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Thank You, Senator Harkin, But I Think My Outrage Points a Different Way

>> Thursday, March 19, 2009

And that would be at you and every other senator who voted to bail out AIG.

Today I received this in my inbox. It's a message from my esteemed senator titled Outrage Over AIG Bonuses.

The first paragraph goes like this:
This week, I was just as outraged as I am sure many of you were, when I learned (I bolded the words) that millions of dollars were paid out in bonuses to employees at companies that received bailout funding. I am dumbfounded to think that some of the very people at AIG whose recklessness caused such harm to the financial system and our economy are now being rewarded.
Maybe, Senator, you would have known about the bonuses if you had read the entire bill before you signed it... Do you remember the conversation I had with a staffer in Harkin's office just last month? The one in which the staffer said to me: "So you expect the senator to read and memorize this entire bill?"

You're damn right I expect him to read the bill! That's what he is paid to do!

The message went on:
What’s more is that the Federal Reserve and the Treasury Department knew about these bonuses before they went out and did not aggressively act to stop them. The Treasury needs to step up oversight of those companies who have received federal bailout dollars and become a much more forceful watchdog of taxpayers’ dollars.
Not only did they know about the bonuses, Senator, they specifically worked them into the bail out. Chris Dodd owned up to that... (which means he lied and should be impeached).

And now we see what our Senator really thinks of Iowans...
Up and down Main Street, businesses are closing, homes are being foreclosed on and people are in financial trouble, while workers on Wall Street continue to profit. But, folks in Iowa look at that and see business as usual. They see one set of standards for ordinary working families and a very different set for the privileged and wealthy. They see the federal government requiring union workers at GM and Chrysler – some making as little as $14 an hour – to renegotiate their contracts and accept lower compensation as a condition for federal relief for their employers. But the bonus contracts for millionaires at AIG are held up as somehow untouchable. Iowans are sick and tired of seeing those who break the rules get richer and richer.

I hate to tell you, Senator, but us "folks in Iowa" don't see different rules for others. In fact, us "folks in Iowa" believe in the inherent fairness of life. I believe that's why we live in Iowa. Of course you may not spend enough time in your Cummings shack or your Indianola rental properties to really know how Iowans really are. Your Beltway mentality is showing, Senator. Oh, and $14 an hour is "middle class", sir. Of course it won't buy much in Alexandria, VA.

He finishes:
Congress must act now to recoup the bonuses paid out. We need to pass legislation that completely taxes those bonuses away. We need to send a message to AIG and other companies who received bailout money. They need to know business as usual will not be tolerated, incompetence and recklessness will not be rewarded and this kind of insult to Iowans and all Americans will not be allowed to stand.
Hasn't congress done enough? If you "pass legislation" on these people who, themselves, did nothing wrong, what's to stop you from destroying any contract that gets in your way? It is unconstitutional. But John at Powerline (he's a lawyer, too), says it better than I can.

So, Senator, I am unswayed by you hypocritical rant. In fact, I hold you responsible. You are, after all, supposed to be representing me. I expect you to do your job.


Tamara B 9:06 AM  

Amen sista! Ready for a tea party?

Chilihead2 3:58 PM  

Yes. I'm so glad you wrote this! Now I can just point people over here.

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