Corporate Rule: The Real Thing

When we speak of corporate rule, in America or elsewhere, we usually speak notionally, not literally. In view of this article from The Independent, it appears that referring to “corporate rule” in Europe, in particular by Goldman Sachs, should be taken quite literally: their direct high-level involvement in several European governments is broad and deep. For the situation at a glance, look at the map of Europe in the linked article. (Americans of my generation are quite good at reading a “bleeding map”; in my youth, though, the red areas of the maps were intended to convey the spread of communism. The more things change…)

There is much food for thought here, to be addressed later; I just wanted to acknowledge the fact so everyone can begin exploring the reality.

(H/T L’Enfant de la Haute Mer.)

AFTERTHOUGHT: this is not entirely and only a European problem. America has its share of Goldman exes in government, which Enfant was quick to note in the comments. Please read the comment thread. I just reread the post above and realized that I may have unintentionally implied that the problem is European but not American. It is very much America’s problem too.

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  • L’Enfant de la Haute Mer  On Friday November 18, 2011 at 10:01 am

    Jon Stevens Corzine (1947-) is the former CEO of Goldman Sachs and of MF Global, and a one time American politician, who served as the 54th Governor of New Jersey from 2006 to 2010. A Democrat, Corzine served five years of a six-year U.S. Senate term representing New Jersey before being elected Governor in 2005.

  • L’Enfant de la Haute Mer  On Friday November 18, 2011 at 10:04 am

    Robert Edward Rubin (born August 29, 1938) served as the 70th United States Secretary of the Treasury during both the first and second Clinton administrations. Before his government service, he spent 26 years at Goldman Sachs eventually serving as a member of the Board, and Co-Chairman from 1990-1992. His most prominent post-government role was as Director and Senior Counselor of Citigroup, where he performed ongoing advisory and representational roles for the firm.[1] From November to December 2007, he served temporarily as Chairman of Citigroup[2][3] and resigned from the company on January 9, 2009. He received more than $126 million in cash and stock during his tenure at Citigroup.[4]
    He is currently engaged actively as a founder of The Hamilton Project, an economic policy think tank which produces research and proposals on how to create a growing economy that benefits more Americans.[3] He is Co-Chairman of the Council on Foreign Relations and sits on the board of the Harvard Corporation, Harvard University’s executive board. Mr. Rubin is chairman of the board of the Local Initiatives Support Corporation, the nation’s leading community development support organization, and he serves on the Board of Trustees of Mount Sinai-NYU Health. He also serves as Counselor at Centerview Partners, an investment banking advisory firm based in New York City.

    • Steve  On Friday November 18, 2011 at 10:16 am

      Great minds think alike, Enfant 🙂 I was just about to post the following afterthought:

      • How many of Obama’s current cabinet are Goldman Sachs exes?

      But you’re right to cast the net more broadly than just Obama’s cabinet: much of Congress (including Democrats) warrants close examination.

      When I reread my post, I realized that I conveyed… as I did NOT intend to… that this is a European problem but not an American problem. It is most definitely a problem of at least the entire Western industrialized world, and possibly broader than that.

  • L’Enfant de la Haute Mer  On Friday November 18, 2011 at 10:52 am

    Joshua Brewster Bolten (born August 16, 1954) served as the White House Chief of Staff to U.S. President George W. Bush. Bolten replaced Andrew Card on April 14, 2006.
    Executive Director for Legal and Government Affairs at Goldman Sachs in London from 1994 to 1999.

  • L’Enfant de la Haute Mer  On Friday November 18, 2011 at 10:54 am

    Henry Merritt “Hank” Paulson, Jr. (born March 28, 1946) is an American banker who served as the 74th United States Secretary of the Treasury. He previously served as the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Goldman Sachs.

  • L’Enfant de la Haute Mer  On Friday November 18, 2011 at 10:56 am

    Timothy Franz Geithner (pronounced /ˈɡaɪtnər/; born August 18, 1961) is an American economist, central banker, and civil servant. He is the 75th and current United States Secretary of the Treasury, serving under President Barack Obama. He was previously the president of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York….
    …. In March 2008, he arranged the rescue and sale of Bear Stearns.[13][23] In the same year, he played a supporting role to Henry Paulson, former CEO of Goldman Sachs, in the decision to bail out AIG just two days after deciding not to rescue Lehman Brothers from bankruptcy. Some Wall Street CEOs subsequently expressed the opinion that decisions in which Geithner participated, especially the failure to rescue Lehman, contributed to worsening the global financial crisis.

    • Steve  On Friday November 18, 2011 at 12:03 pm

      Yes, Enfant, that’s a rogue’s gallery, right there in the Obama administration.

