AIG CEO Asks For Half Of The Bonus Money Back

AIG CEO Edward Liddy told the House Financial Services subcommittee this afternoon that he has asked the members of the Financial Products division to voluntarily return half of their bonuses.

“It was distasteful to make these payments,” said Liddy. “This morning, I’ve asked the employees of AIG Financial Products to step up and do the right thing. Specifically, I’ve asked those who received retention payments in excess of $100,000 or more to return at least half of those payments.”

When asked by Chairman Barney Frank if he would agree to provide the names of the bonus recipients to the committee, Liddy agreed on the condition that they would remain confidential.

Frank refused to promise confidentiality and informed Liddy that he will subpoena the information if it is not provided. Liddy responded by reading from a recent death threat that suggested AIG employees and their families should be executed “with piano wire,” claiming that releasing the names would endanger the lives of AIG employees.

Chairman Frank explained that the Congress would follow the advice of law enforcement and security advisers once the names were turned over, but that he was not persuaded by the death threat argument.

[CSPAN]

Comments

Edit Your Comment

  1. JackWalker says:

    String ‘em up!

    • OULAXER11 says:

      @JackWalker:

      I second that motion!

    • mcmachete says:

      @JackWalker: As despicable as they are, you do realize that the bonuses are < .1% (that’s less than a tenth of a per cent) of AIG’s bailout?
      I’d start with the government…

    • Gtmac says:

      @JackWalker: I am no more happy than anyone else over these bonuses and what they represent, but inciting homicide/suicide is absurd and inappropriate.

      I would have hoped we’d evolved beyond lynch mobs. Or is this just another case of web anonymity breeding extremism?

      • JackWalker says:

        @Gtmac: Web anonymity breeding extremism? Hardly. I think you’re reading too much into my quip.

        “String ‘em up,” could mean any number of things. It is a quip with a morbid sense of irony around it as the article contained a quote >”with piano wire”< See the irony? Also, it could be a simple figure of speech. Did I literally mean to have them hung from the nearest cypress or tall oak? No. But I do believe that EVERYONE that unabashedly took their piece of the pie (the bonuses) deserve to be held responsible and duly punished.

        If it would ease your delicate senses, mayhaps a public flogging would be more appropriate?

      • trujunglist says:

        @Gtmac:

        It’s clear from your post that you don’t understand Japanese culture or tradition.
        I, for one, would be honored to be AIG’s kaishaku should they choose such an honorable death.

  2. Gridneo says:

    Piano wire? That’s like 1-shot, 1-kill. Firebombing them all would be far far more effective.

    • dohtem says:

      @Gridneo: Yeah but in a situation like this, I think we would want to savor the kill.

    • silver-bolt says:

      @Gridneo: And would save us a bunch of money too.

    • Applekid ┬──┬ ノ( ã‚œ-゜ノ) says:

      @Gridneo: I don’t remember where I first read this (definitely not at this link) but, google-fu resulted in this link so I’ll provide it.

      How to Commit Suicide

      For those who won’t follow the link lest they get a call from HR trying intervention after the network admin reported an employee researching suicide, I’ll copy and paste.

      Method 8: Emotionally Disturbing Piano Wire Beheading

      You will need

      * Superglue
      * Piano wire

      1. Find a very tall building, overlooking a public place. Stand on top of it with lots of piano wire and some superglue.
      2. Tie one end of a piece of piano wire 5 meters short of the ground to your ankles. Secure the other end to the top of the building.
      3. Tie one end of a piece of piano wire 10 metres short of the ground in a lasso around your neck, so it can tighten when pulled. Secure the other end to the top of the building.
      4. Glue your hand to your head.
      5. Jump!

      The result: at 10 meters from the ground, the piano wire around your neck will tighten and slice your head off. Your head will, however, not fall because it is stuck to your hand. You will be found dangling upside down 5 meters from the ground with your head stuck to your hand.

      And a record 45,098 people have killed themselves after witnessing a piano-wire suicide. What a coincidence!

      The original was in a chat log and ended with the other person in the chat saying “I don’t think I can be your friend anymore.”

  3. KyleOrton says:

    I don’t want these people to be able to choose to do things while the average American simply has things done to them.

    Layoffs, pay cuts, outsourcing, downsizing, restructuring. Imprisonment.

    I watched part online and caught an apology by the committee for threats and harassment to AIG employees. I don’t advocate death threats, but do these executives have any idea how angry some of the less fortunate are going to be if they continue to see no consequences for disastrous actions?

    • Trai_Dep says:

      @KyleOrton: Yeah.
      I love how all the buffoons citing how untouchable bonus contracts for these AIG execs are untouchable were the same ones undoubtedly cheering as the labor contracts for working people – pensions, wages, etc. – were slashed.

  4. Solange82200 says:

    Bastards. I have to admit, as an Obama supporter, I am very disappointed in the way our government just turned over this money to these fools with no conditions whatsoever. There is something strange going on, this just doesnt make sense. Are you telling me that they had no idea that greedy bankers would be greedy bankers? I want to know WHO took this out of the bill:

    [www.huffingtonpost.com]

    • MostlyHarmless says:

      @Solange82200: I wouldnt be too surprised if it was Barney Frank. Incredibly saddened, but not surprised.

    • ecwis says:

      @Solange82200: Yes, it’s quite ridiculous how Congress, and Barney Frank especially, is acting so surprised. They removed the prevision that would have prevented this. This makes me feel sorry for AIG in a way. I bet they want to pay back these loans ASAP so they don’t have to keep dealing with this crap.

    • Trai_Dep says:

      @Solange82200: As a rational person, I’m more concerned with who set up the machinations that destroyed the global economy a tad more than slightly more than a hundred million in bonus payments.

      Trillions vs millions: seems a bit of a distraction, no? Tempest in a teapot?

      Oh wait. Now I remember. Conservatives and their nutty Free Market Fundamentalism. Yeah. Those guys.

      • Trey Mahaffey says:

        @Trai_Dep: wasnt it the democratic controlled congress that has allowed these bills to be written , i know bush was there at the beginning of these bailouts… but as of the new stimulus package the honeymoon is over… obama has to do something and so far it has been a joke when dealing with these people at AIG.

        who were the biggest recipients of money from AIG for their campaign? it wasn’t obama and dodd was it?

        • madog says:

          @Trey Mahaffey: it was my understanding too that the previous administration wrote up the bail out contracts and Obama was just there to implement them. I’m sure he could have modified them but then again I think he felt it was more urgent to implement them as soon as possible.

        • trujunglist says:

          @Trey Mahaffey:

          For 1 trillion dollars, which party received the most money in 2000 and 2002, when AIG was running amok doing the crap that led to its ruin?

          OBAMA DID IT IT WAS OBAMA

          Ohhhhhhhh, I’m sorry, the correct answer is the Republican party. Thanks for playing though!

        • Trai_Dep says:

          @Trey Mahaffey: Oh darn.
          It turns out that AIG’s CEO gave roughly 60% of his donations to the Republican Party, 38% to PACs and a whopping two percent to the Democratic Party.
          That’s 2%.

          Darn. Oh darn. Gosh darn double-darn.

          On the bright side, he maxed out in contributions to President Bush, candidate Dole and President Shrub.
          No contribs to the other side.

          (Thanks to Harry Pothead for the cite, below)

          • Trey Mahaffey says:

            @Trai_Dep: Senate Banking committee Chairman Christopher Dodd told CNN Wednesday that he was responsible for language added to the federal stimulus bill to make sure that already-existing contracts for bonuses at companies receiving federal bailout money were honored.

            these are the people on your team that are running things now…

            cant refute this… bush didn’t do this one… this is Dodd and he is telling you he did it!

            guess everyone looses.

