Friday, November 13, 2009

The Recent Change In The Name Of Our Country.

November 13, 2009

Re: The Recent Change In The Name Of Our Country.

My writing having been taken up entirely by l’affaire Madoff for almost a year, it is a pleasure to turn to a very short posting on another matter. Here it is: We now live in the United States of Goldman, Sachs.

That’s it. That’s the whole post. Explanation of its meaning is unnecessary for anyone who has read the newspapers for the last year (although reading the newspapers is an increasingly quaint idea, like Alberto Gonzalez’s view of the Geneva Conventions).

A Hebrew scholar, when challenged to recite the entire Talmud while standing on one foot, is said to have replied, “Do not do unto others what you would not have them do unto you. All the rest is explication.” So too here. We now live in the United States of Goldman, Sachs. All the rest is explication.

I shall not explicate. I shall, however, present some of the corollaries.

The song whose first line is “O beautiful for spacious skies,” has been renamed “Goldman, Sachs The Beautiful.” Some of the last lines have been changed to “Goldman, Sachs, Goldman, Sachs, God shed his grace on thee, And crown thy good, with brotherhood,” etc.

Another of our patriotic songs, this one written I think by Izzy Balin, er, Irving Berlin, now begins, “God bless Goldman, Sachs, Land that I love, Stand beside her, And guide her,” etc., etc.

The history books have been changed also. The name of the explorer who gave his first name to our nation and to two continents has been changed to Goldman, Sachs Vespucci. Accordingly, the two continents have been renamed North Goldman, Sachs and South Goldman, Sachs.

The English language has been changed too, due to a particular early bailout that saved Goldman, Sachs’ bacon (about 85 billion dollars worth of its bacon). To give assistance to a particular nation in order to pull it out of possible deep trouble is now to give it foreign AIG. To help a friend is to give him aig. To be a Senatorial assistant is to be a legislative aige. Meanwhile, the sickness formerly known as the ague is now the adue.

The names of our navy ships have been changed. We no longer have the USS Ronald Reagan or the USS Stennis, for example. We now have the USGSS Ronald Reagan and the USGSS Stennis.

People who live in and wish to escape despotic foreign countries no longer apply for visas to come to America. Now they apply for visas to come to Goldman, Sachs. And passports of American citizens now say, in large gold letters on the front, “The United States of Goldman, Sachs.”

Still under consideration is the question of whether the motto on our coins should be changed to “In Goldman, Sachs We Trust.” Some people think that would be going too far. They say that it is one thing to change the name of the country, but quite another to equate the country with God. Their position is undercut, however, by the fact that they are religious fundamentalists. Secularists find nothing wrong with changing the motto on our coins. And economists who are monetarists, or who think well of what the Federal Reserve has done, are vociferously in favor of the change. They also want the head of the Federal Reserve to change his name to Ben Bankee. This would make him Ben Bankee, Chairman of the Federal Reserve Board of the United States of Goldman, Sachs.*

*This posting represents the personal views of Lawrence R. Velvel. If you wish to comment on the post, on the general topic of the post, you can, if you wish, email me at

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