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‘Government Sachs’ Strikes Gold ... Again

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Posted on Jul 14, 2009
Blankfein
AP / Mark Lennihan

Fortunes change: Lloyd Blankfein, right, CEO of Goldman Sachs, leaves the New York Stock Exchange after attending a panel discussion in 2008. 

By Robert Scheer

Connect the dots: Goldman Sachs made $3.44 billion in profit this past quarter, while the U.S deficit topped $1 trillion for the first time in the nation’s history and appeared to be headed toward doubling that figure before the budget year is out. Since most of the increase in the federal deficit is due to bailing out the banks and salvaging the greater economy they helped destroy, why is the top investment bank doing so well?

Well, because that was the plan, as devised by Bush Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, a former CEO of Goldman Sachs. Remember that Lehman Brothers, Goldman’s competitor, was allowed to go bankrupt. The Paulson crowd wouldn’t let Lehman change its status to that of a bank holding company and thus qualify for federal funds; soon afterward, Goldman was granted just such a deal, worth a quick $10 billion. Much is now made of Goldman paying back part of its bailout money, but forgotten is the $12.9 billion that Goldman got as its cut of the $180 billion AIG payoff. That is money that will not be paid back.

Goldman is considered a very smart bank because it was early in reducing its exposure to the mortgage derivatives that in large part caused the meltdown. However, it had done much to expand the market and continued to sell suspect derivatives to unwary buyers as sound investments, even as Goldman divested. The firm still holds $1.85 billion in real estate and lost $499 million in the previous quarter on bad loans, but made up for it by playing the vulture role and issuing high-interest debt to governments and companies made desperate by the recession that the financial gimmicks of the banks brought on in the first place.

And Goldman was not just another bank. Before Paulson ran the Treasury Department, another former Goldman head, Robert Rubin, pushed through the repeal of the Glass-Steagall controls on banking activity. While some now play down the significance of this radical deregulation, not so Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd C. Blankfein—at least not back in June 2007, when the markets were still doing well. “If you take an historical perspective,” Blankfein told The New York Times by way of explaining his company’s spectacular success at the time, “we’ve come full circle, because that is exactly what the Rothschilds or J.P. Morgan the banker were doing in their heyday. What caused an aberration was the Glass-Steagall Act.”

That 1933 act was repealed in a law signed by President Bill Clinton at Rubin’s urging, and in the following eight years Goldman Sachs recorded a 265 percent growth in its balance sheet. “Back then,” The Wall Street Journal reports, “Goldman was churning out profits by trading credit derivatives, speculating on currencies and oil and placing big bets [on] the roaring stock market.”

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Big bets made in a casino designed by Goldman, which now makes money off loans to the victims. High on the list of victims are state governments that have to turn to Goldman for money because the federal government that saved the banks won’t do the same for the states, which have watched their tax bases shrink because of the banking meltdown. As the WSJ noted, “issuing debt to ailing governments” is now a growth industry for Goldman.

Why didn’t the federal government just lend the money to the states? Why was all the money thrown at Wall Street instead of needy homeowners or struggling school systems? Because the federal government works for Goldman and not for us. Indeed, when it comes to the banking bailout, Goldman Sachs is the government.

So much so that last fall The New York Times ran a story, headlined “The Guys From `Government Sachs,’ ” that stated: “Goldman’s presence in the [Treasury] department and around the federal response to the financial bailout is so ubiquitous that other bankers and competitors have given the star-studded firm a new nickname: Government Sachs.”

One of those stars was Stephen Friedman, another former head of Goldman. Friedman was both a director of the company and chairman of the New York Federal Reserve Bank when he helped work out the details of the Wall Street bailout. The president of the N.Y. Fed at the time, Timothy Geithner, now secretary of the treasury, requested a conflict-of-interest waiver that allowed Friedman to buy more Goldman Sachs stock, and Friedman ended up with 98,600 shares. At market close on Tuesday that was worth $14,756,476. That’s nothing – three years ago, the 50 top Goldman execs made $20 million each, and this year could be better.

