AIG Mob Invades Neighborhood

As Michael noted yesterday the House passed Speaker Pelosi’s targeted tax increase on AIG (and other TARP funded) bonus recipients. Regrettably, almost half of the Republicans in the chamber joined in on the hypocrisy (proving once again that Republicans can always be expected to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory).

Taking their cue from Congress, local activists and unions in the Wilton, CT area are planning some drive by harassment of AIG employee homes this weekend to indulge in some good old fashioned schadenfreud. (If anyone had a doubt as to how card check will unfold, here’s your preview.)

Are you angry at AIG? I know I am. $165 Million in bonuses for a bunch of executives whose most impressive accomplishment was ruining their own company and helping drive the nation’s economy to the brink of ruin.

More money for AIG executives isn’t be the best way to dig out of this recession. So do you want to do something about it?

In Connecticut, we have a unique opportunity to tell AIG executives exactly how we feel. AIG’s Financial Products Division (the part of the company most responsible for this mess) is headquartered right here in Connecticut. And many of their top executives live nearby.

So this Saturday, hop on the bus, Gus: We’re going for a ride. Join us on a tour of the lifestyles of rich and infamous AIG executives. Did you ever wonder what kind of property billions of dollars in risky “credit default swaps” can buy you? This is your chance to find out. We’ll deliver a letter to each of these AIG executives to let them know how we think we can put our economy back on track.

The zeitgeist of the present Washington political class seems to emphasize a despicable invasion of the privacy of private citizens. Thugs like these (and the Congress that encourages them) happily embrace their mob identity, clueless to the threat they represent to individual liberty and freedom…but what should we expect in this post partisan world of collectivism? Robespierre would be fond of these jacobin asses (even though these particular ignoramuses probably don’t know what ultimately happened to the French scoundrel).

To their credit, The New York Times reports that there is real, human face behind this riot of indignation:

The A.I.G. executive who was nicknamed “Jackpot Jimmy” by a New York tabloid walked up the driveway toward his bay-windowed house in Fairfield, Conn., on Thursday afternoon. “How do I feel?” said the executive, James Haas, repeating the question he had just been asked. “I feel horrible. This has been a complete invasion of privacy.”

Mr. Haas walked on, his pink shirt a burst of color on a slate-gray afternoon. The words came haltingly. “You have to understand,” he said, “there are kids involved, there have been death threats. …” His voice trailed off. It looked as if he was fighting back tears.

“I didn’t have anything to do with those credit problems,” said Mr. Haas, 47. “I told Mr. Liddy” — Edward M. Liddy, the chief executive of A.I.G., the insurance giant — “I would rescind my retention contract.”

He ended the conversation with a request: “Leave my neighbors alone.”

Tom Wolfe would be proud….this past week resembles a scene from Bonfire of the Vanities.

And now, for something completely different
TOTUS on the Call of Apology
  • Adrian Browne

    Will there be any tea bags or tea bagging involved?

  • M B Hallwig
  • retired military

    Every employee at AIG should quit. Then Congress can explain how a business failed aftr they spent $170 billion on it.

    This is getting to be like the Lord of the Flies. Too bad Piggie is the American taxpayer.

  • You know, a lot of people are talking about this being the last straw for Geithner. But all those statements lead me to do is say, ‘then who’ll take the job?’ When he was nominated a lot of people, yes, a lot on the right, too, said he was a smart pick (this was before his tax “issues” came out) due to his expererience with the Fed and such. I don’t recall a lot of alternatives being reasonably proposed.

    So who would replace him if he was the best available? (and I don’t mean ‘appoint donald duck, he’d do a better job’, I mean quite seriously who would replace him?)

  • sam

    Falze:

    How could anyone do a worse job than Geithner? Does anyone even know what Tim is doing, except writing big checks? Anyone can write big checks.

  • Grace

    This is the same type of mob mentality that landed Obama in the White House.

    Ignorant people who worshipped “hope and change” without knowing of what the hope and change would consist.

    These are the same people who filled in the blanks on the Blank Slate.

    These are the same people who now, with snippits of ideas they can’t or won’t completely understand, are running hot and angry to blame someone, anyone.

    The more I read, the more I realize that these bonuses are part of a very complex picture which CONGRESS screwed up. They are the ones who passed the legislation without reading it. I too am angry, but at the very least, an attempt should be made to get an accurate picture of both sides.

    I know, too much to ask of ignorant, angry mobs.

  • that’s my point, sam…if he’s the best there is…well, you can finish that statement.

  • Rance

    Question: Can you really call it a mob if they are riding around in a bus?

    Maybe you should coin a new term, like Mobbus.
    ( They are a very one-sided group.)

  • Great post HughS. All of this is a very sad commentary on the state of our Repbublic. Mob rule leads to lynchings. Is that what we want? Is that what Congress wants?
    http://www.rightklik.net/

  • RobD

    If I was “Jackpot Jimmy” I would set up a table on my front porch and proceed to clean my guns.

