|The Nossiter Net
The net that shall enmesh them all
Edited, Written, and Published by Josh Nossiter
|Dear Citi: Will Destroy You for Less
Saturday, January 10th, 2009
|The Nossiter Net is cast to snare some of the riper rascalities of the day. Comments? Send a letter to the editor.|
|As Treasury Secretary Robert Rubin helped dismantle Glass-Steagall, fought regulation of derivatives, weakened accounting and reporting rules, and so laid the groundwork for our present economic collapse. As a reward for his service at Treasury, he was given a lavishly paid job at Citigroup. There, he promoted unwise acquisitions, advocated risky investments, and eschewed oversight. These activities have brought Citi to its knees, despite an at least three hundred billion government bailout, and counting. As a reward for his service at Citigroup, today's New York Times reports Rubin was paid nearly an eighth of a billion, over one hundred and twenty six million dollars.
Here some news for Citigroup: you could have destroyed your company for a lot less. Take, for example, me. I'd have ruined you for a tenth of what you paid Rubin. The difference, $113.4 million, might have saved some of your executives' third homes or yachts. Or you could have put the money in gold and made something on it. Peanuts compared to the losses Rubin has cost you, but it might have been a start in the right direction. Or you could have just given the money to charity.
Sure I don't have Rubin's reputation but our credentials aren't dissimilar. Rubin went to Ivy League schools and got a BA and a JD. I went to Ivy League schools and got a BA and an MBA. He worked on Wall Street. I worked on Wall Street. He has two grown sons. I've got a grown son and a daughter. I'm younger than he is, maybe better looking too. Recent events appear to have aged that boy considerably. He wrote a book and had to hire a co-writer. I've written a lot of books, mostly all by my lonesome. He has more dark suits than I do but on the squash court he wouldn't have a chance.
And here's another thing. I thought getting rid of Glass-Steagall was a big mistake at the time. I took Warren Buffet's comment about derivatives, that he would never invest in something he didn't understand, to heart. If I'd had any money, I would never have invested in them either. Come to think of it, I might have saved you from disaster instead of pushing you over the cliff the way Rubin did. And have I mentioned I'd have done it for less? The good news is, you're still alive, albeit on life support. And the further good news is that I'm available. So call me. I can guarantee I'll do at least as good a job at Citi as Rubin did.
©Joshua C. Nossiter, 2008
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A NOTE TO READERS ***Update***
Another three week plus hiatus, from April 30th until May 23rd, again due to Yahoo Geocities dismal service.
There was nothing new at The Nossiter Net between March 3rd and April 26th, 2007, nearly eight weeks. The reason: tech sabotage. Yahoo Geocities, the host for this site, denied access for the entire period. At one point, they even managed to lose all the files. In many discussions with Yahoo staff, no clear explanation was forthcoming. No one seemed able to fix the problem. Ruling out the possibility of Dubbya’s revenge, I finally wrote to Mr. Terry Semel, Chairman and CEO of Yahoo! Inc and described the ordeal the page had undergone since the beginning of March. A week later, a helpful Yahooo engineer named Jason called. He had my letter before him. Though he couldn’t do the repairs on on the spot, he promised a fix by the next day. That was April 26th, nearly two months after shutting me down in the first place.
The Nossiter Net apologizes, which is more than I can say for Yahoo Geocities.
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