Archive for the ‘Liddy’ Category

Inside the Piñata At AIG: Death Threats and Disappointment in Elected Leaders

March 19, 2009

Wwe’re not defending AIG so much as pointing out they they haven’t been treated with the repect that still seems common for “lawmakers’ who screw up just as badly….And nobody except maybe Terrorists and the Taliban deserve death threats….

Seven and one half years ago, death threats were swirling for those that killed our citizens in the World Trade Center.  Now death threats are swirling and aimed at those same captains of finance and economies…

Protesters At Homes Of AIG Execs


A solitary flat-screen television hangs on the back wall of the trading floor inside the headquarters of AIG Financial Products here. Wednesday afternoon, the most-talked-about employees in America huddled around it to find out just how despised they have become.

By Brady Dennis
The Washington Post

They watched quietly as members of Congress referred to them as greedy and incompetent. They heard more than one demand that their names be released to the seething American public. They heard the chairman of American International Group, Edward M. Liddy, tell lawmakers that people, in e-mails sent to AIG-FP, suggested that the firm’s leaders “should be executed with piano wire around their necks.”

The evening before, the firm’s chief operating officer, Gerry Pasciucco — whom Liddy recruited in November from Morgan Stanley to shut down Financial Products before it could do more harm to the economy — had gathered them together in the same spot.

Pasciucco urged them to keep their heads down, to act professionally and to continue working to extricate Financial Products from its more than $1.6 trillion in outstanding derivative contracts. He acknowledged that the past few days have been like being “inside the piñata.”

In reply, they told him that they worried mostly about getting shot, despite the guards now patrolling the parking lot, the front door and some of their homes.

A sense of fear hung in the room — the palpable, unsettling kind that flashes across people’s eyes. But there was anger, too. No one would express it publicly, of course. Who wants to hear a wealthy financier complain? And yet, within those walls off Danbury Road lies a deep sense of betrayal — first by their former colleagues, now by their elected leaders.

Read the rest:

Defining Moment for Obama’s Treasury Secretary

March 19, 2009

All three of President Obama’s top economic advisers were on message when they appeared Sunday on separate television talk shows. Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner, they said, had concluded, based on lawyers’ advice, that he could not stop the $165 million in bonuses that the American International Group was even then doling out to hundreds of employees.

By Jackie Calmes
The New York Times

But when Mr. Geithner and other officials met at the White House that night, the president’s political advisers — who had agreed to the day’s message — decided the growing outcry left Mr. Obama no choice but to publicly second-guess his Treasury secretary.

The next morning on camera, the president said he had directed Mr. Geithner to find a legal way “to block these bonuses and make the American taxpayers whole.”

Thus began perhaps the worst week in a string of bad weeks for the Treasury secretary. The mixed messages on A.I.G. gave further ammunition to critics who had begun questioning Mr. Geithner’s credibility as the administration’s point man on the economy, an essential commodity if he is to help restore consumer confidence.

Fair or not, questions about why Mr. Geithner did not know sooner about the A.I.G. bonuses and act to stop them threaten to overwhelm his achievements and undermine Mr. Obama’s overall economic agenda. Edward M. Liddy, chief executive of A.I.G., told Congress on Wednesday that he generally deals with Fed officials, figuring they would keep Treasury informed.

The controversy comes as Mr. Geithner is about to announce details of the restructured bank rescue program, and it clouds prospects for more rescue funds that the administration is all but certain to need.

Mr. Geithner’s once-heralded credentials with Wall Street were already marred by false starts in revamping the Bush administration’s bank rescue program, even as his perceived closeness to financiers — he is the former president of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York — and unease with populist politics left Main Street skeptical.

Read the rest:

Fed Failed to Tell Obama About AIG Bonuses For Months

March 19, 2009

Federal Reserve officials knew for months about bonuses at American International Group but failed to tell the Obama administration, according to government and company officials, exposing problems in a relationship that is vital to addressing the financial crisis.

