On April 20, David Letterman read the Top Ten Goldman Sachs Excuses. Oddly, the list includes all three of Goldman’s main arguments against the SEC charges. See if you can guess which three (answers below):
(Link) Tuesday, April 20, 2010
Top Ten Goldman Sachs Excuses
9.You’re saying “fraud” like it’s a bad thing
8.Planned on using money to buy everyone in America delicious KFC Double Down sandwich
7.Distraught over George Lopez’s move to midnight
6.We were framed by evil menswear company Goldman Slacks
5.Since when are financial institutions not allowed to screw their customers?
4.Hey sport, how much to make these questions go away?
3.America needed a villain both Republicans and Democrats can hate
2.Everyone we ripped off got an “I Got Cheated By Goldman Sachs” tote bag
1.Uhh, it’s Obama’s fault?
Answers: 9 and 5 (and a little 10). Seriously. The defenses so far center around the idea that not disclosing that short interest selected the mortgages to put into this particular synthetic CDO deal was not illegal. The argument is that their customers should be aware that they may be trying to screw them. And the company seems to be fine with what happened, as long as they were making a buck without doing something illegal (yet to be determined of course).
Question: what is better for Goldman, 1) claiming this was a terrible mistake, that Goldman seeks to always disclose any and all pertinent information to clients, and that the company will build stronger internal safeguards to protect its clients, or 2) the current strategy? Question: what is better for America?