The times they are a changin’ and they are a changin’ in jolly old England.
The United Kingdom Independence Party (UKIP) is an important force in British politics. It’s an important force in European politics. It is even influencing American politics. UKIP’s most recent achievements may be a harbinger of what is to come in the the USA.
The big pharmaceutical companies have done very well in the crony department over the last decade. Medicare Part D was a giant gift to pharma, then the “donut hole” fill of Part D in 2010 meant even more money for the drug companies. Big Pharma in many respects is a government contractor. A quarter of its revenue comes from Medicare, Medicaid, and various other government programs. But now one of the giants is leaving for England lured by lower tax rates.
The answer simply is – yes.
No reason to keep records of what happened at one of the world’s most powerful central banks during the height of the 2008 Crash. Nothing important to know there. No reason to look back and remember what worked and what didn’t. No reason to keep the evidence.
The USA leads the world in giving ambassadorships to non-career diplomats, aka cronies. All one needs to do is bundle half a million or so for the president (any president) and boom – a sweet diplomatic post.
People are chaining themselves to barricades and waving red flags in the streets of London in protest of the G8 talks. The protest has been called a “carnival against capitalism.” Sadly these folks do not understand the vital difference between “capitalism” which is voluntary and provides opportunity for those not blessed with access to the modern aristocracy, and “crony capitalism” where the state is hijacked by the powerful to line their pockets and consolidate power.
European politicians especially love them.
Goldman is not the only firm that treats its clients like this, but one senses that the Vampire Squid guys might be especially nasty. Today Greg Smith, formerly with the bank, puts the Goldman culture on display in the New York Times.