Sunday, March 15, 2009

WTF Are They Thinking?

Insurance giant AIG--which has received $170 billion in bailout money from American taxpayers--is about to pay out $165 million in bonuses to its executives.

Suddenly my previous suggestion about cutting off the balls of those responsible for getting us into this mess doesn't seem that outrageous, does it?

I understand the argument that we can't afford to let AIG fail and that its collapse would drag down not only our own banking system, but those of other nations as well. But paying out over a hundred million dollars in bonuses is just plain inexcusable. That's like giving the crew of the Titanic a bonus for at least getting partway across the Atlantic.

The Obama administration says that there is nothing it can legally do to block this particular payout. AIG is contractually obligated to issue these payments and would otherwise face lawsuits.

That may well be the case, but it goes to the very heart of what got us into this mess in the first place: The attitude among business leaders that its okay to get rich yourself while telling everyone else to go fuck themselves.

Regardless of what the letter of the law may say, this is wrong on so many different levels that it defies any possible rational justification.

The truly laughable part is that the chairman of AIG is trying to justify the payouts. His argument? It's the only way the company can retain talented staff. Is this guy on drugs, or what? What "talented staff?" These incompetent idiots have led the world to the brink of economic ruin. In what possible sense are they talented? Calling them talented is like calling Dustin Hoffman's character in Rain Man talented because he could count the number of matchsticks on the floor.

Actually, that comparison may be an insult to Raymond. He probably would have done a better job than the people running AIG now.

So fine. Issue the payouts. But let's post the name of every single recipient of these bonuses, as well as their home addresses and phone numbers, on a website for everyone to see. We can even call it If they're being funded by the rest of us, then it's only fair that we should be able to see where our tax dollars are going.

I just purchased that web address. Anyone in a position to follow through with my suggestion should contact me. You can have the address for $15.

0 thoughtful ramblings: