Thursday, March 19, 2009
Personal Aside: Dont Blame You, Dont Blame MeBlame that Fella Behind the Tree! Dodd Admits He Did the Dirty AIG Deed but at the Request of Treasury.
Sen. Russell Long (D-La.), longtime chairman of Senate Banking had a favorite wisecrack that he delivered when politicians tried to wriggle out of blame: Dont blame you, dont blame me. Blame that fella behind the tree. For the past few days, the Congress principally Democrats since they were 99% responsible for the stimulus package wallowed in an orgy of demagoguery for something that was clearly the Congress (and the administrations) fault. The contract with AIG was written into these agreements by Geithner more than a year ago long before the company was partially nationalized. Frankly, this snafu is the biggest argument against socialism or quasi-socialism that Obama is crusading for.
The question was: how did key employees in the very division in AIG responsible for its near-destruction end up receiving bonuses and how did the offending contract get affixed to the bill? And how did it happen that Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner who was the very architect of the AIG bill when he was president of the New York Federal Reserve bank the same Geithner who understood the entire bailout not know the bonus was included. Even allowing for human forgetfulness how did he miss the stories in Bloomberg and Barrons that the contract was included? And after he found out following the presidents signature why the delay in telling him?
Yesterday Congress put the $1 a year CEO of AIG on the hot seat but it was an exercise in hypocrisy and cowardice. Sen. Chris Dodd (D-Conn.), chairman of banking, denied putting the contract into the bill yesterday, saying The language that I wrote on executive compensation had no dates in it like this at all. When my language left the Senate it did not include it. When it came back, it did. Frankly, the bonuses to the offending executives constitute .097 of the bailout but the administration still is responsible because it hustled the bill through the Congress so quickly no one including the administration could adequately digest it. The Democrats have been talking about revenge, passing a rider on the legislation especially singling out AIG but that would be unconstitutional since it would be equivalent to a Bill of Attainder. Now the Dems are talking about breaking the contract by a ruse a 100% rate of taxationbut that would be a Bill of Attainder as well.
Well, that statement was a barefaced lie. Dodd admitted yesterday that he was the author of the offending language but in typical cowardly fashion, attempted to put the blame on Geithner. Dodds shelf life in the Senate can well be ended next year because of this and charges of undue cozyness with the financial services industry. He has been shown running very slightly ahead of his likely Republican challenger or a tad behind him. This bomb about AIG should do it.
Dodd is one of the Senates ranking leftists on Latin American foreign policy, a shill for the Castro brothers and a consort of Daniel C. Ortega in Nicaragua during the days when Ronald Reagan wanted to aid the Contras. He was also a major playboy compatriot of Ted Kennedy. A pro-abort Catholic, he divorced his first wife and after a legendary career of being the bodys most indiscriminate skirt chaser, remarried. However he differs from his great and good buddy Kennedy by declining to receive communion which is one great mark in his favor.
Of course the media is focusing just as David Axelrod wisheson the horrific company AIG not the incompetence involved in passing it not the lies of Chris Dodd who finally owned up to writing the contract not the weird lapses in the Geithner role and his inexcusable laxity in not telling the president early not in blaming the administration for leading the Congress in a pig-race to get the thing passed without reflection.
No, none of these things are examined. Only the evil AIG. It is amazing how diligent the mainstream media are to pursue the line most advantageous to Obama.