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Goldman Sachs: The Marie Antoinette of Our Time!

Friday, 30 April 2010 19:29
Goldman Sachs Chairman and CEO Lloyd Blankfein pushes a camera lens away as he finishes testimony before the Senate, 04/27/10. (photo: AP)

Goldman Sachs Chairman and CEO Lloyd Blankfein pushes a camera lens away as he finishes testimony before the Senate, 04/27/10. (photo: AP)


Reader Supported News | Perspective


"I have ever believed that had there been no Queen, there would have been no [French] revolution." -Thomas Jefferson

homas Jefferson said many things in his wide-ranging autobiography, but he rarely spoke ill of anyone. He made a notable exception in the case of Marie Antoinette. In describing the infamous cake-distributor, he painted a biting portrait of the contemptible Queen:


"Her inordinate gambling and dissipations ... her inflexible perverseness, and dauntless spirit, led herself to the guillotine ... and plunged the world into crimes and calamities which will forever stain the pages of modern history."


According to Jefferson, Marie Antoinette treated French citizens as little more than lice under her well-powdered wig ... until tax collection time, of course.

Enter Goldman Sachs. A modern day financial monarchy, Goldman acts with the impunity once reserved for kings. Controlling legislators. Electing Presidents. Filling the Executive Branch with well-heeled lackeys, manipulating world markets and betting against the welfare of its own clients ... the American people. When their equivalent of "tax time" came, they squeezed the peasants for billions of bail-out bucks.

Marie would be proud.

Is there any end to Goldman Sachs greed? Since the Supreme Court recently expanded a ruling that gives corporations the same individual rights as human beings, I'd like to ask Goldman Sachs ... human to human ... why they have such disdain for the American people and such a lack of love for the country that made them rich? How do their managers manage to skip merrily along, collecting hundreds of millions in bonuses after breaking the backs of this economy?

No contrition.

No apparent remorse.

Good Ol' TJ described Marie as "proud, disdainful of restraint, indignant at all obstacles to her will and eager in the pursuit of pleasure."

It's eerie how much his Marie matches our Goldman.

They certainly showed no restraint in gaming the market. Sachs knew the market would fail, that's why they bet against it. This is not an opinion, the emails are there.

Sachs clearly knew Americans would lose their homes. They bet "short." They counted on it all failing. Come on, charming Tin Men. Where is your heart?

Watching the coverage of the congressional inquiry on C-SPAN, I wondered if, perhaps, this was our Marie Antoinette moment.

Charles Dickens wrote of Americans, "they will believe anything but the truth." Now, the truth stares us in the face. It's an epiphanic moment in time.

Again, remember that those hearings were not mere commentary. They produced evidence. The emails tell Goldman Sachs' story. It's right there in writing, even as their pretty lips and forked tongues tell contrition-free tales and contradictory stories. This bipartisan committee worked like good old-fashioned gumshoe reporters. They dug up the proof.

Remember when the leaders of big tobacco raised their hands and swore on the Bible that they didn't know nicotine was addictive?

This is that moment ... double squared.

We cannot afford to ignore it. How many neighbors have had their homes repossessed on your block, Mr. Goldman Sachs? I've witnessed two. These neighbors cry as they drive away with the contents of their lives crammed into the back of a car or pick-up truck. One couple was well over sixty. How do they start over?

I'm not saying we should dislike those golden Sachs boys. We don't have to hate them. They are just doing what they were taught. But what they were taught was wrong. The story of Jesus in the temple comes to mind. It seems applicable. Jesus ran the moneychangers (bankers) out of the temple. Why? Because the temple is not to be defiled with commerce of any sort. This democracy is our temple. So, please keep your sullied hands off our Congress, our Treasury Department and our President. Stay away from our temples.

Sachs can and will spin the "Dickens" out of the truth. I heard an interview with one Golden Boy yesterday on National Public Radio that made me laugh out loud. His sleight of hand was masterful!

Because of those hearings and because of Goldman Sachs, we are smarter than we used to be.

Thanks again, Goldman Sachs for the Marie Antoinette moment.


