Here’s some shocking news (if you’re from another freaking planet). When Henry Paulson was U.S. Treasury Secretary last fall, he spoke repeatedly with the top gun at Goldman Sachs, which ended up benefiting directly and indirectly from the government bailout program. And, oh yes, Paulson used to be the CEO of Sachs, a company he spent more than 30 years at.
The frequency of calls between Paulson and Sachs’ head, Lloyd Blankfein, was dug up by the New York Times using the Freedom of Information Act.
As reported by Reuters, “Goldman has come under fire from some lawmakers and public interest groups for its government connections, seemingly sailing through a deep recession shortly after accepting $10 billion of taxpayers bailout money and benefiting from a host of other government programs, including access to the U.S. Federal Reserves borrowing window.”
The biggest issue is the saving of insurance giant AIG—AIG, by getting lots and lots of taxpayer bailout bucks, was able to survive and pay back the money it owed——-ready?——Goldman Sachs!!!!! (About $13 billion, btw.)
Now, Paulson did, of course, get a special waiver from White House lawyers from an ethics ban on the sort of contacts he was making with Sachs…only, he didn’t get it till AFTER he made all those contacts. Sort of like getting a note from the bank president after the fact saying it was fine by him to hold up the bank! A bit late, if you know what I mean?
The worst part of this is that the Times needed to get the information by filing a FIA request with the government…meaning the government was trying , as best it could, to keep this all a big secret.
Has to make you wonder what we still don’t know about the financial crisis and the bailout? Lots!
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