            • Trey Mahaffey says:

              @Trai_Dep:
              Here’s the list of top AIG recipients for the 2008 campaign:

              1. Sen. Chris Dodd, D-Conn., $103,100
              2. Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., $101,332
              3. Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., $59,499
              4. Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., $35,965
              5. Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., $24,750
              6. Former Gov. Mitt Romney, (R) Pres $20,850
              7. Sen. Joe Biden, D-Del., $19,975
              8. Rep. John Larson, D-Conn, $19,750
              9. Sen. John Sununu, R-N.H., $18,500
              10. Former Mayor Rudolph Giuliani (R) Pres $13,200
              11. Rep. Paul Kanjorski, D-Pa., $12,000
              12. Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., $11,000

              do the numbers confuse you?

              notice how obama got almost 85% more than mccain

              4 of the top 5 were democrats!

              here is where i got the numbers from

              [abcnews.go.com]

              guess your story about the CEO giving money doesnt matter much given the amount of money donated to the democrats

              and for trujunglist

              today… this is today, not 2000 and 2002… rehashing numbers from almost a decade ago… very good. i guess you brought that up because there isnt much substance to your complaints.

  5. Bladefist says:

    Barney Frank is a laughing stock. And aside from his ignorance he should be in jail

  6. JulesWinnfield says:

    That’s a half-assed solution

  7. Joewithay says:

    Yes I hate AIG getting bonuses with our tax money, but going after the money and the executives will not fix our finical system. This all seems to me as a distraction and a situation for Americans to vent their anger and frustration. At the end of day, we are still in a recession.

    • YouDidWhatNow? says:

      @Joewithay:

      The point isn’t so much about the $ per se – it’s about the exceptionally irrational and greedy behavior that it makes evident.

      The people getting these extravagant bonuses performed abysmally in their jobs. This being aside from the fact that they had a huge part in destroying our financial markets. The fundamental question is why in the hell would people who have clearly failed so miserably get magnificent bonuses for having done so?

      • godlyfrog says:

        @YouDidWhatNow?: They didn’t perform poorly, they did their jobs too well. If the bottom hadn’t fallen out of the economy, they’d have been doing really well.

        Despite that, handing out bonuses when your company has just been bailed out by the government and calling them “retention” bonuses is just absurd. These people got retention bonuses when they were allowed to keep their jobs. I don’t hate the receivers of the bonuses, though, I think the person or people responsible for paying out the bonuses needs to find a new career.

    • Darklighter says:

      @Joewithay: Bingo. Massively freaking out over 0.1% of the federal money AIG has received is a waste of time. Our attention is needed elsewhere.

    • FrankGrimesJr says:

      @Joewithay: I agree. As this goes on, it’s starting to feel more and more like “witch hunt” and less and less like “justice”.

      • Erwos says:

        @FrankGrimesJr: I very much agree that this is a witch hunt, and Congress has better things to do than argue over $160m when they’ve just blown through a trillion bucks. Never trust a politician to do anything other than what these guys getting the bonus are doing – putting themselves first.

    • heltoupee says:

      @Joewithay: Yes, we are in a recession, which is why this is such a big deal. Let me explain.

      The bonuses AIG is paying out total, roughly, 165 million dollars. The American population, according to [www.cia.gov] is roughly 303 million, with the age 0-14 demographic making up roughly 20% of that. So we’ve got ~242 million people 15 and over (old enough to work, and hence, pay taxes). I’d say it’s a good estimate to say that not all of those people pay taxes, so, I’m going to round it out and say that for each person that payed taxes, $1 went to AIG for the express purpose of paying these bonuses.

      Think about that for a minute. Uncle Sam took a dollar from each and every one of you, at a time when you could have REALLY used it (recession and all that), and gave it to one of less than 100 individuals. Nevermind that these people are the very ones that pissed away the American economy – who are among those responsible for so many of us losing our jobs or not being able to find work. These people are already quite rich. This bonus money is not going to go back into the economy – let me tell you why. It’s going to go into a bank account, because, after all, we’re in a recession, and all these rich people’s investments are nose-diving. Plus, they’re all bankers, so, being smart bankers, this money will be hidden away in off-shore accounts.

