But the spectacle is so much more sordid than that. The CFPB is a constitutional affront, the crowning achievement of this White House’s mantra of never letting a crisis go to waste.
The agency has the power to regulate any practices it deems “unfair” — primarily the practices of institutions and businesses that had nothing whatsoever to do with the financial crisis.
Indeed, it has blank-check power to write the rules it wants to enforce. Worse, it cannot be reined in by Congress, because Dodd-Frank gave it a self-funding mechanism. It can simply take up to 12 percent of the Federal Reserve’s operating expenses to do whatever it wants. The power of Congress is ultimately the power of the purse. But in their finite wisdom, Democratic lawmakers gelded themselves. They also insulated the rogue agency from the courts, requiring that judges defer to the CFPB’s legal theories.