They’re not hurting.   

   

Click here to check out Robert Scheer’s book,
“The Great American Stickup: How Reagan Republicans and Clinton Democrats Enriched Wall Street While Mugging Main Street.”


Keep up with Robert Scheer’s latest columns, interviews, tour dates and more at www.truthdig.com/robert_scheer.



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By Inherit The Wind, July 18, 2009 at 5:07 am Link to this comment

Here’s the BIGGEST of the big Lies:

“AIG is too big to fail”

Crap.  Turns out that AIG wasn’t allowed to fail because the company on the OTHER side of the trades AIG would have defaulted on was….
(drum roll)
GOLDMAN, SACHS!

So the WHOLE bail-out of AIG was solely to protect Goldman,Sachs’ profits.

Now I’m pissed because it means Obama fell for it. (of course, so did Bush)

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By thebeerdoctor, July 18, 2009 at 1:01 am Link to this comment

re: Inherit The Wind

Yes the Monsanto corporation represents the most diabolical aspects of global capitalism, vis-a-vis agribusiness. Goldman Sachs, when it comes to money, is as Matt Taibbi pointed out, a giant squid sucking the face of humanity.
Peace and thank you for your insight.

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By Inherit The Wind, July 17, 2009 at 1:43 pm Link to this comment

thebeerdoctor, July 17 at 11:15 am #

re: Inherit The Wind

Am I correct to assume that when you refer to the Monsanto corporation, you are referring to their tireless efforts to put BGH into the food chain, along with their concentrated efforts to prevent truthful labeling?
If that is the case, then your comparison to Goldman Sachs is quite accurate.

*******************************************

Yup, you got it.

Don’t forget their genetically engineered seeds that a farmer cannot use to grow more seeds or Monsanto will sue his ass.

In fact, if the Monsanto victim’s crop seeds blow into his neighbor’s land and Monsanto finds THAT farmer inadvertently growing their patented crops, they will sue HIM as well!

Monsanto’s whole genetically engineered system is designed like a pusher hooking a junkie and then charging him a fortune AND beating his ass bloody if he goes to another cheaper pusher.

Monsanto is like the Halliburton of agriculture.  They should be regulated out of business.

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By thebeerdoctor, July 17, 2009 at 8:15 am Link to this comment

re: Inherit The Wind

Am I correct to assume that when you refer to the Monsanto corporation, you are referring to their tireless efforts to put BGH into the food chain, along with their concentrated efforts to prevent truthful labeling?
If that is the case, then your comparison to Goldman Sachs is quite accurate.

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By sommop83, July 17, 2009 at 8:13 am Link to this comment

THE BASTARDS!!!
___________________________________________________
http://www.movabletype.org/members/sommop83

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By sommop83, July 17, 2009 at 8:06 am Link to this comment

THE BASTARDS!
______________________________________________
[url=http://www.movabletype.org]http://www.movabletype.org[/URL]

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By Inherit The Wind, July 17, 2009 at 4:49 am Link to this comment

Goldman, Sachs: The Monsanto of Banking.

Banks have ALWAYS been willing to damage the nation for their personal ends.  J. P. Morgan and the House of Morgan BITTERLY fought the post WWI efforts by other banks to break the bankrupt British monopoly on international finance.  Since HOM was the sole conduit of US $$$ to the international economy and HOM was plugged into the UK banks, HOM’s interest was directly opposite what was best for the nation AND the world because it was a bottleneck for needed post-war funds.  A very PROFITABLE bottleneck.

But J.Pierpont Morgan was SO powerful and influential that he almost—ALMOST—pulled it off.

Nothing has changed in 90 years.

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By 911truthdotorg, July 16, 2009 at 7:53 pm Link to this comment

This guy is great!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VSwWy4E6I04&feature=player_embedded

  Max Keiser: Goldman Sachs gang are ’scum’ who have co-opted U.S. gov’t

July 16, 2009

Max Keiser calls the Goldman Sachs gang what they are– scum.

