More Goldman Criminality

When do we get to put these guys on the FBI most wanted list:

Wall Street tactics akin to the ones that fostered subprime mortgages in America have worsened the financial crisis shaking Greece and undermining the euro by enabling European governments to hide their mounting debts.

As worries over Greece rattle world markets, records and interviews show that with Wall Street’s help, the nation engaged in a decade-long effort to skirt European debt limits. One deal created by Goldman Sachs helped obscure billions in debt from the budget overseers in Brussels.

Even as the crisis was nearing the flashpoint, banks were searching for ways to help Greece forestall the day of reckoning. In early November — three months before Athens became the epicenter of global financial anxiety — a team from Goldman Sachs arrived in the ancient city with a very modern proposition for a government struggling to pay its bills, according to two people who were briefed on the meeting.

The bankers, led by Goldman’s president, Gary D. Cohn, held out a financing instrument that would have pushed debt from Greece’s health care system far into the future, much as when strapped homeowners take out second mortgages to pay off their credit cards.

And if we do anything to try to regulate these folks or punish them, glibertarians, Republicans, and the nitwit tea partiers will scream about the heavy hand of government. Not that we will try to do anything about it, because Chris Dodd and his cronies won’t put a beefy regulatory bill in play anyway.

103 replies
  1. 1
    gbear says:

    We should force them to appear in public wearing nothing but a Lily thong.

    edit: and then throw them off a cliff.

  2. 2
    Cat Lady says:

    I live in Barney Frank’s district. I can send him a sternly worded letter (R).

    ETA: BTW, for the PUMAs who lurk here, Barney’s sister Ann Lewis was Hillary’s 2008 campaign adviser, so STFU. Also, too.

  3. 3
    Mike Kay says:

    I remember when the blogoraiti loved Dodd during the primaries. Markos was ready to have his baby.

    Mark this one under “Beer-Goggles”

  4. 4
  5. 5
    Mike Kay says:

    Too be fair with Dodd, Shelby intends to filibuster Dodd’s bill because his masters object to the proposed “Consumer Financial Protection Agency”. This is one of many pieces of legislation that can’t be passed through “reconciliation”.

    It’s time to kill the filibuster, before it kills the country.

  6. 6
    John Cole says:

    @Mike Kay: I was big on the Dodd, too. He was my first choice, when he was out I sort of efaulted to Hillary, then I became an Obot.

  7. 7
    Cat Lady says:

    @John Cole:

    Me too, except for the Hillary part. I sent him money when he opposed FISA. I want my $100 bucks back – I could use it. Like for cat food (for my cats) who are more worthy.

  8. 8
    mr. whipple says:

    This short track speed skating is exciting.

    Jeebus, they are showing the death again, but say this will be the last time. Fuckers.

  9. 9
    Mike G says:

    the nation engaged in a decade-long effort to skirt European debt limits

    (wingnut) That’s the problem, it was the EU-imposed debt limits! Gov’ment regulation is EEEEVVVUUULLL! (/wingnut)

  10. 10
    Mike Kay says:

    @John Cole:

    I just couldn’t support anyone who whole-heartily voted for the war.

    And there was Dodd, beating his chest on the senate floor with Edwards calling to disarm Saddam.

    SEN. DODD: There’s no question that Iraq poses biological and chemical weapons, that’s not in doubt, and that he seeks to acquire additional weapons of mass destruction, including nuclear weapons. That’s not in debate. I also agree with President Bush that Saddam Hussein is a threat to peace and must be disarmed.

    It was beyond laughable that Markos and other anti-Iraq war activists would look up to a creep who said this.

  11. 11
    Shoe says:

    I don’t think Dodd is at fault here. From what I’ve read the problems arise from a lack of votes in the committee. The problem (as always) is a reliably corrupt Republican party plus a handful of democrats being focus fired by financial lobbyists.

  12. 12
    Mike Kay says:

    @mr. whipple:

    Jeebus, they are showing the death again, but say this will be the last time. Fuckers.

