What a misguided little ingenue The Business Press Maven is. If nothing else, I thought, the demise of Wall Street firms previously thought to be infallible will at least deter the business media from reflexively making paper heroes out of CEOs for a month or two -- especially CEOs of those Wall Street firms.

But old habits die hard. Really hard. I submit for your disapproval coverage of John Thain, whose sole accomplishment as the leader of Merrill Lynch ( MER) was to sell the firm moments before it went soft, white underbelly up.

Granted, Thain was only at the helm of Merrill for a year, so there was a limited amount he could do. But outside of the sale, which he was pushed toward after Lehman's collapse, he did nothing. Yet he emerges from the wreckage of Mother Merrill still a hero. He was appointed to a prominent post at Bank of America ( BAC), which took over Merrill, and the default assumption was that he would soon take over the combined entity.

Look at this bit from the The Wall Street Journal: "The highly regarded Mr. Thain, 53, might well be that person, observers said. 'There is really nobody else around,' one analyst said."

"That person" refers to the leader of the combined firm. "Highly regarded" means, uh, highly regarded. And that's not a word I would use for Thain or any other Wall Street executive right now. And "nobody else around"? Please. Don't make me gag.

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