“Goldman Sachs are scum– that’s the bottom line. They have basically co-opted
the government; they’ve co-opted the Treasury Department; the Federal Reserve
functionality; they’ve co-opted the Obama administration. Barack Obama dances to
Goldman Sachs tune. And they are really crooked and abominable in what they’ve
done. Just remember, Hank Paulson took Congress hostage– took them in the
backroom and said ‘give us $700 Billion or we’re going to crash this market.
He’s an arsonist; he’s an outlaw– and yet he’s praised.”

Max Keiser didn’t stop there. He continues, naming only SOME of the names from
Goldman Sachs now dominating the political-economic sphere in government. Keiser
continued:

“If you go down the list, they’re all Goldman Sachs scum: whether it’s Hank
Paulson, Geithner has very close ties to Goldman Sachs, and all these banking
bonuses are paid out to their cronies, who are Goldman Sachs scum. And America
for some reason has allowed this coup d’etat to take place– this silent coup
d’etat where Goldman Sachs and their friends now control the U.S. Government and
manipulate prices…”

Strong words for strong villains. Fair enough, as far as I can see.

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By anonymously, July 16, 2009 at 7:53 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

one for you people…

you may have seen this one,
but it is titled,

“the last tango: enron and bush”

http://www.cpusa.org/article/view/348/

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By Gooby, July 16, 2009 at 8:57 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

What if GS, JP Morgan and others were called into a closed door meeting and told that they would partner in the US recovery? What if this was the condition of the TARP money?
What if they were given interest-free loans (us taxpayer money) to invest in gold futures and the market and then when gold hit around $965, they would dump the gold futures and the stocks, pay back the taxpayer money to uncle sam and use the profit to purchase treasuries, more gold futures and more stocks? Isn’t it possible that they are profiting - NOT by making loans, but by robbing ordinary investors of their wealth?

Think about it. In 2007 China threatened to dump the US dollar. China wants assurance that they will be PAID. The US government is in HUGE debt…..job losses continue = less taxpayers. The government cannot collect enough tax from those who are still working, to cover the interest on the debt! So, they can do one of 2 things. They can raise taxes, but that will hurt the economy because people will stop spending OR, they can do what I have suggested above. Manipulate both the COMEX and the stock market via their ‘minions’ and this will keep the dollar propped, the market from crashing and gold from escalating.

Now, the above article suggests that financials can serve as a base for the market. Well, if you’re robbing the average investor, then I suppose maybe they can!

Folks, we have become slaves to China and our government is beating us with the whip! A perfect scheme - and guess what? The bankers win, as usual….they can show a profit without hiring and without making loans! Amazing. Bunch of t**** - the lot of them.

Notice JP Morgan is making nice profits? Wasn’t anyone on this board gobsmacked when TARP money started to be paid BACK? I mean, WHERE did they find the money? Oh yeah, that’s right…..they didn’t actually need it! Bollocks!

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By liecatcher, July 16, 2009 at 5:23 am Link to this comment

I’m sorry the link as I listed it was ineffective. It should have been: http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/,

and the aricle is:

Can The Economy Recover?  By Paul Craig Roberts

There is no economy left to recover. The US manufacturing economy was lost to offshoring and free trade ideology.

It was replaced by a mythical “New Economy.”

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By liecatcher, July 16, 2009 at 4:42 am Link to this comment

‘Government Sachs’ Strikes Gold ... Again

This is another excellent & timely article. I thought it was an interesting coincidence that the main villain
was also born in the Bronx.

I was prepared to say a lot about this article until I
came across one that says it much better, so I’m only
going to make this brief comment. We know that the
bubble burst agenda is designed to wipe out the Oligarchs competitors,e.g. Lehman Bros. & Bear Stearns,& weren’t given bailout money. However,General Electric was given bailout money & as
soon as the fix was in, GE’s stock went from under 6
to over 14 in a few months.

This is the website that has the excellent article.

informationclearinghouse.info/article23068.htm

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By lester333, July 16, 2009 at 4:13 am Link to this comment

THE BASTARDS.

