Thursday, November 12, 2009

Having Your Cake and Eating It, AIG Style

In an ideal world, we get to have our cake and eat it - every last calorie-laden crumb. But in the real world we live in today where business giants have been allowed to gorge on their proverbial cake (read: taxpayer dollars), there comes a price for having it all. AIG, the great American Insurance GIANT that was not allowed to fail, is up in arms about pay czar Kenneth Feinberg’s strict anti-bonus diet.

Poor AIG leaders. Where else can you lose billions of dollars, stick your hand out for $170+ billion and then retreat quietly back to your boardroom in anticipation of your $3 million year-end bonus.

Threatening to quit after just three months at the helm, AIG’s recently appointed chief executive Robert Benmosche backed down and scurried back to AIG’s Ivory Tower. Coward. The FT reports that around a dozen top level executives and business managers have left AIG in the past few months.

If those “executives and business managers” were in involved with the massive scourge that AIG has left behind for American taxpayers to swallow, I sincerely hope that they're working three jobs at minimum wage or digging holes in our roads right now.

And for those who didn’t know it, having your cake and it eating is a fairy tale. Somebody somewhere has to pay the price for someone’s mistake. AIG seems to be learning that the hard way.

Thanks to Francesco Guerrera of the FT for his excellent reporting on AIG.

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