Obama is going to be doing a media tour this week to get the public behind him after being thrown off track this week. Geithner and the President will be touting the help that will be needed to shore up the banks.
Did Team Obama drop the ball or throw the game?
Sunday, March 22, 2009
By Jack Kelly, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
American International Group, an insurance company that has received about $180 billion in taxpayer funds, this month paid $165 million in bonuses to executives whose bad judgment is largely responsible for the financial mess we're in.
Sen. Chris Dodd, D-Conn., the chairman of the Senate Banking Committee, wants the government to take back the bonuses. This is a change of heart for Mr. Dodd, because it was he who inserted in the "stimulus" bill an amendment which specifically protected from restrictions on executive compensation "contractually obligated bonuses agreed on or before Feb. 11, 2009." The amendment applied principally to AIG.
This apparent hypocrisy was not helpful to Mr. Dodd, who has been criticized for receiving a cut-rate loan from Angelo Mozillo, CEO of Countrywide Mortgage, one of the worst of the subprime mortgage lenders, and for his purchase of a $160,000 Irish "cottage" with the assistance of an insider trading felon for whom Mr. Dodd had arranged a pardon.
But it gets better.
The AIG bailout has been a way to hide an enormous second round of cash to the same group that had received TARP money already," wrote former New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer in Slate Tuesday. "AIG was nothing more than a conduit for huge capital flows to the same old suspects, with no reason or explanation."
Perhaps there's a hint of an explanation in this: Employees of Goldman Sachs contributed $955,473 to the Obama campaign. Employees of CitiGroup contributed $653,468; employees of JPMorgan Chase, $646,058; employees of Morgan Stanley, $485,823
If you want to read about Obama's Crocodile Tears over the AIG bonuses click here.