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By johannes, July 16, 2009 at 2:49 am Link to this comment

You can be happy and human without lots of money!!!

What you can bye with money is pseudo happiness and pseudo love.

Al this lethargic people, who live deep down under ground by the LE’THE river, are shade people who try by drinking lots of the rivers water
to forget real live, and real love, this pseudo shade humans with all their money.

How can it be that living on a beautiful planet with all his possibilitys, you go for the dirtyes of dirty
money, what are they learning on the schools and universitys, they forget les arts de vivre, le joix de vivre.

salutation

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By Shift, July 16, 2009 at 1:25 am Link to this comment

Remember, dirt has nutrients and can be eaten.

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By bluelori, July 15, 2009 at 11:57 pm Link to this comment

Must watch video Janet Tavikoli saying govt. sachs should have a clawback excellent video explaining more about what payoff they really got from the obamageddon pretty soon people are going to want to claw out goldmans eyes!

http://watch.bnn.ca/#clip193973

If they do not re-bail out CIT they will sell it to one of their favorites to run out the competition. Goldman Sachs, and its fearless leader, Lloyd Blankfein, through their government connections, made sure that Lehman Bros. and Bear Stearns were “wiped out”.

In other words, no bailout for them. Since the two were major competitors of Goldman, when they went under, Goldman took their market share. Lloyd Blankfein and Ben Bernanke are “thick as thieves”. Goldman now completely dominates the securities trading market with an Obama sanctioned monopoly. Fink and Blankfein will make all the money under Obama. Count on it.

Larry Fink, CEO of Blackrock, a private equity company, and Blankfein, have direct access to the White House via Bernanke.
Who is really picking up the tab?

The panel, charged with determining whether taxpayers are receiving maximum benefit from the TARP, conducted its own valuation of the warrants the Treasury holds. It found that the 11 banks that have repurchased their warrants from the Treasury for a total amount that the panel estimates to be only 66 percent of current market value, shortchanging taxpayers by $10 million.

http://washington.bizjournals.com/washington/stories/2009/07/06/daily90.html

Goldman Sachs Group Inc executives sold almost $700 million worth of stock since the collapse of rival Lehman Brothers last year, the Financial Times said on Monday.

The newspaper said that most of the stock sales took place while the biggest U.S. investment bank was bailed out by the government with $10 billion of taxpayer money, according to filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

http://www.reuters.com/article/ousivMolt/idUSTRE56D03R20090714

So who do the democrats want to be the Carbon Regulators none other then BO’s boyz at Government Sachs!

http://greenhellblog.com/2009/07/08/goldman-sachs-to-be-carbon-regulator/

Is this the same “greedy” Wall Street Democrats ALWAYS condemn, but NOW want us to trust with Cap and Trade?

http://www.collinsreport.net/2009/07/10/“-a-danger-somebody-who-knew-how-to-use-this-program-could-manipulatestock-markets”-wall-street-greed/

Who already knows they can profit handsomely from Crap and Tax?

http://greeninc.blogs.nytimes.com/2008/11/12/goldman-sachs-buys-into-carbon-offsets/

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By AT, July 15, 2009 at 9:41 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Thanks to Walker Bush and all those folks who reelected him,his tax cut for 10 years is over 9 trillions, it amounts to 4.5% of the national GDP with a yearly interest alone of over 400 millions, more than what we(tax`payers) paid for in defense spending. No wonder we have no money to pay for healthcare etc….what this would do to our deficit, inflation and pressure on (the dollar) our currency. BY 20019 this situation will become unsustainable.

