Goldman Sachs: Just 5 Billion dollar Fine Compared to 13 Billion Dollar Taxpayer Bailout 54


Goldman Sachs aggressively sold sub-prime packages to investors as a first class product, while at the same time laying equally aggressive bets that those packages would fail. That is not my analysis; it is one of the things they have admitted as part of the deal in the United States that means that, in return for a 5 billion dollar fine, yet again no corrupt and fraudulent bankers are going to jail.

The ultimate irony is that the 5 billion dollar fine is dwarfed by the 13 billion dollar taxpayer bailout they received after the banks’ immoral antics caused massive economic collapse. So the net result of their appalling behaviour has been that they collect not only the profit from those bets the system would collapse, but an eight billion dollar net payment from ordinary taxpayers thrown in. Which eight billion dollars has been just a contribution to the bonuses and partner remuneration which have continued to bulge in their over-stuffed pockets since 2008, uninterrupted by the crash, thanks to the generosity of poor taxpayers struggling to balance their personal budgets.

This is a description of the position of Goldman Sachs in the United States, but it sums up the entire banking crisis worldwide and its result in the punishment of entirely the wrong people, and the continued rewards enjoyed by the crooks.

Due to new media (of which this blog is one atom in a mighty sea) public awareness of what is happening is growing, as is the desire for popular resistance to the super-rich. But they are not surrendering control any time soon. Which is why the call for Clinton to release the transcripts of the extravagantly paid talks she gave to Goldman Sachs is more than a question of political openness. It goes to the heart of the rot in the system.


54 thoughts on “Goldman Sachs: Just 5 Billion dollar Fine Compared to 13 Billion Dollar Taxpayer Bailout

  • Otto

    Do you think there’s any hope for the common man, Craig? It’s likely that Sanders won’t win so the world will have President Clinton, Cruz or Trump

  • John Goss (don't feed the bigots)

    The banksters are the worst thing to have happened to the world. These usurers and thieves have to go. I just read an article by John Pilger about the way white men went to Australia and turned the natives who had lived there since (arguably) human beings began their existence on earth only to have become the lowest caste in their own land.

    http://johnpilger.com/articles/starvation-in-australia-utopia-s-dirty-secret

    I thought yes, and that’s what the Yanks did to native Americans too. We no longer communicate with other animals, trees, rocks and earth-soils. We are out of touch with nature. And when I say we, I really mean you.

      • David

        Who did you mean then?

        I am just reading a book on cognitive dissonance .” Mistakes were made, but not be me” sounds like you ought to read it too!

        Liked your link to John Pilger

    • Habbabkuk (flush out fakes)

      Fair point, Mr Goss. But given that “banksters” are a modern, post-industrial phenomenon (at least in the sense you’re using the word), what do the Australian aborigines and North American Indians have to do with the banksters?

  • BrianFujisan

    Great Piece Craig…And a High Quality Atom Your Blog is. Cheers.

    But yes the march of Alternative media is a great thing

    I was watching this video earlier…It gets interesting about three mins in ” the practice of Fraud was / is every day,,the actual use / mention of the word A BIG No no… Also from 3 mins how easy it was to find willing Whistle blowers

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BkQQoGUj6VY&nohtml5=False

  • glenn_uk

    Personally, I don’t think the transcripts matter a great deal. La Clinton could have been giving some anecdotes about her student days, or suggesting the best way to prepare pasta. It’s not important.

    The point is that the Clintons have received some $152 million in speaking fees to banksters and their ilk since Bill left office – it’s a payoff. They receive great speaking fees, her hedge-fund manager son-in-law will never make a bad bet, and their family and their mates are going to do incredibly well. It’s not a pay-to-play scheme, which landed Illinois governor Blagojevich in jail, it’s a much longer game. No brown envelopes stuffed with cash. They can pay up front or after the political term with “speaking fees”, or later with sponsored tours, directorships and so on.

    H. Clinton will do their bidding. She’s already bought and paid for. Her husband is still being paid off for his work. What’s actually said during these speeches is very unimportant.

    • lysias (DON'T FEED THE TROLLS)

      Which makes it all the more mysterious that she/they won’t release the transcripts.

      • glenn_uk

        It’s all a game. When the transcripts are finally released, it will be seen as not having been a big deal after all. The point is the fees, not the content.

