Thursday, March 19, 2009

AIG Bonus Fiasco

Ok wow. Tell ya what, lemme go pour a Schlafly Scotch Ale for this one.

Mmm that's good.

Let me preface this by stating up front that my source of information is the Wall Street Journal. I don't have any specific dates or anything, but it's just info taken from their articles, website, and podcasts over the last few days since the news broke.

So yeah, ouch. We're paying for these executive bonuses. Yeah, I feel like I've been taken advantage of as a taxpayer. It really pisses me off, as it does you. Here's the problem. AIG had a board meeting in regards to these bonuses months ago, I think in November or December, and 2 MEMBERS OF THE FEDERAL RESERVE WERE PRESENT! And my boy Geithner claims he just found out about this a week or 2 ago. No. No way. I don't buy it for a second.

President O'Bama knows that Geithner knew about this. He's downplaying the finger-pointing and rightly saying basically who cares who did it, let's fix it. At one point he even said (paraphrasing), "If you want to blame someone, blame me, I'm the President. Let's fix this." Yeah, this is the correct attitude to have, Mr. President, but I question your motives.

So yeah, Big O is right. Let's forget about the blame game and do something about it.

So at first Congress was talking about a 100% tax on these bonuses. In other words, write into law that if you received $3M in taxes from this, then you'll pay $3M in tax on it, thus returning it to the taxpayers. And yeah that sounds great. It's our money, give it back to us, let's put it somewhere better.

But here's the problem. This is America. And these were contractual obligations. Contracts are the foundation of the United States legal system. The Constitution is, in its simplest form, a contract between the US government and the citizens of the United States. Like it or not, folks, this is their money, and who the hell are we to charge them 100% tax? Sure, tax them heavy because they're bonuses and all bonuses are taxed heavily. But not 100%.

Someone made a huge mistake. Someone allowed these bonuses to be given out. Someone should have done the research and found these bonuses and made sure special provisions were written into the bill (also a contractual document btw) that would disallow these funds to be used to pay for these bonuses.

Or maybe someone was paid off hoping it was just go away quietly. Who knows.

But someone must be held accountable for allowing these bonuses to happen. And it's Geithner's show. Timmy, my boy, you have to take the bad with the good.

Fire him? I don't know. That's not my call. Let's see how the administration handles this moving forward. The way this administration handles this will certainly solidify my opinion of it for a long time to come.

And don't forget that I have been giving BHO the benefit of the doubt since the election.

BTW, Hussein, I'm a huge supporter of the new medical marijuana enforcement policy. Truly, thank you. I think you should take the next step there. (sorry, that's the civil libertarian in me)

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