A “vanilla characterization”: Goldman Sachs, Deutsche Bank, and Hillary Clinton

Goldman Sachs, Deutsche Bank, Hillary Clinton. Your cash is good at the bar.

Emails recently released via wikileaks restore little hope about the Clinton team behind scenes. The excerpts below, verbatim and in-house, pertain to that vexed topic of Clinton’s paid speeches for Wall Street.

They’re pretty clear. Little editorializing required. As Halloween approaches, some naked self-exposure of cynical willingness to fool the public is highlighted in orange:

On Fri, Nov 20, 2015 at 3:03 PM, Dan Schwerin <dschwerin@hillaryclinton.com> wrote: > Following up on the conversation this morning about needing more arrows in > our quiver on Wall Street, I wanted to float one idea. In October 2014, > HRC did a paid speech in NYC for Deutsche Bank. I wrote her a long riff > about economic fairness and how the financial industry has lost its way, > precisely for the purpose of having something we could show people if ever > asked what she was saying behind closed doors for two years to all those > fat cats. It’s definitely not as tough or pointed as we would write it > now, but it’s much more than most people would assume she was saying in > paid speeches. (Full transcript is attached and key riff is pasted below.) > Perhaps at some point there will be value in sharing this with a reporter > and getting a story written. Upside would be that when people say she’s too > close to Wall Street and has taken too much money from bankers, we can > point to evidence that she wasn’t afraid to speak truth to power. Downside > would be that we could then be pushed to release transcripts from all her > paid speeches, which would be less helpful (although probably not > disastrous). In the end, I’m not sure this is worth doing, but wanted to > flag it so you know it’s out there.

The suggestion did not meet with unmitigated moral contempt or a generous wrath. On the following Monday, Clinton spokesman Brian Fallon passed it along:

Reviving this thread because AP is working on a story similar to Pat Healy’s article in Sunday’s NYT about HRC’s “Wall Street image problem.” The reporter, Lisa Lerer, plans specifically to note that her paid speeches to banks were closed-press affairs, and transcripts are not available. She is asking if we wish to characterize her remarks in any way. I think we could come up with a vanilla characterization that challenges the idea that she sucked up to these folks in her appearances, but then use AP’s raising of this to our advantage to pitch someone to do an exclusive by providing at least the key excerpts from this Deutsche Bank speech. In doing so, we could have the reporting be sourced to a “transcript obtained by [news outlet]” so it is not confirmed as us selectively providing one transcript while refusing to share others.

There were demurrals. As Mandy Grunwald responded the same day,

I worry about going down this road. First, the remarks below make it sound like HRC DOESNT think the game is rigged — only that she recognizes that the public thinks so. They are angry. She isn’t. Second, once you start looking at speeches, you run smack into Maggie Haberman’s report for Politico on HRC’s Goldman Sachs speech, in which HRC isn’t quoted directly, but described as saying people shouldn’t be vilifying Wall Street.

In other words, the suggested riff might not obfuscate enough to be helpful. As Grunwald went on,

Maybe you think the Deutsche Bank speech takes the sting out of the Goldman report — but I am concerned that the passage below will exacerbate not improve the situation.

For nostalgic reasons, I like seeing the name Deutsche Bank come up. Remember the great moment in Casablanca when Rick (Humphrey Bogart) entertains an official from Deutsche Bank?

Clip on Youtube here

Playing it again

Playing it again

The dialogue names names:

53. I’m sorry sir, this is a private room.


54. Of all the nerve! Who do you think…? I know there’s gambling in there ! There’s no secret . You dare not keep me out of here! You


55. Yes? What’s the trouble? ABDUL This gentleman — GERMAN RICK Your cash is good at the bar. GERMAN What ! Do you know who I am? Yes? What’s the trouble? This gentleman ….


56. I’ve been in every gambling room between Honolulu and Berlin and if you think I’m going to be kept out of a saloon like this, you’re very much mistaken.


57. Hello Ugarte. Uh, excuse me, please. Hello, Rick.


58. What! Do you know who I am? Your cash is good at the bar


59. I do . You’re lucky the bar is open to you.


60. This is outrageous. I shall report it to the Angriff!


61. Huh. You know, Rick, watching you just now with the Deutsche Bank, one would think you’d been doing this all your life.


62. Well, what makes you think I haven’t.

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