Congress and Goldman Sachs Group, Inc.

by Daniel McNeet on March 20, 2012

Sink Hole

Good day, good people.

For devotees of the English language: Wanhope is a noun. It means forlorn hope, despair and delusion.

What continually surprises me is: people are shocked and surprised by the revelations of corruption being exposed in Congress, the government and Wall Street.

In May of 2010 Michael Lewis, a former Goldman Sachs bond salesman in London, had his book published called Liars Poker. He told his readers Goldman was defrauding their customers and had conflicts of interest. Nothing was done about it within Goldman which is obvious by the continuing revelations or without by any prosecuting agencies — so far, but I have hope.

Greg Smith, head of Goldman’s U.S. equity derivatives for Europe and located in London, also said in March of 2012 that the Goldman culture is corrupt. “I can honestly say that the environment now is as toxic and destructive as I have ever seen it.” “. . . how callously people talk about ripping their clients off.” “. . . five different managing directors refer to their own clients as ‘Muppets’, sometimes in internal emails.” When the managing directors insulted their customers by calling them Muppets, they were saying the customers were manipulated like any other kind of marionette and brainless, too. And I understand other names worse than Muppets were used by the good directors at Goldman who obviously had a high regard for the sources of their income they betrayed.

One of the naïve talking heads on television who had been living in a vacuum in a cave said, “If customers of Goldman are dissatisfied with Goldman’s, they can move their account to another Wall Street firm. According to Paul Volcker, the former Federal Reserve Chairman, said because there is so much money to be made by not putting the interests of their customers first — they don’t. Or, to put it another way: the game is crooked, but it’s the only game in town — Caveat Emptor. One customer who spoke said, “We trade a lot with Goldman, and we know that we have to be very careful when we do so.”

Lloyd Blankfein, the CEO of Goldman, told Congress their customers have no right to know about conflicts of interest. Is the principle, it is alright to cheat, lie and steal, but it is not alright to get caught apply to Wall Street? Maybe the board of directors of Goldman should allow Mr. Blankfein to file for unemployment insurance and find someone to replace him whom has a moral sense.

The Dodd–Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act was signed into law by president Obama in July 2010. Unfortunately, by the time the lobbyists and Wall Street finished motivating members of Congress with money, the bill was ineffective in preventing the corrupt culture on Wall Street. So, it was business as usual — profits first, customers second.

In October 2011 Lawrence Lessig’s book was published. The title is Republic, Lost: How Money Corrupts Congress and a Plan to Stop It. The title is self-explanatory. Until we prevent the corrupticians in Congress from taking bribes, not disguised as campaign contributions and perquisites, and delivering what the bribers want, the American taxpayers, their employers, will never get an honest first count.

What this country needs is some good-old fashion sustained outrage, nonstop until the members of Congress remove the corrupt culture and make the changes which put the taxpayers first and protect them from Wall Street predators. The U.S. did not lose a battle in Vietnam, but it lost the war. Why? Because, a war cannot be sustained without the will of the people. The same should be true in reforming the Congressional-corrupt environment. Are we to continue to be called the Muppets or worse names by members of Congress and Wall Street?

Do you have wanhope? What is your thought on the contribution you can make to change the corrupt environment of Congress and Wall Street?

Contacting me with comments and constructive criticisms with honesty and pleasantness their constant companions will always be welcomed.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Daniel McNeet August 16, 2014 at 6:45 pm

Why would you send me a comment with a word intentionally misspelled? Please advise, thank you.


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