Would You Buy a Used Car From This Investment Banker?

by Lanny Goodman on November 11, 2009


I love this picture.

It fairly oozes sincerity, humility and aw shucks integrity.

Of course, unless you’ve been on vacation in Zimbabwe, you know this is Lloyd Blankfein, CEO of Goldman Sachs taken from an article in the Huffington Post by Ryan McCarthy.

You know, the one who sanctimoniously told us a couple of days ago that Goldman Sachs was “doing God’s work.”  


Today, the Goldman Sachs spinmeisters are telling him to explain to the unenlightened who think that a company that invents securities that no one can understand, with risks no one can assess, insured by companies that can’t cover their losses and sells them to companies who ought to know better is not in the public interest, that the billions GS rainmakers earn in “bonuses” is because “The people of Goldman Sachs are among the most productive in the world.”  

Unfortunately, they appear to be primarily productive at doing what I just described.

Of course, if you’ve got a goose the size of the Chrysler building laying eight hundred pound golden eggs, it would be naive to assume that the owners of said goose are simply going to roll over the first time their game comes under some scrutiny.  Quite the contrary.  When you control the kind of fungolas these guys do, you can afford the best legislation money can buy.  

And, if you’ve been following the news, Congress is having a pre-holiday sale…all the Representatives and Senators are on sale, but don’t leave home without your Amex card as prices seem to start in the seven figures.

You would think, however, that given the level of PR talent these guys can afford, they would come up with something more credible than “we’re doing God’s work.”  Are they hoping that the Tea Baggers will ride to their rescue because of a reference to God?

I guess when you own Wall Street and the Treasury Department (thank you Tim Geitner!) then you really don’t have to worry very much about what the great unwashed think about you.  Certainly no need to waste any of those hard-earned billions on a bunch of dumb PR flacks who demonstrably if they had any brains would be working at GS (very productively) and making real money. 

Do you every get the feeling that the world has slipped on its axis and that the inmates have taken over management of the asylum?

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