Archive for the ‘Lloyd Blankfein’ tag
Citizen Radio is a member-supported show. Visit wearecitizenradio.com to sign up and support media that won’t lead you to war!
God, this is depressing. The industrial sector is just about extinct, corporations are fleeing the country to exploit cheap foreign labor, unions are gasping their last breaths, and 6.8 million Americans have been unemployed 27 weeks, or longer (the numbers are higher in places like Detriot, which has 30 percent unemployment, but the media doesn’t really focus on that reality).
But there is good news! Well, kind of. If your trade is oil spill clean-up, you’re experiencing a bonanza right now.
Hundreds of contractors and subcontractors are doing jobs both complex and mundane, whether it’s building the robots that BP sends 5,000 feet underwater to capture live video of the broken wellhead or providing boats to skim oil from the water’s surface. And then there is the cottage industry that has sprung up overnight to support the 24,600 cleanup workers, catering their meals, hauling away their trash and supplying portable toilets.
“There’s money flowing in the streets,” said Michael E. Hoffman, director of research at Wunderlich Securities, a Memphis-based brokerage firm.
America may be losing the race to evolve technology, and alternative fuels, but at least we still lead the way in creating horrible catastrophes that our unemployed masses can then toil to clean up.
Ever the barometer of compassionate altruism, Wall Street immediately rushed to figure out who would be the winners of the BP disaster. The financial sector doesn’t price superfluous biological waste like sea turtles, or oceans because things like endangered pelicans don’t make the right people money. However, Wall Street does know how to price stuff like hundreds of thousands of gallons of toxic dispersants.
Within two weeks of the April 20 Deepwater Horizon explosion, the stock price of Clean Harbors, a Boston-based hazardous-waste management company, shot up more than 20 percent. During the same period, Nalco Holding Co., which makes the chemical dispersant Corexit, rose to nearly a year high.
Sure, Nalco, made a killing during the disaster. It helps that one of its board members, Rodney F. Chase, is a former BP board member. That cozy relationship provides Nalco with unique access to the big business of oil spill cleanup. The Wapost article doesn’t mention that stuff (why get messy?) but it does include this nugget:
This is a weird country. Actually, it’s not the country itself that’s strange, but the media and the gubment, and their childlike fixation on sex and sports. This was most recently demonstrated in the media-led circuses that broke out post-Tiger Woods extramarital boinking and Mark McGwire’s steroid confession.
The media and the gubment (mubment?) love sports so much that one time the Government Reform Committee held a hearing on steroid use in baseball in 2005, and no one said this was a dumb idea. What the fuck was that? People know this is a sport, right? If a loud five-year-old wandered into the Senate and shouted, “I WANNA HOLD COMMITTEE ON HOW THE CHOO-CHOO RUNS!” people would, rightfully, tell Timmy to shut up, and that Congress is for adult business. Yet, this was okay.
John McCain even said he would introduce legislation imposing drug testing standards on professional athletes if baseball players and owners do not adopt a stringent crackdown on steroids. That’s how mad the government was: they were threatening to regulate business.
If only those dual pillars of distraction could summon the same degree of outrage against Goldman Sachs, or the Bush administration for leading us into war for no good reason.
Maybe Goldman Sachs should board up their windows and take a break for a month, or six.
The public hasn’t been too pleased with Goldman for a while — with the billions of dollars in bailouts, cozy ties to the current administration, and the payments of lavish bonuses, while the US unemployment rate hit 10.2 percent and foreclosure rate continues to rise.
Yes, it all looks pretty bad for Goldman. And now there’s this.
Update: This article has been edited to read “$2 trillion in taxpayer money.” The original read “$2 million in taxpayer money.”
This week, Congressman Alan Grayson (D-FL) launched UnMaskTheFed, a website devoted to finding out where the $2 trillion in taxpayer money went during the bailout frenzy. Grayson wants answers before Chairman of the Federal Reserve, Ben Bernanke, is up for confirmation to his second term.
Grayson is the new sweetheart of the left, a man the Wall Street Journal claims is “waging a one-man war against contractor fraud in Iraq,” and who once described the Republicans’ health care plan as “don’t get sick, and if you do get sick…die quickly.” The GOP demanded an apology. They got this remark from Grayson: “I apologize to the dead and their families that we haven’t voted sooner to end this holocaust in America.”
The man doesn’t back down from a fight, so it’s exciting to see him lead this quest. This isn’t the first time Grayson has gone for Bernanke’s jugular. Back in July, Grayson grilled the Fed Chairman over the same question: Where did the money go?
Bernanke’s response: “I don’t know.”
Oh. It seems Chairman of the Federal Reserve is the only occupation where this kind of response is excusable. If a Cardiologist responds, “I don’t know” to a triple bypass question, or a mechanic responds, “I don’t know” to a question about a carburetor, their careers in those respective fields will probably be short-lived.