Say you are president. You thunder about how your predecessor’s bailouts let corporate execs keep big bonuses at taxpayer expense. That won’t happen on your watch!
And then it does. AIG bigwigs take $165 million.
So you are angry at yourself, for signing that stimulus bill with its specific language permitting TARP recipients to pay bonuses if bonuses were part of contracts made before February of ’09.
Maybe somebody should have read the legislation. So who has that job? Besides you . . . I mean the president himself. Why, Congress, of course!
Iowa Sen. Charles Grassley said he would at least “feel better” were AIG executives to apologize and then either “resign or go commit suicide.”
Connecticut Sen. Christopher Dodd and New York Sen. Chuck Schumer advocate passing a special tax to confiscate all the bonus money ex post facto.
Dodd didn’t mention that he had authored the provision specifically permitting the AIG bonuses. He has now said he’ll return the $280,000 in donations he’s received from AIG executives. Schumer was mum about his $112,000 from those same execs.
Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar said, “We’ve got to do whatever it takes to make sure people that basically ripped off the American people weren’t able to profit from it.”
So is she talking about AIG . . . or Congress?
This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.