Cojones Grandes

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I am astounded . . . Chutzpah redefined:

From a column in Friday’s NYT by the great Floyd Norris:

“Mr. Donaldson’s efforts are frustrating to those who expected that the Bush administration would roll back regulation. The proposal received a D- average grade from Wendy Gramm, director of the regulatory studies program at George Mason University. “The S.E.C. offered no evidence that existing solutions to poorly performing boards do not work,” wrote Ms. Gramm, a former Enron director.”

Seriously, how big a set of balls must you have to say something like that if you are Wendy Gramm? She is now the director of the regulatory studies program at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University — which means this school has zero academic credibility — and seems to be against most regulation of Boards of Directors.

This from the woman who:

1) enabled Enron’s off balance sheet finacial shenanigans;
2) Sat on the B of D of a public company while her husband was a Senator who — surprise! — recieved donations from Enron (indeed, why else was she put on the board if not to buy his vote?);
3) Cashed out before the whole thing went kablooey.

Now, she has the temerity to tell the SEC chief there is “no evidence that existing solutions to poorly performing boards do not work” ?

Talk about an imperfect messenger: Where do people like this get such cohones? The honorable thing to do would have been to fall on your sword. Instead, an entire farce of academic analysis has been fabricated to pursue a specific agenda.

Sheesh! Any one with a sack that big should be working in Porn . . .

UPDATE: May 9, 2004 8:42pm
A reader informs me that George Mason University has “two Nobel laureates in economics on staff full-time, I doubt the school lacks academic credibility. Everyone makes mistakes in hiring.”

I stand corrected . . .

Sources
Angering Big Business, Donaldson Vows to Change Voting Rules
FLOYD NORRIS
NYT: May 7, 200
http://www.nytimes.com/2004/05/07/business/07norris.html

Wendy Gramm has no regrets
By Gary LaMoshi
Salon, Jan. 28, 2004
http://www.salon.com/tech/feature/2004/01/28/wendy_gramm/

Phil Gramms Enron Favor
Watchdog: Senator Pushed End to Oversight for Campaign Contributor
by James Ridgeway
Village Voice, January 16 – 22, 2002
http://www.villagevoice.com/issues/0203/ridgeway.php

No Problem Here, and Gramm Should Know
By Al Kamen
Monday, January 26, 2004; Page A17
http://www.washingtonpost.com/ac2/wp-dyn?pagename=article&contentId=A47126-2004Jan25&notFound=true

Enron and Phil and Wendy Gramm
NANCY BENAC
Associated Press 1/24/02
http://www.nctimes.net/news/2002/20020124/52934.html

So You Want to Buy a President?
1998 PBS and WGBH/FRONTLINE
http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/president/players/gramm.html

BULL MARKET
Garance Franke-Ruta
Washington City Paper, March 8-14, 2002
http://www.washingtoncitypaper.com/archives/cover/2002/cover0308.html

What's been said:

Discussions found on the web:
  1. Matt Stoller commented on May 8

    The porn industry is fighting regulation right now – she’d fit right in.

  2. Shane commented on May 9

    “She is now the director of the regulatory studies program at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University — which means this school has zero academic credibility — and seems to be against most regulation of Boards of Directors.”

    With two Nobel laureates in economics on staff full-time, I doubt the school lacks academic credibility. Everyone makes mistakes in hiring. Other than that, I agree with you.

  3. Houston’s Clear Thinkers commented on May 9

    Say what, Wendy Gramm?

    Floyd Norris notes in this NY Times article that Securities and Exchange Commission chairman William Donaldson is not sounding or acting like the go-slow regulator that many expected when he was named to the post. As Mr. Norris notes: [Mr….

  4. Houston’s Clear Thinkers commented on May 9

    Say what, Wendy Gramm?

    Floyd Norris notes in this NY Times article that Securities and Exchange Commission chairman William Donaldson is not sounding or acting like the go-slow regulator that many expected when he was named to the post. As Mr. Norris notes: [Mr….

  5. Houston’s Clear Thinkers commented on May 9

    Say what, Wendy Gramm?

    Floyd Norris notes in this NY Times article that Securities and Exchange Commission chairman William Donaldson is not sounding or acting like the go-slow regulator that many expected when he was named to the post. As Mr. Norris notes: [Mr….

  6. thrashbluegrass commented on May 9

    “this school has zero academic credibility”

    Shh…that’s where I’m completing my Bachelor’s…don’t let the word out…

  7. Houston’s Clear Thinkers commented on May 9

    Say what, Wendy Gramm?

    Floyd Norris notes in this NY Times article that Securities and Exchange Commission chairman William Donaldson is not sounding or acting like the go-slow regulator that many expected when he was named to the post. As Mr. Norris notes: [Mr….

  8. Houston’s Clear Thinkers commented on May 9

    Say what, Wendy Gramm?

    Floyd Norris notes in this NY Times article that Securities and Exchange Commission chairman William Donaldson is not sounding or acting like the go-slow regulator that many expected when he was named to the post. As Mr. Norris notes: [Mr….

  9. pope commented on May 10

    I believe it to be spelled cojones, but good find anyway.

  10. pope commented on May 10

    I believe it to be spelled cojones, but good find anyway.

  11. Chibi commented on May 10

    Yeah, why would a respectable school want to hire Wendy Gramm for that particular position, huh? Good catch by Norris.

  12. Off the Kuff commented on May 12

    Partial settlement for Enron employees

    Some action from one of the many class action lawsuits filed in the wake of the Enron collapse. This one…

  13. Tom Marney commented on May 12

    It’s “cojones grandes.” In spanish, adjectives are plural if their subject is plural.

    [Editor’s Note: Fixed!]

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