Skip to comments.Trump Picks Another Goldman Sachs Executive
Posted on 12/12/2016 11:45:11 AM PST by VitacoreVision
A global power structure that is responsible for the economic decisions that have robbed our working class, stripped our country of its wealth and put that money into the pockets of a handful of large corporations and political entities, was the wording of a Trump TV commercial late in the presidential campaign, complete with the face of the chief executive of Goldman Sachs, Lloyd Blankfein, on the screen.
Yet President-elect Donald Trump has named Blankfeins friend and associate, the chief operating officer of Goldman Sachs, Gary Cohn, to lead the National Economic Council (NEC), the third Goldman executive tapped for either a staff or Cabinet post. It is somewhat reminiscent of comments made by Jimmy Carters campaign manager, Hamilton Jordan, made after Carter had won his supposedly anti-establishment campaign for president in 1976. Jordan told reporters, ''If, after the inauguration, you find a Cy Vance as secretary of state and Zbigniew Brzezinski as head of national security, then I would say we failed. And I'd quit.''
After the inauguration, Vance was secretary of state, and Brzezinski was national security advisor, but Jordan did not quit.
During his successful run for president, Trump often railed against the influence of Wall Street investment firms generally, and Goldman Sachs in particular. He said his chief rival for the Republican nomination, Senator Ted Cruz of Texas, was in bed with Goldman, once tweeting of Cruz, Goldman Sachs owns him, he will do anything they demand.
After winning the Republican nomination, Trump turned his attention to Democrat nominee Hillary Clintons strong associations with Wall Street, especially Goldman Sachs, although Trump had already tied Clinton to Goldman even before he won the nomination. At one Republican primary debate, Trump said, I know the guys at Goldman Sachs. They have total, total control (over Cruz), just like they have total control over Hillary Clinton.
Cohn has been at Goldman for 25 years. The NEC, which Cohn will lead, was a post established by President Bill Clinton. Clintons choice to lead the NEC was Robert Rubin, then co-chairman of Goldman Sachs. The NEC is supposed to coordinate policy-making for domestic and international issues, to coordinate economic policy advice for the president, to ensure that policy decisions and programs are consistent with the presidents economic goals, and to monitor implementation of the presidents economic policy agenda.
Trump previously named Steven Mnuchin, a partner at Goldman as secretary of the treasury. Steve Bannon, who ran the very pro-Trump Internet news service Breitbart News, will be Trumps senior advisor in the White House. Bannon previously worked at Goldman Sachs, in acquisitions and mergers.
Perhaps a key to understanding the appointment is that Cohn is a friend with Jared Kushner, Trumps son-in-law, who is married to Trumps daughter, Ivanka. CNN reported previously that Trump highly values Kushners advice, so much so that Kushner is expected to move to Washington, D.C., and take a key advisory role inside the White House.
It is believed that the principal reason Trump met with former Vice President Al Gore at Trump Tower was due to the urging of Ivanka. Ivanka shares Gores belief that human industrial activity is causing global warming. But soon after the meeting with Gore, Trump named Oklahomas attorney general, Scott Pruitt, to head up the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Pruitt is a close political ally of Oklahomas Senator Jim Inhofe, perhaps the Senates most vocal critic of what he calls the hoax of global climate change.
Cohn is a registered Democrat, who has donated to both Democrats and Republicans, including Hillary Clintons Senate campaigns. But he only gave to Republicans in the 2016 campaign year.
He grew up in the Cleveland suburbs, the son of a real estate developer and electrical contractor. After attending a private school, he went to American University. After graduation, Cohn worked for U.S. Steel in Ohio, then took a position with the New York Mercantile Exchange in 1983, eventually becoming a silver trader. In 1990, he went to work at Goldman Sachs, becoming a partner in 1994. By 2006, Cohn was co-president and co-chief operating officer of the investment firm. He was seen as the heir apparent as CEO of Goldman when his friend, Lloyd Blankfein, retired from that position..
Cohns views on some issues seem to be different than Trumps. Cohn is much more of an internationalist than Trump, whose public statements have classified him as more of a nationalist, especially in economic policy. Speaking at a conference in Florida a few days after the election, Cohn said the countrys economic problems were tied to the worlds economic difficulties, saying the biggest problems facing the country was the global growth issue.
Cohn insisted that the United States economic woes cannot be solved just by domestic economic policies. Were trying to solve it with domestic policy. Its not going to work.