      It’s akin to theft. AIG found a way to legally steal $1 from the wallet and purse of EVERY American taxpayer, and give the spoils to less than 100 of it’s higher-ups.

      I’m pissed, and I, for one, want my damn dollar back!

    • Trai_Dep says:

      @Joewithay: What annoys me is that apparently, the AIG counterparties were given 100% of their payoff, even by companies – such as Goldman Sachs – that were privy to AIG’s books.
      That’s BILLIONS, not this relatively small change.
      I’m not saying pennies on the dollar would work, but they should get SOME kind of haircut, given the situation…

    • Anonymous says:

      @Joewithay: No, no no.. now you’re missing the point. Of course this isn’t going to fix our current financial problems. I don’t think anyone is making that suggestion. This is about fairness, justice and deterrence. The populous is obviously outraged at AIG’s behavior playing a part in our current financial mess and does not want to see any taxpayer monies going to those responsible. And we surely don’t want this type of behavior being seen as condoned by the gov’t, which could encourage similar behavior in the future.

      What would you have the government do? Nothing? How does that make sense? By your logic we should forget prosecuting murderers because: a) it distracts us from the poor dead victim and b) it won’t bring the murder victim back to life. That’s nonsense.

    • Anonymous says:

      @Joewithay: No, no no.. now you’re missing the point. Of course this isn’t going to fix our current financial problems. I don’t think anyone is making that suggestion. This is about fairness, justice and deterrence. The populous is obviously outraged at AIG’s behavior playing a part in our current financial mess and does not want to see any taxpayer monies going to those responsible. And we surely don’t want this type of behavior being seen as condoned by the gov’t, which could encourage similar behavior in the future.

      What would you have the government do? Nothing? How does that make sense? By your logic we should forget prosecuting murderers because: a) it distracts us from the poor dead victim and b) it won’t bring the murder victim back to life. That’s nonsense.

    • oneliketadow says:

      @Joewithay: But at least we’ll be happy.

    • mallen462 says:

      @Joewithay: I agree going after AIG will not fix our financial situation, but it will symbolize us no longer accepting large companies to destroy our economy further or take advantage of taxpayers. I think for a company in AIG situation to do this really shows you how much they care, and what they will be willing to do to make a dollar. Personally i think our goverment should take a stronger stand against AIG, but unfortunately that will never happen.

  8. ludwigk says:

    Yes… Half their bonus is a good start, Liddy. Now, what about the other half? And then the bailout money? What? AIG will fold? That’s not really my problem, now is it?

    Here’s a hint, Liddy. Stop Rewarding Failure.

    • Keavy_Rain says:

      @ludwigk: Half of the bonuses? I think we’ll be lucky if we see any of that money ever again.

      By which I mean the money we’ve given them so far. Even if they somehow manage to survive and become profitable again they’ll find a way to weasel out of repayment.

      • ludwigk says:

        @Keavy_Rain: Yeah, I know. He asked greedy, entitled executives to *voluntarily* return big wads of cash. I’m sure we’ll see like 5% of it returned at most.

  9. HFC says:

    I’m glad Mr. Liddy got my letter. I was worried I had the wrong address.

  10. GavinEstecado says:

    It’s a start at least, but who really would say “You know what, you’re right. Let me just write you a check for 2 million, half my bonus.”? I just want to fast forward to see how this all ends…

  11. DoubleEcho says:

    I don’t think this Liddy guy is really fully aware yet that the government owns a staggering majority of his company. Half of the bonus? Is he shitting us? That’s like catching the guy who stole your walllet, and having him tell you he’ll give the wallet back with half the cash if you just let him go.

    • sebadoh128 says:

      @DoubleEcho:

      Except in this case you gave the guy the wallet after he gave you a sob story. And, when he came back with the same sob story you gave him the keys to your house.

      Blame. The. Government.

    • oneliketadow says:

      @DoubleEcho: This sounds like something Circuit City would do when you brought in a broken TV: “Howabout we give you half of a refund?”