  • Sue

    Sorta reminds me of all the anti-Prop 8 stuff after it passed. Those who supported it (donated money) were harrassed to the point that some lost their jobs, there was property damage as well as injuries. And of course picketing as an angry mob.

    The angry left feels ENTITLED to do whatever necessary to get their way-even if it involves harrassment, intimidation and for some even violence.

    There’s no way this can be considered anything but harrassment and intimidation considering they are taking out their anger not on congress, or Obama who signed the bill allowing the retention bonuses but on the people who are simply doing their job and expecting to get paid what their contract said they would for doing it.

    It’s nothing but class warfare that the left likes to stir up.

    You’re right-this is what it will be like with card check.

  • Clay

    Those thieving bastards should be harassed in their homes, in public, or anywhere else they can be found. Taxpayers everywhere should throw rotten fruit and hurl epithets at their sorry asses for accepting ill-got gain.

    Wait. We’re talking about the fact that Congress voted against eliminating their automatic pay raise. Right?

  • Rance

    Clay,

    As far as harassing AIG employees “anywhere else they can be found”, you might note that AIGFP, the unit responsible for their mess, is located in London. I’m assuming that most of there emplyees, current and ex, still live there.

  • Chris

    I have been yelled at, threatened and cursed by executives. Nobody cared to reason, became forced to accept that this is the way it is. And resigned into submission quietly just to have a paycheck. These guys should be treated with their own medicine; curses, threats and yelling over a streak of years. Beaten into submission with shattered nerves until they are unable to sleep. That is what most of must endure. What about job security? There is none! Many do not dare to take on loans when jobs are insecure, with no continuity. I trust it would help the economy if jobs would be more secure. Still dreaming of a fair civil America. Middle management were loaded with all the responsibility without the authority or resources. Suitable to prevent the “shit” from flowing upstream.

  • Clay

    As far as harassing AIG employees

    Comprehend much?

  • Oyster

    Did anyone read MB Hallwig’s link?

    Here’s a very telling paragraph:

    The handful of souls who championed the firm’s now-infamous credit-default swaps are, by nearly every account, long since departed. Those left behind to clean up the mess, the majority of whom never lost a dime for AIG, now feel they have been sold out by their Congress and their president.

    Sold out? They been offered up as sacrificial lambs to the slaughter. This administration has whipped up the mob to the point that they now cannot control them. They’re actually inciting blind hatred. How’s that for what we’ve elected to lead us? Now this mob is lashing out blindly. Most of them don’t even know what any of these people do for AIG or how long they’ve been there, but they’re willing to send them death threats.

    I have a great idea. Why don’t Dodd and Obama (#1 and #2 recipients) and a few others give back their campaign donations from AIG? What ever happened to leading by example? Or that something these politicians don’t believe in anymore?

  • GarandFan

    Wanna bet all those ‘demonstrators’ are on Obama’s email list? Wished they’d all show up in their Brown Shirts.

    Were I an AIG employee, I’d be sitting in a chair on my front lawn with a shotgun across my lap.

  • JC Hammer

    Sounds like the same BS against them as there was against the UAW. According to most of the posters here, the factory workers were over paid. Yet they did not have a say in management, they just assembled the auto’s.

    Those poor (?) white collar guys who may/maynot help cause our economic meltdown should be treated different then the factory workers?

    What is the difference? Oh I know, one was union, so violate their contract, but not the white collar workers at AIG? Whats good for the goose is good for the gander, right?

    Or do you posters have a better BS spin on this?

  • SillyPuddy

    Why are they not camped out at Dodd’s house?

  • 914

    “Why are they not camped out at Dodd’s house.”

    Good question..Do You mean the big house He deserves to be sent to… Or the one He currently occupies down on sesame street with big turd and the nookie monster?

  • retired military

    Adrian

    “Will there be any tea bags or tea bagging involved?”

    Nice shot there Adrian. I wonder how many people on these boards (including the moderators) even know that teabagging is slang for a man lowering his testicles into a woman’s mouth.

    Nice touch of class there.

  • GianiD

    Cmon now ret-mil, dont discriminate.

    Barney Fwank gets tea bagged every day.

  • hcddbz

    POTUS tells the AMERICAN people that AIG is like a suicide bomber on national TV. He kisses IRAN at the same time. His goes on Arab TV and praise them and his State Department tells UK we do not enjoy any special relationship with them.

    AIG is just a distraction. They want AIG to fail so they can use it to get enough outrage to start stealing people wealth. They do know what the Constitution and I bet you if they can rush this through it will have high taxes on all types of Bonus payments. Mean while there a national shortage on Ammo.

  • GarandFan

    “Or do you posters have a better BS spin on this?”

    Yeah, JC, I do. And it’s not spin. How about the elected fucking leaders of this country READ THE GOD DAMNED SHIT THEY PASS INTO LAW? Or is that just too FUCKING COMPLICATED?

    Simple enough for you?

