Roger Smith, CEO and Scott Smith, President of American Income Life and National Income Life Insurance Companies could have told you years ago, exactly what Greg Smith, ex Goldman Sachs Executive, told us a few days ago.
"Wall Street is greedy. Goldman Sachs puts profits ahead of clients. The system is rigged to benefit wealth creation for the very privileged. The Golden Rule is -- those who have the Gold Make the Rules."
Perhaps the public shaming of Goldman Sachs will force cultural changes within their organization and others on Wall Street, maybe not. The toxic and destructive environment portrayed by Greg Smith is really a much bigger story about a corrupted system of players, politicos, and public media mouthpieces.
Unfortunately, there are those who are intent on putting a gun to the head of the middle class -- their story is the same. We need to take away their license to destroy. It's time to change the Golden rule and enforce a system that provides oversight, accountability and transparency.
Let's start now. Here is an example.
JOBS -- Roger Smith states, "It is not the time to strip away the few rules that hold companies accountable while raising capital. The Jumpstart our Business Startups (JOBS) ACT should NOT be signed without significant investor protection language. Without some real oversight and safeguards, I fear that that investors and crowd funders just might get trampled under the weight of "billion dollar emerging growth companies" running to raise money. "
My understanding is, under the bill, investment banks that underwrite stock offerings could publish research reports before the IPOs, offering investor's information that would compete with the regulated disclosures required by the SEC.
Seriously, as investors who do you believe would protect your interest, Mary Schapiro at the SEC or the likes of Lloyd Blankenfein at Goldman Sachs ? I'm taking Greg Smith's advice and steering clear of Goldman Sachs. I don't hold out hope that public shaming will change the likes of GS or the many companies who put profits before people.
Now is the time to support companies that create a culture that honors the contract between Main Street and Wall Street. Now is the time, to support companies with years of practice; in serving the clients interest, accepting the moral responsibilities of stewardship, and putting long term interests ahead of transactional profits.
We all make choices. Now is the time to choose wisely, your future depends on it.