For contrast, here's a story on community banks that did things a little differently. Jim Rendon of The New York Times reports:
"In the midst of the worst banking crisis since the Great Depression, community banks have generally fared well. That’s because they typically shunned the lending practices that led to high default rates. They rarely participated in the securitization of loans, credit-default swaps and other overvalued financial products that put the global financial system in crisis. Instead, they stuck to the fundamentals. They considered the character and history of their borrowers. They required collateral. Without community banks, the current financial crisis would be a lot worse. And even though they operate in a different sphere from global financial giants like Citigroup, some economists now say that they may have a lot to teach our largest institutions."