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Colbert Brings Pitchfork but Obama Might Not Stop Bonuses

Populism is all the rage these days. Americans are angry about the extravagant bonuses being doled out to AIG executives and they want Obama to stop it.

Last night on his show, Stephen Colbert promised to lead a mob of torch- and pitchfork-wielding taxpayers, angry that the bailout cash is being used in "ways we never see, to prop up business we don't understand."

President Obama has promised to do what he can to stop AIG from spending taxpayer funds on bonuses. Still, some in the business community fear that if the government cancels compensation contracts, it could start a dangerous precedent and result in more economic instability. Perhaps the focus should shift toward creating future contracts that don't require bonus payments in the case of financial ruin.

If employees at bailed-out companies keep taking home fat checks, how long until pitchforks and mobs evolve from satire to reality? To see Colbert in true form,

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janneth janneth 7 years
Contract or not, did they think those bonuses would go unnoticed??
janneth janneth 7 years
I can't find a pitchfork, but I have a wire wisk!
UnDave35 UnDave35 7 years
Unfortunately, it was in their contract, and the government didn't put any sort of stipulation on what the bailout money could be spent on. I blame this on the government.
GKitty GKitty 7 years
The latest update: 6.5 million bonus went to one employee 6 others got 4 million and the rest got 1 million each.
mydiadem mydiadem 7 years
The majority of the money didn't go to bonuses, it went payments to Goldman Sachs, Barclays, Merrill Lynch etc. Other businesses that also go bailout money and paid their execs big bonuses.
GKitty GKitty 7 years
Bonuses of 1 million went 73 employees and 11 employees no longer work for AIG.
Carrie-Sue Carrie-Sue 7 years
"I may be wrong but aren't those bonuses well less than 10% of what we the tax payers gave them?"Just what I was thinking...except I think it was actually .01% of what they were given. A tenth of a percent. And it was the GOVERNMENT that gave them free reign to do what they wanted with the money. No stipulations. They really don't have much right to sound so outraged in all of this. It was their shortsightedness that led to this.
Carrie-Sue Carrie-Sue 7 years
"I may be wrong but aren't those bonuses well less than 10% of what we the tax payers gave them?" Just what I was thinking...except I think it was actually .01% of what they were given. A tenth of a percent. And it was the GOVERNMENT that gave them free reign to do what they wanted with the money. No stipulations. They really don't have much right to sound so outraged in all of this. It was their shortsightedness that led to this.
mydiadem mydiadem 7 years
What Piper said :) How can we expect Wall Street to be anything but greedy, Congress trusted Paulson when he said that the money needed to be given without strings because then they could use it the fastest to stop the collapse of the banking system. Probably shouldn't have done that.
mydiadem mydiadem 7 years
What Piper said :) How can we expect Wall Street to be anything but greedy, Congress trusted Paulson when he said that the money needed to be given without strings because then they could use it the fastest to stop the collapse of the banking system. Probably shouldn't have done that.
genesisrocks genesisrocks 7 years
Lol modus. I think the snow shovel will be very intimidating :)
piper23 piper23 7 years
No, it definitely wasn't a loan. It was a blank check. AIG proved to be unscupulous with money which is why they needed the "bailout" in the first place. Why anyone thinks that the people of AIG would have acquired some sort of ethical conscious when spending taxpayers money that was practically wrapped in a bow and given to them is beyond me. I would like to see them poked in the butt with a pitchfork but that seems too little too late.
Modus-Vivendi Modus-Vivendi 7 years
I don't have a pitchfork. I'd have to take to the streets with my rake. Or the snow shovel.
genesisrocks genesisrocks 7 years
The scary thing is that if the economy gets even worse I can seriously see people wielding pitchforks and turning to violent protests.
GKitty GKitty 7 years
LOAN!!! hahaha....
GKitty GKitty 7 years
LOAN!!! hahaha....
stephley stephley 7 years
Loan? We own about 80% of AIG. The division getting most of the bonuses is the group most responsible for its downfall, so we shouldn't even have to tell AIG that you don't reward the virus destroying you from the inside.
StolzeMama StolzeMama 7 years
I may be wrong but aren't those bonuses well less than 10% of what we the tax payers gave them? And I really don't care, you shouldn't have given them money in the first place. You gave them a loan, you cannot now go back and tell them how to run their businesses, sorry!
Modus-Vivendi Modus-Vivendi 7 years
Maybe it was the comma that threw me off. ;PSorry, I thought maybe pitchforks had historically been used in some atrocious way I didn't know about.
Modus-Vivendi Modus-Vivendi 7 years
Maybe it was the comma that threw me off. ;P Sorry, I thought maybe pitchforks had historically been used in some atrocious way I didn't know about.
stephley stephley 7 years
And thus I combined it with the Senator's comment.Next time, I'll try not to be so subtle.
stephley stephley 7 years
And thus I combined it with the Senator's comment. Next time, I'll try not to be so subtle.
Modus-Vivendi Modus-Vivendi 7 years
I was just trying to understand. It seems weird to be bothered by a joke tame enough to be in DIsney movies.
stephley stephley 7 years
"Are pitchforks somehow inherently racist or sexist or just too violent?" I linked pitchforks and suggesting people kill themselves: which do you think?
stephley stephley 7 years
"Are pitchforks somehow inherently racist or sexist or just too violent?" I linked pitchforks and suggesting people kill themselves: which do you think?
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