Wednesday, May 18, 2011
Matt Taibbi, the Rolling Stone writer who labeled Goldman Sachs a "vampire squid" in one of the defining stories of the financial collapse, has written another article on the Wall Street firm.
This one is potentially more devastating.
Taibbi argues that Goldman Sachs executives lied when they testified in front of Congress in the aftermath of the crisis. Unlike other commentators who grouse about how Wall Street execs should be tossed in jail, Taibbi actually provides specifics. He takes quotes from some of the Goldman execs who testified, including CEO Lloyd Blankfein and CFO David Viniar, and then juxtaposes them with what he believes to be the truth at the time.
And at least as Taibbi tells it, the statements do appear to be misleading, if not outright false.
One of the biggest frustrations most people have about the financial crisis is that no one has yet been held accountable for it. In prior crashes--the S&L collapse, the 1987 crash, the dotcom bubble--prosecutors had a field day parading villains in front of TV cameras. And yet, this time, despite the financial crisis ushering in the worst recession since the Great Depression, no big shots have gone to jail. (read more)