That sound you hear coming from Washington is the sound of every lawyer and lobbyist strapping on his or her battle gear and heading for the war zone.
Today President Obama signs the financial industry’s nightmare into law. Huge hanks of the way Wall Street likes to do business will for the first time be regulated, certainly impairing every cowboy’s ability to ride the range with his six-shooter and stallion, knocking down homesteads and rampaging pretty much every which way he can. It’s the end of the range, expecially for those who like to be both bad men and law men, depending. Any way you slice it, it’s not gonna be as much fun around Dodge as it used to be.
But wait. The fun is only just starting. Those laws are one thing. They’re on the books. But to be enforced, they’ve got to be turned into rules that every townsperson can understand, and every lawman can enforce. And we’re a long way from that, pardners. And that’s where those lawyers and lobbyists come in. Lord, what a mess of meetings and palavering and influence-peddling and horse trading and litigation there’s gonna be! And all that money to be made in town while it’s going on, too. Happy days are here again, ladies and gentlemen.
And in the end? When all the shooting stops? Well then, we’ll just see about that. Those jaspers have been at this game a long time, a lot longer than the new dudes in town with all their high-falutin’ talk about reforming the way things are done. I wouldn’t bet against the black hats on this one.