Goldman Sachs is a banking corporation whose business is investment banking and investment management, along with many other financial services.
Role in the Financial Crisis of 2008
Part of the business model of Goldman Sachs, along with countless other investment banks, has been to trade debt obligations for profit. As part of this strategy, Goldman Sachs purchsed consolidated mortgage loan obligations from lenders and sold the repackaged obligations to other banks and financial institutions at a profit. As part of the repackaging, low expectations of loan repayment were hidden, encouraging Goldman Sachs' clients to purchase the loan obligations without fully understanding how unlikely it was that mortgage holders would actually pay those loans back. As more and more mortgage holders defaulted, the companies Goldman Sachs had sold loan obligations to began to lose money, and as these companies were clients of Goldman Sachs, so did Goldman Sachs.
Controversy and Antisemitism
There is no doubt that actions taken by Goldman Sachs employees had a part in causing the financial crisis of the late 2000s. Furthermore, actions taken by former Goldman Sachs employees, like Henry Paulson, likely worsened the recession.
Nevertheless, the media has given an inordinate amount of attention to Goldman Sachs, with strong accusations of economic tampering, criticism of their business practices, and outrage over bonuses paid to executives. While other companies, which were arguably at least as responsible for the recession as Goldman Sachs (AIG is a great example), have received some media scrutiny, no company has been as violently attacked as Goldman Sachs. This has led some to accuse those in the media of antisemitism against the company, due to its name.
- "Give me control of a nation's money and I care not who makes the laws." -- Mayer Amschel Rothschild of the Rothschild family
- "The Rothschilds are the wonders of modern banking ... we see the descendants of Judah, after a persecution of two thousand years, peering above kings, rising higher than emperors, and holding a whole continent in the hollow of their hands. The Rothschilds govern a Christian world. Not a cabinet moves without their advice. They stretch their hand, with equal ease, from Petersburgh to Vienna, from Vienna to Paris, from Paris to London, from London to Washington. Baron Rothschild, the head of the house, is the true king of Judah, the prince of the captivity, the Messiah so long looked for by this extraordinary people. He holds the keys of peace or war, blessing or cursing. ... They are the brokers and counselors of the kings of Europe and of the republican chiefs of America. What more can they desire?"
- "This multinational banking family is a byword for wealth, power – and discretion... The Rothschild name has become synonymous with money and power to a degree that perhaps no other family has ever matched."
- "Gold is the money of kings, silver is the money of gentlemen, barter is the money of peasants and debt is the money of slaves." -- Traditional