Sense on Cents 2011 Halls of Fame and Shame
Posted by Larry Doyle on January 1, 2012 12:41 PM |
America wakes up this morning hopeful for a new year filled with peace and prosperity. Sense on Cents welcomes spreading our spirit of optimism.
Before we move forward, though, let’s take an accounting of 2011 and induct those most deserving into our Sense on Cents’ 2011 Halls of Fame and Shame.
Prior to our induction ceremony today, I am sure there are many in the crowd who may want to review our past award winners. On that note, I humbly submit:
From the above Fame and Shame lists, I believe the top three in each Hall deserve special recognition. On that note, the medals go to the following:
Hall of Fame
Gold Medal: Richard Greenfield, who called Mary Schapiro a liar during my interview with him on NQR’s Sense on Cents with Larry Doyle in October.
Silver Medal: Helen Davis Chaitman
Bronze Medal: Joe Saluzzi of Themis Trading
Hall of Shame
1. Gold Medal: Mary Schapiro, the centerpiece of the Wall Street-Washington incest
2. Silver Medal: Bernie Madoff, a special place in hell for this vermin
3. Bronze Medal: collectively, all participants in the Wall Street-Washington incest
Special recognition was too difficult to determine last year as there were simply too many worthy candidates on both sides of the ledger. I am sure that most readers would concur.
There is no doubt that many of those currently in our halls of dignity and infamy deserve further attention and recognition. To that end, I hope you will share this specific commentary so they receive their just desserts.
On that note and with no further adieu, the envelopes please. (For those who would like to read more on specific individuals or groups highlighted today, I am happy to include the date of the story at Sense on Cents profiling why each person or group is so designated. You can find these stories via the archives in the left hand sidebar)
2011 Sense on Cents Hall of Fame Inductees
1. Walter Williams, economist at George Mason University who highlighted that “politicians exploit economic illiteracy” (January 22)
2. Christine Acosta, a 27 year old barista in Portland, Oregon, who told the Center for Public Integrity in an interview on our money center banks, “I just can’t trust them” (January 20)
3. Paul Ryan (R-WI), a politician whom I believe embraces the true spirit of ‘sense on cents’
4. Michael Lewitt of Harch Capital who slammed the media and our government for concealing the truth (January 6)
5. Charles Ferguson, Oscar award winner, who in his acceptance speech slammed the lack of meaningful accountability by regulators over those at the center of our economic crisis. (February 28)
6. Pete Peterson, of The Peterson Foundation, who is dogged in highlighting the perils of our national debt.
7. Thomas Sowell, a noted writer who truly embraces our ‘sense on cents’ virtues!!
8. Robert Auerbach, an economist formerly within the Federal Reserve and on Capitol Hill who unloaded on the Federal Reserve under current chair Ben Bernanke in a Bloomberg interview. (April 26)
9. All those auction-rate securities holders who continue to fight the fight and share their stories while pursuing the return of THEIR cash from these fraudulently marketed and distributed investments. (April 21)
10. Gretchen Morgenson of The New York Times who pursues and promotes our Sense on Cents virtues of truth, transparency, and integrity in her writing.
11. Matt Taibbi of Rolling Stone for his hard hitting exposes on fraud and assorted other bad practices on Wall Street.
12. Marcia Fritz, head of the California Foundation for Fiscal Responsibility, who highlighted that if California would only fix its pension system it would not have to fire its public school teachers. (May 19)
13. The Navy Seals who brought Osama bin Laden to justice. These individuals may not seem to belong on a blog about the economy and markets, but come on….would anybody deny them this honor and every other honor we might bestow upon them.
14. William Cohan of Bloomberg who regularly peels back the curtain to expose what is really going on within Wall Street.
15. Laurence Meyer, senior managing director and co-founder of Macroeconomic Advisors, who highlighted how dysfunctional our education and political systems are on a Bloomberg interview. (June 27)
16. Amar Bhide, graduate professor at Tufts University, who openly questioned the nature of Wall Street as a criminal enterprise. (June 21)
17. Joe Grano, former senior executive at Paine Webber, who slammed Wall Street and Washington in a Bloomberg interview. (June 10)
18. Jim Garvin, who spoke for so many Americans when he produced a video of “I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take it anymore” which went viral.
19. Carson Block of Muddy Waters who works to expose shoddy business practices, if not outright fraud, in Chinese companies.
20. Sal Arnuk of Themis Trading. The partner of a Sense on Cents all-time favorite Joe Saluzzi. Sal is also most deserving of this recognition for embracing and promoting our Sense on Cents virtues of truth, transparency, and integrity.
