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Posts Tagged ‘truth’

Charles Lewis: 935 Lies/The Future of Truth and the Decline of America’s Moral Integrity

Posted by Larry Doyle on June 23rd, 2014 8:42 AM |

One of the best lines I ever read in The Wall Street Journal was attributed to then CEO of First Boston, Allen Wheat. When asked about a senior executive who had recently departed the firm, Wheat rhetorically inquired and responded, “How do you know when he is lying? His lips move.”

Regrettably, couldn’t we say the same about so many of our so called political and business leaders? I think there is little doubt.

Life in and around Washington, Wall Street, and elsewhere in America now seems much more to revolve around rationalization than integrity. With the media often complicit in allowing the lying to go fully unchecked, our society suffers. Against this backdrop, I am very excited to pick up a copy of a book scheduled to be released tomorrow entitled 935 Lies: The Future of Truth and the Decline of America’s Moral Integrity written by a new Sense on Cents favorite, but longstanding journalistic giant, Charles Lewis.

What are some of the Lies for The Ages, as designated by Lewis?: (more…)

Charles Lewis: If Truth Be Told

Posted by Larry Doyle on June 19th, 2014 9:50 AM |

The truth.

The health of our democracy demands that we pursue and embrace the truth wherever it may take us and whatever we may learn. Regrettably as a nation the truth often largely escapes us due to forces wielded by those who might suffer in the process. We see evidence of this reality almost on a daily basis.

Investigative journalism is critically important to unearthing the truth yet this most noble undertaking remains under serious pressure. Fortunately we have individuals like Charles Lewis, one of the most highly distinguished investigative journalists in our nation’s history, to fight back against the tide.

Lewis provides fabulous context on this topic in a recently penned 3-part series entitled If Truth Be Told. In light of all that is going on in our nation, this series qualifies as an absolute must read and an instant Sense on Cents classic. As a teaser, I welcome providing a few snippets of Lewis’ work. Let’s navigate.  (more…)

New York Times’ Thomas Friedman: “We Have to Demand the Truth”

Posted by Larry Doyle on February 22nd, 2010 6:05 AM |

Without the truth, we are mere slaves to a corrupt system and will never control or master our destiny.

I don’t write this premise whimsically nor do I accept it as a given. The fact is, our forefathers are rolling over in their graves right now given the fatuous culture our society has not only tolerated but promoted. I continually call for the pursuit of truth, transparency and integrity while navigating the economic landscape for the very reason that without these virtues we are doomed as a nation.

High five to AL for pointing out that none other than Thomas L. Friedman of The New York Times drills this very point in writing, The Fat Lady Has Sung. Whether you agree with Friedman’s politics is immaterial.   (more…)

Did Uncle Sam Intentionally Mislead the American Public?

Posted by Larry Doyle on October 5th, 2009 12:40 PM |

“You can’t handle the truth!!”

While the above line by Jack Nicholson in A Few Good Men may have made for good theatre, it makes for lousy public policy. Regrettably, Uncle Sam has utilized that approach in its initial disbursement of funds via the TARP (Troubled Asset Recovery Program).  That opinion is not strictly mine (although I do agree with it), but rather that of Neil Barofsky, the inspector general charged with overseeing the bank bailouts.

The New York Times sheds light on Barofsky’s feelings this morning in writing, Inspector’s Report on Bailouts Says Treasury Misled Public:

The inspector general who oversees the government’s bailout of the banking system is criticizing the Treasury Department for some misleading public statements last fall and raising the possibility that it had unfairly disbursed money to the biggest banks.

A Treasury official made incorrect statements about the health of the nation’s biggest banks even as the government was doling out billions of dollars in aid, according to a report on the Troubled Asset Relief Program to be released on Monday by the special inspector general, Neil M. Barofsky.

There is NO doubt that Uncle Sam, in the persons of Hank Paulson, Ben Bernanke, Tim Geithner, Larry Summers et al, has little confidence that the American public can handle the truth about the overall health of our banking industry.

That said, the lack of transparency and integrity as highlighted by Mr. Barofsky does not come without a cost. What is that cost? Lessened confidence in our regulators and our markets going forward.

I addressed these very topics of financial regulatory transparency and integrity on my radio show last evening. In the process of interviewing former SEC attorney Genevievette Walker-Lightfoot, I made the following comment in regard to the statement put forth a month ago by SEC Inspector General David Kotz dealing with the SEC’s failures on the Madoff investigation. I said:

If that is the kind of face saving self-serving approach, people are going to call foul on it. The real cost is, and I think we are bearing this cost right now whether with the SEC or with FINRA, if you’re not going to be honest with us how can we fully trust that you’ll be honest on a going forward basis?

Now I’ll grant you I guess we don’t have much choice. What are we going to scrap the entire SEC or scrap the entire FINRA and start from scratch? Some people may say that’s what we want to do, but that’s obviously not going to happen.

It does get to the point where there’s got to be total transparency. There’s got to be total integrity. There’s got to be total accountability and if people haven’t done the job or are incapable of doing the job then you know what, for the long haul – and I’m not talking about the next six months but rather the next ten, fifteen, twenty years – people got to go and other people got to come!!

Genevievette Walker-Lightfoot responded:

“I agree. That’s true.”

How about you, what do you think? Can you handle the truth? Wouldn’t you like to be given the opportunity?

LD

Note: the views expressed by Genevievette Walker-Lightfoot during last night’s show are her own personal views and do not in any way reflect her position as an employee of the Federal Reserve Board.






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