      If anybody in official Washington sides with ordinary people, or even with ordinary Americans, I don’t know of them. It looks to me as if we have been completely sold out. To some extent it’s our own fault, but some parts of the takeover by the very wealthy could not have been prevented by anything the non-wealthy could have done.

      Only one thing may make the wealthy relinquish control: global climate change. Hey, would you want to be in control when climate change hits full-force?

  • L’Enfant de la Haute Mer  On Friday November 18, 2011 at 11:12 am

    Olusegun Olutoyin Aganga (born 1955) was appointed Nigerian Minister of Finance from 6 April 2010 to June 2011.

    He was educated at the University of Ibadan, Nigeria where he obtained a B.Sc Degree in Biological Sciences in 1977 and the University of Oxford, United Kingdom where he obtained a degree in Theology in 2000. Aganga qualified as a Chartered Accountant in 1983.

    Aganga previously worked in Arthur Young in Nigeria, Ernst & Young in London UK, and Goldman Sachs International in London, where he was Managing Director in hedge funds. Aganga was also a Board Member of the Nigerian Security and Exchange Commission Technical Committee on Nigerian Capital Market Structure and a former Chairman of the Association for Financial Markets in Europe (AFME) Prime Brokerage Committee. Aganga currently serves on a number of boards and committees including Technoserve and The Prince’s Trust Invest in Futures Committee.

    In 2006, Aganga founded the Nigerian Leadership Initiative.[1]

    Aganga is credited for the establishment of the Sovereign Wealth Fund (SWF) in Nigeria.[2]

    In July 2011, Aganga was redeployed by the President to the new Ministry of Trade and Investment, to make way for Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala to return as the Nigerian Minister of Finance.

  • L’Enfant de la Haute Mer  On Friday November 18, 2011 at 11:14 am

    Otmar Issing (b. 27 March 1936 in Würzburg) is a German economist, former member of the board of the Deutsche Bundesbank (1990–1998) and of the Executive Board of the European Central Bank (1998–2006). He developed the ‘two pillar’ approach to monetary policy decision making that the ECB has adopted.

    Otmar Issing is advisor for Goldman Sachs.

  • L’Enfant de la Haute Mer  On Friday November 18, 2011 at 11:17 am

    Karel Van Miert
    …Europe’s competition commissioner from 1993 to 1999, an unexpectedly tenacious champion of the free market. ..
    ..Out of office, he became an adviser to Goldman Sachs, took up directorships and was president of the business school at Nyenrode University. From 2003 he chaired the EU high-level group on trans-European networks. ..

  • L’Enfant de la Haute Mer  On Friday November 18, 2011 at 11:26 am

    For the rest of it, please “google” up the names on the map of Europe in the linked article, as Steve suggested.
    I think I am done

  • L’Enfant de la Haute Mer  On Friday November 18, 2011 at 12:06 pm

    one more:

    Government Sachs: Goldman’s Close Ties To Washington Arouse Envy, Raise Questions:

    …It seems that every few weeks, another Goldman Sachs executive goes to work for a government agency, with bankers landing in positions of power at the Treasury Department, the Federal Reserve, and pulling the levers of the massive trillion-dollar federal bailout. …

    …The close ties between Goldman Sachs and the government dates back to World War II. Sidney Weinberg served as vice-chair for FDR’s War Production Board during the war. The head of Goldman from 1930 to 1969, nicknamed “Mr. Wall Street,” he worked his way up at the firm after starting as a $3-a-week janitor’s assistant….

    Please jump to the last part of the article and find there names & positions.

  • L’Enfant de la Haute Mer  On Saturday November 19, 2011 at 12:52 am

    Who voted for you, Mario Monti?

    • Steve  On Saturday November 19, 2011 at 10:13 am

      Enfant, Stella and I were both drop-jawed when we learned that Italy’s and Greece’s PMs were changed without elections. It looks as if the technocrats are getting out of hand. This possibility was discussed by the critics back when the eurozone was formed, but I never really expected it to happen. And now it has. Maybe it really is time for a few nations to abandon the euro, with all the ensuing chaos that implies.

      • L’Enfant de la Haute Mer  On Saturday November 19, 2011 at 10:54 am

        I totally agree “ abandon the euro, with all the ensuing chaos that implies…”

        And let me remind you of the term I had used only a few days ago!!

  • L’Enfant de la Haute Mer  On Saturday November 19, 2011 at 2:22 am

    The founders of the EU were trying to prevent another German superstate. But that is precisely where we are heading

    Last dozen of words:
    “We need a referendum on our continued membership of this bureaucratic dictatorship.

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