        • bevin

          I am not sure. I suspect that Clinton gave a rousing justification of bank de-regulation and boasted of her family’s critical role in facilitating it. No doubt one of her speechwriters had come up with a hymn of praise for unrestricted capitalism, and reminded them of how much they depend, in the final analysis, on government to collect their debts and enforce their contracts. Something which gives them a direct interest in vetting candidates for office.
          Clinton is so deeply lodged in the pockets of the plutocracy that it is amazing that she still has supporters among the, albeit, corrupt leaders of the black community which suffered more than any other in the sub prime meltdown. There are estimates that the net worth of black families has fallen by at least fifty per cent as a result of the bursting of the bubble in 2008.
          The Clintons have a truly revolting record of enmity towards humanity. Their role in Haiti in restoring the Ton Ton Macoutes, and introducing cholera is appalling. Their part in the scam of using the Arkansas Penitentiary population as an inexhaustible source of blood to be sold, puts them in the company of the Albanian terrorists to whom Bill gave Kossovo.
          The corruption of US politics is exemplified by the success that Hillary has in hoovering up Union endorsements and money after having served on the Board of Walmart, the most anti-union firm in the country.

    • lysias (DON'T FEED THE TROLLS)

      Goldman Sachs and the other financial firms got loans from the Federal Reserve at preferential rates. What they gained that way was far greater than what they got through TARP.

      Even now, the interest rates the big banks have to pay are lower than for smaller institutions because lenders know they are too big to fail and will be bailed out.

  • John Goss (don't feed the bigots)

    “Due to new media (of which this blog is one atom in a mighty sea) public awareness of what is happening is growing, as is the desire for popular resistance to the super-rich. But they are not surrendering control any time soon.”

    And it is not just the Yanks. This control by the super-rich is pandemic. But honest MPs, such as Dennis Skinner, light up the House with gutsy rhetoric and strong moral stances. What a gentleman he is to walk again (so English). If this had been the Verkhovna Rada he’d have been hoisted out by by his own goolies. You do all know Yatenyuk’s gone? Thought not.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-36017171

      • Mochyn69

        John, I did!

        BTW, class act by Dennis Skinner, not the Beast of Bolsover for nothing!

        I have heard on the grapevine from a seemingly knowlegeable American friend that the presidential hopefuls were interviewed on their attitude to the the banksters, and all answered that they would be held responsible except Obama, and so it was Obama got the nomination. Looking into this claim. Anybody got anything else on this?

      • Mochyn69

        John, I did!

        BTW, class act by Dennis Skinner, not the Beast of Bolsover for nothing!

        I have heard on the grapevine from a seemingly knowlegeable American friend that the presidential hopefuls were interviewed on their attitude to the the banksters, and all answered that they would be held responsible except Obama, and so it was Obama got the nomination. Looking into this claim. Anybody got anything else on this?

        • John Goss

          I expect there to be a few on here Mochyn69 who try to keep themselves informed about what’s really happening in the world. Glad to see you’re one of them.

          • lysias (DON'T FEED THE TROLLS)

            The roman a clef Fixers by Wall Street insider Michael Thomas purports to give the explanation for how Obama was got to.

    • David

      Just read your link. How terrible! Will put it on Facebook and ask people to share it. Is there a petition organised to force Parliament to debate it at least?

  • Courtenay Barnett

    Craig,

    You said:-

    ” The ultimate irony is that the 5 billion dollar fine is dwarfed by the 13 billion dollar taxpayer bailout they received after the banks’ immoral antics caused massive economic collapse. So the net result of their appalling behaviour has been that they collect not only the profit from those bets the system would collapse, but an eight billion dollar net payment from ordinary taxpayers thrown in…”

    Actually – the “ultimate irony” for me is that when Obama was first elected – I honestly thought that he would be the new FDR ( i.e. there would be a “new deal” for the American people and for the world at large – moving, as one hoped – from the hegemonic ambitions of the military-industrial complex towards something viable. Duh…huh … fool me!).

    So here we are with a choice between – the soon to be bought and Wall Street paid for Barack Obama out of office – with a sparkling new set of choices of either ‘The Donald’ – or – ‘ :Liberal hawk – Clinton’.

    What a wonderful world!

    • CanSpeccy

      So the net result of their appalling behaviour has been that they collect not only the profit from those bets the system would collapse, but an eight billion dollar net payment from ordinary taxpayers thrown in…”

      This is complete rubbish. The $8 billion was repaid.

