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Suddenly, they are all focusing on it.

The Daily News is back to the cheerleader position, trying to make the most of the good Wall Street day yesterday

.pointing out that it was “Bam’s plan” that did it (someone at Daily News needs to read WSJ)

Newsday is as usual closer to reality, sticking with the AIG bonuses

and surprisingly New York Post joins in

At the other end of the spectrum than the Daily News, AM NY cancels the optimist by pointing out some bizarre signs of the times



Great commentary on the “hooray, Wall street approves”

“.Our press corps has discovered an important scoop: Rich people approve of using taxpayer money to help rich people.

In case you haven’t noticed, there’s a common thread throughout all of this coverage, which is that Geithner’s plan cannot be successful unless it wins the enthusiastic endorsement of the very rich people who drove the broader economy into the ground in the first place..

This too

rom the front page of this morning’s conservative Daily Mail newspaper comes a measure of where Geithner’s misguided economic might lead:

“Millions face ‘worst of both worlds’ as cost of living rises but rate for fixing pay and pensions falls to zero.”

The AIG bonuses posturing brings into question when was this matter news to those pushing for the AIG bailout?

AP yesterday wrote that it was old news

Cue the outrage. For months, the Obama administration and members of Congress have known that insurance giant AIG was getting ready to pay huge bonuses while living off government bailouts. It wasn’t until the money was flowing and news was trickling out to the public that official Washington rose up in anger and vowed to yank the money back.

All they needed to do was check AIG’s SEC filings from last November

A November SEC filing by the company details more than $469 million in “retention payments” to keep prized employees.

TIME, zeroing on Treasury, goes to a slightly earlier date than declared

Although Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner told congressional leaders on Tuesday that he learned of AIG’s impending $160 million bonus payments to members of its troubled financial-products unit on March 10, sources tell TIME that the New York Federal Reserve informed Treasury staff that the payments were imminent on Feb. 28. That is 10 days before Treasury staffers say they first learned “full details” of the bonus plan, and three days before the Administration launched a new $30 billion infusion of cash for AIG

WaPo writes a whole story blaming the Federal Reserve for failing to tell Obama

How the Fed Failed to Tell Obama About The Bonuses

There’s one little fly in that ointment, as the article mentions

When the government rescued AIG in mid-September, no one was more central to the decision than Geithner.

and, like the AP piece revealed as well

AIG executives said they disclosed in a quarterly filing late last year to federal regulators that employees at Financial Products would receive retention bonuses but the filings, with the Securities and Exchange Commission, did not detail how much individuals would be paid or the dates of the payments. The company revealed those details in meetings with New York Fed officials in January, AIG chief executive Edward M. Liddy said at a congressional hearing yesterday.

Helps out NYT

Once A.I.G. was under the Fed’s control, its compensation plans hardly came up, according to officials. In December, an initial $55 million in bonuses went out with hardly a stir.

Geez, I wonder if that 55 million was in addition to the 165 we’re talking about now. But, hey, if they sneaked 55 bellow the radar, why not the remainder of the bailout money?

And now the White House releases a timeline putting their date at March 12 (late, mind you)

President Obama did not learn of the controversial bonuses for bailed-out AIG executives until late Thursday, two days after Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner was told about the payments, the White House said.

Which would be all nice and dandy if not for Dodd’s statement about administration officials pressing for an amendment

“I’m the one who has led the fight against excessive executive compensation, often over the objections of many. I did not want to make any changes to my original Senate-passed amendment but I did so at the request of Administration officials, who gave us no indication that this was in any way related to AIG.

Dodd himself didn’t know of AIG’s bonuses until last week – he says.

The buck indeed stops…over there.

Not Your Sweetie

May 2020