    I guess they misplaced their tape of twin-towers collapsing.

  13. 13
    Jean says:

    I too started with Dodd, then Edwards, but after quickly tiring of “son of a millworker,” went to Obama. I bypassed HIllary completely.

  14. 14
    MikeJ says:

    Legality implies a state actor to decide what is and is not legal. Greece paid these guys a shitload of money to come in and cook the books. I presume Greece, the site of the activity, doesn’t call it a crime.

    If you value morals over money you;re obviously some sort of commie.

  15. 15
    mr. whipple says:

    @Mike Kay:

    Maybe I misheard, because they didn’t show it again. Thank dog.

  16. 16
    Annie says:


    LOL. Absolutely. And, can we get the entire Republican leadership in Tunch thongs that say “obey”?

    Would definitely set the right tone for the health summit…

  17. 17
    Svensker says:

    @Mike Kay:

    It was beyond laughable that Markos and other anti-Iraq war activists would look up to a creep who said this.

    You take what you can get where you can get it. If you’re going to wait around to find the pure politician who is right on everything, or even most things, you’re going to have a very long wait. Dodd was really good on FISA. Bad on lots of other stuff, including the war. Obama was bad on FISA and (apparently) good on the war. Waddyagonnadu?

  18. 18
    Kevin says:

    Hey, we don’t want to stifle innovation, do we?

  19. 19
    Waynski says:

    because Chris Dodd and his cronies won’t put a beefy regulatory bill in play anyway.

    Where’s a chunky Reese Witherspoon when you need her?

  20. 20
    burnspbesq says:

    Criminality? This is getting tiresome.

    What criminal statute has been violated? If you have no answer to that question, you should really find some other word to describe the conduct you find objectionable.

    You can’t only believe in the rule of law when the law gives you an outcome you like. That’s quintessentially Republican behavior.

  21. 21
    Mike Kay says:


    Dodd was posturing on FISA. He could have stopped it if he really wanted to. All he had to do was bring the senate to a halt by invoking every procedural objection (forcing them to read the bill, blocking unanimous consent requests, placing holds on every Bush appointee, forcing a cloture voted on every piece of legislation) that would have gummed up the works,

    I mean, HELLO, that’s what the goopers are doing right now to obama. EVERY nomination or piece of legislation has to go through cloture.

  22. 22
    Brick Oven Bill says:

    Goldman perhaps owns the government John. They knew his weakness (ego). They knew his vulnerability (I am becoming increasing convinced birthplace). These guys have Columbia. They know what the records contain. They have maybe achieved the ability to take down this government, and perhaps American democracy, with one phone call.

    Why would a man publish his views as an undergraduate, and then stop? Why would the writing style change from noun-verb errors in college articles to a fluent writer of books?

    Why is the Treasury Department led by Tim Geithner with a Goldman Sachs Lobbyist as Tim’s Chief of Staff?

    Geithner. His dad was his best man.

    There is a Logical conclusion. I welcome being proven wrong. It would cost $15. An apology by me would be warranted in this case.

  23. 23
    Mike Kay says:

    Just to reiterate the point, because you can’t say it enough.

    Dodd has a good bill right now that would establish an Independent Consumer Financial Protection Agency that would have :

    * The authority to write and enforce rules governing mortgages, credit cards and consumer loans;

    * the power to police both banks and non-bank financial firms like payday lenders and mortgage finance companies.

    It probably will get 57 votes, with vichy dems Nelson and Landrieu voting with the banksters.

    But 57 votes won’t be enough, because Shelby and the GOP will kill the bill, using the filibuster.

    The filibuster has to go. You can’t have every piece of legislation filibustered just because GOP can’t stand the fact that a black man is in the White House.

  24. 24
    Mike Kay says:

    @Brick Oven Bill:

    Does the Tin Foil make your scalp chafe?

