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According to the Collins English Dictionary 10th Edition fraud can be defined as: "deceit, trickery, sharp practice, or breach of confidence, perpetrated for profit or to gain some unfair or dishonest advantage".[1] In the broadest sense, a fraud is an intentional deception made for personal gain or to damage another individual; the related adjective is fraudulent. The specific legal definition varies by legal jurisdiction. Fraud is a crime, and also a civil law violation. Defrauding people or entities of money or valuables is a common purpose of fraud, but there have also been fraudulent "discoveries", e.g. in science, to gain prestige rather than immediate monetary gain
*As defined in Wikipedia

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Complicity in Goldman's Crimes

I know Larry wants to expand this site beyond Goldman Sachs as there is plenty of blame to go around so here's a different sort of piece that ventures out further than we normally go.

Confronting Our Complicity
"Everyone thinks about changing the world, but no one thinks about changing himself."
- Leo Tolstoy

American society, for at least the last few decades, has been immersed in an unbearable tension which is constantly present and hiding just beneath the surface of our daily lives, but is rarely ever featured in mainstream sociopolitical discussions. It is the tension between the decisions we as Americans choose to make every day and the unethical outcomes that result; between our actions and their consequences. Since the end of World War II, America the country has gradually expanded into America the empire through increasing economic and military strength. While the rest of the world lay in ruins, our significant competitive advantage in manufacturing goods allowed us to export our way into economic dominance. Our "Cold War” with the Soviet Union also provided us a great opportunity to intervene in the politics of various countries, either via indirect diplomacy/covert operations or brute military force, and to create a justification for expanding "free-market" capitalism across the globe. It was a systematic endeavor to export our economic and political values to the rest of the world so that, theoretically, everyone could benefit from increased efficiencies and overall wealth. Regardless of what one thinks about the specific policies we implemented during that time, it is undeniable that significant social, political, environmental and economic costs were exacted as a result.


Most people are already familiar with the SEC’s charges of fraud against Goldman Sachs for a deal involving a synthetic credit default obligation and severe conflicts of interest, since it gained so much coverage in the financial press, including the champion of mainstream financial news, CNBC. [4] There were also some more subtle, yet equally fraudulent practices at other major banks which have occurred during the last year or two. J.P. Morgan was recently investigated by the Department of Justice for manipulating prices in silver markets and potentially defrauding people out of billions of dollars. This investigation was launched after a whistleblower contacted the CFTC with specific details of how the bank used concentrated short positions to push prices down on certain dates and actually told them a specific future data when it would happen, and sure enough it happened exactly as he said (the whistleblower was then involved in a hit-and-run car accident which may or may not have been related). [5] [6]. J.P. Morgan also settled a $700 million case with the DOJ earlier this year regarding their blatant kickbacks to local officials in Jefferson County, Alabama to be selected as the managing underwriter for bond offerings and complex swap agreements, in which the bank charged the taxpayers higher interest rates to offset the bribes. [7].

Read the whole thing here


Anonymous said...

When a guy like this tell you to swallow this line of know your there is complicity and "captured" actors in the system...un friggin real!

Munger Says `Thank God' U.S. Opted for Bailouts Over Handouts

Charles Munger, the billionaire vice chairman of Berkshire Hathaway Inc., defended the U.S. financial-company rescues of 2008 and told students that people in economic distress should “suck it in and cope.”

“You should thank God” for bank bailouts, Munger said in a discussion at the University of Michigan on Sept. 14, according to a video posted on the Internet. “Now, if you talk about bailouts for everybody else, there comes a place where if you just start bailing out all the individuals instead of telling them to adapt, the culture dies.”

Angry Public

“Charlie Munger is misrepresenting history, and that’s why the public is angry at Wall Street,” said Joshua Rosner, an analyst at research firm Graham Fisher & Co. “We could have wiped out the equity holders before we wiped out the taxpayer.”

Anonymous said...

from zh...

About "Charlie" Munger's blatherings earlier:

"Before 1933 the people themselves had an effective way to demand economy. Before 1933, whenever the people became disturbed over Federal spending, they could redeem their paper currency in gold, and wait for common sense to return to Washington." - Howard Buffett, father of Wall Street legend Warren Buffett

How tunes have changed for these funny money billionaires.

Anonymous said...

And we have made "icons" from this garbage?

Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger: Winning the Class War

Warren Buffett Jumped the Squid

Charlie Munger's War

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