UNITED STATES HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES COMMITTEE ON FINANCIAL SERVICES
WASHINGTON DC--February 11, 2009
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CHAIRMAN FRANK ANNOUNCES SURPRISE PANEL OF INDUSTRY EXPERTS TO HELP FLOG WALL STREET EXECUTIVES
Excerpts from today's hearing:
CHAIRMAN BERNIE FRANK: Hello, my name is Congressman Bernie Frank. I am the Chairman of this Committee and don't you forget it. Today we will be
addressing a matter of grave importance, the lack of accountability on Wall Street vis-a-vis the TARP I Bailout. You are all familiar with
the detailed reporting requirements that we neglected to include in the TARP enabling legislation that fateful weekend (or was it a week or two weeks?) last
September. Given that feeble drafting skills of the Committee Staff, the Wall Street guile of Mr. Paulsen's crew of Goldman hacks led by Kneel Cash N Carry, the unlimited greed and
diabolical machinations of Wall Street executives and the paucity of brain power on this Committee, it should be no surprise that we are gathered here today
without one inkling of where the billions and billions of TARP taxpayer dollars have gone. Rather than ruminating over these sad and shameful facts, I decided that it
would be more fun to haul a bunch of Wall Street CEOs into this hearing room for a verbal caning (in the parlance of Singapore's Temasek Holdings). The culprits called for today's skewering are well known: Ken "Screwless Lewis" of BadBankAmerica, Vikram Bandit of CITIBadBank, Lloyd Landmein of Goldman Bank & Trust me, Jamie Diamonds of JPMorgan and John Pay it Back of Morgan Stanley Bank & Trust me. Given Mr. Diamonds relatively good behavior compared to the rest of these rascals, I have decided to let Mr Diamond examine himself. Mr Diamond there is a powder mirror in my office.
To assist the Committee in these important matters I have invited a special panel of industry experts to examine the witnesses directly and indirectly. The Special Panel consists of the following luminaries: John Thain, a corporate governance expert with hands on experience in the investment banking industry most recently with Merrill Lynch; Barney Madoff whom you will all recall was good enough to testify at the Marco Polo hearing last week (I would like to thank the United States Marshall Service for allowing Bernie to stay in Washington over the weekend as a guest in my home); Ms. Kristen Davis, better known as the Manhattan Madam; Mr. Ralph "unsafe at any speed" Nader a well known expert on greed and corruption in corporate America and the magician Michael Blaine who is an expert at misdirection.
I don't know about you folks, I sure can't wait to misdirect attention away from my own incompetencies and culpability in this grand fiasco. So without further Ken Lay, excuse me, "delay" I turn the floor first to Mr. Madoff who will be returning to his Park Avenue incarceration cell later this morning.
One more small housekeeping item, will the industry witnesses please submit their AMTRAK ticket stubs for verification by the Sergeant at Arms.
BARNEY MADOFF: Got you again Bernie/Barney. Gentleman, we are all familiar with the near viral growth curve of the Ponzinomial expansion as a paradigm for modern global finance. As I have said on many occasions, the insights of Charles Ponzi some 100 years ago have adapted well to our business of financial innovation. Some critical ingredients: opacity, incomprehensibility, breach of trust and plain old fashioned hutzpha! Ponzinomics adaptes well to politics as well. I regret that I have not mastered certain facets of the art as well as yourselves. My first question is directed to Mr. Landmein of Goldman Bank & Trust me. Mr Landmein, do you believe that the basic Ponzinomic model is broken or, inasmuch as it is embedded in the Goldman model, will it survive the current upheaval?
JOHN THAIN: Thank you Chairman Madoff, I mean Frank. My first question is to Mr. Screwless. Ken, is it not true that I hand delivered to you numerous limited edition Currier & Ives Christmas cards detailing: 1. The size of the mega trading losses incurred by Merrill nit wits after the Merger Agreement was signed; 2. My plan to spend billions of TARP dollars enriching spoiled and incompetent Merrill bankers in order to save the Bull franchise; 3. My intention to sell all of my faux French furniture on Ebay before year end; and 4. Requesting your approval of my Christmas vacation schedule?
MADAM DAVIS: First, I would like to know which of you will finance the cost of my website as well as the distribution cost of my "Tell All" book. A favorable answer will avoid my having to submit this Black Trading Book as evidence in this hearing. Second, will one of you please explain the difference between screwing around for cash and screwing around with credit card invoices?
MR NADER: Mr Bandit, despite adequate warning signals and contrary to good business sense, the automotive industry opted to exploit a seemingly unlimited resource and failed to adapt a prudent business model that would withstand the risks associated with shifts in the global markets. Why should the US government bail your sorry asses in view of this hubristic display of greed filled evil corporate buffoonery? (Mr. Frank: Ralph we are talking about Wall Street not Detroit) I stand by my question, just change "automotive" to "banking" and assume the unlimited resource is cheap leverage instead of oil. If you've seen one bailout you've seen em all.
DAVID BLAINE: I have studied the business practices of the global finance industry. I would analogize it the old bent card and card board box. I am speaking of course about Three Card Monty, that quaint street game that is familiar to all native New Yorkers. By the time someone screams about the bent Red Queen, the cards and the card board box are flying in the air and Mr. Monty (together with the money) is long gone before the SEC cops arrive. I have a question for all of you. What is the difference between a Three Card Monty artist and a Wall Street Banker?
FOR MORE INFORMATION: The WilliamBanzai7 Blog