  25. 25
    Mark S. says:


    Yeah, the article says a couple of times that what GS did was legal, albeit a bit shady (The best I can tell, Greece took out loans but called them derivatives instead. That should probably be regulated). Even if they did something illegal, I don’t see any US jurisdiction on the matter.

  26. 26
    Brick Oven Bill says:

    Mike Kay.

    Here is my question to you.

    Why would the Obama Administration name a Goldman Sachs lobbyist to be Tim Geithner’s Chief of Staff at the Treasury Department?

  27. 27
    Lurker says:

    @cleek – I love your pie filter. Thank you so much for writing it. :-)

  28. 28
    cat48 says:

    @Mike Kay:

    Shelby is out and Corker is now working with Dodd. Corker says he will vote for the bill they work out, regardless of repercussions from his own party

    In other news in WP, Sen. Bond feels Obama is killing too many terrorists when they should be captured and interrogated instead. This is a new GOP complaint. Who’s soft on terrorists?

  29. 29
    Yutsano says:


    In other news in WP, Sen. Bond feels Obama is killing too many terrorists when they should be captured and interrogated instead.

    ¿que? Where in the hell did that come from? Can he just fucking retire already?

  30. 30
    charm city says:

    @Mike Kay:

    IIRC, Dodd put a hold on the FISA bill and Reid brought it to the floor anyway. And there weren’t 39 other Senators willing to vote against cloture if he tried to filibuster. I’m no Dodd fan, and maybe there were other things he could have done, but it never seemed like merely grandstanding to me.

  31. 31
    Waynski says:

    @Brick Oven Bill

    You’re a fucking idiot. /retard

    Waynski + 6 Out.

  32. 32
    The Republic of Stupidity says:


    ¿que? Where in the hell did that come from? Can he just fucking retire already?

    From here… it’s been floating around the intertubes the last few days…

    Perhaps Thiessen is hoping he gets to be one of the torturers if they catch ’em some terraists…

  33. 33
    Mike Kay says:

    @Brick Oven Bill:

    Oh, that’s an easy one. The same reason why Bush appointed Hank Paulson, the former chairman of Goldman Sachs, as Treasury Secretary — because Bush was behind the September 11th attacks and Goldman had the evidence, so they forced Bush to appoint Paulson. It was either that, or Bush would have been tried for treason and mass murder.

  34. 34
    Yutsano says:

    @The Republic of Stupidity: Ah. It’s the blackity black black guy running things again so therefore it must be wrong. Gotcha.

  35. 35
    cat48 says:


    8 more months. He’s red hot still because on MTP, John Brennan criticized politicians running around politicizing the panty bomber case while they were trying to control sensitive info. at intelligence agencies. Brennan said it only helps Al Qaeda!!! (oh no he didn’t) Thus, Bond & Peter King demanded that Brennan be fired immediately. So Bond has been in a huff since running around on the TV and now using the Hiatt fishwrapper.

    I’m quite fond of Brennan. He upsets Repugs everytime he makes a TV appearance.

  36. 36
    Mike Kay says:

    It’s well known in washington that Bond is an alcoholic.

    You know how sloppy drunks are.

  37. 37
    Sanka says:

    But, according to the POTUS, Blankfein is “savvy” and deserves the fruits of his labors.

    Heckuva job, Barry.

  38. 38
    Yutsano says:

    @cat48: So the Republicans aren’t teh awesome when it comes to national security? I was told by Saint Ronnie himself that was unpossible! Seriously, why are we listening to these fucktards anymore?

    @Sanka: Hey I’m all about making these rich fat cat bankers pay through the nose for wrecking the world economy for their own pocketbooks. But isn’t that like uhh soshulist and stuff? Can you EVER make a coherent argument?

    Now sit down and be quiet my boy is skating.

  39. 39


    In polite society, that’s usually abbreviated to SOM.

