Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Goldman Sachs Fulminating

There’s been more attention paid to Goldman Sachs in today’s New York Times, which lists behavior that’s pretty similar to the stuff we knew about before and may or may not be all that sketchy anyway. (Pro- and con- sketchy positions here and here, respectively.)

I do think we’re missing the point by overfocusing on Goldman Sachs. To the extent that they’re alleged to be devious manipulators (and they are!), it’s a really important point to notice that they still lost oodles of money and needed a bailout. They needed two, actually: one from the Fed bailout window, and the other from A.I.G. paying its derivatives counterparties in full. To me, if the most devious, Machiavellian bunch on the block can’t seem to stay above water, it punctuates (full stop!) the problems with the American economy these past few years. Which, again, reinforces our need for reform and renewal across all parts of our economy. And we’ve made a pretty decent start, I suppose, but there’s miles left to go.

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