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  #21  
Old 03-19-2009, 08:57 PM
BlueAngel BlueAngel is offline
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Default Re: The Bailout


The reason being used by the Administration/Treasury Department for the pay-out of bonuses to the executives of AIG is that they were fearful they would be sued otherwise, because the contracts of these executives provide for the payment of bonuses.

AS FAR AS I CAN TELL, THE EXECUTIVES OF AIG DIDN'T HAVE A CONTRACT WITH THE TAXPAYERS OF THIS COUNTRY OR THE TREASURY DEPARTMENT to provide them with bonus money.

Please, correct me if I'm wrong.

Are the executives of AIG employees of the Treasury Deparment?

Since taxpayer money was used to bail-out AIG, does this mean that we own them?

Are we the new Board of Directors?

How much stock have we acquired in the company?

I would think there should be a clause in the contract of executives who are apparently guaranteed bonus money that they shall not receive any in the event of POOR performance such as bankrupting the company.

Rather than allowing the executives of AIG to pick the pockets of the Treasury Department through lawsuits, who, apparently have a contract with them to provide bonuses even though their company was insolvent, and, as far as I can tell, they are not employees of the Treasury Department, decided it would be best to let them pick the pockets of the taxpayers.

If the FED didn't own AIG previously, they certainly do now.

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  #22  
Old 03-19-2009, 09:31 PM
BlueAngel BlueAngel is offline
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Default Re: The Bailout

Isn't that how it works?

A company is failing/bankrupt.

They need an injection of money to survive.

Financial assistance is provided by a group/individual and this group/individual becomes a stockholder/director.

In this respect, since taxpayer money was used to bail-out AIG, the taxpayers should have acquired stock in AIG and should be directors of the company.

However, according to Wikipedia, the government bailed them out.

American International Group - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

So, which is it?

Was taxpayer money used to save AIG or was it FED money?

Last edited by BlueAngel : 03-19-2009 at 09:41 PM.
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  #23  
Old 03-19-2009, 09:49 PM
BlueAngel BlueAngel is offline
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Default Re: The Bailout

Kindly send the taxpayers a stimulus check after you recoup some of the bonus money paid to the AIG executives through the legislation that was passed to impose a 90 percent tax on it.

Thanking you in advance,
A Taxpayer

Or, give it back to the government.

Cause, I'm confused.

Was it the FED or the taxpayers who bailed AIG out?

House passes bill taxing AIG and other bonuses

House passes bill taxing AIG and other bonuses

Print By STEPHEN OHLEMACHER,
Associated Press Writer Stephen Ohlemacher,
Associated Press Writer – 1 hr 15 mins ago

AP - Thursday, March 19, 2009, WASHINGTON – Denouncing a "squandering of the people's money," lawmakers voted decisively Thursday to impose a 90 percent tax on millions of dollars in employee bonuses paid by troubled insurance giant AIG and other bailed-out companies. The House vote was 328-93. Similar legislation has been introduced in the Senate and President Barack Obama quickly signaled general support for the concept.

"I look forward to receiving a final product that will serve as a strong signal to the executives who run these firms that such compensation will not be tolerated," the president said in a statement.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif, told colleagues, "We want our money back now for the taxpayers. It isn't that complicated."

The outcome may not have been complicated. But the lopsided vote failed to reflect the contentious political battle that preceded it.

Republicans took Democrats to task for rushing to tax AIG bonuses worth an estimated $165 million after the majority party stripped from last month's economic stimulus bill a provision that could have banned such payouts.

"This political circus that's going on here today with this bill is not getting to the bottom of the questions of who knew what and when did they know it," said House Republican Leader John Boehner of Ohio.

He voted "no," but 85 fellow Republicans joined 243 Democrats in voting "yes." It was opposed by six Democrats and 87 Republicans.

The bill would impose a 90 percent tax on bonuses given to employees with family incomes above $250,000 at American International Group and other companies that have received at least $5 billion in government bailout money. It would apply to any such bonuses issued since Dec. 31.

The House vote, after just 40 minutes of debate, showed how quickly Congress can act when the political will is there.

It was only this past weekend that the bailed-out insurance giant paid bonuses totaling $165 million to employees, including traders in the Financial Products unit that nearly brought about AIG's collapse.

AIG has received $182.5 billion in federal bailout money and is now 80 percent government-owned.

Disclosure of the bonuses touched off a national firestorm that both the Obama administration and Congress have scurried to contain.

In a statement issued by the White House late Thursday, Obama said the House vote "rightly reflects the outrage that so many feel over the lavish bonuses that AIG provided its employees at the expense of the taxpayers who have kept this failed company afloat."

