Friday, March 20, 2009

A Ridiculous Plan

After 9/11 George W. Bush decided that we should go to war with Iraq and, in the furor of the moment, almost everybody in Congress decided to agree with President and send our armed forces into harm's way. At the time, and years later, many of us realized that making decisions under stress like that is the worst thing we as a nation can do. Such important and far-reaching decisions should be made rationally in a timely manner.

But here's the Congress deciding to tax the AIG bonuses by 90 % and practically doing it overnight. Congress sure can act when they are riled up, not thinking reasonably, and when looking for revenge.

Now I believe those AIG employees SHOULD have refused those damn bonuses. (Oh and by the way, WHEN were those bonuses offered?) How do you accept money when you are being bailed out by the U.S. taxpayer? But I understand contracts and contract law and so does Obama and he thought there might be some real trouble if the bonuses were held back. He was probably right. But now we'll never know.

So to make sure we GET those guys who didn't have enough moral character to refuse the bonuses, the Congress comes up with this ridiculous plan. Listen, you don't legislate acts of revenge. You don't legislate to GET a group of people who acted within the law but foolishly and wrecklessly.

According to David Greising in the Chicago Tribune,
Congress could not achieve a bipartisan consensus while passing President Barack Obama's nearly $800 billion stimulus package, bailing out Detroit or helping struggling homeowners. But on the AIG bonuses, House Republicans clenched fists alongside House Democrats and voted a tax big enough to make the bonuses disappear.
The 400 AIG people who accepted the bonuses shouldn't have that money. But the Congress is running the country, with the President, and WE shouldn't be acting WRECKLESSLY. I certainly hope the President does not accept this piece of legislation and tries to comes up with a better idea. If there is a better idea...

theteach

14 comments:

Raven said...

I agree. I was actually forced to agree with some Republicans yesterday. Man, you know things are bad when I agree with Republicans.

Dianne said...

It's posturing for the masses - they don't mention what a tiny % these bonuses are - I think AIG and many others are greedy and uncaring in a deeply disgusting way but this is all just creating theater rather than leadership

I'm so sick of endless national outrage aimed in all the wrong directions

Paula and Skip said...

Great post. But than I am a German transplant to Florida and it might not be liked that a foreigner has an opinion on politics in a foreign country

Queen-Size funny bone said...

Seems like someone had a fire under their ass.

Queen-Size funny bone said...

Seems like someone had a fire under their ass.

~~gail~~mooselovingmamabear said...

I agree... and have to add...they should not only give the $$ back, but w/ interest. I'm soooo sick of bailing out the banks....you want a stimulus pkg, give it to "main street'...not "wall street"... IMHO...

♥ Kathy said...

I agree Mary. It's a mess.

Lew said...

Some of this anger is misplaced. The AIG Financial Products people who created the problem are long gone with their millions made before it was learned that it was a dangerous charade. These latest bonuses were promised to the people retained and hired to untangle the mess and keep it from affecting many more holders of AIG insurance. Those Republicans who are now willing to tax bonuses were proposing new and bigger tax cuts for the bankers and brokers as the way to get the economy started again. I agree with you that all of us, but especially Congress, need to think before we vote.

My Story said...

In my opinion bonuses should never be contracted and should only be given in the case of profits large enough to determine they were earned on merit. Something was said the other day that I don't quite understand, but felt scary and that was when it was suggested that AIG should not receive a bailbout due to these greedy bonuses, it was pointed out that if they fail, there was something called 'derivatives'
which were layered in the company and could cause world financial collapse. What happened to the monopoly laws and what fool repealed them.
Note to Paula & Skip: Welcome! and in this country all views are a right protected under our constitution, so speak up! Smiles, Tiffiny

SandyCarlson said...

I would love to see a rogues galler of the people who accepted those bonuses. The Puritan in me says they should be publicly humiliated.

There is the rule of law, and there is ethical behavior. It's a subtlety that can't be legislated. On either side of these bonuses.

Marilyn said...

I was wondering about this myself. An additional tax of some kind might not be a bad idea but the way this is being passed bothers me and I imagine that in this economy some of those people might not even have that money anymore. I guess it's the flavor of revenge that bothers me most. It feels like mob rule.

Daryl said...

I find it far more annoying that the Republicans are whining about how slowly this fix is going and how the President should stay home and do what he's paid to do rather than visit LA ... well, I wonder then how those same Republicans felt about W and his trips to Crawford to clear brush while he was being paid to work? You Republicans remember him, he who took more vacations than any other sitting President in the history of this country, the same man who thought clearing brush one August was more important than attending a briefing about a memo citing BenLaden's plans to use airliners to attack our cities.. the same man whose lack to ability to focus allowed his VP to pretty much do whatever he wanted while ignoring the outcries of the citizens ..

These are the same whiners who let this mess get to where it is now ... well I say to them STFU .. or find a better way to fix this.

Putz said...

teach, you sweetheart you, how is it that you can come up with exactly what has been on my mind incesstantly for weeks....first of all i am so mad at dick cheney...no real reason, i just kind of like to be mad at hm and his big mouth recently..he is one to talk, not to the crux of MY problem....we have million dollar, and multi million dollar basketball players who get paid....and if their team loses they get endorsments, and a player like boozer says if i can get a bonus, i will go from one losing team to another....we don't take his money back, and i grant that maybe you can't call his money taxpayer money, but it is money...now i am against anybody who makes more money than me, but that is the way it is and has been and will be....i can just see the lawyer's fees to litigate all this....the principle is what the american people are saying and i guess crooks, but then again isn't boozer a crook also...he plays bb for utar but he doesn't really care

PJ said...

Mary, this is the smartest take I've seen on AIG debacle. It's so painful to watch the mess getting bigger and more out of control. Keeping a level head right now is definitely the antidote.