  12. Rob Weddle says:

    Not good enough, Joe. Not NEARLY good enough. I put you in charge of the entire advertising library!

  13. silver-bolt says:

    Great. So someone should release the names of EVERYBODY in that group, bonus or not. Let them all get killed instead. Is that what you want mr CEO? For more people then needed to be killed?

  14. Yossarian says:

    This grandstanding is laughable. Who couldn’t wait to give away billions of dollars with insufficient constraints? “Oh, woe is us, Citi is advertising on a stadium!” “Oh, the outrage, AIG is paying bonuses in accordance with contracts!”

    Take the money out of subsidies for ethanol and HFCS and it’s win/win.

    • LandruBek says:

      @Yossarian: Personally I’m in favor of a wee bit of grandstanding, since I naively hope it will prod Congress better to fulfill its oversight responsibilities. Those contracts would have a different meaning if AIG had truly gone bankrupt. But I am with you on pulling the teat away from the Corn Lobby. That would be awesome. Not that it will ever happen. *sigh*

  15. Blueskylaw says:

    It was retention bonuses, not performance bonuses.

    So you see, that makes it alright.

  16. acrobaticrabbit says:

    hear ye, hear ye, I declare we should bring back the age-old public humiliation and tar and feather these fools!

  17. OmniZero says:

    As they said on CNBC, from an e-mail from a viewer:

    “Using people’s money to pay off other people. Sounds like a Ponzi scheme.”

    • OmniZero says:

      @OmniZero: And as an added note…

      Jon Stewart was right about “They burned the f—ing house down and walked away rich as hell”. Their actions has caused the highest jobless rate in a long, long time. Then they get paid.

      They paid themselves after they made hundreds of thousands of people lose their jobs. How come no one up on Capitol Hill understands the severity of that? They have no idea what common people go through in a day and that makes me absolutely disgusted.

  18. QADude says:

    I say a public flogging (Michael Fay style) on the steps of city hall would work wonders.

    • madog says:

      @QADude: I would venture towards something awful and completely inappropriate that would emotionally scar them for the rest of their lives. Say, forcing them into a brothel and performing blumpkins to work off the money they owe.

  19. knightracer says:

    So by only keeping half the bonus money, we’ll only be half as pissed off at them right?

  20. artki says:

    Welcome to the Age of Show Trials.

    • Pop Socket says:

      @artki: And kangaroo courts. The shame is never what is illegal, but what is perfectly normal. Fatcat investors are getting their billions but the guys cutting the checks are having their pockets picked.

  21. Saboth says:

    I think this will work. They return half, and if their bonus is anything like what I got last year, the IRS will take the other half. Funny, I don’t remember the IRS working late nightly, busting butt, but apparently they put in enough work on my projects to earn them 40% of my paltry bonus.

  22. Anonymous says:

    While getting this money back won’t magically fix the depression, you have to remember that our current situation was the result of a huge number of smaller problems, actions and a lot of lack of foresight. There’s no single sweeping fix that can fix all our problems, but hundreds of small steps in different sectors and situations that will, in the end, hold the right people accountable and to slowly rebuild the economy.

    When someone murders another human being, nothing you can do can ‘fix’ the fact that a human being is dead, but you can punish the perpetrator. I’ll admit, not a perfect analogy, but that’s basically it.

  23. GuinevereRucker says:

    I agree with some of the previous posters that this is only a minor deal compared to the spending CONGRESS did in the first place. I’m not really surprised that big companies spend money extravagantly or unwisely. They did that before the bailout; why would they change now?

    I keep thinking about the graph that compares the war in Iraq to the bailout, and how insignificant the war is. The amount of money Congress just dropped on this bailout is astronomical.

    IMO, Congress should be tarred and feathered for giving a trillion dollars of taxpayer money to corporations that should be allowed to fail under a free market. Since when was it the government’s job to bail out private companies?

  24. econobiker says:

    I still wonder how in the ~F~ people get jobs that allow golden parachutes (and the mentioned bonuses) even when they tank the company/division/department. It is like getting fired but being paid for it.

    Just how does one word these retention bonuses to a prospective employer? Saying “I am so good that even if you fire me I will make money from your company.” I understand about non-compete clauses and paying a severance but for over $1 million?

    Or are these terms buried deep in the micro print of a contract? Or do you have to have the whole board of directors out on the country club golf course drunk out of their minds before you can get this agreement?

  25. Anonymous says:

    I don’t understand why these Execs are still trying to weasle out of this. They don’t see that if they don’t do the right thing and give back ALL the money, eventually those names WILL be made public and then they will have a reason to fear for their lives.

    Do the right thing, and they will most likely be able to keep their names secret. Course, people this greedy really don’t see straight, and would most rather die a few thousand dollar richer (which won’t help them when their dead) than be alive and not-as rich -_-

  26. tgpt says:

    So I see two possibilities here:

    (1) I received a bonus and am an incompetent lout who is going to lose my job due to my own incompetence and be an unemployed finanical worker in this economy with AIG as a stain on my resume. What incentive do I have to return any money?

    (2) I received my bonus and am good at my job, which I’m now probably going to lose due to the incompetence of my management and co-workers, leaving me an unemployed financial worker in this economy with AIG as a stain on my resume. What incentive do I have to return any money?

  27. savdavid says:

    Lotsa luck!

  28. Jabberkaty says:

    I can’t read posts like this any more. My blood pressure. My poor heart. The blood shooting out of my eyes.

    Half. Pfft. And he thinks the death threats his employees are receiving are going to make us sympathetic towards them? Just who’s money does he think he’s dolling out?

    Sorry, I need to go bang my head against the wall. It’s less painful than watching these jokers piss away our money.

    • discordance says:

      @Jabberkaty: I hear you man. I used to listen to NPR in the morning to get an update on the state of the world and maybe have a fun anecdote for use over lunch.

      Now the news is so infuriating that it’d put a mar on my entire day. I’d get to work and be in an absolutely horrible mood. This goes double for my trip home since by that point Marketplace is on and that’s even worse.

      I can’t do it any more. Now I just turn the radio off and listen to the hum of my engine and the noise of the road.

      I realize how ‘head in the sand’ that manner of thinking is, but I don’t want to be in a miserable mood all the time, especially when it impacts my work and my home life.

  29. Bill2me says:

    What Mr. Liddy fails to realize is that Chairman Frank is planning a good old fashioned Salem Style witch-hunt and that’s very hard to do if you can’t parade your victims around in public.

    The truth is that AIG had contractual obligations to pay these people for work they did as much as 2 years ago. It’s admirable that some are giving back the money and sad that that won’t be enough for blow-hards like Barney Frank (someone who holds a great deal of blame for our current situation.)

    • David Brodbeck says:

      @Bill2me: As part of bailing out the automakers, Congress demanded that the UAW tear up all their contracts and take pay cuts. Why didn’t they demand the same of AIG’s employees? This kind of crap is the real “class warfare.” Blue collar workers get the shaft and white collar workers get bonuses.

  30. Bahnburner says:

    Can my grandchildren have half the bailout back?

  31. lincolnparadox says:

    When can the revolution start? Do we all need to be starving to death and have some French tart tell us to “go and eat cake” before we’re ready to do something?

    Boycott AIG. If you have AIG or 21st Century auto/life insurance, cancel your policy and find an insurer not associated with AIG. Find out if your bank or Realtor works with AIG.

    While yer at it, vote out your Congressperson if they don’t do something to stop these rich douchebags from stealing our tax dollars.

    • heltoupee says:

      @lincolnparadox: The problem is that you only get one vote, while the rich douchebags can buy many, many more than one vote. Hell, I live in Illinois where the rich douchebags have run unopposed for decades because the honest, hardworking among us know we don’t have a chance. We just bend over and take it and are glad, because they’re at least using lube now.