"In the end, this is a symptom of a larger problem — a bubble-and-bust economy that valued reckless speculation over responsibility and hard work," he said. "That is what we must ultimately repair to build a lasting and widespread prosperity."

In his statement, Obama did not explicitly endorse the House bill. Instead, he was careful to take a wait-and-see attitude on the details of the final legislation while making clear that he supports the effort to get the bonus money back for taxpayers.

Topic No. 1 raised by Republicans during the House debate was the last-minute altering of a provision in Obama's $787 billion stimulus law to cap executive compensation for firms receiving government bailouts.

The measure might have forestalled payment of the AIG bonuses.

But Senate Banking Committee Chairman Chris Dodd, a Connecticut Democrat and the author of the provision, says the administration insisted that he modify his proposal so that it would only apply to payments agreed to in the future.

That, critics claim, cleared the way for the AIG payouts.

"The idea came from the administration," Dodd said Thursday

Dodd said he was not aware of any AIG bonuses at the time the change was made.

Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner confirmed such conversations with Dodd. He said the administration was worried about possible legal challenges to the provision.

"We expressed concern about this specific version," Geithner said in an interview with CNN. "But we also worked with him to strengthen the overall bill."

The treasury secretary, who has been criticized for not learning of the AIG bonus payments sooner since he helped orchestrate the bailout last year as president of the New York Fed, said anew in the interview that he was not informed of the bonuses until last week.

"And as soon as I heard about the full scale of these things, we moved very actively to explore every possible legal avenue to address this problem," Geithner said.

A similar — but not as punitive — bill to recoup bonus payments with taxes was gaining support in the Senate.

It would impose a 35 percent excise tax on the companies paying the bonuses and a 35 percent tax on the employees receiving them. The taxes would apply to all companies receiving government bailout money, but they are clearly geared toward AIG.

"This is not just another case of runaway corporate greed and arrogance, ripping off shareholders by excesses lavished around the executive suite," said Rep. Earl Pomeroy, D-N.D. "These bonuses represent a squandering of the people's money. ... Starting right here, right now, we are saying no more."

The Senate measure is sponsored by Sen. Max Baucus of Montana, the chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, and the panel's senior Republican, Chuck Grassley of Iowa. It was expected to be brought to the Senate floor next week.

Meanwhile, New York's attorney general, Andrew Cuomo, said AIG has given him the list of employees who received a total of $165 million in retention bonuses.

Cuomo said he won't release any employees' names until his office has answered any security concerns raised by the AIG employees.

He also said he will work with AIG in the coming days to determine which workers have decided to return the payments.

Cuomo had sought the names from AIG chief executive Edward Liddy through a subpoena. The deadline was Thursday.

Separately, Connecticut's consumer protection division also subpoenaed AIG, demanding that the contracts and names of employees who received the bonuses be provided by March 27. Gov. M. Jodi Rell has said she wants the division to determine whether the bonuses can be voided under the Connecticut Unfair Trade Practices Act.

AIG's financial products division is headquartered in Wilton, Conn.

Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal says his office also demanded the bonus recipients' names and the amounts.

About 400 AIG employees and future employees received bonuses, but not all of them earned over the $250,000 family income threshold specified by the House bill.

Obama administration special envoy Richard Holbooke was on AIG's board of directors in early 2008, when the insurance company committed to the bonuses, and during the previous years of aggressive investment strategies that brought the firm to brink of collapse. White House spokesman Tommy Vietor said Thursday: "Mr. Holbrooke had nothing to do with and knew nothing about the bonuses."

While the House legislation calls for a 90 percent tax, Rep. Charles Rangel, D-N.Y., chairman of the tax-writing House Ways and Means Committee, said he expected local and state governments to take the remaining 10 percent of the bonuses.

Rangel said the bill would apply to mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, among others, while excluding community banks and other smaller companies that have received less bailout money.

"The American people demand protection and that's what we're doing today," he told the House.

___

The bill is HR 1586

___

Associated Press writers Stephen Ohlemacher and Julie Hirschfeld Davis contributed to this report.
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  #24  
Old 03-19-2009, 10:07 PM
BlueAngel BlueAngel is offline
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Default Re: The Bailout

Obama tells Leno he was stunned by AIG bonuses

Print By MARK S. SMITH, Associated Press Writer

Mark S. Smith, Associated Press Writer – 1 hr 7 mins ago

New York AP – President Barack Obama, left, appears on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno in Burbank, Calif. Thursday, … BURBANK, Calif. – President Barack Obama told Jay Leno on Thurday that he was stunned when he learned of the bonuses that bailed-out insurance giant AIG was paying its employees.