  • 914

    AIG Hussein mob invades neighborhood

    In other news POTUS insults mentally challenged individuals and consults teleprompter for next assinine course of action.

  • Fred

    That article holds about as much water as a tea bag. I don’t condone the harassment of these executives but I sure as hell don’t feel sorry for them either. In reading the article its clear that the bonuses promised were still far above the typical norm. Unless you believe that trumped up nonsense about them potentially jumping ship. What firm is hiring for those types of positions in this economy, you’ve got to be kidding me! And even if firms were hiring they sure as hell wouldn’t hire anyone from that firm. If anything they would leave after getting the bonuses. If they stay they still at least get a paycheck. Yes, they are still paid a salary without getting the bonuses, some of which were 1,000,000 dollars, yes, 6 zero’s.

    Prosecute the losers delivering threats. But anyone with half an intelligence can’t possibly feel sorry for the ‘poor’ executives.

  • retired military

    Fred

    Might want to read this

    http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/4ff2f77e-1584-11de-b9a9-0000779fd2ac.html

    and oh btw did you hear

    http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601087&sid=aV8LR4i3muGE&refer=worldwide
    “March 20 (Bloomberg) — General Motors Corp. and Chrysler LLC, which have requested as much as $21.6 billion in additional government aid, may need “considerably” more than that, said Steven Rattner, the Treasury’s chief auto adviser.

    “It could be considerably higher, I won’t deny that,” Rattner said, when asked whether U.S. aid sought could rise. Rattner spoke in an interview on Bloomberg Television’s “Political Capital with Al Hunt,” scheduled to air today.

    And exactly what has GM and Chrsyler done to lower costs? Nothing as far as the UAW goes.

  • fred

    retired military,

    Obviously your being sarcastic, that was a pretty funny article though, thanks.

    As I think you were trying to point out someone in that article forgot to mention that the tax is only for companies that accepted bail-out money AND only for households making over $250,000 a year (1.9% of households).
    So I do agree with you in that it should be an effective tax that really only impacts the wealthy. If you thought that article was funny you will love this one, its from Newsweek. A little less obscure than your source:

    http://www.newsweek.com/id/155951?tid=relatedcl

    regards

  • Oyster

    “Or do you posters have a better BS spin on this?”

    You seem to be spinning just fine without any help.

    Fred, I can’t speak for everyone here, but I don’t “feel sorry” in general for them. I do feel sorry for those caught up in the net that had no part in bad decision making. I do feel a measure of sympathy for those being so openly threatened and intimidated to the point that they fear for their family’s safety, families that never worked a day for AIG. And I think it’s unconscionable that our Congress is taking part in the demonization and incitement. Especially after they signed onto the very bill, one so hastily written and thrown together that no one had the time to read, that caused all this.

    I have to admit that when Obama said things were going to be different in Washington, I didn’t envision this. Thank God he hasn’t yet armed and funded his new “civilian force”.

  • Reality

    Oh for the love of Pete! Will everyone get over this AIG bonus snafu, so we can move on? Every politician in America has postured over this enough! Let’s review the facts instead of being shrill, shall we? 1) It wasn’t just executives in AIG’s Financial Services division who got bonuses, but employees all the way down to the analysts sitting in the cubes, crunching out numbers. 2) these were retention bonuses that were intended to kept their best and brightest on board to assist in their exit from this line of business. 3) many people responsible for getting AIG into this mess have indeed been fired. 4) The bonus contracts were executed well before AIG got – or even asked for – bail-out money. They are legal, binding contracts and neither AIG or the government can arbitrarily vacate them. The government cannot usurp the law just because it is embarrassed. 5) we must consider scale. To a corporation the size of AIG, $165M is a drop in the bucket; is simply isn’t that much money. It’s the equivalent of us giving a couple of bucks to the neighbors’ children so that they can buy an ice cream cone.

    While everyone is screaming, pounding their fists, and posturing over this minor issue, more critical problems in AIG’s business are being overlooked. The truth is that AIG is not “too big to fail.” The new management team should be given a few months to show that they have pulled AIG out of its tail spin and is on the road to financial stability. If they can’t, the company must be allowed to go bankrupt.

  • bg

    “Wanna bet all those ‘demonstrators’ are on Obama’s email list? Wished they’d all show up in their Brown Shirts.” 17. Posted by GarandFan

    Funny you should ask that…

    “ACORN Behind ‘Protests’ At AIG Homes”
    http://sweetness-light.com/archive/acorn-behind-protests-at-aig-ct-homes

  • JLawson

    Man, dig deep enough and it’s funny how ACORN keeps popping up. You’d almost think it was a conspiracy or something by people determined to keep their influence with the government intact…

  • Oyster

    “The new management team should be given a few months to show that they have pulled AIG out of its tail spin and is on the road to financial stability.”

    Exactly. Just like we’re told over and over to give the new President a chance…

    Although it’s not like we have a choice there.

  • MichaelG

    ?