I don’t know if I am still a capitalist at heart. I watched part of the Goldman Sachs hearing and my stomach turned. Not at what Goldman did but the self serving hypocritical people in our government that are suppose to serve us but mostly severing themselves. My guess is that Goldman operated legally within the regulations and laws of our country at least with respect to the transactions being discussed. In our system, Corporations have a primary responsibility to their shareholders (and boards have a legal responsibility). That does not mean that there is not room for ethical considerations. And most great companies that are built to last believe that being a responsible citizen is part of that. Wall street does tend to get isolated and decoupled. The biggest issue on Wall Street is the people are compensated on the short term and take too many risks. They are also paid way to much. It is not their pay that really matters with respect to the economy but what they are driven to do to get that pay. But this is where they are one with their brothers in Congress. Both have control over vast amounts of money. And both will make decisions that are short term and create great harm to others. Wall Street has a much higher price however. I mean a typical senator will sell out is country for a one million dollar campaign contribution. Wall street wants a lot more. So now we have the government investigating Wall Street which conveniently takes away the light from the governments own role in all this. I would love to see a panel with our government leaders answering questions from smart people from Wall Street.
Here is a link on the point of view of Warren Buffet with respect to Goldman.