Giving Occupy Wall Street something to chew on

The lovely Mrs. Verschleiser preps her daughter for the big day?

Jeffrey Verschleiser, who made a fortune at Bear Sterns peddling fraudulent mortgage-backed securities and who now resides under a rock at Goldman Sachs, presumably doing something equally as noble, is spending $1 million to throw his daughter a bat mitzvah. I’d be curious to learn how much he’s given to the families of the Bear Sterns employees who lost their jobs while Verschleiser was doing his.

UPDATE: Teri Buhl doesn’t think much of Mssr. Verschleiser either.


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18 responses to “Giving Occupy Wall Street something to chew on

  1. AJ

    I thought jewish girls had sweet sixteens– a less tight assed form of those debutant, coming out things. Autographs from pro skiers? That’s a laugh. You can go to a clinic with the best skiers in the world, and it’s not very expensive. But I guess she can add them to her golf pro and tennis pro autograph collection.

  2. Peg

    Kudos to Mr. Verschleiser. The kind of fellow who blackens the names of those who work in the financial district.

    Stupid me. I thought that bat mitzvahs were supposed to be a celebration of a girl’s transformation into womanhood, knowledge of her religion and a time to share with family a friends. Didn’t realize it was an opportunity for a buffoon to show off his wealth in an obscene manner.

  3. There is a Occupy Aspen protest today (4pm) at the popular hotel Jeff took over. The Aspen Daily News editor has highlighted more exclusive spending by Jeff all in the name of celebrating his offspring. Three big flat screens are in the front of the hotel with a photo blast of the 13 yr old. Since he shut down the bar it kind of sucks for the bartendars who can make $1k a night on a big weekend like this. He also has the hotel chef only serving Kosher food.
    Rolling Stone Taibbi did a good job explaining who Jeff is in a way my editor’s wouldn’t allow me to. It’s a fun read.

    In all my reporting on bankers in the financial crisis this guy commited some of the worst financial crimes and there is sooo much evidence to prove it. Yet no charges.

  4. DollarBill

    Hey, lay off Verschleiser who made his bundle fair and square, and Peg stop channeling the OWS rhetoric about the “buffoons” flaunting their wealth obscenely. After all, V, like all our Masters of the Universe on the Street,. was a “jahhhhb creator.” All of you who got a problem with our” free enterprise” system, go move to North Korea or Chavez country. How free would be Mr V. be if he wanted to pay for a batzmitzah in Castroland? Not too free if you ask me.

    As for the Bear Stearns families whose husbands or wives ” lost their jobs,”, I say dems the breaks in a capitalist system. It’s all about the “creative destruction.,” doncha know. No use crying over them; every economy has its winners and losers, and those families are losers. Tough love means they’ll just have to pick themselves up by their proverbial bootstraps. No handouts for them. That’ll send the wrong message. Moral hazard and all that.

  5. DollarBill

    “At one point during these deals, Verschleiser reamed out his immediate subordinate, co-head of mortgage finance Baron Silverstein, over the “problem” of the due diligence department taking too much time to do its work. Silverstein responded by issuing the following tirade to John Mongelluzzo, Bear’s VP for Due Diligence, demanding that he not get in the way of Bear’s insane goal of funding 500 mortgages a day:

    ” I refuse to receive more emails from [Verchleiser] (or anyone else) questioning why we’re not funding loans every day. I’m holding each of you responsible for making sure we fund at least 500 each and every day… I was not happy when I saw the funding numbers and I knew NY would NOT BE HAPPY… I expect to see 500+ every day. I will do whatever is necessary to make sure you’re successful in meeting this objective.”

    Whenever any right-wing loon, or Bloombergite, tries to tell you the mortgage crisis was caused by the government forcing the poor banks to lend to broke black people, please direct them to this passage. The banks not only wanted to give out these loans, they wanted to give them out at the speed of light. They wanted to crank them out so fast that their own auditors literally couldn’t read the writing on the loan applications. This was greed, not policy. Anybody who says anything else is high on something.” –MT

    • No one has ever underestimated the ability of Wall Street and Washington to get along, DB. They’re the same people, after all, and take turns shuttling between both locations while enriching themselves and their friends. I can think of three past senators from New Jersey, two from New York and one from Connecticut who ilustrate this perfectly but of course, they were hardly the only pigs at the trough.

  6. AJ

    DB from some of your previous posts, I thought you might be one of those collectivist, let’s all hold hands and go broke together, lefty types. It seems like you’ve found your inner, ruthless, rise above the masses, I’m gonna get me some, American self. This is American, and we like our cars flashy, our music loud, and what’s the point of working hard if you can’t show off your bling to prove it. One of my favorite examples of flaunting it is the 5th Ave. home of mining magnate Henry Clay Frick as seen in the following clip. At 1:14 into the video you can see the room with the indoor pond where he probably went to meditate after machine gunning his workers– beauty (the house) and the beast (the man). I’ll bet the inside of Walt’s Round Hill abode is very similar with a pond for the fillies to splash around and wet their manes in:

    But I think it would be more appropriate to blame Washington than to blame Wall Street. Why should anybody be surprised that crooks steal — it’s in their nature; it’s Washington’s job to keep a tight rein on them. But good luck on that after watching Greenspan on PBS’s Frontline proclaim that you can’t regulate fraud. It’s interesting that in Steve Kroft’s recent interview with Obama, after Obama said that no one did anything illegal, maybe unethical, that kroft didn’t press him to give some examples of what the President thought was unethical but not illegal. With Wachovia convicted of laundering over $378 billion in Mexican Drug Cartel money, and no one going to jail, and just a slap on the wrist for fines as one example, it’s obvious that crime does pay, and that nothing will change as long as Obama remains President, or is replaced by Romney, Gingrich, Perry, or Santorum.

