Criminalizing Capitalism

That is the title of this article from Forbes. Obviously, a lot went wrong in the late 90s, but legislation isn't going to fix things. The market has already punished the evildoers by driving their stock down significantly. I think there is some truth to this part:

"It's the criminalization of risk-taking, which is the same as criminalizing capitalism," says Robert Elliott, former partner of KPMG and head of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants. "Executives now face millions of dollars in fines and 25 years in prison for things as common as estimation errors and writedowns."

What is it about America that causes us to keep passing legislation to protect people from their own mistakes?