$500 Million and Apology From Goldman
By GRAHAM BOWLEY
How much good will can an apology — and half a billion dollars — buy? A lot, Goldman Sachs is hoping.
After first staunchly defending its outsize profits and pay, and then bristling at calls for restraint in these tough economic times, Goldman is trying a new tack: It is apologizing for past mistakes that led to the financial crisis — and sharing at least some of its riches.
A little more than a week after Goldman’s chairman and chief executive drew fire for saying the Wall Street giant was “doing God’s work,” the bank said Tuesday that it would spend $500 million — or about 3 percent of the $16.7 billion it has so far set aside to pay its employees this year — to help thousands of small businesses recover from the recession.
At the same time, the executive, Lloyd C. Blankfein, also showed a bit of humility, acknowledging at a conference in New York that Goldman had made mistakes, and that it was sorry. “We participated in things that were clearly wrong and have reason to regret,” he said. “We apologize.”
Gosh, Lloyd. On behalf of the 22% of Americans who are out of work, I’d like to thank you for that apology.
You’re an upfront guy.
Now take this scam you and Warren Buffett have dreamed up, stick it in your ear and put a few coins in the collection-plate this Sunday.
Most of America hasn’t enough soap to take a bath, but Goldman is bubbling along to another bubble economy that will (once again) separate the sheep from those who shear the sheep.
Speaking of shearing, Goldman has already set aside enough bonus-dough (if it were evenly spread among their 31,700 employees) to send everyone home to a Merry Christmas with an individual $700,000 for Santa.
“Under the plan, Goldman will provide $200 million to pay for small-business owners to get business and management education at local community colleges and other places — the first program will be at La Guardia Community College in Queens, New York.”
Better hustle over to LaGuardia before all the seats are taken.
It ain’t exactly Harvard, but then Goldman ain’t exactly interested . . .
. . . except for the press (and that’s not working so well either)