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Forum Post: Goldman Sachs’ Trader Finds a New Occupy Tactic

Posted 6 years ago on March 20, 2012, 7:42 a.m. EST by Pujete (160) from New York, NY
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In the last decade, Wall Street has evolved from predator to organized crime with a speed dial to Washington.  Instead of Washington reforming Wall Street, it has seduced and corrupted Washington.  It didn’t have to come to this.

Since at least 1989, incredibly talented, hardworking men and women have been leaving high paying positions at major Wall Street institutions and alerting the public in meticulously crafted, first-hand narratives released by venerable publishing houses that Wall Street wants to rip off its clients’ faces.

On Wednesday, March 14, Greg Smith – following in the proud lineage of Micheal Lewis, Frank Partnoy and Nomi Prins – simply bypassed the tedious route of galleys and nit-picking editors  and went straight to the OpEd page of the New York Times with his resignation letter decrying Goldman Sachs for abusing its clients.  “It makes me ill how callously people talk about ripping their clients off. Over the last 12 months I have seen five different managing directors refer to their own clients as ‘muppets,’ sometimes over internal e-mail,” Smith said. He called the current environment at Goldman “as toxic and destructive as I have ever seen it.”

Each day since then, corporate media pundits have frenetically struggled to characterize the motives of this 33-year old earning $500,000 a year.  The defining moment in this debate came in this video where Evan Newmark, Wall Street Journal columnist and a former Managing Director of Goldman Sachs, asks MarketWatch writer Jon Friedman the following question in reference to the 3 million page hits Smith’s OpEd had received on line: “Do you think Greg Smith will have an easy time monetizing his popularity?”  I had to play the tape three times to be sure I wasn’t hallucinating.

A young man throws both caution and his career to the wind in a virtual scream for the leadership of this country to wake up to what’s still transpiring on Wall Street and a journalist for the newspaper covering Wall Street can only relate the selfless act to dollar signs.  The Wall Street culture of greed is metastasizing into the larger society at a gut churning pace.  The assumption by Newmark is that there is no one earning $500,000 who might love his country, its future, the next generation’s future more than his love of money.




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[-] 0 points by Odin (583) 6 years ago

I didn't know that Greg Smith was one of many talented people who have left Wall St. dating back to 1989.... and exposed them for their corrupt practices. It does not surprise me though that the financial elite go on a personal attack on anyone that does expose them. What else can they do, but try and discredit the messenger? In a way though... all this is more an indictment on our society which no longer seems to be able to feel outrage when they find out they are being screwed. So in the end, "The fault...lies not in the stars, but in ourselves..." We now have the chance to be redeemed though.

[-] 0 points by Pujete (160) from New York, NY 6 years ago

I don't know if The OWS movement is enough to redeem this culture of ours - but at least it's a down payment.

[-] 0 points by Odin (583) 6 years ago

I guess all that we have is hope....and knowing what the alternative is.