  40. 40
    Mike Kay says:

    @charm city:

    he could have blocked it by blocking and delaying other pieces of legislation, creating a log jam that would have prevented FISA from ever rising to the floor. In short, you can vote on something that doesn’t come up for even a basic floor vote.

  41. 41
    TenguPhule says:

    The filibuster has to go. You can’t have every piece of legislation filibustered just because GOP can’t stand the fact that a black man is in the White House.

    No, it’s not the filibuster that’s the problem. Without it we’d have a fucked up privitized Social Security looted and gone by now.

    The problem is Imperial Stormtroopers have not mowed down Republican Officials en-masse. It’s like they’re the fucking incarnation of out of control suicide genes that kill healthy cells instead of the damaged ones.

  42. 42
    cat48 says:


    It doesn’t get anymore pathetic than taking advice from an ex-speech writer who worked for Bush. He wrote the FP piece earlier saying O was killing too many terrorists. I guess Bond got the idea from him. He’s the only one on-record in the WP story. He was so pissed last wk he went on MSNBC 3x to complain. That is a rarity. Usually on Fox.

  43. 43
    Yutsano says:

    @cat48: I guess if he wants to end his career beng remembered as a WATB that is his right. Personally I think it’s sad and pathetic.

    OH YEAH! OHNO SKATED LIKE A MADMAN! Life is good. :)

  44. 44
    Brick Oven Bill says:

    You did not answer my question Mike Kay, but I shall answer your insinuation.

    George Bush, I believe, was fooled. This was not tough to do. Or perhaps he was in on it too and only plays the idiot. This is one more reason to abolish Legacy Scholarships.

    Now consider the events of September, 2008.

  45. 45
    mr. whipple says:


    Hell yeah.

  46. 46
    Mike Kay says:


    Leave it to Comrade Sanaka to attack “free market capitalism” now that the republicans are out of power. I imagine the GOP will hold their 2012 convention in North Korea.

  47. 47
    MikeJ says:

    @Yutsano: Two from the town where the ‘rents live. Who knew having a roller rink in town would pay off?

  48. 48
    Yutsano says:

    @MikeJ: Does Ohno live in Federal Way too? If so A) I’m sorry and B) that would actually be all kinds of awesome.

  49. 49
    Sanka says:

    Hey I’m all about making these rich fat cat bankers pay through the nose for wrecking the world economy for their own pocketbooks

    The problem is you have POTUS telling us for a year how wall street “fat-cats” are evil and so are their ill-gotten bonuses. Now, his tune changes and calls the head of Goldman Sachs—ground zero for “wrecking the world”—as “savvy” and that said bonuses are well-deserved.

    If the POTUS wants to lower himself and the office in “begrudging” a private citizen’s ability to earn or not earn a bonus, so be it. But being a complete liar, well. Whatever.

    And they wonder why Republicans are winning elections in Massachusetts.

  50. 50
    Mike Kay says:


    Not true. Bush could have used “reconciliation” to privatize Social Security, but they didn’t even have the requisite 50 votes.

    Moreover the privatization scheme was Dead on Arrival. Not a single hearing occurred in Congress. Not a single bill was introduced. Not a single vote occurred. Congressional republcians knew better than to get near the 3rd rail of politics, no matter how much bush and wall street pushed them.

  51. 51
    MikeJ says:

    @Yutsano: Yup. Both of them from Federal Way. Which doesn’t seem any better or worse than any other suburban town other than their surfeit of short track skaters.

  52. 52
    Yutsano says:

    @Sanka: And as usual, what the President said doesn’t quite fit your narrative:

    The president, speaking in an interview, said in response to a question that while $17 million is “an extraordinary amount of money” for Main Street, “there are some baseball players who are making more than that and don’t get to the World Series either, so I’m shocked by that as well.”

    @MikeJ: I actually applied for a job there in the company I was working for at the time. Didn’t get it, but as I recall there wasn’t much that made the place stand out. I guess that’s the very definition of bedroom community.

