Well, obviously it could happen again. There's been no repeal of the market cycle. There's been no repeal of human nature. So clearly, markets are going to go up and down, and if they go down in a precipitous manner that escapes the control of smart regulators, we could have another crisis.
I wish I could say I am more optimistic. I'm deeply concerned about the fact that we still have the same fragmented, balkanized regulatory system that was identified after Black Monday as one of the biggest problems we needed to fix. It was identified again after 2008 as one of the biggest problems we needed to fix. And yet here we are in 2017, and we still have this balkanized regulatory system where one agency regulates these people and another agency regulates that product and a bunch of different regulators regulate other things.
You know, we've got a banking supervisor, a securities supervisor and an insurance regulator in every one of the 50 states? So that's 150 regulators to start with before we even get to Washington. Multiple banking regulators, a stock market regulator that only regulates the stocks and the options, and a different regulator that regulates options on futures and futures contracts and has recently been put in charge of certain aspects of swap which did us so much damage in 2008. So if anything, our regulatory system is even more fragmented now than it was on the eve of Black Monday.
And the political situation is such that I have a deep concern about how Washington would respond to another crisis. In 2008, at least Hank Paulsen and Ben Bernanke knew each other. They had been in their jobs for a while, and Paulsen came straight out of Wall Street. Looking at the team you would expect to be the first responders in a crisis in the next six months, a year, two years — I don't even know who it would be. I'm concerned about an apparent lack of sensitivity to how much the message matters in the middle of a market meltdown.
What you say, how you say it can be the difference between a 100-point drop and a 1,000-point drop. Message management in Washington and regulatory fragmentation in Washington are, to me, the two things that I worry most about.