Leslie Griffith has been a television anchor, foreign correspondent and an investigative reporter in newspaper, radio and television for over 25 years. Among her many achievements are two Edward R Murrow Awards, nine Emmies, 37 Emmy Nominations, a National Emmy nomination for writing, and more than a dozen other awards for journalism. She is currently working on a documentary, giving speeches on "Reforming the Media," and writing for many on-line publications, as well as writing a book called "Shut Up and Read." She hopes the book, her speeches, and her articles on the media will help remind the nation that journalism was once about public service ... not profit. To contact Leslie, go to your social media marketing partner


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+22 # Guest 2010-04-30 23:47
Off with their heads. At least hard time in a maximum security federal prison. they might need some real tats.
+14 # Guest 2010-05-01 10:34
Thomas Jefferson also wrote:

"The care of human life and happiness, and not their destruction, is the first and only legitimate object of good government"
+8 # Merschrod 2010-05-01 03:23
All of this "letting them eat cake" must be corrected because Marie, took a bum rap because of a poor translation. You must understand that Marie Anntoinette was raised by a Spanish nanny. The expression that the nanny most probably used was "A falta de pan, buenas son tortas." Or, literally, when there is a lack of bread, then eat "Torta" which was a mix of anything that was around such as potatoes. Bread of fine ground flour was a luxury. But, the torta term was poorly translated to mean "cake.

In the case of Goldman Sachs, I'd say "Qué torta." Which comes back to the orginal mix of what ever was around, but the rating agencies gave it AAA and the folks thought that they were eating a piece of cake instead of a piece of ....
+14 # Guest 2010-05-01 04:13
Goldman Sachs = Marie Antoinette? So when does its head roll? Methinks it won't. As for running the bankers out of the temple, in our wonderful capitalistic society bankers ARE the temple and money is god.
-23 # Guest 2010-05-01 06:08
The corrupt bunch in the White House will do nothing to correct this. Bill Clinton will be proud of the lip service.
Read the banking bill. It is not reform. It is government take over of the financical sector.
+16 # Guest 2010-05-01 08:18
Since corporations have been equated to people by the recent Supreme court ruling, give them the guillotine. Cut them back to a size where they are not too big to fail. A good first step would be to put a firewall between community and commercial banking; then, further reduce their size to where any entity could fail without the need for a taxpayer bailout.
+13 # Bix 2010-05-01 08:18
Hiding behind her $50,000,000 mask of feigned moderation and concern, Meg Whitman "Sachs" is vying to be California's Marie Antoinette.
+7 # Guest 2010-05-01 08:33
Merschrod is, alas, wrong about Cake.'Gateau' was Paris slang for the bottom layer of baker's bread. Cooked in huge ovens heated & then roughly cleaned, the bread developed a scorched, ash-loaded bottom layer. This was cut off & sold at the lowest price under the euphemism 'Gateau': Cake.
+11 # Guest 2010-05-01 09:26
With Goldman-Sacks, an accurate spelling, their activities and rational-izatio ns describes the typical sociopath; no conscience, empathy, compassion, pathological liar. It's all about the game and MUST WIN objective.
+8 # Guest 2010-05-01 12:45
What is the old saying, " Capitalism worst enemy is Capitalism " These guys accomplished more destruction to the US Economy and the World Economy than the Soviet Union did during the entire Cold War. So who is really the Enemy of the so called Free World?
+6 # Guest 2010-05-01 17:24
I think you're giving Goldman.. too much credit. They are just the tip of the iceburg, the 1st ones to be found out. Now that the truth is finally out, let's investigate CitiBank, CitiCorp, etc, etc etc.
+6 # Guest 2010-05-01 12:52
What is the old saying, " Capitolism true enemy is Capitolism " These people did more to destroy the US and World Economy than the Soviet Union accomplished during the entire Cold War. So who is really the enemy?
+13 # Guest 2010-05-01 13:46
We are moving to an age in time where we won't have the U.S. Senator from Wisconsin or the congresswomen from Minnesota, but the senator from Goldman Sachs and the congresswomen from the Bank of America. Its time for thoughtful grassroots opposition to Wall Street so we can get our government back.
-1 # Guest 2010-05-01 15:38
I still think instead of the bailout, the government (people) should have let it all fall. Maybe then we could have gone back to the table and start from scratch just like they did back in the 30's. As it is, the fed regulations they are trying to pass will be so torn up by the Reps. (because it won't suit their private/persona l interest groups that they get their big kickback from ) that it won't do a bit of good for control. I think we"ve been had a depression anyway it just wasn't recognized as such by our illustrious government because people still spent, they just used credit cards to pay for it, didn't have those in the 30's you just did without.Without going all the way back to the original regulations and standards of the 30's, it's all pointless anyway. Eventually growth stops, the market has to maintain on goods and sales. We've taken growth as far as it will go. Stop projecting on growth!!! Hell, just stop projection!!

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