Friday, March 20, 2009

Did Wall St. Throw AIG under the Bus?

Think about it.

Wall Street owns most of Congress and most of the Senate. Those investment bankers and brokers, by far, spend the most cash supporting political campaigns. And yet we're seeing Congress running through a bill trashing AIG's bonuses.

It's hard to believe that all of those Congresspeople have forgotten who butters their bread. Is this really a populist, class warfare move? Or is more likely that the people on Wall Street, seeing the seething anger in the population, have decided to direct it, as much as possible, in the direction of someone expendable.

Clearly, if you're in the financial industry and you weren't pulling off various shenanigans, you'd be angry at the AIG types who destroyed and brought in to disrepute your profession. So maybe you tell those Congressional types you own to target AIG. You're happy, because it gets the population off your back. The Congressional types are happy because they're carrying out the vindictiveness of their constituents.

But I can't help but wonder if it's wise. A populist beast, once awakened, doesn't always go back to sleep after a single ravenously eaten meal. The AIG bonuses may just be snack to whet the beast's appetite. Awake now, and aware of its power, the beast can be turned anywhere there's money.

Recommend this PostProgressive Bloggers

No comments: