For bankers, for the economy and for ordinary working men and women, the next several months will be critical. Congress, the bank regulatory agencies and the administration will be debating and possibly enacting into law measures that will reshape our financial regulatory mechanisms. A new regulatory regime has the potential to change the structure of banking, the availability of credit and the underpinnings of the economy itself.

Amid such change and uncertainty, it's easy to feel dazed at times. As one American policy icon put it to me recently, "I get dizzy thinking about all the issues, let alone trying to make sense of them." In the face of such complexity, holding to a small number of organizing principles can help us achieve good public policy that supports sound financial institutions, informed consumers and a growth economy. Let me suggest seven such principles.

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