This page has been archived and commenting is disabled.

Mr. Parasite Goes To Washington

ilene's picture




 

Intro: Robert Reich, wrote in "The Rebirth of Social Darwinism" that in the Gilded Age of the late nineteenth century

"the nation was mesmerized by the doctrine of free enterprise, but few Americans actually enjoyed much freedom. Robber barons like the financier Jay Gould, the railroad magnate Cornelius Vanderbilt, and the oil tycoon John D. Rockefeller, controlled much of American industry; the gap between rich and poor had turned into a chasm; urban slums festered; children worked long hours in factories; women couldn’t vote and black Americans were subject to Jim Crow; and the lackeys of rich literally deposited sacks of money on desks of pliant legislators. Most tellingly, it was a time when the ideas of William Graham Sumner, a professor of political and social science at Yale, dominated American social thought. Sumner brought Charles Darwin to America and twisted him into a theory to fit the times...

 

"To Sumner and his followers, life was a competitive struggle in which only the fittest could survive – and through this struggle societies became stronger over time. A correlate of this principle was that government should do little or nothing to help those in need because that would interfere with natural selection... Sumner wrote in the 1880s. It’s either 'liberty, inequality, survival of the fittest,' or 'not-liberty, equality, survival of the unfittest. The former carries society forward and favors all its best members; the latter carries society downwards and favors all its worst members.'"

I submit that Darwinism is alive and well, will always be, and that the psychopath or sociopath personality type - when combined with impulse control and intelligence - is an advantage to survival and procreation. But Sumner is wrong in his conclusion that "because [millionaires, etc.] are thus selected that wealth aggregates under their hands – both their own and that entrusted to them … They may fairly be regarded as the naturally selected agents of society... the bargain is a good one for society." Natural selection, in a society left unchecked by the rule of law, is not a great bargain, and some of us are not voluntarily making it. ~ Ilene 

 

Mr. Parasite Goes To Washington

 

Courtesy of Cody Penn Dent at Wall Street Examiner

We all know the story.

An energetic, successful person from industry sets off to use his skills as a reform minded public servant. Voters’ imaginations are captured by the opportunity to have someone of proven ability transform government, forge better policy and make it more effective at spending our resources.

Now we know the sadistically laughable version of that story – where an egotistical, conscienceless insider imposes himself on the narrative – buying the PR services and ad time necessary to saturate the population of New Jersey and adjacent states with a tired, bogus theme – a common guy who worked his way up to do great things.

Like any huckster on TV, Jon Corzine tried to foist a crappy product (himself) on unsuspecting rubes. He’d be comparable to Billy Mays who sold us things like laundry detergent, except Mays had a personality and was mildly likable. The comparison also fails when one considers that Corzine is still alive. Then there is that Sham Wow guy – another huckster who you can’t compare with Corzine since Corzine has yet to see a jail from the inside.

At least when you send your money in for OxyClean or a towel you actually get something. When people recently sent their money to MF Global they got a promise from a firm headed by a former Goldman Sachs CEO, Governor, and Senator. The promise? That those deposited funds would receive at least “ordinary care.” Yet, they learned that over a billion dollars has gone missing. And the huckster in charge tells Congress that (a) he has no idea how that happened and (b) he never intended for anything illegal to happen.

Let’s rate his performance as a salesman, shall we?

Does he know his product?

Clearly not. From his testimony he tells us he had no idea of what was really happening at his firm. As a former Goldman Sachs chief and Sarbanes-Oxley co-author, he had no idea (and apparently no curiosity) of how things operated, how money was handled, or even who really made the decision to gamble on European bonds – only that he and the board may or may not have been informed of these things in the vaguest of ways and at the most unspecific of times. He apparently lacked the capacity to supervise the “complex” operations such that over a billion dollars in client funds could get mixed in with the firm’s funds and then be placed on a bet that countries like Italy and Spain would suddenly become creditworthy. At 37 times leverage.

Does he know his customer?