  • bank suckers anonymous

    Canspeccy, one must admire your wish to escape the statist propaganda, so here you go. The focus on one program is the Big Lie. The government gave away the store to AIG, coming back four times to make gratuitous concessions, and Goldman Sachs sucked all that money out of AIG by manipulating the netting and closeout rules they shoehorned into congress to circumvent bankruptcy and prompt resolution statutes. Meanwhile the government screwed savers to bail out banker thieves, beggaring retirees to fuel a purely parasitic carry trade. The bankers took it home in bonuses.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/08/18/this-day-in-tarp-triumpha_n_930918.html

  • Tony

    Corruption, embezzlement, fraud, these are all characteristics which exist everywhere. It is regrettably the way human nature functions, whether we like it or not. What successful economies do is keep it to a minimum. No one has ever eliminated any of that stuff.
    – Alan Greenspan

  • Habbabkuk (flush out fakes)

    For information:

    Written last Friday by our Transatlantic Friend: “I wonder if his prime ministership will survive the weekend.”n

    Today, Tuesday : Mr Cameron still in Downing Street.

    Keep wondering.

    Conclusion: beware false prophets (especially those with form).

  • Habbabkuk (flush out fakes)

    re Paul Craig Roberts, quondam Assistant Secretary of the US Treasury (for all of about 14 months):

    “(e) The Department has 8 Assistant Secretaries appointed by the President, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate. The Department shall have 2 Assistant Secretaries not subject to the advice and consent of the Senate who shall be the Assistant Secretary for Public Affairs, and the Assistant Secretary for Management. The Assistant Secretaries shall carry out duties and powers prescribed by the Secretary. The Assistant Secretaries appointed under this subsection are in addition to the Assistant Secretaries appointed under subsection (d) of this section.”

    (source: US PUblic Law – Library of Congress).

    • YouKnowMyName

      more from the Alternative Media, I suppose it’s a Puff Piece for the latest Spielberg movie, but it goes deeper & adds the point of view of a kid with BOTH parents working for the CIA, (bit like Barack? – sorry Habb, couldn’t resist the wind-up, you did start to mention Presidents & their associates)

      http://www.bigissue.com/features/interviews/6451/gary-powers-jr-talks-bridge-of-spies-its-never-too-late-to-set-the-record

      I ended up not only being able to set the record straight but also to found the Cold War museum in 1996 to honour all those who fought, sacrificed and died during the conflict.”

      So what does Powers Jr think we can learn from the conflict? “It is very important to understand the Cold War era to understand the world we live in today,” he says. “The war on terror has its origins in the Cold War. A case in point: 1979, the Soviet Union invades Afghanistan and the CIA backs the rebels in Afghanistan to fight them. The head of the rebels? Osama Bin Laden.”

      Does his firsthand experience of government misinformation make him suspicious?

      “I have been suspicious of the US government from a very early age. That comes from both my parents working for the CIA. After my father’s death, my mother was able to teach me to read between the lines and not believe everything you read in the press. Governments write articles for disinformation campaigns.

      “There are two individuals right now getting a very bad press. Edward Snowdon and Julian Assange. They, I believe, did what they thought was correct, bringing to the public’s attention what governments were doing behind the scenes that could have constitutional implications. Now that information is in the public domain and is being discussed, which is very important in a democracy.”

      Powers Jr has gleaned one thing from being able to clear up his father’s reputation, which may hold some comfort: “It is never too late to set the record straight.”

      Bridge of Spies is out on Blu-ray and DVD

      Thanks BigIssue, will everyone pick up a copy as they go past a vendor?

      • lysias (DON'T FEED THE TROLLS)

        I am about to finish reading The Deep State: The Fall of the Constitution and the Rise of a Shadow Government by long-time senior congressional staffer Mike Lofgren, who worked in the Congress for 28 years and still lives across the river from D.C. and keeps in contact with people in the U.S. government. Lofgren concludes in his book that Snowden has had a profound effect on U.S. policies.

      • Habbabkuk (flush out fakes)

        Obsessed with Paul Roberts? Not me, guv’.

        It’s the Eminences, fellow-False Prophets and ConspiraLoons (UK Chapter) who keep quoting the old has-been.

        And all on the basis that he was briefly one of several Assistant Secretaries of the US Treasury at the time of that economic genius President Reagan.

