Monday, July 6, 2009

[Expletive Deleted] We Can Believe In: A Rant

As ever, Barry Ritholtz passes along the observation of Andrew Cockburn at the number of former Citibank and Goldman / Sachs executives, even lobbyists, now in the White House and easily able to help the Obama administration Fluff the Banksters affect national economic policy:

However, where there is real despair has been in the cult of the sacred cow appointments. The latest ugly data points: The number of Wall Street (versus business or academic) appointments. To wit ... Andrew Cockburn.

Cockburn details the following recent Wall Street transplants who now have positions in the new Administration:

Robert Hormats, Vice Chairman of Goldman-Sachs, is to be installed as Under Secretary of Economics, Business, and Agricultural Affairs.

Jacob Lew, Chief Financial Officer of Citigroup Alternative Investments Group, will be appointed Deputy Secretary of State (Lew’s dept. lost $509 million in the First Quarter of 2008)

Michael Froman of Citigroup will be Deputy National Security Adviser for International Economic Affairs. Froman was formerly Chief of Staff to Robert Rubin at the Treasury Department during the Clinton administration, before following him to Citicorp.

(Froman’s deputy was David Lipton, who ran Citi’s Global Country Risk Management effort -- and that worked out really well, didn't it?)

Lewis Alexander, Citigroup’s chief economist is now Counselor to Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner.

Neal Wolin, President and COO, Hartford Insurance Company, Property and Casualty Group, is now Deputy Treasury Secretary (Hartford received $3.4 billion in TARP funds).

Gary Gensler, Goldman-Sachs partner, is now Chairman of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission. (Note: It was Gensler who was a key proponent [as Clinton’s Assistant Secretary of Treasury] in pushing the Commodity Futures Modernization Act of 2000, making much of our current fun possible).

Mark Patterson, Goldman-Sach’s lobbyist, is now Treasury Chief of Staff.

Linda Robertson, Enron lobbyist, is now Chief of Public Relations for the U.S. Federal Reserve Bank, working for Ben Bernanke.

I keep saying this: I worked for the President's election, and every time I turn around, there's this sense that the Wunderkind, the Fat Cats, the Greedhead Bastard Masters Of The Universe, the BSD's who pulled hundreds of millions down for themselves, and continue to reap huge benefits at the expense of the misfortune they created for the rest of the country -- are still rigging the game for their continued benefit, while people who have lost their jobs and homes are living in shelters, or worse.

I thought this was all supposed to change. I thought, after almost ten years of open thuggery and barely-disguised looting by Lil' Boots and his friends, that after January, 2009, the same crew of suspects wouldn't be allowed back aboard to do what they do best.

And after all the damage they've helped to do -- Obama hired these people? I mean, come on; Enron's lobbyist -- now PR Chief for the Federal Reserve??

But I'm only a dog, and no one listens to me.