  53. 53
    mr. whipple says:


    Funny how both goopers and lefties say the same thing about what Obama ‘said’, even though it ain’t what he said.

    Odd that.

  54. 54
    Yutsano says:

    @mr. whipple: I think Obama is going to go down in history as the most misquoted President in history. And in the days of the Internet and instant verification, that seems untenable to me.

  55. 55
    Nick says:

    @Shoe: In a perfect world, we could let it fail and then let the ones who voted against it explain themselves to the votes, but I’m pretty sure they’d get reelected anyway.

  56. 56
    Nick says:

    @Sanka: Well Republicans aren’t winning elections because they hate Goldamn Sachs, I could tell you that.

  57. 57
    Nick says:

    @mr. whipple: Lefties are the Presidents second worst enemy, after righties. Best to dump em both.

  58. 58
    Mike Kay says:

    @Brick Oven Bill:

    you didn’t answer my question: why did bush/cheney/rove appoint Hank Paulson, the chairman and ceo of Goldman Sachs as treasury secretary?

    Why did Bush/Cheney/Rove fire a deficit hawk like Paul O’Neill?

    Why did Cheney tell O’Neill, “Paul, Reagan proved deficits don’t matter,” when O’Neill objected to ballooning deficit?

    Whdy did Bush/Cheney/Rove fire Lawerence Lindsey for revealing that the Iraq war would cost at least $100 Billion a year? (yes, he Lindsey was wrong, it cost more like $170 Billion per year, but at least he didn’t say Iraqi oil would cover the whole bill).

  59. 59
    MikeJ says:

    @Nick: No, stupid lefties are the problem. I’m waaaaaaaay to the left of Obama, but I also know who benefits fro talking smack about Obama.

  60. 60
    Nick says:


    deserves the fruits of his labors.

    Actually, what he SAID was he was savvy, but did not deserve the fruits of his labors, but keep making shit up anyway, you’re certainly helping yourself and you’re agenda by doing it.

  61. 61
    Nick says:

    @Mike Kay:

    Why did Bush/Cheney/Rove fire a deficit hawk like Paul O’Neill?

    Wait, so, are deficit hawks good now, because I thought I had to get a torch and pitchfork from Home Depot whenever Obama disses the deficit?

  62. 62
    ajr22 says:

    Who is excited to listen to the media discuss what dickface Cheney says tomorrow all week? This major offensive shows Obama is actually weak.

  63. 63
    b-psycho says:

    @Brick Oven Bill:

    Why is the Treasury Department led by Tim Geithner with a Goldman Sachs Lobbyist as Tim’s Chief of Staff?

    Because contradictory to the screams of the right Obama is a capitalist?

  64. 64
    mr. whipple says:


    Jeebus. There is a lot of room for legitimate criticism. But it’s just freaking dishonest to mangle quotes. It’s a lie.

    Wish they’d become Republicans already.

  65. 65
    Mike Kay says:


    stooopid lefties (ie Firebaggers) are actually kids who hated their parents because they didn’t receive enough attention, and are now projecting their “daddy-issues” on to the President (ie disappointed they didn’t get the pony they demand from their father who is spread too thin trying to keep a roof over everyone’s heads).

  66. 66
    b-psycho says:

    That’s a negative in my book, btw.

  67. 67
    SIA says:

    @ajr22: I’m OK with it as long as they also have McCain, Kit Bond, and Hamscher on the show for a balanced discussion.

  68. 68
    jl says:

    This banker bunch is really scary. I was thinking of living overseas in my olden sicky days if health reform did not pass. But now it is clear they are worldwide messmasters.

    Whatever happened to our reptiloid overlords? Did the bankers bump them off? Maybe we can get them back somehow. Good times, back then with our reptiloid overlords. At least we had jobs. I never cared whether they were dinosaurs who had gone underground or from outer space, at least we had jobs.

  69. 69
    Chad N Freude says:

    What did Obama actually say?

