News and views from inside the media bubble
Hartzman gets a bite
A story that local blogger, whisteblower and sometimes political candidate George Hartzman has been aggressively pitching to local media for almost two years finally got a bite, from no less than Matt Taibbi of Rolling Stone. Hartzman, a broker, put many of his clients on short positions against big banks and Wall Street firms in 2009, believing them to be approaching insolvency even after a massive federal bailout. What he did not realize, and what was the subject of Taibbi’s January RS piece, calld “Secrets and lies of the bailout,” was that big US banks like Wells Fargo and Goldman Sachs received another $7 trillion in bailout funding that was not disclosed to the public. This secret funding laid to waste Hartzman’s theories about bank insolvency, leading to big losses for his clients. Hartzman’s folly dovetailed nicely with Taibbi’s piece in the deadtree edition, leading to a lengthy blog post last week at rollingstone.com.