(To have bull so close to my pasture is pretty cool. It makes this column so much easier to write.)
This past week, Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) made national news by saying that AIG executives that accepted big bonuses should have "followed the Japanese example and come before the American people and take that deep bow and say, "I'm sorry," and then either do one of two things, resign or go commit suicide."
OK, if the proverbial "fall on their sword" comment didn't get your attention, this follow-up comment the next day by the senator should have: it is "irresponsible for corporations to give bonuses" when they are "sucking the tit of the taxpayer". I understand that Grassley comes from the farm but you can't say things like that and think no one from the city will notice.
Folks are all up in arms about the way that AIG has thumbed their corporate nose in our faces by giving hellacious bonuses, while we are bailing them out of bad business decisions. Millions of dollars going to execs in year end bonuses, many who are no longer with the company or who are on their way out.
Then while watching the evening news I see many of the talking heads saying what we need is more regulation.
The problem didn't start with fewer regulations on the financial industry. The problem came from government deciding that we had to bailout companies that made stupid decisions because "poor, poor America" if we let these companies go under.
If a company makes stupid decisions and finds themselves in financial straits, they should reorganize or declare bankruptcy or shut their doors. Why do the taxpayers have to step in a bail anyone out?
And please, those of you on the right don't blame President Obama for this one folks. He was one of only a hundred senators when we did this bailout thing last year.
Somewhere along the line, the government feels as though they have to save these companies and their high priced, foolish thinking execs from their mistakes. And now all I hear is that we have to over regulate the industry because look what they did with "our money".
Has anyone thought that maybe if we hadn't bailed them out to begin with that AIG and others would have reorganized their companies and been responsible business owners instead of spoiled little brats calling for taxpayers to save them from themselves?
When is Washington going to learn their lesson? Stop giving away the farm of the future. Stop throwing the money of our generation and future generations at bad businesses.
When you listen to the talking heads, they seem to want to go in the wrong direction. More regulations will not get American companies to become more responsible. No more bailouts will get companies to realize that they are responsible to their shareholders for making wise decisions.
When that happens, no business will be sucking at the "tit of the taxpayer". No business execs will be called on to "fall on their sword" by anyone other than the ones that they should be responsible to – the owners of the company.