Oh, I feel so bad for those poor Wall Street folks who have to have a normal party instead of a ridiculously lavish one


Ah December, the Christmas Holiday Winter Party season. (Even though winter doesn't start until the 21nd, but who's counting?) Last year, the Wall Street event planning industry suffered a downturn. (Not that they're doing all that great this year either.) Apparently, given the softening of the economy, companies aren't quite willing to spend the money on parties as lavish as they once did. No more models hired to just walk around. No limo ride home. No going-home gift.

The poor babies. I bet they just cried themselves to sleep.

Comments (24)
  1. nathan_works says:

    or, depending on how much they wasted on hookers and blow, looked at all the digits in their bank balance and laughed.. Nero/Rome indeed.

  2. ton says:

    These crooks really didn’t deserve the bailout money. All I’ve heard about on the news is how they are already wasting taxpayer money on bonuses for overpaid executives and splurging for themselves.

  3. SRS says:

    In a similar way, I feel sorry for Steve Ballmer and Bill Gates. Where has all the value gone?

  4. JD says:

    "These crooks really didn’t deserve the bailout money. All I’ve heard about on the news is how they are already wasting taxpayer money on bonuses for overpaid executives and splurging for themselves." – ton

    It’s not a question of ‘deserve’, and the eventual use of the funds is immaterial. What do they have to do to get us to give them the money in the first place? They put a gun to our heads. Of course, it it’s not their own gun, so they don’t wield it themselves; in the increasingly-fascist USA, you just find a way to get the federal government to do the dirty work for you.

  5. Randall says:

    How much ink is wasted on fairly well-off folks "suffering" in the current economy really annoys me, too.  Here’s a rant about it:

    http://gawker.com/5099094/the-infuriating-new-face-of-poverty

    I think journalists are aiming for stories that they think their readers would identify with or gawk at.  They should spend more time focusing on what’s important, and what’s happening today to millions of poor folks seems to qualify.

  6. Gwyn says:

    Christmas is a summer party! Hemispherist! hmmph

    :)

  7. Rikard says:

    "(Even though winter doesn’t start until the 21nd, but who’s counting?)"

    Here, there’s been winter for some time now. The Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute defines winter as the time when the average temperature is below 0 degrees Celcius.

    No, I’m not nitpicking. I hadn’t heard your definition of winter before, so I was interested and looked it up.

  8. Ben Hutchings says:

    I think they still deserve Christmas^Wwinterval gifts. A lump of coal each would be appropriate, I think.

  9. anonymous this time says:

    @Randall

    Back in the early 1970s, Alan Greenspan, not yet at the Fed, said that it was stockbrokers who were hit the hardest by the recession of those years. Calvin Trillin made fun of this in a column that presented the residents of Greenwich, Connecticut, "Greenies" as the new Okies. On the other hand, a stockbroker’s kid I knew didn’t find it amusing.

  10. Daniel Garlans says:

    The other side of the equation is where the problem lies though.. What happens to all the people employed as party planners? What happens to the models who won’t get paid to look pretty? Sure the Wall Street guys don’t get their fancy shindigs, but suddenly there’s a lot of other people who ain’t getting paid.

  11. steveshe says:

    Daniel Garlans – That is the basis of trickle down economics, which we have been told over and over is a myth so there is nothing to see here, move along.

  12. Joanna says:

    21nd?

    21st? Or 22nd?

    At least they still get a party. Graduate students aren’t invited to the faculty Christmas party.

  13. What happens to all the people employed as party planners?

    Hopefully they find a more productive line of work.

  14. Steve D says:

    In Australia, we consider that the season changes on the first of the month for some reason, so it’s already summer here. :-) Still waiting for the weather to catch up, though.

  15. Bart W says:

    My heart breaks. Apparently their companies, unlike mine, still have money to burn on a Christmas party.

  16. Rolf says:

    "(Even though winter doesn’t start until the 21nd, but who’s counting?)"

    I’ve always found it interesting that seasons change on the 21st in some countries – I grew up with seasons changing on the 1st (winter started on dec 21st).

    After all, midsummer is on 21 june, and I find it hard to grasp that midsummer = start of summer (even though wikipedia disagres, it defines midsummer as either the first day of summer or the middle of summer).

  17. Bryan says:

    >These crooks really didn’t deserve the bailout money. All I’ve heard about on the news is how they are already wasting taxpayer money on bonuses for overpaid executives and splurging for themselves.

    I assume you’re referring to things like AIG’s reward to its top sales people of whom brought in millions of dollars of sales to the company alone and represented a large portion of the company’s income?

    Not to mention that the number of people from the financial products division present:  0

    I’m not a big fan of the corporate shindig parties, but to be honest:  virtually every company in that industry has some kind of lavish "Holiday Party" for their top performers.  The fact that they only ( yes, Only ) spent $400k on it shows they are cutting back.

  18. peetm says:

    >No more models hired to just walk around.

    Damn – I was expecting some pics under that!

  19. Bryan says:

    MS:

    That party was not for the execs, it was for the sales people and vendors.  There weren’t many execs in attendance, which you would know if you had researched it :)

  20. MS says:

    Bryan: That might be true, but it still looked bad for the company as a whole.  Plus, if these sales guys were pulling in millions of sales, the commissions they were getting must have been pretty nice to start with…

  21. MS says:

    The remarkable thing to me about the whole bailout thing is how tone deaf about PR these major companies are.  I’m pretty sure that in order to prevent a melt-down, money was needed, but in the same week having a lavish party for execs (as *TLA company* did) was about the most clueless thing you could do.

  22. Bryan says:

    MS:

    The PR of it was obviously recognized since they removed all the singing and tried to keep a low profile.  However, you pay for these events several months in advance of the actual event.  It’s hard to get money back from canceling a flight, I can’t imagine it’s much easier for a $400,000 event.

    The point isn’t whether they’re receiving nice commissions or not – who’s place is it for us to tell someone how much being a top sales person is worth?  I know if they’re anything like the top sales people that work for my company they are putting in 60 – 70 hours a week most weeks and probably working holidays, too.  But I digress.

    The point is that you are grossly misrepresenting a situation for the purpose of berating individuals who don’t deserve it ( for once ).

  23. The limo ride home isn’t lavish and is actually a good idea.  The rates are typically comparable to a taxi service, and often cheaper due to being fixed per-trip or per-hour.  Encouraging everyone to take the limo ride home reduces the chances of drunk driving, which is far more costly in all ways.

    My employer offers taxi rides home from any party that involves alcohol.  I’ve never heard anyone call that lavish.

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