        But, of course, the whackier the man’s present views, the more they love him on CM 🙂

        • C15 fwl

          Habbs, I haven’t read Paul Roberts. What is your view of Peter Dale Scott? I suspect you disapprove of his conclusions and occasional publishers, but still I would be interested in your comments in him.

  • Ba\'al Zevul

    “S*r*s” is a bad word eliciting a kneejerk response from the (economically idealistic) Left. But what he had to say about global capitalism in 1998 has considerable resonance today:

    http://www.thirdworldtraveler.com/Global_Economy/Crisis_Capitalism_Soros.html

    The functions that cannot and should not be governed purely by market forces include many of the most important things in human life, ranging from moral values to family relationships to aesthetic and intellectual achievements. Yet market fundamentalism is constantly attempting to extend its sway into these regions, in a form of ideological imperialism. According to market fundamentalism, all social activities and human interactions should be looked at as transactional, contract-based relationships and valued in terms of a single common denominator, money. Activities should be regulated, as far as possible, by nothing more intrusive than the invisible hand of profit-maximizing competition. The incursions of market ideology into fields far outside business and economics are having destructive and demoralizing social effects. But market fundamentalism has become so powerful that any political forces that dare to resist it are branded as sentimental, illogical, and naive.

    Beat that.

    • Herbie

      His solution:

      “To stabilize and regulate a truly global economy, we need some global system of political decision making. In short, we need a global society to support our global economy. A global society does not mean a global state. To abolish the existence of states is neither feasible nor desirable; but insofar as there are collective interests that transcend state boundaries, the sovereignty of states must be subordinated to international law and international institutions. Interestingly, the greatest opposition to this idea is coming from the United States, which, as the sole remaining superpower, is unwilling to subordinate itself to any international authority. The United States faces a crisis of identity: Does it want to be a solitary superpower or the leader of the free world? The two roles could be blurred as long as the free world was confronting an “evil empire,” but the choice now presents itself in much starker terms. Unfortunately we have not even started to consider it. The popular inclination in the United States is to go it alone, but that would deprive the world of the leadership it so badly needs. Isolationism could be justified only if the market fundamentalists were right and the global economy could sustain itself without a global society.”

      So, the bankers create the conditions he frets about.

      The solution is then what they wanted all along.

      Why not just address the problems created by banking, especially before giving them global power.

      Hook, line and sinker…

      • Ba\'al Zevul

        His solution is different from yours and mine, Herbie, and, predictably, supports continuing globalisation. The notion of US ‘leadership’ is as usual a disguise for ‘superior power’ -how else can it lead? But I thought it interesting that he went as far as he did. He describes globalism as ‘market fundamentalism’ and it’s no accident that this equates current socio-economic thinking with a religious dogma. And I see nothing wrong with autonomous nations adhering to a common international law. If only they did. To which other international institutions state powers and potencies should be subordinated, is where we differ. The free movement of capital across borders ( and this generates far more stuffing for the fat cats than actually doing anything with that capital) depends on the free movement of labour – the old American model again. And this would inevitably lead to the continued decline of labour costs, hence wages, globally. This would require global legislation: just the interference of market fundamentalism of which he complains in my extract.

        It’s very hard to see how he reaches the position in your extract from that in mine. And he’s forced into this convolution by his faith in the occult powers of globalisation. The contradiction can be resolved by dispensing with globalism as a creed, altogether, rather than by attempting to mitigate it.

        So, not hook, line and sinker, perhaps. Just a look at the other guy’s psychology. Re. ‘the bankers’, it is hardly a new insight to suggest that they not only own just about everything, but will do everything in their power to keep things that way. To do anything about that it is necessary to change the apathetic consensus that they have any right to do so. Which might involve the People’s Front of Judea sinking its differences with the Judaean Peoples’ Front and realising that it’s not going to be easy or happen overnight. Know what I’m saying?

  • Scott

    “Just 5 Billion dollar Fine Compared to 13 Billion Dollar Taxpayer Bailout”

    Nailed it again Craig.

    Kind regards,
    Scott

    • 13millmyeye

      http://www.economicpolicyjournal.com/2010/12/totally-busted-truth-about-goldmans.html

      “As it turns out, the government continued to “revitalize” that small sliver of the economy known as Goldman Sachs. During the three months following Goldman’s re-payment of its $10 billion TARP loan, the Fed purchased $27 billion of MBS from Goldman. In all, the Fed would purchase more than $100 billion of MBS from Goldman during the 12 months that followed Goldman’s TARP re-payment.”

