Marketplace Scratch Pad

Here come the pitchforks

Scott Jagow Oct 15, 2009

The level of public outrage over Wall Street’s shenanigans has not abated. In fact today, Gawker announced the Goldman Sachs Project, asking people to report any excessive spending by Goldman employees.

From Gawker:

Are you Facebook friends with a Goldmanite who just posted photos of his lavish bachelor party? Post them to our fancy new tag page, #GoldmanProject, or e-mail them to us. Are you a realtor who just sold a $4 million duplex a Goldman banker? Is your ex-boyfriend Goldman banker planning a year-end trip to Cabo to blow his bonus wad? Shoot us an e-mail…

If this sounds like a creepy exercise in crowd-sourced surveillance to you, understand that we’re not looking interested in digging up private details about private citizens. We just want to catalog how are tax dollars have been spent, and see where $23 billion goes. If Goldman’s employees earned those bonuses, they should spend them with pride. Own it.

Actually it does sound a bit creepy, but more to the point, what does it accomplish? The rage is understandable, but shouldn’t it be directed toward the people who made this possible? I haven’t heard of anyone rounding up Internet search parties to demand that Congress break up these companies or fix TBTF.

One commenter put it like this:

Targeting the kids at Goldman for bottle service is the exact … equivalent of picking a random orgy participant in ancient Rome and calling him responsible for the Nero fire.

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