Monday, February 22, 2010

The Beast is Loose: Is Goldman About to Shoot It's Own Messenger?

Last week, I featured an NYO story on Goldman Sachs and their top PR man, Lucas van Praag. I concluded:

Only at Goldman Sachs would the clever and charming Mr. Praag have to worry that he might be replaced by anyone who can do a good imitation of Don Rickles.
Goldman just found a firm that can do a good Don Rickles imitation.

Praag could not wake-up and feel comfortable about his position this morning. In an NyPo piece announcing that Karl Rove cronies have arrived on the scene, the piece takes a swipe at Praag:

...silver-tongued spokesman, Lucas Van Praag. has responded to criticism in a ham-fisted way, further ostracizing the firm.

Indeed, over the course of the crisis British-born Van Praag, who has an uncanny facility with the Queen's English, has become the embodiment of the view of Goldman as an elitist institution.

One rival p.r. executive, who declined to be identified, put it this way: "They are playing to an internal audience of [Goldman] executives that think issuing two-page rebuttals to articles are beneficial, when it may make them look like a fool to outsiders."

"[Goldman] lashes out when sometimes silence would be golden," another source added.

That elitist feeling seems to rub Blankfein the wrong way -- but Van Praag, a Goldman partner, by all accounts has the firm backing of the CEO.

At an early-morning breakfast at Goldman's 85 Broad St. headquarters last Friday, Blankfein offered support for Van Praag and said he was upset that criticism of the firm had become "personalized" and directed at his p.r. guru.
Remember, nothing in government or Goldman is confirmed until officially denied.

We can also put some old facts in a new light. The facts I write of were contained in my report last week on the Praag exit rumors:

In December, writes NYO, Charlie Gasparino wondered aloud on the Daily Beast if Mr. van Praag might lose his job.
Hmmm, I'm not sure the timeline fits completely, or maybe it fits too well, but as I just reported, the:

vice-chairman [of the Karl Rove connected PR firm hired by Blankfein], Mark McKinnon, writes for the web site, The Daily Beast, so they have their tentacles into the web, also.
Add this up in your head:

New PR firm has connections at Daily Beast.

Daily Beast says old PR guy is an idiot and must go.

Watch your back, Lucas.

No comments:

Post a Comment