      TARP = Troubled Asset Relief Program

      MBS = Mortgage Backed Securities = all the triple A crud that was worth nothing and that Goldman’s either still had on its books or that it bought for 5 cents on the dollar

  • fedup

    Banksters and their ponzi scam of tails we lose, heads they win has so far stifled human progress, and reduced human asset and the pool of knowledge into a dormant and unwanted “commodities” with rationing of learning as in the cost of the higher education, and highly influenced the scope, range and content for education and learning.

    These inveterate scum bags ought to be barbecued and feasted upon for the future generations of the crooks to know and understand that there is and option of the worse possible fate for these immoral and corrupt bunch of operatives.

    Everything these banksters touch turns into ashes and rotten, our world can no longer afford to carry these parasitic forms of life!

  • Loony

    Maybe public awareness of what is happening is growing, or maybe not. Goldman got an awful lot more than the $13 billion you reference.

    They also benefited from Central Bank Liquidity Swap Lines (CBLS), Primary Dealer Credit Facility (PDCF) and the Term Auction Facility (TAF). Goldman availed itself of $814 billion under these programs.

    It gets worse (or better depending on your perspective) – the Fed paid out some $659 million in fees to banks for basically arranging the terms of its own bailout. I do not know how much Goldman collected by way of fees – but I am sure it is more than zero.

  • nevermind

    O/t
    An issue that must be close to Craig’s heart is the massive wave of discarded electronic consumer goods that are swamping Ghana.
    We can see what our priority is here, its not educating Ghana’s students to make for change in their homeland policies, its to continue the dumping of highly toxics substances in their country.

    ‘A European family deciding to buy a flat-screen TV. A government office disposing of its old printers. A school replacing the computers in its computer lab. A teenager switching his smartphone to a newer model. A non-profit renewing their IT equipment. All operations which – when multiplied by the actual amount – produce the millions of tonnes of electronic waste that flood the planet each year’

    http://www.spiegel.de/international/tomorrow/electronic-waste-in-africa-recycling-methods-damage-health-and-the-environment-a-1086221.html

    • lysias (DON'T FEED THE TROLLS)

      Huey Long was the victim of a very suspicious assassination when it seemed possible that he would win the next presidential election and be a very radical president, or at least affect the outcome of that next presidential election.

  • lysias (DON'T FEED THE TROLLS)

    The legal text that has been cited for the Assistant Secretaries of the Treasury is the product of amendment to the law, 31 U.S.C. 301(e), by Public Law 112-166, the Presidential Appointment Efficiency and Streamlining Act of 2011, which was obviously passed long after Paul Craig Roberts was appointed Assistant Secretary of the Treasury in 1981. So it is of no value for determining how many Assistant Secretaries of the Treasury there were in 1981.

    • lysias (DON'T FEED THE TROLLS)

      Public Law 110-49, 121 Stat. 260, which was passed on July 26, 2007, shows that, prior to the passage of that law (which also amended 31 U.S.C. 301(e)), there had been eight Assistant Secretaries of the Treasury. So their number has clearly been increasing.

  • lysias (DON'T FEED THE TROLLS)

    Nuit debout has posted its Manifesto:

    MANIFESTE

    Sais-­tu ce qui se passe là ? Des milliers de personnes se réunissent Place de la République à Paris, et dans toute la France, depuis le 31 mars. Des assemblées se forment où les gens discutent et échangent. Chacun se réapproprie la parole et l’espace public.

    Ni entendues ni représentées, des personnes de tous horizons reprennent possession de la réflexion sur l’avenir de notre monde. La politique n’est pas une affaire de professionnels, c’est l’affaire de tous. L’humain devrait être au cœur des préoccupations de nos dirigeants. Les intérêts particuliers ont pris le pas sur l’intérêt général.

    Chaque jour, nous sommes des milliers à occuper l’espace public pour reprendre notre place dans la République. Venez nous rejoindre, et décidons ensemble de notre devenir commun.

    Sounds very similar to what the Occupy movement was trying to do a couple of years ago.

  • Jim

    There’s a good opinion piece in the evil MSM Guardian today, by Asher Edelman, supporting Sanders. He’s a self-described ‘Gordon Gekko’ type Wall Street banker. Can’t provide a link I’m afraid, sorry.

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