So that’s what this is about. For a moment I was totally speechless and had to dig into my Harvard trained PhD brain to figure out what the hell he meant by “cuddling”! What can I say; once a teetotaling math geek, always a bit slow to pick up on signals from the menfolk. So the former Treasury Secretary had a “crush” on me! And not long afterward the former Treasury Secretary had his tongue down my throat and hands everywhere sort of like an octopus. But as soon as the thought entered my mind — the former Treasury Secretary has his tongue down my throat?! — I came to my senses a bit and awkwardly went back home before we both got too carried away. This is to say, I said to myself that there would be no other former Treasury Secretary appendages entering any other of my orifices.
No man’s behavior looks attractive when he’s cheating on his wife, but this little tell-all by a woman who had a sort-of fling with former Goldman chief and Treasury Secretary Bob Rubin is more than unusually embarrassing. It’s all coming out now — Goldman is officially the new Tiger Woods. The next revelation has to be something involving Gary Cohn and Ted Haggard.
The most disgusting (and revealing) part of the story is, to me, this part of Iris Mack’s narrative:
Things were much more relaxed by the time I walked him back to the Ritz – which was along the way to my South Beach condo. When we passed a homeless man along the way he made a bit of a show of opening up his fat leather billfold and producing a dollar — “There but for the grace of God…” he remarked melodramatically — and I gave him a lot of heat for that, because who exactly did he think he was kidding? I said give the man a job. Heck, you’re the head of a bank!
A multi-multi-millionaire giving a homeless guy a dollar on the way to the Ritz… if that isn’t the perfect metaphor for the modern “Third Way” Democratic Party, I don’t know what is. And Jesus, is there any area of human interaction where these guys aren’t complete and utter culturally tone-deaf buffoons? Even during the hearings, every last one of these Goldman guys, it was like they had no idea how awful they sounded, and how much the whole world wanted to reach through the TV and pull their tongues out every time they opened their mouths. It’s amazing.
An even creepier side note about that above passage: what if it’s true? What if a Bob Rubin really does, a hundred million dollars later, still retain some ingrained fear of being broke and forced to live on the street? That would really be telling, and go pretty far toward explaining the pathology, I think. Or maybe not. But it’s interesting.
Then there’s this part:
But none of this seemed to require Bob Rubin to actually do very much. On November 1 he called me four times as I was leaving for a conference in Raleigh; first while I was packing, then in the cab to the airport, then again before I went through security, then again when I was supposed to land. When I had to put the phone away he acted like a little kid who’d been told it was bedtime, and said he would call me again when I got to my destination.
“Don’t you have work to do, Mr. Chairman?” I joked during our third call.
“I’m the chairman of the executive committee,” he specified.
“What the hell does that mean?” By then I was confused.
“It means the word ‘chairman’ is in the title and I get paid very handsomely, but I don’t have any actual managerial responsibilities.” He seemed pleased.
“Well excuse moi,” I shot back. “Nice work if you can get it!”
A couple of things here. One, this seems to suggest to me that Bob Rubin’s main job at Citi was to hang around and be available for his political connections. His job, as I understand it, was a sort of permanent, ongoing bribe.
Two, this is another thing that is going to drive people absolutely up a wall when they hear more about it — the fact that contrary to what David Brooks and the rest of those types say, I’m not sure exactly how many hours some of these guys worked. In general there seem to be quite a number of upper-management types who make their money according to the crack-dealing model of corporate hierarchy, i.e. the many levels of worker bees underneath do the actual deals and shed the actual blood, while up top a thin layer of entitled, essentially tenured assholedom collects the huge money.
We may get to see some of that reality fleshed out in the Abacus case. It’ll be interesting to watch. In the meantime, it’s just delicious seeing all of this horrible stuff about Goldman pouring out now. It’s so rare to see someone who actually deserves it get the full-blown media turbo-fragging in this country.