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By the worm, July 15, 2009 at 8:03 pm Link to this comment

oh bama came early

he shot his wad

unfortunately for the rest of us
the financial industry got all the money

citizens, workers, taxpayers: we got the debt, the unemployment, the lost pensions, the lost jobs, in many cases, the lost homes

the financial industry got the bonuses

and oh bama’s got no more juice

he has spent all the money he had,  maxed-out the debt, and borrowed all the money global nations will lend: all for the financial industry and none of the citizens, workers and taxpayers.

assuming this can be remedied, there are two choices:
(1) oh bama can get off his george-bushian delusion about ‘doing nothing different’ , face the facts and change policies
or
(2) ciitzens, workers and taxpayers will vote out the democrats in the next election and make oh bama another in the long line of democratic one termers.

for the republicans this must be the best sort of bi-partisanship you can have: in order to pass a bill, the democrats place the fate of the nation in the hands of the private sector, through a few crumbs to the groundlings, get two republican votes and republican party capitalizes on the results.

oh bama , you have chosen to listen to only a few and to follow their self-serving advice. you have groveled to the republicans, you have not led on health care, you have backed off the bush era crimes, you have sold us down the river in this ‘bailout’.

open your eyes , for heaven sake.

it is way passed time to admit your policies must be revised - as the critics say ‘the longer we stay on this course the harder it will be to correct. 

begin now by listening to a larger group of advisors - for example, the ones who predicted the current policies would fail and offered valuable alternatives.

you may have shot your wad, but if we are going to be saved from this debacle, better you than the republican-led opposition, which is just watching you fail. for heaven sake, bring in a new team and get us on the right track.

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By thebeerdoctor, July 15, 2009 at 5:40 pm Link to this comment

re: Dalmazio

A good example of organized greed defeating disorganized democracy was the past presidential election. Does anybody still remember how much was made of team Obama’s ability to raise cash on the Internet? Of course that was only part of the story; the money that flowed from Goldman Sachs and associated entities revealed that when it came to our so-called economic future, our hash was already settled. The continuance of the economic policies that I have always favored the Ownership Class, since the days before Clinton on, was achieved rather smoothly, despite the outrage and bursting bubbles. The rewriting of the bankruptcy laws under President Bush, at the behest of the MNBA credit card corporation, now simply know that all that massive lobby money was not spent in vain when they see their great champion in the Senate, Joe Biden, now the Vice-President of the United States.

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By yours truly, July 15, 2009 at 5:07 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

So what happens when Goldman-Sachs is nationalized?  Instead of Government Sachs will we have government of the people, by the people and for the people?  And wouldn’t that be nice?

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By Tyco, July 15, 2009 at 3:01 pm Link to this comment

Mr. Geithner and Mr. Summers have their tongues permanently attached to the anuses of Mr. Goldman and Mr.Sachs. This is the way democracy is conducted in these United States. Both the lickers and the lickees find this natural and satisfying.  Moreover it is not against the rules of the Democratic Party. In fact, it’s encouraged.

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By johannes, July 15, 2009 at 12:33 pm Link to this comment

So long as the Americans keep writing, over the thiefs they keep on stealing, they are not afraid about words, its all in the program.

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By prole, July 15, 2009 at 12:31 pm Link to this comment

“Why was all the money thrown at Wall Street instead of needy homeowners or struggling school systems? Because the federal government works for”... the ‘Goldmans’ of the world. Little wonder then that the nation’s leading zionist organ, the NY Times could brazenly make it official to the goyim about who is in charge, when last fall it boldly “ran a story, headlined ‘The Guys From `Government Sachs’” i.e. the Boys from the Borscht Belt. Sachs is symbolic but the government ‘of the Chosen People, by the Chosen People and for the Chosen People’ is willing to admit a few Shylocks from other sister firms too in the interest of greater ‘inclusiveness’. So while you have the typical Goldman grubs like Stephen Friedman, you’ll also find a cabal of Citigroup scavengers too in the Obama mafia, such as new Deputy Secretary of State Jacob Lew, lately Chief Financial Officer of Citi. Or Michael Froman, from Citi’s alternative investment dept., and chief-of-staff to Rubin in Clinton’s Treasury., now the new Deputy National Security Adviser for International Economic Affairs. Interestingly, it was Froman who first got a neophyte Obama into the loop by introducing him to his patron Robt. Rubin.  And then there’s Froman’s deputy, David Lipton, formerly heading Citi’s global country risk management team. And Lewis Alexander, former Citi chief economist and now Counselor to Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner. But there’s room for other corporate swine at the federal government trough, as well. Like Neal Wolin, from the Hartford Insurance Company, now Dep. Sec. of Treasury. Goldman however, is not being left behind, recent Vice Chairman of the group, Robt. Hormats has just been tapped to be Under Sec. State of Economics and Agricultural Affairs. Worse still, is Gary Gensler, former Goldman partner, who as Assistant Secretary of Treasury in the Clinton Adminsitration had a big hand in the infamous Commodity Futures Modernization Act of 2000, and is now CFTC commissioner, the ultimate fox-guarding-the-chicken-coop appointment. Of course Rubin himself is the archetype corporate mandarin, having been a top honcho at both Goldman and Citi, as well as more famously, pulling Clinton’s strings and now Obama’s. And with Lloyd Blankfein chairing Goldman and Jamie Dimon topping JP Morgan Chase – and Bernanke at the Fed - the economy is in the vise-grip of Government Sachs – or more properly, Government Shylocks - for the foreseeable. No wonder Blankfein would think it an aberration when the Rothschilds or someone from the same tribe didn’t hold the pursestrings of society. This has been going on for ages. “Connect the dots”.