    “I know both those guys; they are very savvy businessmen,” Obama said in the interview yesterday in the Oval Office with Bloomberg BusinessWeek, which will appear on newsstands Friday. “I, like most of the American people, don’t begrudge people success or wealth. That is part of the free- market system.”

    This sounds like a politician avoiding making any direct statement about whether they “deserved” their bonuses. And the headline on the article is

    Obama Doesn’t ‘Begrudge’ Bonuses for ‘Savvy’ Blankfein, Dimon

    which is not what he is quoted as saying in the article.

  70. 70
    jl says:

    I’ve seen old clips of the Lawrence Welk Show. He had a bubble machine too, but it worked better than the bankers’ machine, which always breaks down.

  71. 71
    Brick Oven Bill says:

    On April 2nd, 2008, a hack-blog called Brick Oven posted:

    Eye On Paulson.

    I have now answered your questions twice, Mike Kay. Here I sit, +5, awaiting your enlightenment on my one question.

    “Why would the Obama Administration name a Goldman Sachs lobbyist to be Tim Geithner’s Chief of Staff at the Treasury Department?”

    Very soon it will be bed-time.

  72. 72
    Yutsano says:

    @Brick Oven Bill: Stop blog whoring. It’s unseemly.

  73. 73
    Brick Oven Bill says:

    I stopped contributing to the blog I am accused of whoring eighteen months ago Yutsano.

  74. 74
    Walker says:


    While generally this complaint is correct, there is a possibility that this is different. Greece was in clear violation of the Maastricht rule that fine eurozone countries whose fiscal deficits exceed 3% of GDP. Yves points out that a serious argument can be made that Goldman was facilitating this, thus putting it in trouble in the eurozone.

    As for American laws, not so much.

  75. 75
    Yutsano says:

    @Walker: It’s basically outside of our purview, so all we can do is sit back and see if the EU takes them to task for their recklessness in this situation. Since the EU has tighter rules than we do regarding these situations, I imagine the Greek government is going to be in some serious trouble and GS will face some serious sanctions.

    Don’t have too much fun without me I’m getting some Dawg time in. :) :) :)

  76. 76
  77. 77
    Nick says:

    @Chad N Freude: It was a lose-lose question. Either he approves of their bonuses, or he’s a socialist who hates free enterprise. Either way he loses.

    In the media, we call it a “22 question” because the goal is to put the interviwee into a Catch-22 position where we get a story no matter how she or he answers.

  78. 78
    Quiddity says:

    @Jean: I took the same path. Thing is, no candidate was a “Yowza!” in 2008 that I could get enthusiastic about. I think one problem is that they all use the same language which comes off as hedged (and frequently their actions once in office are hedged as well).

    Who are public figures that speak bluntly, straightforwardly, but without condescension? I’ve made a long list of such people that can help shape the public debate. It starts with Paul Volker and ends with … Volker.

  79. 79
    Jean says:

    @Quiddity: What’s become of Volker?

  80. 80
    Chad N Freude says:

    @Nick: Yes. And he skirted the question in a way that enabled them to summarize what he said in the headline inaccurately, and that became “what he said”.

  81. 81
    Brick Oven Bill says:

    Well, I really didn’t expect a response. Some questions are uncomfortable. So good night. But always in your travels, remember that ‘The Chicago Way’ pizza crust kits are the greatest gift ever for the man who has everything, even if these kits are not featured at The Balloon Juice Store.

    Only probably $6 for two kits. This equates to four pizzas and lots of group fun. Personally, I am witnessing a kitchen full of excellent pizzas for tomorrow’s pot luck.

    I really enjoy The Facility. All one can do these days is make themselves useful. And as tomorrow I will push my cart, I encourage all to ponder the question that Mike Kay refused to answer.

    “Why would the Obama Administration name a Goldman Sachs lobbyist to be Tim Geithner’s Chief of Staff at the Treasury Department?”

