In the years surrounding the 2008 financial crisis, this small site you are visiting had quite a following. As is noted in the header, in 2008-2009 it won various internet awards for being the best place to come for business investigative journalism and to read about corruption within the USA (at time when the public paid much attention to such subjects). For the shortest explanation of what my principal claims regarding Wall Street were, watch this 3 minute video of clips from those years. Or see either this 1.5 page summary, or this 40 minute presentation (keeping in remember that they were from September 2007, a full year before the crisis). Yet given the heartbreaking understanding our nation came to have concerning Wall Street over the course of 2008-2010, I felt less and less of a need to keep at it, and over the years my activities here dwindled to a close.
This summer I came forward regarding my involvement in a series of events that occurred in 2015-2016. I did so by organizing a panel of journalists whom I know and trusted and with whom I had previously worked. All were from organizations to the Left of Fox. Also invited was Sara Carter of Fox: she was also the only one with whom I had not previously worked (though we had shaken hands once a decade ago), but she had earned her seat there, I felt. In late July Sara wrote a blog that got attention. As the message began bubbling up, it was misunderstood (and perhaps spun). A couple weeks ago David Asman caught me with a question in an interview, news spread of my response, I tried to address it in a release that would end my need to talk about the subject, but that was like trying to put out a fire by pouring kerosene on it.
That’s the proximate cause, but the truth is for about a year I have understood that either certain things were going to eat their way to me, or I was likely going to have to expose them. I used the year to make as robust as possible the firm I was running. Given that Tuesday marked our 20th anniversary, and given that the aforementioned news is bubbling into the mainstream, for the best of the firm it seemed like quite a sound time that I step down and get far away.
It is not my intent to write here articles investigating or exposing things. There is nothing for me to investigate about what happened. I know what happened, or at least my little corner of what happened. And in general, I would prefer to leave it to federal authorities to reveal what happened. However, there are suddenly a lot of press that wish to talk to me, and I have spent the day thinking about how this is going to work.
I am reminded of a lesson I learned from my mitzvah with Wall Street in 2005-2008. When that started, I thought the world worked like it did for Julia Roberts in The Pelican Brief. Julia susses out the scheme, it gets published, all the forces of Right & Good swoop in and arrest the bad guys, and it wraps up in five reels. What I learned from my One Man Occupy Wall Street experience, however, is that the way the world really works when a scandal is exposed is that the power structure reveals itself in response, trying to squelch the truth. In those 2005-2008 years, even a simple message like, “Slop in our stock settlement system is dangerous, hedge funds are manipulating markets with it, the SEC is too close to Wall Street to reign them in, and it is all going to crack” was distorted, ridiculed, and buried. In the process, those forces laid themselves bare (as browsing around old DeepCapture articles will confirm). It took the crisis of 2008 to break their hold on the truth, at which point a number of stories mentioned my vindication, but then something of a Cone of Silence descended on all that I had said and done regarding Wall Street.
More journalists have called me today than any day in my lifetime. It is not feasible for me to communicate with each. Also, the same power structure that sought to bury the truth about Wall Street in 2005-2008, will react badly to much of what I believe is going to be exposed in the months ahead. As a result, I have decided to reactivate this old site, not to break a lot of new things, but simply to communicate with the world (including the press that is contacting me) in a transparent, controlled way. In the process, I will be deconstructing the writing and thinking of the people who write about me: my experience is that this bring discipline and honesty to such relationships.
There will likely be a lot of new people coming here. It has been a busy week, and I am a bit tired to write a terribly coherent orientation to this site. I will manage that someday soon. In the meantime, this weekend I will work on a careful statement of the information that yesterday I rushed through in three different interviews. That will save the overhead of having to have a lot of similar conversations. And it will make it difficult for anyone to twist what I say. I will also research to see if any technology has become available to do something that, until recently, I was doing inside our firm: letting the many aggregate their curiosity into distinct, ranked questions that I answered from highest (crowd-ranked) priority down. That way, we (you readers and I) can have a conversation with as little distortion as possible, and include in our conversations those journalists who add value to the discussion.