No way does Gretchen Morgenson get to take a victory lap because of the SIGTARP report, which she tries to do today. As the late great Tanta pointed out time and again, Morgenson is "a tendentious writer with only a marginal grasp of her subject matter and what appears to be an insatiable desire to make uncontroversial facts sound sinister." How she still has a job is an enduring mystery. This is what Morgenson wrote last September, at the height of the crisis:
A collapse of [AIG] threatened to leave a hole of as much as $20 billion in Goldman’s side, several of these people said.This was unequivocally false, as the SIGTARP report makes clear. The SIGTARP report strains to make a credible argument that Goldman had any exposure to AIG, let alone $20 billion of exposure. In fact, the SIGTARP report doesn't even succeed in proving that Goldman had any exposure to AIG — it basically just says, based on no evidence or argument of any kind, "Well, it's technically possible that things could've gotten even worse than Goldman's already-conservative assumptions." But $20 billion of exposure? Not. Even. Close. So no, Gretchen, you do not get to take a victory lap. Your September 27, 2008 article was materially false, and breathtakingly irresponsible.