By David Cho and Michael D. Shear
The Washington Post
As pressure mounted on AIG employees to return the bonuses, new details emerged yesterday about what the Fed, the Treasury Department and the White House knew regarding the payments and when. AIG executives said the Fed was informed three months ago by the company that it would pay $165 million by March 15 to employees working at its most troubled division. The Treasury and White House said they learned of the payments from Fed officials only days before they were due.

Close coordination between the Fed and the administration is now more important than ever as they near the launch of two signature programs to rescue the financial system, which together could reach $2 trillion and are aimed at reviving consumer lending and purchasing soured assets and loans from ailing banks.

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AIG Bonus Snafu: Boomeranging Into the Faces of Democrats?

March 18, 2009

The AIG bailout and bonus snafu has the feel of a keystone cops caper.

No wonder the Chinese fear for the investments they hold in the United States.

Oversight of financial institutions?  Next to zero.

Public confidence in the Treasury, the Fed and Congress?  Heading downward.

The President?  He is still defending Tim Geithner which I see as a losing horse.  The best politicial advice I could give to this president is this: fire the Treasury Secretary now and at least you look like you are doing something.

 Obama, Congress, Treasury, Fed: Shameful Mismanagement of Your Money, Recovery

Economic Recovery? “These guys are eating my lunch”

The congress?

“The fact is that the bill the president signed, which protected the AIG bonuses and others, was written behind closed doors by Democratic leaders of the House and Senate. There was no transparency,” said Sen. Charles Grassley of Iowa, the senior Republican on the Senate Finance Committee.

The more the public sees of Barney Frank and his House Committee on Financial Services the more they’ll lose confidence in their entire government.

The hearings featuring AIG chairman Edward Liddy — who came out of retirement and is working for $1.00 a year to clean up the AIG side of this mess — are showing how mean spirited and just simply stupid our “lawmakers” are.

These are the same guys that failed to read the “stimulus” but voted for it….

The Fed?

The dumped a bunch of dollars into the system on March 18 and what happened?  Oil went up and the dollar went down.

AIG’s Liddy looks credible and as if he is doing his best to make this right.

Mr. Liddy disclosed that the Federal Reserve — which sits on A.I.G.’s board — was informed of the bonus payouts and that Mr. Bernanke, the Fed chairman, had been consulted all along.

The A.I.G. executive  said  no attempt was made to hide the bonuses, no effort to conceal….

The committee members look, well, like self-righteous grandstanders.

Expect to see Obama regret his “outrage” at the AIG bonuses: it looks like many members of the government knew about them long before they were paid and some “lawmakers” and others took positive actions to make sure the bonus provisions in the AIG contracts were allowed to stand….even after the federal bailout amd “takeover” was well under way….

The discussions of suicides and death threats are way out of line, over the line and distasteful.

Much of this AIG bonus caper looks as if it was caused by the congress; with help from the Fed and the Treasury Department, perhaps….

I’m calling this Obama-Gate because it has the feel of Watergate in fast forward and without the stealth of a long coverup….yet….The president will survive this certainly but his stature will be diminished.  Some government officials could and should lose their jobs.  And the Republicans will get some new life, mojo or whatever.  This is actually a badly needed dose of Viagra for Republians and a real gift from the Obama Democrats….

Some congressional staffers are telling us the president knew about the bonuses last week and maybe before….

Lawmaking by Stampede Made the Stimulus, Now We’ll Tax ‘Bonuses’ the Simulus Allowed?
Obama On Geithner Sounds Like “Brownie, you’re doing a heck of a job”

 AIG Bonus Snafu: Boomeranging Into the Faces of Democrats?

“Dodd The Dodge” — Senator Weasels Away The Truth; And Not Artfully

Obama the centrist, pragmatic problem-solver is gone: now liberal spendathon, no accountability
News at eleven followed by Jay Leno and Barack on the National Barack Channel….

Obama, Pelosi: Anything to Win

Obama, Congress, Treasury, Fed: Shameful Mismanagement of Your Money, Recovery

Did Obama White House Fuel AIG Bonus Mess To Enact Tougher Rules With Public Support, “Outrage”?

Fed to pump another $1 trillion into U.S. economy “from thin air”