Friday, May 4, 2012

Unknown unknowns

Yes, that type of discussion (unknown unknowns) did take place in about the same time frame as the company emerged from a deal with a whole bunch of debt on its back. The deal took place in another era, it seems in looking back. But, were lessons learned (see Financial Amnesia)? Just like with houses seen as ATMs, some of the thinking then thought that those who could were allowed to pull enormous amouns of money from out of a company (leaving behind, yes, debt -- some type of payout for the special folks and an onus (read larger than life) for the less fortunate).


The news of the recent filing brings to fore another set of chapters (pun intended). For instance, those in the town were you find the company, who had tried to work out supporting arrangements (tax relaxations, bonds, etc.), heard of the pending filing through reading the WSJ. It remains unclear how the fallout from all of this will affect those who have worked at the company or who have pensions or any number of other things. GS (do you have to guess?), or course, declined comment.


Early introduction
The debt cannot be wished away or swapped (one news source said that some swap deal had been done). Gosh, using that 'swap' word brings up the bedevilment that continues. Oh yes, remember. One, very large company, who had loads of promises on their books (oh yeah, we'll cover you if needed -- they said), were not to be seen when things hit the fan (yet, in their 'trading' heyday, there were bonuses paid up the wazoo). Do I have to say this aloud (sufficient are three letters, okay? -- the extent of their toxicity is still an unknown)? Ah, they were following the whims of the best-and-brightest.


So, we're just going to bring forward, for now, posts from the past that are pertinent (since the company involved was mentioned).
  • June 2, 2008 -- yes, oops are more prominent than not. For so long, and for so many, the pangs were just taken by those who had no control over the situations. Has it ever been any different? Near zero, folks, with sacrifices all around (the 0.1% are the ones who are good at sloughing off pain from their arses -- if you want one distinguishing feature of the type). 
  • October 26, 2008 -- leveraging as a game, essentially. How was filling the pockets of some through the debt of others seen as smart? Oh wait, that was the way? People need to wake up to this fact; interminable servitude is one result. 
  • November 12, 2008 -- notice that this was before the bottom. Actually, the problem was there from the get-go. Some of these deals did fill some pockets (to a very large extent) for awhile.  
  • March 24, 2009 -- yes, the extent of pain felt by others from the effect of your actions needs to be part of the near zero equation (describe an associated meme to get the truth processed, perhaps). 
  • January 15, 2012 -- Well, Mitt will bring us closer to seeing what goes on behind some of the doors. Yes, he made his money doing deals like this. Doesn't seem to have any conscience pangs? But, then, confession is of another faith (is it not?).  

Nothing anti-business ought to be construed (or mis-construed) from these postings. Rather, the notion is to make the realities more clear. That is, the Main Street influence that goes on after Wall Streeters (and their ilk) spend their bonuses on luxury items needs to be better understood. Somehow, these issues are not seen due to colored glasses (why else the popularity of those WStreet movies that glorified greed and arse'arity?).


And, have we not bound into debt our, and our's, progeny's future? We'll get back to that.


05/29/2012 -- Jamie's bank in the news, again.

05/28/2012 -- Can we tell if we're on a limb

05/14/2012 -- GS and Onex are out, according to this report. Something else of recent interest is Jamie's bank losing some money. Ostensibly, they're taking risks to get gains greater than cost of capital. Sheesh, guys, Ben is giving you almost free money. Why not just admit that it's the thrill of the gamble? 'bet' being using in business? And, no one seems to barf at that idea.

05/05/2012 -- The theme will continue. A note to add, now, is that something to discuss is how Ben's largess helps with the debt loading.

Modified: 05/29/2012

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