-default swaps, commodities speculation, and selling off all of our national assets. He explains clearly how we have been suffering through tremendous speculative bubbles, wild and unexplained swings in the cost of gasoline, how insurance companies get away without paying for much of anything, and much more. (Like not paying for any “flood” damage on the Gulf Coast during Hurricane Katrina, and trying to weasel out of paying for lots of necessary medical operationa, either, causing about half of all US bankruptcies each year…)
The answer is really pretty simple: the criminal billionaires and multi-millionaires who really run this country have managed to get Congress, the Fed, the states, and the federal government as a whole to deregulate anything that might increase the short-term flow of billions and trillions of dollars into their coffers, even while they pass laws that soak all the rest of us for as much as they can get away with. Then again, those elected or appointed government bureaucrats who best do the bidding of the large corporations are handsomely compensated with money, fame, and fortune when they leave those posts to take up where they left off in ‘private industry’.
Again it’s Matt Taibbi’s book, Griftopia: Bubble Machines, Vampire Squids, and the Long Con That Is Breaking America.