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By dan m ketter, July 15, 2009 at 12:28 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Sheer is a long in the tooth columnist who’s bet days are wayyyy behind him Why anyone pays him to write is beyond me. The bailout $$ was handled by the eastern federal reserve chairman who was then barak’s Treasury chief. Bush allowed barak to pick his man so there could be a smooth transition.
This nothing to do with Paulson and everything to do with barak.
Once again be have an obamite cheerleader

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By flow, July 15, 2009 at 12:12 pm Link to this comment

Can anyone break the code in the message these folks are getting from Goldman Sachs, health insurers and former Vice President Dick C.

http://extras.sltrib.com/bagley/

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By flow, July 15, 2009 at 11:22 am Link to this comment

Bravo! Bravo! Tao Walker!

There is no oblation like liberation!

Liberation from the con, liberation from the deceit, liberation from the delusion.

Give me liberty or give me death! (talk about oxymoron, what is life deprived of liberty if not the most wretched privation?)

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By RdV, July 15, 2009 at 11:21 am Link to this comment

How oddly irrelevant Obama has become. Sort of like Bush in his final years—after the scales had been tipped and everyone was just waiting for the change.
  So much for the big change, huh? Now everyone views these things avoiding the uncomfortable facts of who the Obama appointees are and the feeble lines he promotes in draining the treasury to enrich these crooks, otherwise known as “bush’s base”. Obama has become an embarrassment. Death redeemed Michael Jackson. Obama better hope that it isn’t his only way out of being such a disappointing failure as his legacy.

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By KDelphi, July 15, 2009 at 11:07 am Link to this comment

Thank you, mlb.

And, another article , at the same site, will help put it in perspective. (or, why Obama should have given money to the states vs the banks)
“California: the human toll of the economic crisis”
By Kim Saito and D. Lencho
15 July 2009 (social service applicants talk to wsws)

http://www.wsws.org/articles/2009/jul2009/dpss-j15.shtml

“California’s ruling class is using the state’s deepening economic crisis to increase its attacks on the working class. Republican governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and the Democratic-majority state legislature is preparing a series of massive spending cuts, and possibly regressive tax increases, that will further devastate the living conditions of the working class in California ...
The major banks are also stepping up the pressure in a more direct way. On Monday, a group of the country’s largest banks—including Bank of America, Citigroup, Wells Fargo, and JP Morgan Chase—said that they would not accept state “IOUs” beyond July 10…”
unquote

Did I read that correctly??
“The move by the banks to stop accepting warrants also opens the way for speculators to profit from them. Already, vulture investors are seeking to purchase IOUs from small businesses and individuals in need of immediate cash. If banks stop accepting the warrants, recipients may be forced to sell them at a substantial discount, allowing speculators to cash in by redeeming the warrants (including interest) in October.”

Are you shitting me?! The BANKS are in a position now to make demands??!!