To answer that question, you have to ask who the customer is. Based on his testimony to Congress (as well as the course of his career), the answer becomes clear: himself. As his own customer, Corzine did what comes naturally – put himself first and screw everyone else. Viewers were treated to a well choreographed, finely lawyered display of “not my fault” from the one person who had the means, authority, and experience to ensure that the very simple and elementary step of holding client funds separate from MF Global’s was taken.

Does he engage the buyer and close the deal?

A guy who does white collar criminal defense work rated Corzine’s performance as “phenomenal.”

Yet, Corzine convinced me of his complete and total culpability for these “lost” funds. Here’s why: Corzine either did this knowingly and is simply lying about it or he is criminally negligent. Take your pick.
This is a man who thoroughly knows trading and developed proprietary trading at Goldman Sachs into something hugely profitable. Goldman’s proprietary trading is legendary – harvesting massive amounts of data from markets in real time and then setting about to place complex trades at high volume to create and exploit market movement.

In 2009 the public got a rare and fleeting glimpse of the power of what Goldman had assembled. Code and data were downloaded by an employee and uploaded to an off shore server. The FBI, in bringing the indictment against the employee, commented that “in the wrong hands” the code could be used to “manipulate markets”. A hilarious statement in retrospect – the statement assumed Goldman’s were not the “wrong hands” in the first place and ignores (while simultaneously acknowledging) that the software, by design, alters markets.

Proprietary trading implemented to shape and exploit market movements is really a parasitic force – it actually undermines the soundness of markets and undermines “price discovery” as profits are culled by deceiving buyers and sellers into thinking that a fair price is taking hold via bargaining when it is not. Instead, the pricing is stage managed such that Goldman could buy positions cheap and sell them at a premium. In modern times, parasitic proprietary trading has resulted in participants simply leaving the market. As one who elevated proprietary trading to new, massively profitable heights, Corzine should be known as Mr. Parasite.

You would think that a person skilled enough in supervising such trading and taking Goldman public would be able to manage keeping client money separate from firm money at MF Global. Yet Corzine testified that the intricacies of simply keeping these sums in different accounts were beyond his supervisory skill set.

Again – it seems to me that he is either lying or criminally negligent. Pick one.

Time for Corzine’s Law

The greatest con men and hucksters crave interaction with those they are swindling. Like an executioner who really likes his job, these sociopaths really like to look deeply into their victims’ eyes and witness the moment when they’ve won. Corzine testified to Congress without his attorney sitting next to him. No quick chats with counsel – no coaching in front of the cameras. No – Corzine wanted to shove the hearing in the faces of those who had the temerity to subpoena him. So the staging was raw, bold and risky, but the answers were finely pre-parsed to leave his accusers with nothing. In my opinion, the man is as sociopathic as they come – his career has been built on finding suckers and taking them for a ride – as a trader, as a partner, as a Senator, as a Governor, as a CEO and now as a witness. I think Corzine got off on leaving Congressmen befuddled and slack jawed as he related a narrative in which he, as CEO, was in no way responsible yet deeply apologetic.

It is time we recognize that our markets are severely impaired by the sociopathic parasites who use their power as intermediaries to create the maximum number of losers possible. When that happens, participants leave markets. Our liquidity crises around the world are in no way aided by the fact that many retail investors have walked away from financial markets. “Risk off” doesn’t just refer to the risk of recession – it also refers to the risk of being bilked by sociopaths who think they are clever because of a novel interpretation of law on the basis of which, when confronted, they can disclaim liability based on vague statements about intentions.

Corzine has positioned himself as the ignorant, unaware boss because it is the path with the fewest sanctions. Criminal negligence is part of our body of law, but most jurisdictions only throw offenders in prison if they put a victim in the hospital or a grave. You can see life in prison if your gross negligence involves a motor vehicle, but not if it involves a financial vehicle. We need to amend our laws to extend the sanction of prison to those whose gross negligence creates property losses in excess of a billion dollars and affects in excess of 500 victims. Such would provide a simple yet bright regulatory line that would keep those like Corzine from escaping justice. If you ask to be responsible for others’ property, demand compensation for it and then show reckless disregard for that property on a societal scale and it results in massive loss, then you should see a jail cell for a while.