Obama told "The Tonight Show" host the payments raise moral and ethical problems — and vowed again to try to recoup the cash for taxpayers.

"We're going to do everything we can to get these bonuses back", he declared.

Leno asked Obama what he thought when his staff first advised him of the payments, many made to traders in the very division that brought American International Group to ruin.

"'Stunned' is the word," Obama replied in a taped appearance on "Tonight." He said he found it hard to fathom how anyone would accept lavish payments in those circumstances. "People just had this sense of entitlement. We must be the best and the brightest."

But Obama staunchly defended Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, who's increasingly come under fire for failing to block the bonuses.

"I think Geithner is doing an outstanding job," Obama said. "He is a smart guy. He is a calm and steady guy. I don't think people fully appreciate the plate that was handed him."

Obama added Geithner's carrying on "with grace and good humor. He understand that he's on the hot seat."

Too many in Washington are trying to figure out who to blame for things — when they should be focused on fixing them, Obama said.

According to NBC, Obama was the first sitting president ever to appear on "The Tonight Show." He'd already appeared twice as a candidate.

Obama spoke with little interference or challenge from Leno, who clearly was enthused about snaring the president as a guest and pronounced it "one of the best nights of my life."

Leno veered away from politics and into the personal toward the end of the 35-minute interview, asking, "How cool is it to fly on Air Force One?" and when Obama daughters Sasha and Malia would get their pet dog.

"This is Washington. That was a campaign promise," Obama replied to audience laughter. "No, I'm teasing. The dog will be there shortly."

The new pet will be in place after he returns from a NATO meeting, Obama said.

The White House bowling alley remains in place, Obama said, bragging that he rolled a 129-point game ("Like the Special Olympics or something," he said), but a basketball court is a priority.

In his opening monologue, Leno said lots of people were surprised Obama would come on NBC — figuring he'd be tired of big companies on the brink of disaster with a bunch of overpaid executives.

Leno also joked about the dismal state of the economy, saying it's so bad Obama flew to California on Southwest Airways — making nine stops.

In recent years, a "Tonight Show" appearance has become a key humanizing touch for aspiring presidents. But its history of such appearances goes back to 1960, when then-Sen. John F. Kennedy came on the show to chat with Jack Paar.

Obama himself has already made two non-presidential appearances — on Dec. 1, 2006, and Oct. 17, 2007.

The White House scheduled the appearance as part of a broader outreach to promote Obama's agenda — one that's already had him on ESPN's "SportsCenter" this week and includes a "60 Minutes" interview airing Sunday, plus a prime-time news conference Tuesday.

But on ESPN, the talk was mostly about basketball. The First Fan filled out an NCAA tournament bracket — picking North Carolina to defeat Louisville in the final. But recalling he picked the Tar Heels last year, he joked, "This year, don't embarrass me in front of the nation, all right? I'm counting on you."

___

AP Television Writer Lynn Elber contributed to this report.
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  #25  
Old 03-19-2009, 10:13 PM
BlueAngel BlueAngel is offline
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Default Re: The Bailout

I'll post my commentary later about Obama's remarks, while a guest on the Jay Leno show, regarding the AIG bonuses.

For starters.

I can't believe he referred to himself as having performed as if he was competing in the Special Olympics since he bowled a 129 in the White House bowling alley.

Last edited by BlueAngel : 03-19-2009 at 10:50 PM.
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  #26  
Old 03-19-2009, 11:09 PM
BlueAngel BlueAngel is offline
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Default Re: The Bailout

Let's recap.

Or, a play by play, if you will.

DODD and his staff constructed a BILL for the AIG bail-out that included a diluted version of executive bonus payments.

This Bill passed the Senate.

Afterwards, the ADMINISTRATION instructed DODD to change the language in the Bill to include exorbitant bonus payments to the executives of AIG and DODD accommodated the ADMINISTRATION.

Was this Bill, with the change, presented to the Senate again for a vote?

DODD stated that he had no clue that the revision he made to the original BILL to provide for exorbitant executive bonuses upon the request of the Administration was in support of AIG.

Well, if this is so, then we are to assume that DODD had no clue for whom he was writing the original Stimulus Bill.

What is he doing?

Writing a Bill without any idea for whom or what?

According to President Obama, who must be out of the loop, as well, he was unaware that this BILL provided for exorbitant bonuses to the executives of AIG.

He was astounded that his Treasury Secretary failed to block the exorbitant bonus package.

Huh?

Block it?

He authorized it.

A diluted version was passed by the Senate and the Treasury Secretary (Administration) told DODD to change it.

So, who threw the Treasury secretary the pass that he failed to block?

Those who control our country?

Those who control our President?

