Get Over It America???
The Associated Press (AP) ran a headline today that caught my attention. Actually, it got right up off the page, slapped me across the face, and then laughed at me as it settled back down into its place on my laptop’s screen. It was like something out of Disney’s masterpiece, Fantasia, if you can remember that far back.
The headline read: “Get Over It America,” and it was written by Rachel Beck of the AP in New York.
What Rachel thinks we should “get over” is that Goldman Sachs is apparently setting aside $16.7 BILLION for bonuses so far this year, which is about $530,000 per employee, according to Beck’s story. If Goldman was the kind of place where things were divided up evenly, I might care about how much per employee $16.7 BILLION equated to, but since they are most definitely not, I really don’t care. The number again is $16.7 BILLION, and that’s so far this year.
That’s not all that bad for a company that one year ago received $10 BILLION in federal funds, and $19 BILLION from the bailout of AIG. To say nothing of the access to capital that has been essentially free, as a result of various lending programs made available by the Fed. In fact, Goldman, specifically, has benefitted tremendously from the Federal Reserve and government backing of its $30 billion of debt.
The fact that Goldman was allowed to repay the TARP funds… well, it’s absolutely ridiculous to me. I don’t think they should have been allowed to pay TARP back until they stopped being dependent on the other federal freebies. TARP funds, after all, placed restrictions on executive bonuses, the other freebies don’t, so you don’t have to be a math wiz to figure out what went on there.
Beck’s article goes on to say that forcing Goldman to pay out less in bonuses isn’t going to help a single American find a job, or pay a mortgage, or whatever. So, I have to say something about this line of thinking and the headline that made me stop and take notice:
And to my government… How dare you peddle this crap like we’re all a bunch or morons who don’t understand accounting and can’t read our way out of paper bags. Collectively you are the biggest bunch of assholes as anyone could ever dream of. Here’s a few ideas of what we the people want to see happen:
1. We want all the money back. All of the money provided to the banks that are paying out billions in bonuses comes back into the Treasury. Since the banks are obviously doing so well that they could pay out record bonuses, this shouldn’t be a problem.
2. Goldman must either start lending like a bank, or it’s not allowed to keep its status as a “Financial Holding Company,” which is what allows it to put more than $125 BILLION at risk without having to worry about losses. That’s right… we’re guaranteeing the losses and they get to keep the gains.
3. No more letting the banks borrow at 0% and then charging us 29% interest on credit card debt. Your allowing them to screw us in order to get the money they need to screw us again in the future.
And that’s just a start…
So, as far as getting over it… I’m thinking… NO… I think I’ll hold onto it. That way it’ll still be with me when I go into the voting booth next fall.