    • Irish_Knight says:

      @lincolnparadox: yea thats gonna happen….

  32. krispykrink says:

    This false outrage from the dipsticks in Washington is sickening. These are the guys that allowed these bailouts and bonus’ to happen in the first place. The only reason why they treat it as such a big deal is because the public found out.

    As for the safety of the AIG employees, weak at best. Nobody touched Madoff, the public is nothing more than sissified sheep right now. Hopefully that will change as this crap continues and eventually the people will just remove Washington or start a tax revolt.

  33. kwsventures says:

    Who exactly in the government was in charge of following the money when taxpayer funded welfare was given AIG last year? Uh, that guy or gal needs to be fired like yesterday. … Regarding giving back part of a bonus: That populist, pandering request is stupid. If I got an AIG bonus my response would be: “Uh, go pound sand.”

  34. Colin Bean says:

    The worse part of this whole AIG fiasco? Obama, Geitner, and some other members of Congress knew we were giving them bonus money.

    [news.yahoo.com]

  35. WelcomeToMyWorld says:

    Edward Liddy’s campaign contributions are a matter of public record. 58% republican candidates, 1% democratic candidates, the rest to insurance PACs.

    [www.newsmeat.com]

  36. UnnamedUser says:

    Hmmmm … Here’s my solution:

    Since Obama has not made a single move to undo the Unconstitutional “Executive Orders” and anti-terror legislation, I suggest he use some of the provisions thereof.

    First: he should declare the AIG employees who got the bonuses to be “Enemy Cobatants”.

    Next: he should use his powers of “Extraordinary Rendition” to capture the enemy combatants anywhere in the world and take them to … places unknown.

    Finally: hold them there until they give up the money.

    Sounds good to me.

    There but for the grace of FSM go you and I.

  37. kwsventures says:

    Two corrupt characters–Obama and Dodd– got the biggest political contributions from AIG. Each creep received $100k. Did those 2 pandering fools give the money back?

    • Trai_Dep says:

      @kwsventures: See Harry Pothead’s excellent cite, above: 60% GOP, 1% Dem, maxed out to G Bush, Dole, GW Bush…
      Government isn’t the problem: Conservative gov’t is the problem.

  38. chrisjames says:

    Liddy, pal, it’s not that they have the money. It’s that they received any at all. It’s a drop in the bucket, sure, but it’s time to start plugging leaks not keep ignoring them. And, Liddy, pal, you’re the leak.

  39. axiomatic says:

    On the off chance a CEO or elected official is reading here:

    I have lost all respect for my elders running our businesses and governments.

    You should all be ashamed of yourselves. Middle School CHILDREN could do a far better job than any of you greedy thieves in the public or private sector.

    I think it’s time to start putting the executives or politicians college they attended next to their names when it is displayed on TV so we viewers actually know who is (partially) to blame teaching these levels of greed. I’m convinced that this behavior is taught, not innate to a person.

    I’m not even religious and I have twice the moral fiber of some of these fat cats who obviously have no shame.

    On topic: HALF is nowhere near good enough! Get ALL the money back. Let AIG fail.

  40. smonkey says:

    While I’m all for removing the executive bonuses. I’ve heard that alot of sales people bonuses were in this as well. If that’s the case they shouldn’t be the ones punished. Removing their bonus is in effect removing 50% or more of their annual income. This has the preverse incentive that the more sales they brought in the more financial pain they will go through. You’ll be punishing them for being good at their jobs.

    But by all means, let the executives not get anything

  41. Posthaus says:

    Can we get this guy labeled as an “enemy combatant?”

  42. RStui says:

    JulesWinnfield and HFC: You are my commenting heros.

  43. WelcomeToMyWorld says:

    Is it just me, or does this guy look like the evil twin of Newt Gingrich?

  44. CapitalC says:

    If I’d been canned then received $100K bonus, I’d be all “SCREW YOU! I’m moving to MEXICO!”

  45. KillTheAcademy says:

    kill em all.