Namely, the FED/Banksters.

Oh, yeah, I'm certain that the Treasury Secretary is capable of blocking the FED just the same as the President.

Don't you just love how OBAMA said that people are too concerned with placing blame.

Actually, I disagree.

The people should be VERY CONCERNED as to placing blame and I think you share in part of the blame and are using the Treasury Secretary as the fall guy because you certainly can't tell the people that you take your orders from the FED and, therefore, have no REAL power.
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  #27  
Old 03-19-2009, 11:31 PM
BlueAngel BlueAngel is offline
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Default Re: The Bailout

So, when the Administration told DODD to change the STIMULUS BILL for AIG to include outrageous bonuses for the executive's of the company, what was he going to say, "NO!"

He's beholden to the BANKSTERS just the same as the rest of THEM.

He's a fall guy, just the same as the Treasury Secretary.

Because those who control, control from behind the curtains.

The "SHADOW GOVERNMENT."

On another note.

Did I hear this correctly?

On one hand, OBAMA told the American people that he's going to fix the economy and then in the next breathe, he told us not to expect much from the government.

How reassuring.

Flip...Flop!
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  #28  
Old 03-20-2009, 10:19 AM
BlueAngel BlueAngel is offline
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Default Re: The Bailout

Obama apologizes for Special Olympics gaffe

Obama apologizes for Special Olympics gaffe

Yahoo! Bookmarks Print 15 mins ago
March 20, 2009

WASHINGTON President Barack Obama has apologized to the chairman of the Special Olympics for his late-night talk show quip equating his bowling skills to those of athletes with disabilities.

Appearing on "The Tonight Show" Thursday, the president told host Jay Leno he'd been practicing at the White House's bowling alley but wasn't happy with his score of 129. Then he remarked: "It was like the Special Olympics or something."

The audience laughed, but the White House quickly recognized the blunder. The Special Olympics, founded in 1968, is a global nonprofit organization serving 200 million individuals with intellectual disabilities.

On his way back to Washington on Air Force One, Obama called the chairman of the Special Olympics, Tim Shriver, to say he was sorry even before the taped program aired late Thursday night.

"He expressed his disappointment and he apologized in a way that was very moving. He expressed that he did not intend to humiliate this population," Shriver said Friday on ABC's "Good Morning America." Obama, Shriver said, wants to have some Special Olympic athletes visit the White House to bowl or play basketball.

Still, Shriver said, "I think it's important to see that words hurt and words do matter. And these words that in some respect can be seem as humiliating or a put down to people with special needs do cause pain and they do result in stereotypes."

Shriver is the son of Special Olympics founder Eunice Kennedy Shriver and nephew of Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, whose endorsement early in the Democratic primaries was critical to Obama winning his party's nomination.

Deputy Press Secretary Bill Burton told reporters traveling with Obama that the president's offhand remark was not meant to disparage the Special Olympics, only to poke some fun at the commander in chief's bowling skills.

"He thinks that the Special Olympics are a wonderful program that gives an opportunity to shine to people with disabilities from around the world," Burton said.

Despite making fun of his score, the president appears to be getting better the more he visits the White House lanes, which President Truman installed in 1947. During a campaign photo op a year ago at a bowling alley in Altoona, Pa., he rolled only a 37 in seven frames. The clip of the disastrous game was replayed on late night television shows such as Leno's one of Obama's few campaign gaffes.
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  #29  
Old 03-21-2009, 10:08 PM
BlueAngel BlueAngel is offline
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Default Re: The Bailout

Here.

I'll help you out and the matter can be settled very quickly.

BONUS:

Anything given in addition to the customary or required amount.

WAGE:

Money paid for work done.

A BONUS is NOT a wage.

Therefore, the Connecticut WAGE law, which the AIG executives are using to justify their bonuses does not apply.

I cannot imagine that our states have a law that protects the BONUSES to be paid to employees of companies.

Bonuses paid to employees are not a public matter.

They are a private CONTRACTUAL matter between employee and employer.

I can, however, imagine that states have a law to protect the wages of employees.

One is not the same as the other.

IMO, of course.

Last edited by BlueAngel : 03-21-2009 at 10:11 PM.
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  #30  
Old 03-21-2009, 10:31 PM
BlueAngel BlueAngel is offline
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Default Re: The Bailout

Anyway WE can find out the annual salaries (WAGES) of the AIG executives who received bonuses and, while you're at it, I think YOU ought to go after the Merrill Lynch executives who received bonuses, as well.

After all, from what I understand their pay-out was a lot higher than the executives of AIG.

The taxpayers of this country have had ENOUGH!

WE don't like it when the rich steal from the poor!
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