What has outraged me and millions of people this week was the greed that was unashamedly displayed by AIG’s corporate executives. They took $165 million in bonuses. It was a company that received $170 billion in taxpayer money as part of the stimulus package from President Obama’s administration. This not only has angered liberals but also populist conservatives.
Money like this should be used to keep the jobs of AIG employees who are on lower incomes—not to line the pockets of corporate executives who already make nice salaries. What’s happening is that taxpayers are helping to keep the company above water and at the same time, the executives get rewarded for it by accepting $165 million? It really doesn’t make any sense to me.
If they had any decency at all, they should be the first to be receiving a pay cut. If they had any honor at all, they should resign from their positions and free up their own salaries to help the company stay afloat. That would be an honorable thing to do but I don’t think this kind of honor exists anymore.
This display of corporate greed will undoubted hurt the image of AIG. At the same time, it will give reason for people to bash capitalism. This greed will give capitalism a bad name and it reinforces the image that corporations are greedy. If there is a better time for proletariats to reinforce to negative image of the: “Capitalist pigs!” it’s now. Personally, I wouldn’t hesitate at all to raise the corporate taxes on AIG. In fact, I wouldn’t hesitate to pull the plug on AIG and them go down with the rest of the insurance companies. But the one thing holding me back from this are the honest hard working insurance holders who invested their savings into purchasing insurance from AIG. It would be disastrous for the economy if this major insurer went under. A public bailout for all the insured would be far worse.
There are enough insurance companies and financial institutions that went under that this kind of money could have gone to help them. But “no”, it went to AIG. This was why some conservatives and Republicans were so hesitant to see this stimulus package go through Congress. It’s corporate welfare and I don’t agree with corporate welfare at all except with cases of uncontrollable circumstances.
I hope this administration can turn this around and get the money back out from the pockets of those greedy executives. I would also encourage everyone to boycott this company’s insurance products. Don’t buy AIG in the future.