PORTLAND, Oregon - US Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner sought on Wednesday to reassure Americans that the Obama administration was doing what it could to rout out the bad actors from the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression.
"The wheels of justice are turning now," Geithner said at an event in Portland after touring a factory there. "They are not turning as fast as people would like, but we have the best system in the world for making sure we can enforce the laws of the land," he said.
Geithner suggested that holding people accountable for the wreckage caused by the recent housing collapse and the ensuing financial meltdown was not that simple since most crises were not caused by criminal activity.
"Most financial crises are caused by a mix of stupidity and greed and recklessness and risk-taking and hope," said Geithner, who helped tackle the crisis for the Bush administration when he was the head of the New York Federal Reserve and has been urging Europe to act more aggressively to contain its debt problems.