Ken Langone's Rallying Cry: Charity, America, Freedom

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Ken Langone just gave a speech at this year's Ira Sohn conference on why the hedge fund industry should be writing checks to charitable causes. Why? KEN LANGONE TELL YOU WHY!

"I don't know how many people here work at hedge funds, but I want to say something. The city of New York would be worse off without the hedge fund industry. I want to tell you something. We don't do a good enough job bragging. The Robin Hood Foundation. Steve Cohen, all he's done. Yet we let ourselves be defined by people who resent us because of our success...Spitzer thinks I'm a bad guy, I'm not a bad guy. What's the worst thing that he can say about me? That I'm an overpayer? [aside] I don’t like the guy and every time I get a chance to take a shot at him I do it...so let me tell you why you should give money to charity. When a society creates a gap between the haves and the have-nots so wide you're setting yourself up for social unrest. Think about what's going on in the so-called Arab Spring. It's not democracy versus dictatorship. It's about people wanting a better life. That's why they're in the streets...[screaming] And I'm giving money to America...a place that let a kid who's father was a plumber and mom worked in a cafeteria get an education. And I'm not sorry, I worked my ass off. The first thing I do every morning is put on an American flag pin on my lapel and I say 'thank you grandma and grandpa for coming here.' I never felt rich until I started writing big checks. For your own selfish reasons, write a check. Confident people accomplish more. If you want to make a difference, then think about what good you can do with what you have."

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Taking Chairman Title Away From Jamie Dimon Is The Craziest God Damn Thing Ken Langone's Heard Today

As you may have heard, recently some JP Morgan shareholders have been making a lot of noise about their desire to strip Jamie Dimon of his gig as JP Morgan Chairman. Their argument centers largely on last summer's incident in which one of the bank's employees lost $6+ billion on a trade. So far the board has rallied behind JD, but we hadn't yet heard from veterans of the business community. What, for instance, is Ken Langone's reaction to the idea that Jamie can't hold down two jobs at the same time? Whattayanuts? It's horse shit, is what! "Nuts!" he told Bloomberg TV the afternoon. "It's nuts!" 1. Jamie Dimon is the best CEO in America, nay, the universe 2. JPMorgan is so good is can afford things like the Whale. 3. Ken loves Jamie, as a human. 4 This "whole nonsense about governance is a lot of horse feathers" to Big Langs and 5. Unrelated but important: Ken Langone would like to remind you that he once vanquished Eliot Spitzer.