In the freezing rain a few yards away from Bank of America’s New York headquarters on 42nd Street, the man who made America see Goldman Sachs as a “vampire squid” was describing his research on a forthcoming article. “I called up my source and told him that I wanted to highlight all the really bad things Bank of America has done, and he said, ‘What, do you have 1,000 pages?'” Matt Taibbi was speaking to a group of Occupy Wall Street protesters about BoA’s central role causing the still-reverberating mortgage crisis, and explained the bank’s crimes thusly: “Mortgage backed securities are like banks selling oregano as weed. And that’s exactly what Bank of America was doing.” [Gothamist, Related: “Taibbi rushed in unannounced and, by way of congratulations, slammed a pie in his face. The pie was made with fresh vanilla cream, hand-puréed strawberry, and five ounces of horse semen“]
It wasn’t too long ago that when faced with a nonconfrontational line of questioning, but one he nevertheless did not appreciate as it dared to do anything but revere him for the hero he is, that Matt Taibbi’s go-to move was to throw a scalding hot cup of coffee in the face of his offender. When he had more time to plan his attack, it was extracting semen from horse, storing it in his refrigerator for weeks, baking it into a pie and then smashing it in the face of some nameless asshole. Does he currently have a vat of jizz sitting in his kitchen, ready and waiting for anyone who might offer an unfavorable review of his upcoming book, Griftopia, out November 2? Allegedly, no. In fact, Taibbi says over the course of his interview with the Observer to promote the new tome, he’s pretty much done with that and all the other stuff that’s come to made him tick over the last 40 years. Here is a list of things Taibbi claims to be giving up for at least the short-term (though don’t hold him to it): Read more »
When Lloyd Blankfein agreed to attend Obama’s speech this morning, only because he absolutely had to and not because he just has buckets of free time to mosey up to Astor Place, he knew there’d be some people there he didn’t want to see. Bob Diamond. Shmuck reporters. Obama’s favorite banker who can do no wrong (who actually turned out to be a no show, which rankled LB even more that his presence would have, because Fabio can do whatever he wants and nobody gives him shit for it).
Lloyd did not anticipate coming face to face with the guy who supported Matt Taibbi’s little attempts at fiction writing, because really, who the fuck invited the publisher of Rolling Stone? And yet, there he was. Jann Wenner. The guy who gave Taibbi-cat the green light to sit at his typewriter trying to come up with theories for how Goldman Sachs has been able to take over the world, pausing only to periodically make sure the Thermos of horse semen in the fridge hadn’t congealed.
In truth, when Blankfein first spied the guy across the room, he was stunned. Not because it was Taibbi’s boss but because, as he whispered to Gary Cohn, “Damn, Kurt Russel has put on weight.” After the GS president corrected him and yanked his arm back anticipating what was about to happen (reader poll: would it really have been that big a deal for LB to do a crotch grab in Wenner’s direction?), it was decided that Blanks would walk over and say hey. Read more »
When all is said and done, there are two types of men in this world. In one camp you have the kind who, when faced with criticism, will ably defend themselves, either through words or fists, or simply brush it off. In the other, you have the impotent little bitches. These are the ones who will immediately lose their cool and scream and shriek at you, their voices most likely cracking. Then they’ll throw coffee in your face, and chase you down the street. I’m not saying that Matt Taibbi is an impotent little bitch, but I am saying that this is apparently his chosen course of (re)action. If you want to come to the conclusion he’s an impotent little bitch, that’s your choice. From the latest Vanity Fair:
When I first contacted Taibbi for this story, he replied unenthusiastically. “Ugh. No way I can talk you out of this, huh?” he e-mailed. “In the end nobody really wants to read about a couple of overgrown suburban teenagers writing about anal sex and the clap and then calling themselves revolutionaries when some third-world dictator gets bored of letting them stay published.”
He then fell out of touch, re-emerged a month later, and agreed to meet me for lunch at a Manhattan restaurant. I arrived late, and he was visibly annoyed. There was no boyish smile. “I just don’t see why you’re doing this story,” he said. When I told him that Ames was now living in New York he grew more agitated. I mentioned some of the Exile pieces of his I planned to write about, and he said, “That was covered in the book.” I told him yes, that was true, but the book had been published in 2000, and, frankly, I didn’t think it was very good.
“The book wasn’t good?” he said.
“No, I didn’t think so,” I said.
“My book?” he said.
“Yes, the Exile book. I thought it was redundant and discursive and you guys left out a lot of the good stuff you did,” I said.
At this, Taibbi’s mouth turned down and his eyes narrowed.
“Fuck you,” he snarled, and then picked up his mug from the table, threw his coffee at me, and stormed out.
The restaurant was packed with customers, and they all turned to watch as I sat there, stunned, coffee dripping from my face. The waiter arrived with the milkshake Taibbi had ordered. After wiping myself off a bit, I went outside, where Taibbi was putting on his coat, and asked him to calm down and come back into the restaurant. He walked up to me, glaring, beside himself with rage.
“Fuck you!” he yelled. “Did you bring me here to insult me? Who are you? What have you ever written? Fuck you!”
I tried to talk to him, but gave up when he walked away. I went back inside, paid the bill, left, and began walking up Sixth Avenue. Halfway up the block, I turned around, and Taibbi was behind me.
“Are you following me?,” I asked. He walked toward me, raising his arms as though preparing to throttle me or take a swing.
“I still haven’t decided what I’m going to do with you!” he said.
“Are you kidding?,” I asked.
Taibbi-Cat wasn’t. But maybe this is an unfair anecdote to use in order to shed a little light on the boy who sits at his typewriter trying to come up with theories for how Goldman Sachs has been able to take over the world, then exclaims, “I’ve got it!” and furiously taps away that it all comes back to the chip Lloyd Blankfein had installed in his sack one night in the basement of the Federal Reserve. Here’s another one, involving MT storing horse semen in his fridge, and then throwing it in someone’s face.