What People Say
San Francisco Review of Books
Alexander C. Kaufman
Jeff John Roberts
co-author of Barbarians at the Gate
and author of Days of Rage
"Eisinger is a fearless reporter. He apparently does not care much about eating lunch on either Wall Street or K Street. Any lawyers who have prosecuted or defended white-collar cases over the past 30 years are likely to go first to the book’s index to look for their names, and more than a few will be crushed by what they read. Unlike the Justice Department’s approach to white-collar criminals, Eisinger’s important and profound book takes no prisoners."
"This book is a wakeup call, delivered calmly yet with no shortage of well-reasoned urgency, to a nation whose democratic traditions are being undermined by backroom dealing, deregulation, and the consolidation of corporate power. It's a chilling read, and a needed one."
"Any book that can definitively answer the question of why no executives have gone to jail for the Financial Crisis deserves our attention. And in this case a Pulitzer Prize. The Chickenshit Club is a fast moving, fly on the wall, disheartening look at the deterioration of the Justice Department and the Securities and Exchange Commission, written sympathetically, thoroughly, but mostly - engagingly. It is a book of superheroes."
"The Chickenshit Club presents a stable of heroes.... There’s Kathy Ruemmler, the former deputy director of the Enron Task Force who delivered the government’s closing arguments in the trial that convicted former Enron executives Kenneth Lay and Jeffrey Skilling and later went on to become Obama’s White House counsel. And there’s U.S. District Judge Jed Rakoff, who argues to this day that government enforcers lack a backbone when it comes to indicting corporations. And Benjamin Lawsky, New York state’s former head of the Department of Financial Services, who, absent indictments, fined big banks hundreds of millions of dollars and forced dozens of employees to resign."
"The Chickenshit Club is not exactly beach reading. But it is smart, deeply sourced, and full of insider tidbits about legal stars like Comey, judge Jed Rakoff, and former SEC chair Mary Jo White. If copies of the book start to appear in the Justice Department and on law school syllabi, Eisinger could spark important debate about why—at a time when so many people struggle to obtain basic procedural rights in the criminal justice system—white-collar defendants manage to consistently evade its grasp."
“Jesse Eisinger is a master journalist. Revelatory, maddening, and engrossing, the book draws on vivid characters and immersive narratives to chart the rise of the corruption and the inertia within the Justice Department."
"A fascinating narrative that begins with how US law enforcement used to get white collar crime right - not even two decades ago - and how it all fell apart. Unfavorable rulings and extreme timidity have created a special class of citizenship for corporations and their executives, a class that need not fear accountability for criminal misconduct. This is a must read for understanding that transformation, and the deep rot in our system of prosecuting white collar crime."
“Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist Eisinger does a masterful job of assembling this riveting dossier of the legal scholars, jurists, and elected officials who played a role in turning the U.S. into a nation in which white-collar criminals are celebrated for their cunning instead of incarcerated for their offenses.”