2. Narcissistic egomaniacs with secret “God complexes”: London Times’ John Arlidge interviewed Goldman CEO Blankfein: ‘He paid himself $68m in 2007, now worth more than $500 million, yet insists he’s a blue-collar guy. He says banking has a ‘social purpose,’ just a banker ‘doing God’s work’.’ When I was at Morgan Stanley in the seventies the firm ran an ad: “If God Wanted To Do a Financing, He Would Call Morgan Stanley.” Today, all of Wall Street is dual diagnosed: They’re morally blind money addicts who believe they’re “God’s chosen.” AA would say: They haven’t “bottomed,” won’t recover from their disease till a disaster hits, with another market meltdown and the “Great Depression 2.” Then maybe they’ll “quit playing God.”
3. Paranoid obsessives about secrecy, guilt and non-disclosure: Bloomberg: “New York Fed’s Secret Deal: Taxpayers paid $13 billion more than necessary when government officials, acting in secret, made deals with banks on AIG, buying $62 billion of credit-default swaps from AIG. The government would eventually cover about $180 billion in AIG swaps backing toxic CDOs when Paulson and Bernanke double-teamed to bailout Goldman, saving them from bankruptcy.
5. Borderline personalities who regularly ignore “conflicts of interest”: New York Times: ‘Before becoming Treasury secretary in 2006, Hank Paulson agreed to hold himself to a higher ethical standard than his predecessors. He specifically said he’d avoid his old buddies at Goldman where he was CEO. Later Congress saw many conflicts of interest, not just meetings but favorable treatment for his buddies at Goldman.’
6. Pathological liars incapable of honesty even with own investors: McClatchy News: “Goldman secretly bet on the U.S. housing crash after peddling more than $40 billion securities backed by 200,000 risky home mortgages. But they never told their investors they were also secretly betting that a drop in housing prices could wipe out the value of those securities.’ Paulson knew, stayed silent. ‘Only later their investors discover Goldman’s triple-A investments were junk. Did Goldman’s failure to disclose its bets on an imminent housing crash violated securities laws?’ BU Professor Kotlikoff says: This is fraud, should be prosecuted.’ But won’t in the new “mutant capitalism.” Members of AA know when an alcoholic is lying: Their lips are moving! Same with Wall Street: Think Liar’s Poker. It’s in their DNA. They’re compulsive liars trapped in a culture of secrecy. They lie, the lies cascade, memory slips, more lies are necessary, they cannot stop lying. Goldman sure can’t … look, their lips are moving again.
7. Sole fiduciary duty to insiders, not investors, never the public: NY Examiner: ‘Goldman was at the heart of the sub-prime market, selling sub-prime junk as no-risk AAA bonds, then gambling, hedging, shorting their investors. Goldman traded like Enron. That set up the meltdown. The Fed and Goldman’s ex-CEO at Treasury saved Goldman. Taxpayers got stuck with the bill. McClatchy’s Gordon uncovered Moody’s making billions selling triple-A ratings. Bailout overseer Elizabeth Warren called this reckless gambling. Trend forecaster Gerald Celente calls it mafia-style looting.’
12. Engage co-conspirators to cover-up, distract, do your dirty work: Reuters: ‘Former Merrill Lynch CEO John Thain was fired after a scandal over the billions Merrill bonuses. He says big insider bonuses don’t cause excessive risk-taking nor the financial crisis.’ He blames ‘poor risk management, excessive leverage and too much liquidity for too long. But even if they tie bonuses to long-term performance, that won’t prevent the next collapse.’ Why? They’ll find new ways to break the moral code.