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Again… The coordinated action of the financial oligarchy will severely constrain the main measure taken by the state to allow for continued operations without a budget…..

Further…

“.......The warrants are 90-day bonds, redeemable in October. They will pay for services for special needs children, state prison caterers, tax refunds, low-income senior citizens, student aid programs, welfare recipients, contractors and other creditors. While past court decisions have forbidden the government from paying state workers with warrants, the state will use them for other payments, such as travel reimbursements….”


For its part, the Obama administration sees the wholesale attack on the California working class as a model for the country as a whole.

“A few weeks ago, some legislators asked the federal government for emergency funding. At the time, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, and White House economists Lawrence Summers and Christina Romer, rejected the request. They chided the state for failing to get its house in order and demanded instead that California accept the bitter medicine of austerity. According to the Washington Post, the White House feared that a bailout for California would lead to “a cascade of demands from other states.”

What moral cowardice….

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By TAO Walker, July 15, 2009 at 10:54 am Link to this comment

Neither Robert Scheer’s watered-down rhetorical exercise here nor Matt Taibbi’s much more comprehensive and incisive piece in Rolling Stone gives any real consideration to the descending progression of predatory practices by Goldman-Sachs and a few others….although that is certainly implicit in Taibbi’s treatment.  These’ve gone from boldly picking peoples’ pockets to preemptively CONscripting the lives of generations to-come to the servicing of unpayable fraudulent debt.  These vampires are already setting-up to rob and pick-over their (at-least semi-voluntary) “victims’” corpses.

The slaphappy ‘popular’ assumption seems to be these things are merely circulular, rather than purposely CONfigured as ever-tightening spirals of engineered degradation in which the hapless CONsumptive ‘public’ never gets back to some earlier level of societal well-being, but always finishes a “business(as in: getting ‘the-business’)-cycle”  deeper in The Hole.  Having succeeded in ripping the domesticated peoples from the natural Living Arrangement, the tormentors now rely on their captives’ effectively CONgenital inability to even recognize (nevermind understand and resist) the process of industrialized exploitation to which they’re self(and mutually)-deludingly subject.

On the bright side, the entire CONtraption itself is already deep into the terminal phase of its operations….running on fumes, so-to-speak.  What’s more, its owners have come-up well short of where they figured to be by now, which explains in-part the remarkable degree of wretched excess to which they’re now reduced….accelerating their own death-spiral quite in-spite-of their own silly selves.

Meantime, for those who can see The Way clear of this cascading failure’s wreckage, out of the shroud of their false “individual” Id-entities, and back to the Natural Form of Humanity (which English-speakers still call “community,” despite massive efforts to devalue the term by applying it profligately to every random collection of “individuals” around), the Song ‘n’ Dance of Life Herownself goes-on as always.  Us surviving free wild Human Beings are ready to welcome as many of our tame Sisters and Brothers back as can make-it alive through The Eye of The Needle. 

The rest we’ll catch later.

HokaHey!

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By captain Rick, July 15, 2009 at 10:32 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Now we ask you , who has done more damage to America Al Quieda or Goldman Sachs?

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By flow, July 15, 2009 at 10:29 am Link to this comment

How much of Goldman Sach’s current windfall is the product of purchases made by the Federal Reserve?

As the crisis unfolded and the influence of conventional monetary policy stalled (due to the zero-bound limit on interest rates), in an effort to ward off deflation, a decision was made by the Federal Open Market Committee to pursue the unprecedented policy of expanding the money supply through the purchase of certain market (not government) securities.

The Fed “printed” a few trillion dollars for itself and then started buying securities. Securities from whom? GS?

Does anyone know what is meant by the term helicopter money? Or what Bearnake had to say about how the Fed would manage a crisis characterized by the threat of deflation and the limits of the zero-bound? (See Bearnake’s Helicopter speech at the Fed’s website)

Simple. Drop money out of a helicopter to increase the money supply. But given the political sensitives, this must be done in secret and to “friends of the Fed only” (see wikipedia).

