If Wall Street can lay claim to special expertise in any particular field, that field is the raising and management of capital. Bringing together, presumably in an orderly and mutually beneficial way, companies that need new money to run their businesses and investors who wish to hire out some of their money at reasonable risk, is Wall Street’s work—the social justification of its existence. By and large, over the years, it has performed this function well. Yet in the latter nineteen sixties the capital structure of Wall Street itself became unsafe and unsound to a degree that, when hard times struck, was revealed as nothing less than a scandal. It was more than a case of a physician being unable to heal himself; ...