  82. 82
    Yutsano says:

    Gonna say it now: Ohno was ROBBED! He was MUGGED by the Koreans! Glad karma caught up with them though. Oh well it’s not his last race here fortunately.

  83. 83
    Mike Kay says:

    it’s medication time Brick Oven Bill, it’s medication time.

    9/11 was an inside job and Bush is the greatest mass murder in US history. Henry Paulson, the Chairman and CEO of Goldman Sachs uncovered the conspiracy with his good friend Alex Jones and he used the evidence of Bush, Cheney, Rove, and Rumsfeld’s treason and terrorism to blackmail them into appointing him as the Secretary of the Treasury.

    You still refuse to answer why Butch/Cheney/Rove/Rumbsfeld appointed the Chairman of Goldman Sachs to head the Treasury.

  84. 84
    John Quixote says:

    @Brick Oven Bill:

    “Why would the Obama Administration name a Goldman Sachs lobbyist to be Tim Geithner’s Chief of Staff at the Treasury Department?”

    His dad was his best man.

    You answered your own question, numb nuts. It has nothing to do with Goldman ‘owning’ Columbia, or any of the other black helicopter shit you always bring up. A lot of people get thier jobs because they know someone on the inside. The system is corrupt. Always has been. Always will be.

    What, are we all Claude Raines in Casablanca now? Shocked, absolutely shocked that the firm with all of the damn money has it’s tendrils in everything? This cake was baked 40 fucking years ago. We just now noticed that it’s moldy.

    BTW – I know where Obama’s Kenyan birf certificate is located. The same place that Saddam hid his WMD’s.

  85. 85
    Yutsano says:

    @Brick Oven Bill:

    “Why would the Obama Administration name a Goldman Sachs lobbyist to be Tim Geithner’s Chief of Staff at the Treasury Department?”

    I realize you’ve claimed to go to bed, but it would help if we knew who the hell you’re talking about. Name names or shut the hell up.

  86. 86
    Brick Oven Bill says:

    The name appointed is Mark Patterson, a good WASP. You should get a computer Yutsano. Now I am really going to bed.

  87. 87
    John Quixote says:

    @Brick Oven Bill:

    a good WASP

    You have answered your own question for a second fucking time. The only thing WASP’s are good for are scratching each other backs.

  88. 88
    Yutsano says:

    @Brick Oven Bill:

    Despite some criticism, Patterson received a White House waiver to work at Treasury, and he has promised to recuse himself when certain issues related to Goldman Sachs are discussed.Yost, Pete, “Ex-Goldman lobbyist now Geithner’s right-hand man,” The Associated Press, Jan. 30, 2009

    Weak sauce BoB. Weak sauce. Unless you have direct evidence that Patterson hasn’t recused himself, you’re just flinging poo.

  89. 89
    Brick Oven Bill says:

    I am so happy to know that Mark Patterson has received a White House waiver. It all makes sense now.

  90. 90
    Yutsano says:

    @Brick Oven Bill: Translation: I don’t really have a point.

  91. 91
    handy says:

    LOL There goes BOB keeping his eye on where all the real action is. As always. God bless him.

  92. 92
    Sly says:


    No, stupid lefties people are the problem.

    Political ideology is not a vaccine against believing in really, really, really stupid ideas or making really, really, really stupid arguments. I know a fair amount of conservatives who took one look at McCain’s stated economic platform and the musings of Congressional Republicans and voted a straight Democratic ticket without blinking an eye.

    As for Dodd, he more or less got hung out to dry on bonuses by some mid-level functionaries at Treasury, IIRC, and never recovered. The bill he’s been trying to get through the Banking Committee is pretty solid (the Courant has a decent summary of his initial draft), but its being balked at by the usual assholes on the other side, who are the ones really siding with the banks over the issue of a consumer protection agency and tougher regulations on high-risk transactions/products.