Perhaps this is another reason why GS’s CEO was invited to those sensitive meetings held by Paulson, Bearnake and Geitner, where the key decisions were made concerning AIG, Lehman and ????.

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By Dalmazio, July 15, 2009 at 9:44 am Link to this comment

@thebeerdoctor:

“If America is circling the drain, Goldman Sachs has found a way to be that drain—an extremely unfortunate loophole in the system of Western democratic capitalism, which never foresaw that in a society governed passively by free markets and free elections, organized greed always defeats disorganized democracy.”—MATT TAIBBI

Nice quote! And good article.

I believe the key to the above quote is the word “passive”. Constitutional republics (which the U.S. is supposed to be—one step up from a simple democracy) cannot be governed passively. There must be *active* involvement, especially on the part of government representatives goaded by their constituents to protect the free market from vulture opportunists.

That is, it is the role of government (representing the will of the people) to insure the free market remains free from the exploitation of large corporations, such as Goldman Sachs et al. Instead, we have allowed the fox to take up permanent residence in the hen-house… There can be only one outcome.

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By thebeerdoctor, July 15, 2009 at 8:38 am Link to this comment

“If America is circling the drain, Goldman Sachs has found a way to be that drain—an extremely unfortunate loophole in the system of Western democratic capitalism, which never foresaw that in a society governed passively by free markets and free elections, organized greed always defeats disorganized democracy.”
MATT TAIBBI

http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/story/28816321/the_great_american_bubble_machine

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By Fredric Dennis Williams, July 15, 2009 at 8:12 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

As long as politicians win election and re-election with millions of dollars in contributions, and then appoint hundreds of contributors and associates to top positions in government, it is inevitable that those with money will be in a position to profit from government.

The cure for this is the elimination of the spoils system and the creation of a career civil service with the most stringent requirements for employment. No one below cabinet level should be a political appointee. Currently we have the worst of both worlds—countless political hacks, tax cheats, and influence peddlers on the one hand and bureaucrats chosen because they knew someone on the other.

Ideally, the government should go back to making the rules and enforcing them, and should cease running operations that spend trillions. But until then, a carefully qualified csreer civil service is a good first step.

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By mlb, July 15, 2009 at 7:24 am Link to this comment

Which society is more morally backward, one which stones its worst criminals in the public square, or one which allows them not only to freely walk the streets but to continue their crime sprees unchecked and even aided by the government? 

Here’s another very good piece on this:
Record pay and profits at Goldman Sachs, By Andre Damon and Barry Grey - 15 July 2009

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By NYCartist, July 15, 2009 at 5:39 am Link to this comment

Thank you.  There’s a nice companion interview with Matt Taibi on DemocracyNow this morning.
http://www.democracynow.org (live now, video later, transcript later)

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By jerrygates, July 15, 2009 at 3:20 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

A word to the states that bit on Goldman loans, they are responsible for lowering the value of your pensions, investments and state coffers by 30%. Subtracting this amount, ammortized over the life of you new debts is a good payback for a vulture. Dont make even the first payment and see what happens.

  Goldman has taken on the US treasury as it’s own banker, recieving loans at Les than zero % making US citizens lose money, so what the hell, what comes around , goes around, Take you own state bailout out of Goldman’s accounts and realize that that is exactly what they did to the states, indebting them to private enterprise for the duration as muni bonds, post bailouts will come from Goldman brokers as do the city bonds and their heavy payments, Remember what Nancy said, Just say no, but in this case, just take their money for a few months, then belly up and see if the US treasury of Goldman Sachs is too big to fail. It’s not and when it does, what will states loans be worth to the vultures who bought them? Why let Goldman profit from state misery when the congress and senate is supposedly in the purse strings businessm, not treasury? WHAT, yea suckers, they stole your jobs!

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By thebeerdoctor, July 15, 2009 at 2:47 am Link to this comment

This narrative has been told so often, but does any of the concerned outrage change the results? As Eliot Murphy once said: “the killers still run the country, and they count their money with their blood stained hands.”
Disturbed by the truth is about as far as it will ever go. Legal robbery is the sweetest crime of all.

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