By Mike Heads, Wall Street wins; tails, Wall Street wins
Atlanta Journal Constitution (blog)
Banking on Big Fees From the AIG Deal
New York Times (blog)
Wall Street's financial aftershocks
Lucas van Praag: Goldman Sachs's cult PR man
The Guardian Near-Universal Hatred of Goldman Sachs May Cost Them Money ...
By Megan Carpentier
Goldman Sachs concedes it could be damaged by public outrage over pay
|At Brown, Spotlight on the President's Role at a Bank|
New York Times (blog
As I post these daily links and sifst through the many stories, I am often compelled to offer my comments and commentary. I guess you have noticed. Since I take up a little "corner" of the daily links (sometimes not so little) I began to think of it as "Larry's Corner". I would like to make this an ongoing feature here at GS666. If you will allow me to indulge myself, I will begin calling this feature simply, "Larry's Corner".
Today's topic is publicity - the good, the bad and the ugly - about Goldman Sachs. It is a problem they say in their SEC filings could impact their earnings. They have even hired an outside PR firm to help them imporve their image.
But much of GS's public opionion problems are of their own doing. There is that old saying, "that actions speak louder then words", and indeed they do when it comes to Goldman Sachs. But even their own words are damaging to themselves. One must wonder, how a firm obviously talented in some ways, are so ignorant to how they are tarnishing their image.
They do no business with the general public yet it is the general public whose opinion tarneshes their once Gold-man image. Yes, there was a time when they were well respected and offered no moral hazard in their daily busness life.
Today things are much different. Their in house PR man, Lucas Van Praag, one of about 400 partners who share the bulk of that big apple pie they cut up each year, recently was quoted as saying, "The approach we've adopted to media coverage is that we aggressively rebut and refute reports or commentary that we believe are wrong. And if you want it to be noticed, you've got to make it notable." (Quote taken from the Guardian.co.uk...click here for their full story Lucas van Praag: Goldman Sachs's cult PR man)
They "aggressively rebut and refute reports or commentary...". Indeed they do and indeed he does. In fact, he rebuts and refutes almost everything in a very condescending and demeaning manor. As I wrote in my comments yesterday they (and he) display total arrogance. But what can you expect from a man who - as a partner - earns millions of dollars a year? Of course he is going to protect his compnay and his job by refuting and rebutting and ridiculing anyone that speaks badly about "his company", after all he is a company man.
If I may take the liberty of offering GS some advice, Lucas Von Praag is one of your PR problems. Certainly he can be much more productive and useful in some other position. An in house PR person should be spreading PR about the positive things they do in their business, community, country and in the world. But then again, are there any to talk about?
Let's see. Maybe they could publicize the massive relief effort mounted after the earthquake in Haiti, pouring millions of dollars of aid into that ravaged country and how dozens of their employees shed their Brooks Brothers suits in favor of Wrangler jeans, t-shirts and steel toed work boots. Maybe they could publicize their overly generous donation to the Red Cross especially in light of the recent occurance in Chile. Or maybe they could publicize the millions of dollars they are donating to feed the millions of Americans who are hungry and homeless due to an economy they admitted they helped crash. If only each one of them just donated 1% of their earnings what a PR story that would be.
But alas, no, they continue to pour out their PR snubbing their nose at everyone inclluding their own shareholders. They justify their huge incomes and bonuses and somehow even convinced President Obama to change his attitude from "fat cats" to deserving, hard working corporate elite.
Bad PR, you bet, and so very well deserved aimed at someone who relishes the limelight by ruining people and nations then throwing the news of their ill gotten gains (bonuses and salaries) publically into everyone's face.
This is not just an American problem for GS, it is a world wide problem. They so much believe that they are so high and mighty -dong God's work - and that the rest of the world is just plain stupid.
Power and greed, the two greatest elements to bring down empires both of which are strongly exhibited by Goldman Sachs. I predict their fall once the government stops supporting them or they stop contro9lling the government. A long shot I know, but I believe in the people and the people will ultimately prevail. The world is watching and waiting. Only actions will improve their image but somehow I don't think they understand.