For reasons I will never understand, sociopaths find new ways to antagonize society with each generation. Consequently society has to create yet more laws to try to contain such atavism. Our generation seems to have its hands full with child predators – we have Adam’s law, Megan’s law, Chelsea’s law – laws named after victims of remorseless sociopaths. We should name this new, necessary law, “Corzine’s Law” so that people are reminded of the craven huckster whose career has been about promoting himself as a winner by creating as many losers as he could.

*****

Corzine's Testimony Christmas Carol by Cody Penn Dent

 

Jon Corzine’s testimony could have been sung as a Christmas Carol:

(Sung to “God rest ye merry gentlemen”)
I guess you clever gentlemen
Are wondering what I’ll say.
Will I cite the 5th amendment
Or did I come to play?
Well I will tell you everything
On this December day.

You see, I don’t remember anything
Remember a thing
I just don’t seem to remember anything

Now clients gave us money
to invest in stocks and bonds
And some of it bought the services
of teenage Russian blonds
But that stuffs kinda normal
and isn’t really wrong

You see, I don’t remember anything
Remember a thing
I just don’t seem to remember anything

Hypothecated leverage
Are words that I don’t know
Even though at Goldman
It floated our IPO
But now its all so hard for me
as the MF CEO

You see, I don’t remember anything
Remember a thing
I just don’t seem to remember anything

So you see that I’m not guilty
That’s what I represent
Doing stuff illegally
Was never my intent
I simply meant to tweak the law
So suckers would get bent

You see, I don’t remember a thing
Remember a thing
I just don’t seem to remember anything

 

Get regular updates on the US housing market, and stay up to date with the machinations of the Fed, Treasury, Primary Dealers and foreign central banks in the US market…stay ahead of the herd. Click this link to try WSE’s Professional Edition risk free for 30 days!  

 

- advertisements -

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.
Mon, 12/12/2011 - 19:24 | 1971963 Georgesblog
Georgesblog's picture

Robert Reich, Bill Clinton's "Mini Me", reminds me of the former appliance salesman, turned warlord, in the film, "The Postman". Let us not forget that as Secretary of Labor, he said:

"Those who work with their hands and make things have no future".

When he talks about sociopaths and psychopaths, he must know a few.

 http://georgesblogforum.wordpress.com/2011/11/02/the-daily-climb-2/

Mon, 12/12/2011 - 20:01 | 1971886 New World Chaos
New World Chaos's picture

Rothschilds love Darwinism.  It's one of the reasons why they have been secretly pissing in the gene pool via sperm banks.  The other reason is that their secret empire has become unwieldy enough that they need hordes of reliably dishonest minions to fill intermediate positions in business, law, media, education, etc.  They obviously don't inherit the Rothschilds' wealth or occult knowledge but they still prove useful.  They even trick otherwise good people into believing that sociopathy is moral.   And they condition American women to love money and status more than self-awareness, thus ensuring that they will reliably fall for sociopaths.  They won't be happy but they and the sociopaths will have more grandchildren.  Thus, in our society, Darwin entrenches sociopathy, parasitism and willful ignorance at all levels.  This is by design.  They have domesticated us and now they are selectively breeding us to be the perfect parasitic hosts. 

Sociopaths' supposed non-cooperativeness is an illusion.  They secretly cooperate with each other by giving each other routes to profit, power, and Darwinian advantage.  Even when sociopaths fight each other, it is often a staged fight in which the fallout conditions the sheeple to welcome tighter rule by sociopaths.

Mon, 12/12/2011 - 15:44 | 1971260 MrBoompi
MrBoompi's picture

"_______  either did this knowingly and is simply lying about it or he is criminally negligent. Take your pick."

 

Fill in the blank with any CEO of the top 20, or more, banks.  Maybe Corzine will be prosecuted, but probably not.  The track record for this is actually a national disgrace.

 

 

Mon, 12/12/2011 - 15:37 | 1971052 blu
blu's picture

Most sociopaths are violently narcissistic. Their primary fault tends to be that they think they are gods. No doubt humans have as many religions as they do for exactly this reason; there is always a violent sociopath wanting to be god.

They don't even care if you kill them. And they don't learn from watching each other be killed. They just don't know how to care.