  7. Greenwich Old Timer

    Chris – I have always wondered where you get those outrageous (and hilarious) photos you post – one of the many reasons I so enjoy your site. Greenwich Old Timer P.S. Walt continues to be a major draw.

  8. A few more details on the Verschleiser Family and another large pension fund suing Jeff for fraud last month. If Taibbi can write about how he feels about Jeff I thought it was time I printed a view point

  9. peeps

    many Bas Mitzvahs are taken seriously, but lately some parents take it to vulgar levels. A bad side effect is that the parents will have to outdo the Bas Mitzvah a few years later when the girl gets married. If you spend a million on at Bas Mitzvah, do you think she can have a smaller party for her wedding?

  10. Anonymous

    ms. buhl just so you have balanced reporting from one end of the food chain to the other, why don’t you write an article on the abuses of realtors who shoved clients into homes they clearly couldn’t afford (no matter what the price), introducing them to mortgage brokers who helped massage their applications through the system. not that realtors didn’t get kickbacks from those brokers, of course. surely that didn’t happen since they & the mortgage brokers are the most ethical folks in the industry…

    would that practice happen in greenwich? or even nyc? pray tell! why would a traditional real estate brokerage office of all things get in on the wholesale mortgage brokerage biz with no balance sheet to speak of? oh, full client service, that’s right. or, maybe its that couple of point vig on each loan?

    do tell. come on, it’s easy to shoot big fish in a small pond like bankers. go after the whole food chain.

    and by the way quoting taibbi like he really knows what he’s talking about? the quality of his reporting and language is an embarrassment to investigative journalism. you discredit yourself by relying on him as much as you do.

  11. AJ

    Anonymous, sounds like your daddy didn’t smack you around enough when you were younger to toughen you up and knock some sense into you. Nobody is ever responsible for their own actions; it’s always someone else’s fault. How ridiculous, being talked into something you can’t afford. You’re supposed to take your diaper off before you go shopping for a house. Saw some of your friends the other day who got distracted on their way to being sweet talked by their mortgage broker. What kind of fool goes to a mortgage broker anyway? Isn’t that you on the right, 1:37 into the clip:

    Then on your way back, I caught you stopping off for a little dancing and a cup of tea. Sorry for the slow start on this clip the action doesn’t start until :30 in:

    Oh wait, I know who goes to mortgage brokers: people who can’t get legitimate loans. That’s why the credit card companies charge so much interest. They say that if they didn’t charge all that money, then how are they supposed to lend money to people who can’t afford to pay back their loans.

  12. DollarBill

    I spot some serious cognitive dissonance amongst you guys now on the issue of Mr. Verschleiser, and capitalism — illuminated by a previous post so dripping in sarcasm it sailed right over all of your gullible heads!.

    After all, who or what is V.? A douchebag of the highest order who made millions cheating off others, while his colleagues lost their jobs (as CF says), or is he an admirable Master of the Universe, a noble entrepreneur who made his pile, but was laid low by the tentacles of meddling, do-gooding big government liberals who wanted to take his hard-earned dough and give it to undeserving ghetto dwellers (as CF says)? Obviously, he can’t be both, right? Right wing heads are exploding!

    Funny when the right wing tries to channel populism — that scumbag Verschleiser — because it runs up against their sacred belief that the “free market” is always right, and when it’s not right, it’s ultimately the fault of big government. I’m sure some commenter will come along and blame big government for Verschleiser’s greed, and his desire to lavish big bucks on his bat mitzvah. Or defend V by chalking it up to commenters latent anti-Semitism. Or just throw ad hominems at Taibbi or Dollar Bill because that always works. Above all, never criticize the workings of the “free market” for to do so would be to shine a light on how Mr. V. made his bundle. The old fashioned way. He stole it…

  13. Teri Buhl

    On the Verschleiser story Taibbi basically re-wrote what I originally have been reporting for a year – so I feel solid on quoting him. But I hear you he often leaves out facts to get his point accross and makes broad statments without enough back up of the financial transactions involved. But in Friday’s story he did a bang up job explaining the complicated moves the Bear traders did to cheat their own clients – maybe he’s growing up or has taken a finance 101 class?

  14. Anonymous

    Taibbi is a product of his generation: he only knows enough to write broad generalizations, big headlines and sell papers, yet thinks he knows it all and is deserving of the accolades.

    He doesn’t even scratch the surface in his knowledge of the process. Or at least his editors have left out those details. Methinks its probably both.

  15. Anonymous

    AJ: that was awesome, thanks for the laugh. Only problem with your analysis is that your preconception of “legitimate” loans doesn’t fly in the real loan world. Banks have for years (and still do) flip ’em right away, effectively acting as a wholesale broker to institutions who ultimately own the loans. Who’s criteria are they really underwriting to? It might be that bank’s, or it might be from the flow program of that bank’s ultimate buyer. You, as borrower, don’t know (nor should you care, really, as it’s not your concern).

    Securitized portfolio performance of “retail” vs. “wholesale” vs. “correspondent” origination channel is not consistent enough to make a qualitative judgment on what is better. The market preconception of “retail” being the best (a.k.a. your likely definition of “legitimate” loans), well, it’s entirely dependent upon the originating institution itself. Countrywide, after all, was a lotta retail…and they’ve not performed so well….