"Roughly a year after accepting unprecedented financial aid to shore up its operations, Wall Street firm Goldman Sachs Group Inc. [GSG] posted yet another impressive quarter that further distances itself from its rivals, many of which are still struggling to overcome the credit crisis. ... 'We are very aware of what is going on in the world, but we have to trade that off with being fair to our people who, we believe, have performed admirably throughout the crisis,' said [GSG's] chief financial officer, David Viniar. ... [GSG] also has benefitted from the [FDIC's] debt-guarantee program, which means it and other banks can borrow money at cheaper rates than before. ... The firm has tried to soften the blow of its decision to set aside huge pools of money for compensation; Thursday it made a $200 million charitable contribution to the [GSG] Foundation, which has an existing $283 million in it. Still, that did little to deflect attention from the $16.71 billion in has earmarked for bonuses, which will be paid out early in 2010", my emphasis, Susanne Craig at the WSJ, 16 October 2009, link: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB125560247815487177.html.
A "charm offensive" should be easy for GSG. GSG likely employs dozens of graduates of the KGB "charm school" in Nelson DeMille's The Charm School, 1988. This is a job, not for Superman, but Michael Moore (MM). MM, please make a movie of politicians meeting GSG apparachiks then slinking away with newspapers covering their faces. GSG now sprouts the prosperity gospel of say Ken Hagin, or the now-deceased Reverend Ike. "Sow a seed" of say $10 million into Washington and have it return to GSG 100 fold! The Rolling Stone article insulted GSG. GSG would not stick its blood funnel into a money pile of less than $1 billion. Does GSG really want the American public to understand its "business model"? Go Zingales! Why need Blankfein, who makes about $60 million a year, have his actions regulated by $150,000 a year civil servants? Who is he kidding? WC Varones recently added GSG's "logo" to his blog. Take a look. I have an idea for GSG, it can add the vampire squid to its stationery and people's business cards.
Is GSG's charitable contribution admissible "res gestae" on the issue of "consciouness of guilt"? Didn't Bernie Madoff donate millions to charity? Millions of other people's money. Yes Viniar, Henry Paulson performed "admirably" for his "former" firm. $16.71 billion divided by $200 million = 83.5, you're in the "prosperity gospel" ballpark!