A Peek into Wall Street’s Secret Society
There is a secret fraternity on Wall Street called Kappa Beta Phi whose inductees include successful financiers like Michael Bloomberg and former Goldman Sachs chairman John Whitehead. Each year the fraternity hosts an annual black tie dinner event to welcome new inductees, whom they force to dress in drag and perform skits and songs. Kevin Roose rented a tuxedo and snuck into the event in 2012, and wrote in his book about what he saw: Some of Wall Street’s most powerful executives taking swipes at the 99 percent and making crass and homophobic jokes about Barney Frank, the former chairman of the House Financial Services Committee who is openly gay:
Paul Queally, a private-equity executive with Welsh, Carson, Anderson, & Stowe, told off-color jokes to Ted Virtue, another private-equity bigwig with MidOcean Partners. The jokes ranged from unfunny and sexist (Q: “What’s the biggest difference between Hillary Clinton and a catfish?” A: “One has whiskers and stinks, and the other is a fish”) to unfunny and homophobic (Q: “What’s the biggest difference between Barney Frank and a Fenway Frank?” A: “Barney Frank comes in different-size buns”).
The adapted chapter is posted on NYMag.com, which you can read here.
Photo: Wikimedia Commons
Support The Billfold
The Billfold continues to exist thanks to support from our readers. Help us continue to do our work by making a monthly pledge on Patreon or a one-time-only contribution through PayPal.