    The problem is salesmanship, really. Which is something worth criticizing, considering the people holding up the bill are Republicans looking to gain political traction. The DNC and 501cs should have been running ads in Alabama against Shelby, who is the principle opponent of the package, from the get go. Nobody hates bankers like Southerners, and he’s up for reelection this year.

  93. 93
    bob h says:

    One easy way to punish these bastards, which will come in time, will be to cut off the supply of free loans from the government. They borrow near zero, buy safe investments at 3-4%, and call it God’s Work. Just cut off the public charity.

  94. 94
    former_friend says:

    @Nick: “@Nick: “Lefties are the Presidents second worst enemy, after righties. Best to dump em both.”

    Q: And who are you, Nick & Mr. Whipple?

    A: Just the thinnest slice of perfection, that’s all.

  95. 95
    former_friend says:

    @Mike Kay: “stooopid lefties (ie Firebaggers) are actually kids who hated their parents blab blah blu…”

    Brilliant analysis, Data.

  96. 96
    numbskull says:

    @Brick Oven Bill: “Well, I really didn’t expect a response.”

    Good. You’ve learned the first half of the reality. Now, please move on to the second half, which is the “why”.

    Why don’t you get a response?

    Because nobody gives a crap about anything you have to say.

    No, really.

    And the only reason I’m responding at all is that I like to rub your nose in it.

  97. 97
    bob h says:

    The news from Greece re Goldman Sachs is just going to make it all the more perilous for Republicans to oppose financial reform. Make Frank Luntz’s advice all the more ridiculous?

  98. 98
    burnspbesq says:


    My view of this situation is that Goldman is the whore and the Greek government is the john. If you want to eliminate prostitution, you must criminalize the behavior of both actors.

    It’s also worth noting that the deal that Goldman did for the Greek government involved instruments and transactions that have legitimate uses. The analogy is to credit default swaps, which were created to serve a legitimate quasi-insurance function but became a vehicle for irresponsible speculation.

  99. 99
    mclaren says:

    What you call a felony, Goldman Sachs calls a day’s work.

  100. 100
    pantherq says:

    Why does this sound like a mortgage refinancing scam?

  101. 101
    Mike Kay says:



    Looks like I struck a nerve!

  102. 102
    raholco says:

    The Goldman/Eurozone scenario could get interesting back home:

    The Federal Reserve must cooperate fully with this investigation. Ordinarily, the Fed might be tempted to sit on useful information, but they can now feel themselves in Senator Bob Corker’s crosshairs. Senator Corker is willing to cooperate with Senator Dodd on financial sector reform, opening up the possibility of legislation that will pass the Senate, but he wants the Fed to lose its supervisory powers. If the Fed refuses to help – willingly and fully – the European Commission with bringing Goldman to account, that will just strengthen the hand of Senator Corker and his allies.

    If the Federal Reserve were an effective supervisor, it would have the political will sufficient to determine that Goldman Sachs has not been acting in accordance with its banking license. But any meaningful action from this direction seems unlikely.

    Instead, Goldman will probably be blacklisted from working with eurozone governments for the foreseeable future; as was the case with Salomon Brothers 20 years ago, Goldman may be on its way to be banned from some government securities markets altogether. If it is to be allowed back into this arena, it will have to address the inherent conflicts of interest between advising a government on how to put lipstick on a pig and cajoling investors into buying livestock at inflated prices.

    And the US government, at the highest levels, has to ask a fundamental question: For how long does it wish to be intimately associated with Goldman Sachs and this kind of destabilizing action? What is the priority here – a sustainable recovery and a viable financial system, or one particular set of investment bankers?

    To preserve Goldman, on incredibly generous terms, in the name of saving the financial system is hard to defend – but that is where we are. To allow the current government-backed (massive) Goldman to behave recklessly and with complete disregard to the basic tenets of international financial stability is indefensible.

    The credibility of the Federal Reserve, already at an all-time low, has just suffered another crippling blow; the ECB is also now in the line of fire. Goldman Sachs has a lot to answer for.

  103. 103

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