Posts Tagged: Matt Taibbi

A Conversation With Matt Taibbi and Molly Crabapple

On one side of The Divide—the gap in the justice system between the rich and the poor that provides the title for Matt Taibbi’s brilliant and enraging new book—financiers and other wealthy people commit egregious crimes, including laundering drug money, and rarely face jail time. Prosecutors worry about "collateral consequences" before filing charges.

The Divide: American Injustice in the Age of the Wealth Gap, by Matt Taibbi with illustrations by Molly Crabapple, will be published on Tuesday. You can order it now now now, wherever capitalism allows you to obtain books:

Spiegel & Grau / Random House

McNally Jackson

Amazon [...]


Matt "Mad Libs" Taibbi: It's Like [A Thing] with [Crazy Other Things]

By now, you will have tried to read Matt Taibbi's latest, which makes the case, which in my book was already made, that there should be criminal investigations at Goldman Sachs. I say "tried" because this is rough going. (And yes: Matt Taibbi, God bless!) And he's not wrong! Many of us have accustomed ourselves over the last few years to reading about regulatory whatnots and tranchey thingamabobs, and while it'll always be an uncomfortable second nature, at least writing about financial instruments follows some rules. But it's not the finance that's hard. For one, there's sentences like this one: "Each of the deals appears to represent a [...]


Oh Hay, What a Wonderful Success TARP Was!

You know what obscures facts sometimes? Opinion-free, neutral language. True! Here is the soothing language from yesterday's Times: "Nearly a year after the federal rescue of the nation's biggest banks, taxpayers have begun seeing profits from the hundreds of billions of dollars in aid that many critics thought might never be seen again…. These early returns are by no means a full accounting of the huge financial rescue undertaken by the federal government last year to stabilize teetering banks and other companies…. But the mere hint of bailout profits for the nearly year-old Troubled Asset Relief Program has been received as a welcome surprise." So, wait, what are they saying? [...]


Matt Taibbi Has A Bad Pottymouth

Tom Scocca: Am I the only one who sort of wishes that nice Matt Taibbi wouldn't use all those swear words? Choire Sicha: YES. Choire Sicha: I FEEL THE SAME. Choire Sicha: I was like, "You wrote a letter to the Wall Street Journal saying 'fellatio'? Ugh!" Tom Scocca: Right? The letter needed not to say "fellatio." Tom Scocca: (Why does iChat not recognize "fellatio" as a word? What is chat software FOR?)


The 'Rolling Stone' Michele Bachmann Profile Aftermath (and Where Matt Taibbi is Right)

"Because brother, I have been there, when some would-be 'reputable' journalist who's just been severely ass-whipped by a relative no-name freelancer on an enormous story fights back by going on television and, without any evidence at all, accusing the guy who beat him of cheating. That's happened to me so often, I've come to expect it. If there's a lower form of life on the planet earth than a 'reputable' journalist protecting his territory, I haven't seen it."

That description of the lowest form of life reporter Matt Taibbi has ever found on planet earth came exactly one year ago yesterday. It was directed at Lara Logan ("Lara [...]


The Catholic Church: Shut It Down?

"Somewhere underneath all of this there is a root story that has to do with celibacy. The celibate status of its priests is basically the Catholic church's last market advantage in the Christian religion racket, but human beings are not designed to be celibate and so problems naturally arise among the population of priests forced to live that terrible lifestyle. Just as it refuses to change its insane and criminal stance on birth control and condoms, the church refuses to change its horrifically cruel policy about priestly celibacy. That's because it quite correctly perceives that should it begin to dispense with the irrational precepts of its belief system, it would [...]


The Next Round of Taibbi Mania Begins Now

Are you ready for the next round of Taibbi? The Goldman Sachs vampire squid arguments stretched out for well over a month around his last piece, which is something like 9 years in Internet time. Now he has been interviewing doctors with horror stories. (They are horrific!) So this is how they're still doing it: Rolling Stone hits newsstands now with the piece. The website posts unembeddable video of a backlit Matt Taibbi talking about the piece. Which are kind of good videos actually! But are still not the piece. Right now, in some suburban basement, someone is typing it up, and they will illegally (sort of) post it [...]


Shallow 'Rolling Stone' Hit Piece is Just What Michele Bachmann Needed

The backlash against the lashing out against presidential candidate Michele Bachmann has already begun. Following the Palin blueprint, Bachmann plans on fully leveraging the negative publicity with her base: they see leftist attacks as a point of pride and an indication of strength.

This outpouring of disgust is coming at the expense of the excellent local bloggers in Minnesota who have long tracked and fact-checked Bachmann. Their work will be the uncredited foundation of probably every Bachmann hit piece you'll read between now and 2012. It's begun with the self-destructive chewing-out that Matt Taibbi gave Bachmann in Rolling Stone.

"He did prove my point about [...]


The (Partial) Vindication of Matt Taibbi

When Rolling Stone reporter Matt Taibbi fingered Goldman Sachs as the main culprit behind the housing bubble-and most of the other commodities bubbles of the past seventy-odd years-financial journalists closed ranks to denounce every element of the case he sought to make. The story was "just plain wrong," thundered Slate's Heidi Moore. Taibbi was "the Sarah Palin of journalism," sniffed Megan McArdle, without showing any serious flaws in the piece's analysis or reasoning. CNBC contributor and Daily Beast columnist Charles Gasparino sputtered that the whole spectacle of the foul-mouthed, pugnacious Taibbi presuming to explain the Goldman-spurred '08 meltdown was "making me ill." This wasn't merely "wrong"-the financial [...]


The Finance Press Becomes Ever More Willfully Obscure, Clubby And Unhelpful

Yesterday, Matt Taibbi explicated the response he got from Goldman Sachs about his piece in Rolling Stone. (A piece that is only on newsstands, um, except in pirated versions-which, when will Rolling Stone let themselves enjoy good web traffic?) One thing Goldman definitely did was "make it clear that both I and my sources are simply not as smart as they are and don't understand what we're talking about," Taibbi writes. This is standard operating procedure when it comes to bankers-and also when it comes to financial writers, some of whom are now sniping about how Taibbi actually doesn't understand. (Undoubtedly, he probably doesn't understand it all!) [...]