That's why they do so very well in large corporations, and in government, both of which they created for their own purposes mostly to hide within and hunt from.

Money, powerful government, and big business attract them. So long as these vessels remain to carry them forward the sociopaths will rule the human world, and destroy the natural world.

Thankfully both these sociopath strongholds are shortly at an end. The wealth of resources governments and businesses require to stay alive are in profound retreat. It will be interesting (slightly) to see where the sociopaths hide next.

My guess is they will go back into organized religion from which government and business first arose, and sleep there until these vehicles return.

Good luck humanity. You are in the grasp of a great evil.

Mon, 12/12/2011 - 14:44 | 1971000 CompassionateFascist
CompassionateFascist's picture

The problem isn't lack of a "Corzine Law". Theft is theft. The problem is that Corzine and his kind own all the politicians. With a few individual exceptions, the entire US ruling class is sociopathic; i.e., destroying their own country. On purpose. The "Law" will never get rid of them. They are the "Law". Only revolution and civil war can get rid of these creatures.  

Mon, 12/12/2011 - 14:38 | 1970982 The Alarmist
The Alarmist's picture

Stole it, lost it, failed to properly supervise disposition of it ... In an case, conduct not commensurate with the duties and care required of a CEO and fiduciary in exchange for the big bucks .... If the BK trustee was serious about his role, he would easily pierce the corporate veil and take e erything this POS owns.

Mon, 12/12/2011 - 14:36 | 1970977 Uchtdorf
Uchtdorf's picture

Just for grins, let's ponder how many of the duly-elected CONgressmen are familiar with the term re-hypothecation. Are these good public servants (sarc off) now working feverishly on a bill that will right this great wrong that has been wrought on the poor American society? No? Then you know that there are even more guilty people.

Mon, 12/12/2011 - 14:33 | 1970960 forexskin
forexskin's picture

We need to amend our laws to extend the sanction of prison to those whose gross negligence creates property losses in excess of a billion dollars and affects in excess of 500 victims.

Shit, why didn't we think of that before!

Mon, 12/12/2011 - 14:32 | 1970956 sgt_doom
sgt_doom's picture

Outstanding post, Madam Ilene, and so pointedly on target.

And for further enlightening reading:

http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2011/12/maureen-tkacik-the-anti-occupycia-connection.html

http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2011/12/spy-firm-videos

 

Mon, 12/12/2011 - 15:30 | 1971191 ilene
ilene's picture

Thx sgt. doom.

Mon, 12/12/2011 - 14:18 | 1970888 New American Re...
New American Revolution's picture

So, Burn the Fucker.

Mon, 12/12/2011 - 14:17 | 1970884 New American Re...
New American Revolution's picture

Burn him, he's a witch.    I'm serious, he's a witch,... ok, he's a warlock like Bill Clinton, but he's still a witch.

Mon, 12/12/2011 - 14:08 | 1970846 TideFighter
TideFighter's picture

Brilliant, Bill. But you forgot, if you order right now...

Mon, 12/12/2011 - 14:31 | 1970951 Kayman
Kayman's picture

WAIT, WAIT !  You get 2 bare-faced lies for the price of one....

Mon, 12/12/2011 - 14:06 | 1970831 willien1derland
willien1derland's picture

Jon Corzine - typical Douche Bag!

Mon, 12/12/2011 - 13:48 | 1970735 williambanzai7
williambanzai7's picture

ASS SEEN ON TV

Mon, 12/12/2011 - 15:11 | 1971107 ilene
ilene's picture

"remember to plead the fridge"... lol, thx. 

Mon, 12/12/2011 - 14:31 | 1970944 sgt_doom
sgt_doom's picture

That frigging Buckaroo Banzai!!!!!

Now everyone in the coffee shop is staring at me for laughing so hard the latte gushed out of my nostrils. 

Major gross out.......

(And the young are once again discovering the "foundation" connection (please see first link below), and should research the Walsh Commission, circa 1913, 1914.

http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2011/12/maureen-tkacik-the-anti-occupycia-connection.html

http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2011/12/spy-firm-videos

 

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!