Since I have to get up at 4:30 a.m. in order to get to work by 7:00, I rarely watch the evening news anymore. Occasionally I pull up the Trib online and glance at what’s going on, but again, it’s pretty rare. Imagine my astonishment when listening to Bob and Tom on the radio this morning discussing the AIG bailout! Are they kidding? What in the world is going on that we, the American people, have to support the AIG big-wigs by paying their bonuses? Here’s what I have learned this morning:
* AIG went ahead and paid $165 MILLION dollars in bonuses after receiving $170 BILLION in bailout rescue money
* Hundreds of billions of American taxpayer dollars have already gone to financial institutions that have made incredibly poor choices
* Treasury secretary Timothy Gaithner claims not to have been aware of the excesses … who is watching the treasury then?
* The Treasury claims that they cannot legally block the payments … WHAT? doesn’t governmental responsibility override corporate greed?
* AIG reported this month that it lost $61.7 billion in the fourth quarter of last year, the largest corporate loss in history, and it has benefited from more than $170 billion in a federal rescue. (source: SLTRIB.com)
* AIG has another $30 MILLION dollar installment to look forward to … Hmmm, where do you suppose they will vacation next?
As a responsible, taxpaying citizen of this, The United States of America, I am outraged by this irresponsible mishandling of my heard-earned dollars. I would really like to know how these corporate giants are able to sleep at night with so many people suffering in this world today.
Here is what I do know: I know that I have donated new and used clothing to others; I know that I have never turned down someone in need; I know that my family contributes food to our local food pantry year ’round and not just when the holidays approach; I know that I contribute to local causes; I know that I am active in my community; I know that it is important to donate my time and invest in my children’s educations; I know that it is important to advocate for those that cannot advocate for themselves; I know that no amount of money will get me into the next life; I know that I have to live within a budget because noone will bail me out if I don’t; I know that in order to be a responsible citizen it is important to teach my children values and responsibility in order to be successful; I know that while I am far from rich in terms of dollars, I am very rich in life.