At long last, Matt Taibbi’s highly readable and extremely long attack on Goldman Sachs in Rolling Stone is online in full. Now you can read it without having to wrestle with teenage girls who want to read about the Jonas Brothers.
As you almost certainly already know, Taibbi describes Goldman as “the great American bubble machine” and, more colorfully,writes: “The world’s most powerful investment bank is a great vampire squid wrapped around the face of humanity, relentlessly jamming its blood funnel into anything that smells like money.”
(We did a bit of lambasting of the particulars of Taibbi’s article here, and Megan McArdle has a longer and more detailed critique here. Heidi Moore and Felix Salmon debated the article here. Eliot Spitzer called it a conspiracy theory, but said that it could still be true.)
What’s fascinating to us is how the spirit of Taibbi’s piece, if not its details, has really caught on. Yesterday, the Wall Street Journal attacked Goldman Sachs as a heavily subsidized, implicitly guaranteed firm akin to Fannie Mae. They called it “Goldie Mac.”
The New York Times news report on the reaction to Goldman’s earnings also didn’t shy away from these sentiments. It said that Goldman’s traders are known as the Bandits of Broad Street (which is clever, although we haven’t heard that one before) and quoted an unnamed Wall Street who compared Goldman staff to “orcs” in the Lord of the Rings (which is even better).
So Goldman has managed to bring together the Wall Street Journal and Rolling Stone magazine. Does that make them the ultimate deal maker?
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