SEC Spends Most Of Its Time Fixing Paper Jams In The Copy Machine

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What's life like at the ole Securities and Exchange Commission? Moe Tkacik read the Government Accountability Office's report on the regulator issued yesterday, and apparently days at the ranch are spent asking "why does it say paper jam when there is no paper jam," threatening to "kick this piece of shit out the window," composing oneself and making a trip to Kinkos.

Investigative attorneys with whom we spoke concurred that having little or no administrative or paralegal support causes them to spend considerable time on non-legal duties such as copying, filing, document-scanning, preparing exhibits, making travel arrangements, soliciting bids for court reporters, and logging and processing documents submitted by respondents. For example, one attorney told us such duties can take 2 to 3 hours daily. Another, who joined the agency from private practice, said that investigative attorneys can spend up to half their time on tasks handled by support staff in their previous position. One attorney told us of plans to spend a day assembling document storage boxes. Because there is insufficient in-house copying capability, confidential documents sometimes are sent to non-secure outside copy shops. Frequent equipment breakdowns mean attorneys must search for working copiers and scanners, a number of attorneys told us.

If you're on the fence about killing yourself and need that extra push, read on to hear about how long it takes the agency to draft an internal memo (hint: it's closer to two months than twenty minutes).
Scenes From The Ninth Circle Of Financial Bureaucracy [TPM]

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