October 16th, 2012
in Op Ed
by William K. Black, New Economic Perspectives
Matt Taibbi famously dubbed Goldman “a great vampire squid wrapped around the face of humanity, relentlessly jamming its blood funnel into anything that smells like money.” Taibbi knew his metaphor worked a deep injustice on Vampyroteuthis infernalis, a small animal that feeds on carrion and excrement (I will let the reader explore the metaphorical possibilities). Goldman Sachs’ leaders were always secretly flattered by Taibbi’s metaphor. They like being thought of as hyper-aggressive and intimidating. Saying that an investment banker’s goal is to make money is to state the obvious and causes no embarrassment.
The news flash is that Goldman Sachs has revealed her new, softer side. She has become Ms. Good in the Sack and she wants us all to know that she has feelings and she is terribly hurt by the way she is being taken for granted, treated coldly, and made fun of as a “fat” feline. The cruelest blow is that Ms. Good in the Sack suffered these indignities at the hands of the handsome new guy who escorted her to the presidential ball. Her BFF, the tall, dark and handsome guy who was exotic without seeming too dangerous – the kind of guy her dad always warned her never to date – has betrayed her. No sooner had she gotten in a serious relationship with Obama that helped him climb to the top of the social order than she saw him flirting with that skank – Ms. Liberal.
Ms. Liberal is notoriously easy. She is always eager to jump in the sack with any Democratic President who pretends to care about her mind and ideas. Democratic Presidents always take her for granted the next morning and even mock her, but Ms. Liberal stands by her man.
As soon as Ms. Good in the Sack let Obama have his way with her he stopped calling her. Democrats! They’re all alike. Ms. Good in the Sack has learned her lesson and is in a deeply committed relationship with the safe guy who is a member of Daddy’s club. Republicans may not be exciting, but they know enough to date the rich guy’s daughter and to “dance with them that brought them.”
I learned about Ms. Good in the Sack and her breakup with her former BFF, Obama, by reading a WSJ article entitled “Goldman Turns Tables on Obama Campaign.”
When Barack Obama ran for president in 2008, no major U.S. corporation did more to finance his campaign than Goldman Sachs. This election, none has done more to help defeat him.
In the four decades since Congress created the campaign-finance system, no company’s employees have switched sides so abruptly, moving from top supporters of one camp to the top of its rival, according to a Wall Street Journal analysis of campaign-finance data compiled by the nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics.
Employees at Goldman donated more than $1 million to Mr. Obama when he first ran for president. This election, they have given the president’s campaign $136,000—less than Mr. Obama has collected from employees of the State Department. The employees have contributed nothing to the leading Democratic super PAC supporting his re-election.
By contrast, Goldman employees have given Mr. Romney’s campaign $900,000, plus another $900,000 to the super PAC founded to help him.
Hell hath no fury like a maiden scorned. The WSJ article reveals what a cad Obama has been to Ms. Good in the Sack. He betrayed her for a tawdry one night stand with Ms. Liberal.
In interviews with more than a dozen past and current Goldman executives, many said they felt betrayed by Democratic lawmakers and the White House….
You may have thought I was jesting about Obama’s failure to call once he had his way with Ms. Good in the Sack, but the facts do not lie.
Resentments against the White House began, said senior Goldman executives, because the firm thought it would be consulted when the Obama administration began crafting regulations in response to the financial crisis. They weren’t. Instead, they were surprised by a measure dubbed the Volcker rule, which would damage one of Goldman’s lucrative businesses.
A million bucks and a passionate fling and Obama still wouldn’t give her a call the next morning. That was bad, but then that cad Obama made fun of her figure and sent her the Volcker rule instead of a dozen perfect roses. (Well, he also sent her trillions of dollars of aid, but that is simply her due for giving Obama millions of dollars in contributions – what a great multiplier effect. Our saying as S&L regulators during the debacle remains true – the highest return on investment always comes from a political contribution.)
Goldman executives, especially those who had raised millions of dollars for Mr. Obama’s election, said they were offended by the president’s populist rhetoric, including his famous quip about “fat cat bankers.”
Obama used the “f” words about bankers! No, not the five letter “f” word – fraud. He called Ms. Good in the Sack a fat feline. Goldman Sachs executives, who have raised demeaning their staff, particularly women, to an art form in which they hurl the vilest insults in bursts that bring to mind an A-10 Warthog using its cannon’s depleted uranium rounds on a strafing run to slice open the top armor of a tank battalion, are reduced to tears of impotent rage when their former BFF Obama calls them “fat cats.” I hope I did not shock my readers by repeating Obama’s vile insult of Ms. Good in the Sack and her peers as “fat cats.” I assure the reader that Wall Street traders never use profanity and treasure civility.
The WSJ reporters, in order to demonstrate the extent of Ms. Good in the Sack’s rage at Obama, quote Rick Hohlt, the financial lobbyist who became notorious during the savings and loan debacle and descended rapidly from that low point over the next twenty-five years.
“Look at what he did—he attacked those guys and made it personal,” said Rick Hohlt, a financial-services lobbyist. “In the old days you give money because you want to have a seat at the table even if you get screwed. But they weren’t even offering a seat at the table.”
See, Obama “screwed” Ms. Good in the Sack to get her money, got elected to the White House, and now refuses to even invite her to the White House for lunch. Democrats!
The reality, of course, as recent “Washington insider” books by Bair, Barofsky, and Connaughton make clear, is that the Obama administration has been extraordinarily generous to the largest banks, including Ms. Good in the Sack. The shocking revelation is that this no longer suffices. Ms. Good in the Sack is a mistress who demands unconditional pandering. She demands that she be allowed to grow wealthy by defrauding her own customers with impunity and god forbid that any politician that takes her money ever adopt a regulation without giving her a private opportunity to veto it. Ms. Good in the Sack is the very model of modern American crony capitalism. She pretends to be tough but she is whiny and devoid of any sense of humor. She has lots of body issues so she is death on any politician who calls her a fat feline. Lo, how are the mighty fallen – the great vampire squid has morphed into a jilted Valley Girl.
About the Author
William K. Black is the author of The Best Way to Rob a Bank Is to Own One and an associate professor of economics and law at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. He spent years working on regulatory policy and fraud prevention as Executive Director of the Institute for Fraud Prevention, Litigation Director of the Federal Home Loan Bank Board and Deputy Director of the National Commission on Financial Institution Reform, Recovery and Enforcement, among other positions.
Bill writes a column for Benzinga every Monday. His other academic articles, congressional testimony, and musings about the financial crisis can be found at his Social Science Research Network author page and at the blog New Economic Perspectives.
Follow him at: @WilliamKBlack