Sunday, December 06, 2009
In case you were wondering what ever happened to Neel Kashkari, former Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson's hand-picked TARP fund manager (a.k.a. Mini-Me), the Washington Post provides this update with the accompanying photo that immediately reminded me of the Unabomber heading back to his Montana cabin, looking to escape from the world.
That's apparently what Kashkari has been doing lately, so, if you work in the mail room at a big bank and get a suspicious looking package in the mail with a postmark anywhere near Truckee, California - a place that is not too different than Kazcynski's Montana digs - you might want to alert the authorities.
Even in his early-retirement, Kashkari continues to be an easy target ... sorry ... that's not his house, just a cabin out back that he's apparently been building to keep busy.
All joking aside, you have to feel for the guy and the WaPo report by Laura Blumenfeld really does a nice job of contrasting his current and former life with some surprising revelations of the reality of working in the nation's capital.
"It felt like I got jumped."The whole thing is definitely worth reading, especially if you like the outdoors and used to spend nearly all your waking hours indoors working with people whose motives you always questioned, but not publicly.
"Like three guys beat the crap out of me."
The massive block of sugar pine breaks, the crack bouncing off the mountain.
Kashkari is recalling his testimony before Congress, while splitting logs to feed the stove for the winter. He is down to his last two chain-sawed trees.
"Members of Congress will tell you they agree with you, and then in public they blast you. I understand their anger, but the playing at politics when so much was at stake -- "
Whack. The ax blade flies off its wooden handle.
As interim assistant secretary for financial stability, Kashkari had to defend multibillion-dollar cash injections in hearings on Capitol Hill. Constituents were losing their jobs and homes; Kashkari became the object of free-floating recession rage. He sat for five oversight hearings, whose headlines ran from "Lawmakers Slam Kashkari!" to "Congressman Calls Kashkari 'A Chump.' " In one House session, Rep. Gregory Meeks (D-N.Y.) opened with a round of criticism, and then a Republican finished him off, suggesting that Kashkari resign.
"I wasn't prepared for their hostility."
Trained as an engineer (BS and MS), for some reason Kashkari then decided to go get an MBA from Wharton before getting sucked into the whirlwind that is Goldman Sachs and the rest, as they say, is history.