"The dominant element in our financial oligarchy is the investment banker. Associated banks, trust companies and life insurance companies are his tools... . The development of our financial oligarchy followed ... lines with which the history of political despotism has familiarized us: usurpation, proceeding by gradual encroachment rather than violent acts, subtle and often long-concealed concentration of distinct functions... . It was by processes such as these that Ceasar Augustus became master of Rome."
Louis Brandeis -- Other People's Money (1913)