Tyler Durden of Zero Hedge has the story of GS' involvement in CanWest via financial and programming decisions. Amazing, but true:
Why Is Goldman Advising CanWest On Its Programming Line Up?
(Quoting from a Globe and Mail article):
Goldman Sachs sees no reason to revisit its arrangement with CanWest, which has been blessed by Canadian regulators, according to several sources close to the investment dealer.
To date, Goldman executives have not been invited into restructuring talks, a subject of considerable frustration at the investment bank, sources say. Financiers working with Goldman said that over the past year, the investment bank put forward programming ideas for the TV networks, and offered strategic advice on restructuring, but was ignored by CanWest management and its creditors.
One concept that’s been tossed around, but couldn’t move forward until CanWest recapitalization was set, would see Goldman Sachs provide programming and financial support to the conventional television network as part of a larger deal that reworks the entire ownership structure to more closely align all the TV holdings.
Earmuff time: why the fuck is Goldman even considered to provide "programming ideas and support?" Granted this is a case where the firm obviously has extensive and deep tentacle reach, however it is the biggest Canadian media company. And if Goldman can act with impunity to determine what the channel line up and who can and who can't be on TV, does this not raise a huge ethical problem straight out of modern version of "1984"? Although CNBC anchors can rest assured that if the Comcast deal does work out and they all end up jobless, there will be a willing home for them to spin their propaganda.
Also if this is true for CanWest, just where else does Goldman Sachs provide "programming idea" advice? Granted, the gullible audience does not care as it is brainwashed into the next massive paradigm, be it securitization part 2, or "buy, buy, buy any stock on the dips," in fact max out your credit cards just so you can own the next pets.com for the short period of time before even that is worth zero. After all, those fine TV people said so, compliments of Goldman's TV station content line up brigade.
My hope is that the Canadian public will pay attention to this chilling development in broadcasting. A friend of mine here whom I respect greatly in "all things Canadian" (and you know who you are) told me: "Unfortunately, Canadians have lived with media concentration for so long we take it for granted."
I hope that's not the case . . . .
(Cross-posted from Moved to Vancouver)