  46. Anonymous says:

    Don’t forget there are AIG subsidiaries that have nothing to do with the financial crisis, mostly the Life Insurance and Annuity subsidiaries.

    AIG is trying to sell them off, but it would be an enormous blow if they went insolvent. Especially considering some fixed Annuities are not transferrable.

  47. Plates says:

    I don’t know who is more distasteful the corrupt Barney Frank or the AIG idiots.

  48. Owen Wilcox says:

    I’ve been watching CSPAN for the past 4 or 5 hours and I have to say, I feel bad for Mr. Liddy. The US Representative’s at time were harsh in there comments. I do not like the recent news anymore than the rest of Americans, but to bash the current CEO who is trying to clean up the mess is not needed.

  49. trujunglist says:

    Bullshit, to all you that say .1% is not worth bitching over.
    First it starts with .1%, then its .5%, then its 1%, then its 10%, and so on and so forth.
    Responsibility has to start somewhere or people will run with the ball. My ex is a good example.

  50. runswithscissors says:

    Bonus or no, when does the time come when the American taxpayers – now 80% owners of AIG – get to FIRE these executives for outrageous incompetence?

    Why do they still have jobs?!?!? Anyone? Anyone? Bueller? Bueller?

  51. humphrmi says:

    Another example of the government changing the rules, because they don’t like something that has happened.

    It’s a slippery slope. Pray that they don’t come after your paycheck next.

  52. AtomicPlayboy says:

    Mayhaps we could ask our elected representatives to also return half of their income, or half of their campaign funds? They’ve done an amazing, and continuing, job of bollixing up the economy, enough to make AIG’s incompetence look rather trivial by comparison. If we’re going to get into the business of demanding compensation from expensive, failed government-run enterprises, we should start with the government.

  53. avantartist says:

    like a 165 million dollar earmark.

  54. Anonymous says:

    humphrmi:::: What?! Are you really comparing what someone gets paid for doing their job with bailout money (taxpayer bailout money) being handed over to people who obviously haven’t done theirs?

    Let’s look at this in a different way. Let’s say you work for an exterminating company. You spray the houses with too many chemicals and kill the homeowners. Later, the exterminating company, because of you doing your job incorrectly and killing people, goes bankrupt. So the community takes up a collection to save the company, who immediately turns around and pays you your “contractually obligated” bonus, regardless of the fact that your incompetence killed people and led to the downfall of the company in the first place. Under those circumstances, do you REALLY deserve those bonuses? Anyone who answers “Yes” needs to visit a doctor.

  55. stopNgoBeau says:

    Hey, consumerist, when are you going to fix the broken comments?

  56. ZukeZuke says:

    Tell me again why we can’t shoot these jackasses?

  57. kreatre2009 says:

    This “outrage” over these bonuses is stupid. AIG revealed plans to pay out these bonuses over a year ago. The members of Congress (who have no business whatsoever being angry over the actions of a private company) knew long before now that these bonuses were due to be paid out. This is nothing more than more class warfare meant to keep the people angry at wealthy people, and move Obama’s agenda forward. AIG got over $170 billion from the Treasury Dept. These bonuses account for only a tiny fraction of that money. AIG gave away BILLIONS to other banks. That’s what we should be mad at — NOT the bonuses.

  58. bagumpity says:

    If I had received well over a year’s pay for the average American as a bonus, would I pay it back? Heck no- I’d have that cash stashed in a safe-deposit box so fast your head would spin. They’re gonna lay those folks off anyway, so why should they pay back the money they’ll need to live on while they look for new work?

  59. danno5-0 says:

    testing

  60. Anonymous says:

    Why do the AIG’s CEO/Executives get BONUS when the company is in financial trouble? Why the taxpayers has to responsible for it? I just don’t understand why our tax money would be used to reward the BAD performances by those greedy CEO!!!!!!!!!! Mr Obama, can you see our frustration while you are so busy appearing on the Jay Leno and David Letterman shows!