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starbucks4ever (97.41)

Did Buffett just accept a bribe?

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November 18, 2010 – Comments (10)

When I first read his op-ed in the Times, I was surprised by the sycophantic tone of his comments. He certainly didn't sound like the same WEB we used to know. If you read any of his previous articles and compare it with this latest piece, you might think they were written by two different people. (As a side note, I wouldn't be surprised to learn that were in fact written by two different people. Why have secretaries if you can't let them do some piece of creative writing?) 

Anyway, at first I thought Buffett had just sincerely fallen in love with Uncle Sam. But then I saw a piece of news suggesting that the old man could have an obvious personal motive. He already had all the money in the world, so it would be hard to impress him with that. But the one thing he didn't have was a medal. And that's just what he got yesterday - a Medal of Freedom from the president.

Public awards can be a powerful motivator; in the ancient times noblemen would happily give away a village to get themselves the Baronet title. And Buffett has already shown, by donating his fortune to charity, that he is not totally indifferent to public recognition. So why not show some gratitude by writing a panegyric to the people who are giving you a prestigious award?  

To be sure, the causation between the two events cannot be inferred with a 100% certainty, but the fact that the op-ed was published on the same day when the medal was awarded is telling.


  http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE6AG5LA20101117 

"(Reuters) - President Barack Obama on Wednesday named billionaire Warren Buffett a winner of the 2010 Medal of Freedom, along with former President George H.W. Bush and German Chancellor Angela Merkel." 

10 Comments – Post Your Own

#1) On November 18, 2010 at 8:17 PM, ikkyu2 (99.32) wrote:

He got the medal for bailing out Goldman Sachs when they needed capital.

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#2) On November 18, 2010 at 8:24 PM, starbucks4ever (97.41) wrote:

"He got the medal for bailing out Goldman Sachs when they needed capital"

Or for not bailing out Goldman's competitor Lehman :) 

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#3) On November 19, 2010 at 6:46 AM, andywd82 (37.95) wrote:

Merkel orchestrated a trillion euro bailout recently on Obama's advice. She too gets a medal, for convincing the rich governments of europe to to give away a lot of money they will borrow and then give their taxpayers the liability for, and they give it to the governments who are insolvent on the periphery of the eurozone.

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#4) On November 19, 2010 at 12:34 PM, Melaschasm (56.93) wrote:

Buffet has been praising big government intervention for years.  Buffet is a democrat who supported TARP, Stimulus, and QE1 & 2.  This latest article is nothing out of the ordinary.  That Obama would give a medal to one of his wealthiest supporters is not exactly shocking.

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#5) On November 19, 2010 at 1:57 PM, Turfscape (45.91) wrote:

Melaschasm wrote:
"That Obama would give a medal to one of his wealthiest supporters is not exactly shocking."

Do you seriously believe that Buffet has NOT had a significant impact on American society? Do you think he will NOT be in history books for decades to come? Whether you agree with his politics and investing style is irrelevant...Buffet earned his place in life. Not to mention that small philanthropical streak he has puts him in rather rare company. I'm not a personally a fan of Sam Walton...but I can't deny he deserved all the recognition he received, including his Presidential Medal of Freedom. I'm sure I could say the same thing for at least a third of the medal's recipient's.

To think that any President would use the Medal of Freedom as some sort of political quid pro quo is rather cynical, even for the most partisan members on this board. Not everything in life is politics and conspiracy.

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#6) On November 19, 2010 at 3:26 PM, angusthermopylae (39.54) wrote:

Not everything in life is politics and conspiracy.

Maybe not, but it's a good place to start looking for the usual suspects.

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#7) On November 19, 2010 at 3:51 PM, SkepticalOx (99.44) wrote:

angus,

These coordinated negative-opinion posts from zloj and BillyTg is a conspiracy to drive down Berkshire stock so that they can buy it at a cheaper price! BRK.A is down as we speak today also, so while these two events cannot be inferred with 100% certainty, them happening on the same day is very telling!

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#8) On November 19, 2010 at 3:56 PM, starbucks4ever (97.41) wrote:

#7,

Thanks for the compliment! For once, I can feel myself like an important force in the stock market :) 

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#9) On November 19, 2010 at 3:58 PM, SkepticalOx (99.44) wrote:

#8 You're welcome... Funny enough, stocks have had big moves on wilder rumors :P.

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#10) On November 19, 2010 at 7:37 PM, brizzlekizzle (38.98) wrote:

Everything is legit here, now have you considered getting a mortgage? Would you like some TIPS or how about a 2 year note? 

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