21. Joe Sciddurlo, former investigator at FINRA who questioned how carefully FINRA examined the books and records of Wall Street firms, specifically Oppenheimer in regard to its auction-rate securities. Sciddurlo was shown the door at FINRA. He is shown the door into our Hall of Fame here at Sense on Cents. (July 5)
22. Darcy Flynn, the SEC attorney who blew the whistle on what I define as the “Wall Street-Washington incest” within the SEC. (August 17)
23. Mary Meeker of Kleiner Perkins who laid out in detail the enormity of our debt and exposures within our federal entitlement programs.
24. Ray Dalio of Bridgewater Associates
25. Emily Lambert of Forbes. Emily is one of the few individuals within our general financial media who has been willing to address and expose the myriad of issues within Wall Street’s SRO FINRA.
26. Mike Mayo, Wall Street banking analyst, who tilts against windmills in highlighting “why Wall Street can’t handle the truth”. (November 6)
27. Jalen Rose whom I highlighted just yesterday for his efforts within his charter school the Jalen Rose Leadership Academy in Detroit.
Now on the opposite side of the ledger, let us anoint the following individuals with a specail place within our Sense on Cents Hall of Shame for, in my opinion, NOT embracing and promoting our prized virtues of truth, transparency, and integrity. Drum roll please…..
2011 Sense on Cents Hall of Shame Inductees
1. Those firms which have still yet to refund the cash of ARS holders, including Blackrock, Pimco, Oppenheimer, and Schwab.
2. David Sokol, former senior executive at Berkshire Hathaway. Does anybody doubt he engaged in insider trading in his purchase of stock in Lubrizol prior to recommending that Berkshire Hathaway purchase the company? Come on. Is this how the game works? Where is the accountability here? How quickly the regulators and media sweep these situations under the rug.
3. Warren Buffet of Berkshire Hathaway for the manner in which he handled the above referenced situation AND for becoming a political shill for the Obama administration.
4. Wall Street firms and individuals within these firms involved in the fraudulent robo-signing of mortgage documents. I believe these actions are further evidence that the industry violated the Racketeering Act.
5. Individuals and entities involved in propagating the student loan bubble. My April 26th commentary, Are Student Loans an Impending Bubble? Is Higher Education a Scam? remains one of my most widely read posts.
6. John Boehner, (R-OH)
7. Jeff Sessions, (R-AL)
8. Jon Kyl (R-AZ)….all of these supposedly respected Congressmen were implicated by the Government Accountability Project for blocking the passage of The Whistleblower Protection Act.
9. Michael Grimm, (R-NY), who was inducted into the Clown Wing of our Hall of Shame for his efforts to block the aforementioned Whistleblower Protection Act.
10. Donald Kohn, former vice-chairman of the Federal Reserve for what I deemed a very empty apology to all those impacted by the fact that financial regulators were asleep while the foundation of our economic crisis was laid.
11. Raj Rajaratnam, the poster boy for insider trading.
12. Raymond James, which had the balls to assert that it had “meritorious defenses” in its ARS dealings. (May 11)
13. Janus Funds, which pursued and won a case giving it cover from false statements embedded in the prospectuses utilized for the distribution of its own mutual funds. What a joke. (June 16)
14. The justices involved in siding with Janus in the case referenced above.
15. Rupert Murdoch and all those involved in the phone hacking scandal. Do you really fully believe the testimony provided by Rupert and his son in this case? I mean, really?
16. Frances Price, the managing director at Merrill Lynch who oversaw the distribution of ARS at that firm. If you want to review the essence of the vice involved in stifling truth, transparency, and integrity on Wall Street, please read and review ARS Update: Discovery in Merrill/Maui Case is Explosive!! (August 2)
17. Political phonies everywhere including: Rod Blagojevich and all those cronies who are involved in and promote Chicago-style thug politics. Donald Trump and the like who self-promote. This list could be endless.
18-25. Jon Corzine and all those involved in the misappropriation of customer funds at MF Global. Talk about a no-brainer!!
There you have it.
How about a resounding round of applause and derision for all those receiving their appropriate distinction today. Does anybody else deserve recognition? Please be mindful that our halls already had approximately 100 honorees well entrenched.
Certainly 2012 will bring more stories and more individuals deserving of recognition. Sense on Cents will be monitoring closely.
What do you think? Did I award anybody inappropriately? Questions, comments, and constructive criticism are always encouraged and appreciated here.
Happy New Year!!
Do your friends, family, and colleagues a favor and get them to do the same. Thanks!!
I have no affiliation or business interest with any entity referenced in this commentary. The opinions expressed are my own. I am a proponent of real transparency within our markets, our economy, and our political realm so that meaningful investor confidence and investor protection can be achieved.