The Real Goldman

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About Tom Matlack

Tom Matlack is the co-founder of The Good Men Project. He has a 18-year-old daughter and 16- and 7-year-old sons. His wife, Elena, is the love of his life. Follow him on Twitter @TMatlack.


  1. Thanks for sharing this…and hats off to Greg Smith. Maybe he was passed over because he put his family first? Maybe because he wasn’t on-board with screwing his clients?

  2. interesting insight into that world tom.

    so we’ve replaced the economic monopoly of the aristocratic crown with the monopolies of a thousand boardroom princelings. the fault is within the human species, it doesnt matter whether there is one lord of lords, or thousand minor lords. the same tendency to depotism keeps on cropping up

    • I could not agree more, James. It’s a human thing, a feature not a bug, apparently.

      • yeah it’s depressing.
        i often wonder if the answer is already here. sitting on an anthropologist’s dusty bookshelf, forgotten.
        that some ethnic group somewhere, has stumbled on the organisational structure that handcuffs these human failings, and allows proper governance to follow

        • I see this particular desire for dominance in non profits too, and in policy. Obviously. We are primates who have a great interest in status so far as our membership in groups goes, and culturally I see that some systems are different than others, but the US seems incredibly driven only by the goal for money/power. It’s violent how we treat each other on a daily basis.
          There have been occasional periods of enlightenment, and things fall back apart again.
          I’m worried for sure.

          • wet_suit_one says:

            Let’s not debase the word “violence” too much. It already has a meaning and that meaning is quite useful.

            How people are treated on a daily basis is shabby indeed, but not violent. Violent is what we’re seeing in Syria’s treatment of its dissenting citizens on a daily basis. It isn’t that bad in the U.S.

            Otherwise I agree with you.

    • Peter Houlihan says:

      Agreed, I keep hearing calls to “change the system” but I can’t see it making any kind of difference, unless we somehow change human beings too. I guess all we can do is try to regulate the corruption out as much as possible while still admitting that its always going to be an issue.

      • Copyleft says:

        I agree that the word ‘regulate’ is key. We have no power over CEOs and big bankers, except what we exercise through government. The Reagan-era mindset of ‘government is the problem’ needs to end; government is the only weapon we have against the gangsters who run Wall Street. The 1% are the real enemy.

        • Peter Houlihan says:

          I also think the problem extends way way beyond 1% of the population, but thats another story.

          I’m not terribly familiar with the economic policies of Clinton, but did he continue reagonomics? My impression was that GB II revived them rather than inherited them.

  3. Tom- I’ve had similar experience with many, but not all, senior bankers… Its almost comical sometimes. The mentality can spread to other aspects of life. Pick up games or working out with them can be “interesting.”

    I had the requisite educational background and grades to jump into that race. i don’t regret taking a different path.

  4. These are not men. They take their sexual identity from their status in a hierarchy not from their existence as males.

    They are apexuals.

  5. Tom, you mention motivations. Is it possible that the reason he was passed over for promotions was because he found the culture and ethics untenable? Thus didn’t perform to the expectation of the culture he found unacceptable? Thus not getting promoted?

    I mean, sure maybe he’s complaining because he didn’t get a lot of rewards in the form of promotions, but maybe what he saw and found distasteful actually got in the way of his ability to perform? In which case his motivations for the article would be honest.

  6. Peter Houlihan says:

    Well done Tom, its a fantastic piece and a really valuable insight. Thanks for writing.

  7. Thanks for sharing- it’s a cautionary piece of advice for anyone interested in getting involved with the big financial companies..

  8. What a sad world we live in when people aspire to such jobs.


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