Trump was very vocal during the campaign in speaking against companies, such as Carrier, that move their operations (and jobs) out of the country. But Cohn has taken a contrary view. We have a globalized work force, so when I need to go out and hire the incremental worker, I go out and look around the world and see where that incremental worker is available.
In recent years, Cohn has jetted to various global economic summits, including the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.
Of course, Cohn agrees with Trump on the need to reduce regulations that were imposed on banks (such as Goldman Sachs) following the 2008 financial crisis.
Standard & Poors Global Market Intelligence reported that, as of November 14, Cohn owned 872,712 shares of Goldman Sachs, making his stock worth more than $200 million. Since the election, Trumps promises to push for lighter financial regulations have caused the stock of financial institutions such as Goldman to increase dramatically. Goldmans stock price is up 34 percent.
Cohns friend Blankfein, Goldmans CEO, is a strong Democrat who publicly backed Clinton in the presidential race, but recently told the Wall Street Journal that Trump is a very smart guy. He added that Trump may turn out to be a much better president than anyone else might have been in that place.
Of course, whether Trump turns out to be a much better president than expected in the eyes of the CEO of Goldman Sachs, may or may not be something those who strongly supported Trump in his presidential bid will find comforting. But then again, Trump has been wildly unpredictable since the day he descended the elevator at Trump Tower last year to announce his unconventional bid for the White House.
They work for him.
He does not work for them.
Goldman Sachs was consulted by Barry Soetoro 6 weeks before he took office and asked who they would recommend for cabinet positions.
He implemented their list nearly 100%
I never attacked Ted Cruz over Goldman Sachs unlike Roger Stone and others on here.
Wonderful pick. The establishment is furious they aren’t political hacks that they can control with bribes paid to their wives and siblings. This is the greatest thing I have seen in my life!!
And? There are good and bad folks in any institution/corporation/organization.
Do you have reason to believe that he is not picking quality folks who will do the job and follow his agenda or are you another concern troll trying to stir up crap like the "Russia subverted our electoral process" low-lifes?
Do something useful to show you're not 100% troll material:
These picks suck. If we can’t banish G&S from the government sphere now, it will never be done. They will continue to hold the reins after Trump moves on.
Still nursing that Cruzite butt hurt I see. You lost, get over it.
Repeating this like a mantra doesn’t change the fact that Trump is rewarding GS scoundrels (which he blasted during his campaign) with highest posts.
This is NOT good.
Cue the simplistic reasoning and handwaving that there are no good financial experts outside GS...
It is no consolation that Hilliary would have equally meant a GS financial regime.
And they signed contracts to keep from becoming lobbyists and other self-interests. Wake me when he picks Neil Bush to head finances.
I am with you. In the primary, I said just because someone is from Goldman or has in the past does not automatically taint them. There is good and bad there. Lots of globalists but plenty of just plain smart people doing their thing. I don’t know these people but I I don’t see a reason to bash trump about it unless they start pushing NWO crap.
I voted for him. Implicit in that is my confidence in his ability to hire the right people.
So far, so good.
We have a globalized work force, so when I need to go out and hire the incremental worker, I go out and look around the world and see where that incremental worker is available....
That’s just great.
Now the FR capitalists and free trade at any cost folk will come crawling out.
WHAT HE MEANS is the cheapest, Sh.ttiest workers he can find that are breathing.
Like the Indian graphics dept set up for Lazard when I worked in the NYC Graphics dept for them.
We had to correct ALMOST EVERY document they worked on and after three years it closed down.
MANY others did not. Just took the sub par work and pocketed the coin.
This is a great pick.
Because I wanted someone worth $200 million dollars and sounds like a YUGE one world govt guy to be picked for a position /s
So do we like or hate Goldman Sachs at FR these days? It is so hard to keep up with the changing winds sometimes.
We like smart people. The COO of GS sounds pretty darn smart.
Pray tell us what he should do. We’re all ears.
HOORAY Mr. Donald J. Trump
I get it! Good: Mnuchin, Cohn, and Bannon. Bad: Heidi Cruz.
In time you may be proven right. If so, I will have been too patient.
Lets see how it works out.
Trump has his goals. I think he’ll achieve them.
Surely you must realize that a good capable CEO and a terrible incompetent CEO will achieve different things with the same people.
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