Interesting snippet from a heart-wrenching tale about the stigmatized Wall Street wizards:
Of course, mistakes were made on Wall Street, says Emanuel Pleitez, a 26-year-old former Goldman Sachs employee who resigned from his job a few months ago to run for Congress in his hometown, Los Angeles. But to a great extent, he says, those mistakes were born of misplaced trust.
“Look, you can talk about collateralized debt obligations all day long,” he said, referring to a type of asset-backed security that has turned famously toxic. “But there were ratings agencies that were supposed to tell us how risky these securities were. We essentially closed our eyes and said, ‘O.K., you say this is rated triple-A, fine, I believe you.’ ” In hindsight, he said, “Everyone should have been more skeptical.”
I know I have brought this up several times, but putting aside the irresponsibility of just closing their eyes and saying “O.K.,” the folks who seem to have gotten off scott free are the ratings agencies. What they did was akin to the FDA not only removing the warning from cigarette packs, but adding a little statement that “Cigarettes can enhance health if smoked in quantities of higher than four packs a day.”
These guys should face hell, and all the anger seems directed at the Merrill’s and Lehmans and Goldman Sachs’s of the world.
And, in case you were wondering, because I was, Pleitez is apparently a Democrat and served on the Obama transition team.