A Few Greedy Men

February 11, 2009 in Finance,Quotes

Classic email I received from R (and if you don't know, now you know):

I picture the following dramatic scene unfolding later today:

Barney Frank: What did Paulson tell you?

Ken Lewis: [stonefaced]

Barney Frank: WHAT DID PAULSON SAY TO YOU IN YOUR MEETING IN MID-DECEMBER?

Ken Lewis: You want answers?

Barney Frank: I think I'm entitled to them.

Ken Lewis: You want answers?

Barney Frank: I want the truth.

Ken Lewis: YOU CANT HANDLE THE TRUTH! WE LIVE IN A WORLD THAT RELIES ON CREDIT. AND THAT CREDIT IS GUARDED BY FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS LIKE US. Who's gonna do it? You? Fannie Mae? Freddie Mac? I HAVE A GREATER RESPONSIBILITY THAN YOU CAN POSSIBLY FATHOM. You weep for the taxpayer and curse Wall Street. YOU HAVE THAT LUXURY. YOU HAVE THE LUXURY OF NOT KNOWING WHAT I KNOW....  You don't want the truth.  Because deep down, in places you don't talk about at parties, you want me on that wall.  You need me on that wall.  I have neither the time nor the inclination to explain myself to a man who rises and sleeps UNDER THE CREDIT THAT I PROVIDE, THEN QUESTIONS THE MANNER IN WHICH I PROVIDE IT!  I'd rather you just said thank you and went on your way.  OTHERWISE, I SUGGEST YOU GET OFF YOUR PEDESTAL AND TRY TO DO WHAT I DO.  EITHER WAY, I DON'T GIVE A DAMN WHAT YOU THINK YOU'RE ENTITLED TO!!

Barney Frank:  Did you buy Merrill Lynch with an implicit government backstop?

Ken Lewis:  I did the job I was supposed to do.

Barney Frank:  Did you buy Merrill Lynch with an implicit government backstop?

Ken Lewis:  YOU'RE GODDAM RIGHT I DID!!!

And it looks like he wasn't too far off.

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