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Preposterous, Speculative Effluent: But If It Be True, Whither Next?

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Earlier today, some fairly distressing news came out of Goldman Sachs-- according to three different people "familiar with the matter," the bank "may" hire Richard "Jake" Siewert Jr. for "a role similar to the one held by Lucas van Praag." While we'd love to plug our ears and pretend this isn't happening, the reality is that it was clearly leaked from the inside and is happening indeed. Though it's possible Goldman would allow Lucas to hang around the office a bit longer, our beloved spokesman has got a lot more pride than that. If his unique flavor isn't appreciated, if telling reporters that their stories are “extraordinarily ill-informed," "nonsense," "stupid," indicative of a failure "to comprehend the subject matter," and/or reminiscent of "effluent" is all of a sudden not okay, if they want to take a more collaborative (read: limp-wristed) approach with the press, then let them. Van Praag's got better things to do with his time.

In fact, a short list of opportunities includes:

* Resident withering judge on a variety of elimination-based reality shows, including Dancing With The Stars, America's Next Top Model, and The Voice
* Bear and Birch spokesman
* Schoolmarm
* Offering his services to a firm that really needs and will appreciate them (he could do wonders for BofA's image; questions about Countrywide are "extraordinarily ill-informed" and as for people who are accidentally foreclosed on? "Fuck 'em if they can't take a joke")
* Putting the finishing touches on "If I Did It," in which he puts forth a hypothetical description of how *he* was the one to come up with the term "vampire squid"
* Dealbreaker columnist
* Replacing everyone on The View and renaming it My View
* Accepting the offer from the Times to co-byline stories with Gretchen Morgenson

Goldman Sachs Said to Consider Hiring Ex-Geithner Aide Siewert [Bloomberg]


Half A Dozen Former Goldman Partners Will Be Forced To Fight The Urge To Attend Greg Smith's Book Signing Next Week*

Something you may have picked up on is that next week, Grand Central Publishing will release Why I Left Goldman Sachs: A Wall Street Story, by former employee Greg Smith. Should you buy the book? That depends on you ask. Some people, like the ones who made Smith famous, say no. Others, like those who enjoy vivid descriptions of a naked Lloyd Blankfein and edge-of-your-seat ping pong matches, would probably say yes. One group of people who'd prefer you save your money? Goldman Sachs. As previously mentioned, the bank embarked on a Discredit Greg Smith tour last month which has involved equating him with a first or second or third-year analyst who thinks people care about all the crazy stuff he was privy to when in fact it wasn't crazy and no one does; leaking unflattering performance reviews that suggest he was "unrealistic" about his abilities and earnings potential; and generally painting a picture of someone who was a nobody at the firm ("My first reaction [to hearing about his Op-Ed] was, who is he," the firm's head of HR told Bloomberg TV this morning), who wrote his book out of spite for not receiving the bonus he thought he deserved, and whose claims re: The Firm should not be trusted. For the most part, a number of people-- from current to former employees to those familiar but not intimately familiar with Goldman-- have concurred with their assessment of young Greg. Of course, every now and then you have some individuals who speak out of turn and who should probably consider sleeping with one eye open. There are a lot of people who acknowledge these things internally, but no one is willing to say it publicly,” Smith, who was a vice president when he left Goldman Sachs, said in the “60 Minutes” interview. “And my view was the only way you force people to change the system is by saying it publicly.” Seven former Goldman Sachs partners and managing directors, positions that are more senior than vice president, said in March interviews that Smith shouldn’t be taken seriously because he was a junior employee and may have been disgruntled about his pay or career. All asked not to be identified because they didn’t want to risk ruining their relationship with the firm. Six of the seven said they agreed with Smith’s criticism of how the firm has treated clients under Chief Executive Officer Lloyd C. Blankfein, 58, and President Gary D. Cohn, 52, and that current members of the management committee would, too. Even so, they said they don’t expect the board of directors to take action or that anything will change because the bank has made money and outperformed most rivals. What? He shouldn't be trusted because of X, Y, Z but, having said that, he does make some excellent points? Do you hear yourself talking? This is what happens when you don't stick to the script! Goldman Sachs Op-Ed Wasn’t a ‘Betrayal,’ Smith Tells 60 Minutes [Bloomberg] *And will lucky if they're not eating out of feeding tubes..