In his latest Dealbook column, Andrew Ross Sorkin salutes the year that was.
He imagines a closing dinner for 2011, with key players seated next to one another and all the chatter captured by our faithful diarist.
We’ve collected the choicest bits below, including zingers directed at France, Jon Corzine and Silvio Belusconi.
On France: “We thought of holding our gathering in Berlin, but then realised this might be the last year we’d be able to do Paris while France still has its AAA credit rating.”
On the ex-MF Global CEO: “We mailed Jon Corzine several invitations, but initial reports indicated they were accidentally commingled with his holiday cards. He now says he misplaced the invitations completely and has “no idea” where they could be.”
On Italy’s former PM: “Silvio Berlusconi originally R.S.V.P.’ed “yes” when he saw the menu, but backed out when he learned that “16-year-old Caol Ila” was a single-malt whisky.”
An indication of where Sorkin stands on Facebook’s privacy issues?: “I overheard Mr. Zuckerberg ask Mr. Blankfein what holiday gifts he had given his children. Then Mr. Zuckerberg added, ‘I’m not making small talk, Lloyd — it’s literally the only piece of your personal data I don’t have.'”
Mario Batali trying to curry favour with the bankers’ he alienated: “Mario is preparing tagliatelle ai funghi e pancetta, which roughly translates to ‘please don’t put my restaurants out of business.'”
Necessary shot at Bank Of America: “Even [Groupon CEO Andrew Mason’s] tablemate, Brian Moynihan, chief executive of Bank of America, is getting into the Groupon spirit with an offer of his own: three shares for the former price of one!”
On Republican obstruction of the President’s nominees to lead the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau: “Even if you think the financial industry is overregulated or you don’t like the agency’s governance structure, all this political manoeuvring sends an awful message to the public: Wall Street banks are actively trying to stymie a start-up agency charged with protecting consumers’ money.”
On OWS, Sorkin throws a bit of a dud: “I was hoping to invite some leaders of Occupy Wall Street to provide a little balance, but I still don’t know who’s in charge.”