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The most famous commode on Wall Street

February 1, 2009

Just when you thought things couldn’t get any worse about Wall Street executives pillaging shareholders money, along comes someone like John Thain, former (thankfully) Merril Lynch CEO who brings it to new levels.

As Newser reports, Thain “may have steered his company to a $15.4 billion fourth-quarter loss, but he did so from a really nice office.”

As the company reeled under heavy losses, he apparently got busy spending $1.2 million renovating his office, paying $87,000 for a rug, $25,000 for a pedestal table and $35,000 for an antique “commode on legs.” See the picture here along with a list of stuff he got for $1.2 million.

What’s a commode? Simply put, its a toilet bowl. An antique “commode with legs” is apparently an old cupboard that’s used to store chamberpots, the buckets people did their business in before plumbing was invented.

Why anyone wants it badly enough to pay $35k for one is beyond me but now that this sorry episode has become the butt of jokes in Wall Street, you can just see Thain’s reputation going down the toilet, along with a handsome chunk of US bailout money.

All I can say is, I wouldn’t want to be John Thain about now.

More detail on the story here.

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4 Comments leave one →
  1. February 2, 2009 12:18 am

    Haha, maybe the next time some bosses wanna spend such money, they should start thinking about their ‘exit plan’ if things don go well at all. Obviously, this guy has the ‘enjoy now, think later’ kind of mentality, which is a big NO NO for year 2009 😛

    Either that, or he’s plain stupid.

    I think he had a silly moment. Anyway after the furore errupted, he went public to offer to pay for those things with his own money. Too bad, the damage is done.

  2. LC Teh permalink
    February 2, 2009 8:51 am

    Why is that Merril Lynch always sound like a mob to me… ?

    You mean like a lynch mob? Haha.

  3. February 2, 2009 7:23 pm

    May Obama saves the day…

    He seems to be doing that as we speak 🙂

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