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raybond
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House passes bill taxing AIG and other bonuses
House passes bill to tax employee bonuses at AIG, other companies with big bailouts
Stephen Ohlemacher, Associated Press Writer
Thursday March 19, 2009, 4:02 pm EDT

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Acting swiftly, the Democratic-led House approved a bill Thursday to slap punishing taxes on big employee bonuses at firms bailed out by taxpayers.

The bill would impose a 90 percent tax on bonuses given to employees with family incomes above $250,000 at American International Group and other companies that have received at least $5 billion in government bailout money.

"We want our money back now for the taxpayers," House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said.

Democrats led the charge in an attempt to get in front of raging public anger over the AIG bonuses, even though a provision that would have made such payouts illegal was stripped from last month's $787 billion stimulus bill by its Democratic sponsors.

The vote to tax back most of the bonuses was 328-93. Voting "yes" were 243 Democrats and 85 Republicans. It was opposed by six Democrats and 87 Republicans.

The bonuses, totaling $165 million, were paid to employees of troubled insurer AIG over the weekend, including to traders in the unit that nearly brought about the company's collapse.

The wide margin of victory came despite sharp Republican attacks calling the legislation a ploy to paper over Obama administration missteps.

Minority Leader John Boehner, R-Ohio, said the bill was "a political circus" to divert attention from why the administration and congressional Democrats had not done more to block the bonuses.

However, although a number of Republicans first cast "no" votes, the political appeal of the legislation apparently won the day. In the closing moments of the roll call there was a heavy GOP migration from the "no" column to the "yes" side before the final vote was called.

Democratic leaders rushed the bill to the floor under a procedure that requires a two-thirds majority for passage.

Rep. Charles Rangel, D-N.Y., chairman of the tax-writing House Ways and Means Committee, said he expected local and state governments to take the remaining 10 percent of the bonuses, nullifying the payouts.

Rangel said the bill would apply to mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, among others, while excluding community banks and other smaller companies that have received less bailout money.

A competing bill is gaining support in the Senate that would impose a 35 percent excise tax on the companies paying the bonuses and a 35 percent excise tax on the employees receiving them. The taxes would apply to all companies receiving government bailout money, but they are clearly geared toward AIG.

In the House, a nonbinding resolution to express "the sense of Congress that the president is appropriately exercising all of the authorities granted by Congress" to deal with economic crisis didn't fare as well as the vote to tax the bonuses. The vote on that measure was 255-160, short of the required two thirds margin.

A tax expert said there is plenty of precedent for levying punitive taxes on behavior that lawmakers find objectionable. Robert Willens, a corporate tax lawyer in New York, cited the steep excise taxes levied on money paid to firms to keep them from launching hostile takeover bids, known as "greenmail."

"You can write very narrowly tailored laws," Willens said. "And they can do it for bonuses already paid."

The bill passed as controversy swirled around the disclosure that, while Democrats and Republicans were both railing about the AIG bonuses, Democrats were also responsible for removing a provision, originally contained in stimulus legislation, to ban such bonuses.

Senate Finance Committee Chairman Chris Dodd, D-Conn., said Wednesday his staff agreed to requests from the administration to delete the executive pay provision that would have applied retroactively to recipients of federal aid.

However, Dodd said he was not aware of any AIG bonuses at the time the change was made.

President Barack Obama, who took office just under two months ago, told reporters Wednesday that his administration was not responsible for a lack of federal supervision of AIG that preceded the company's demise.

But Obama added, "The buck stops with me."

The bill is HR 1586.

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Propertymanager
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These morons (on both sides of the isle) are FAR more overpaid than the AIG executives that took this bonus money. The white house and congress have known about these bonuses for quite a while (some reports say since November). They lied about it and are now trying to cover that up. It's a circus in Washington and these idiots ARE destroying the country.

Or is this AIG scandal simply an effort to cover up the real story, that the economy is on the brink of total collapse?

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T e x
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lol, maybe they'll get voted off the isle...

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Nashoba Holba Chepulechi
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Propertymanager
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Even more disturbing is that the Federal Government is using this tax to punish a few individuals - to single out people. Maybe next they decide that posters on AllStocks should be taxed at 90%. Or maybe those evil glass blowers will be targeted. Or maybe anyone named Tex!
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T e x
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I guess if Bob starts peddling CDSs and has to get a bailout to keep from pushing the economy into crisis and then I have to unwind a lot of bad packages and then my big, fat bonus gets caught in the wringer... I'll worry about it.

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Nashoba Holba Chepulechi
Adventures in microcapitalism...

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glassman
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quote:
Originally posted by Propertymanager:
These morons (on both sides of the isle) are FAR more overpaid than the AIG executives that took this bonus money. The white house and congress have known about these bonuses for quite a while (some reports say since November). They lied about it and are now trying to cover that up. It's a circus in Washington and these idiots ARE destroying the country.

Or is this AIG scandal simply an effort to cover up the real story, that the economy is on the brink of total collapse?

the economy already collapsed.

i find it amusing that you constantly defend the people who lost all the marbles and critisize the peopl holding the roof up over all of our heads....

contracts cannot be broken lightly..

the right to do so is Federally Constitutional, but is reserved to the court system...

the case will/would take years to settle, and in the meantime? we would all be in bread lines. even people with "cash flow"

of course all banks have to remain solvent for said cash flow to continue.

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glassman
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quote:
Originally posted by Propertymanager:
Even more disturbing is that the Federal Government is using this tax to punish a few individuals - to single out people. Maybe next they decide that posters on AllStocks should be taxed at 90%. Or maybe those evil glass blowers will be targeted. Or maybe anyone named Tex!

more likely it would be anyone accepting S-8 money or food stamps in their receipts.

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Propertymanager
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quote:
the economy already collapsed.
The economy certainly hasn't collapsed yet. So far, it's being help up with imaginary money (pulled right out of thin air) from the government. You'll know it has collapsed when the companies that are "too big to fail" - start failing. That's coming!

It IS going to collapse. We've now reached the point that the government is paying it's own debt by printing money - that's a very dangerous turning point. Put on your helmet - we're gonna crash!

quote:
contracts cannot be broken lightly..

the right to do so a Federal right but is reserved to the court system...

That's right, and for the record, I am not for these people getting bonuses and being rewarded for destroying their company. I am for AIG failing and these morons being OUT OF WORK! What I object to here is that the government is using the tax code to punish INDIVIDUALS.

quote:
the case will take yeas to settle, and in the meantime? we would all in bread lines. even people with "cash flow"
Even during the worst depression, "all" of us will not be in bread lines. During the great depression, unemployment only reached 25%. Of course, they didn't have a base unemployment rate of 15% to 20% - people that are too lazy to work and living on government handouts. When you add that to our current government provided unemployment numbers, the true unemployment is probably already 25% today.
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Lockman
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quote:
Originally posted by glassman:
quote:
Originally posted by Propertymanager:
These morons (on both sides of the isle) are FAR more overpaid than the AIG executives that took this bonus money. The white house and congress have known about these bonuses for quite a while (some reports say since November). They lied about it and are now trying to cover that up. It's a circus in Washington and these idiots ARE destroying the country.

Or is this AIG scandal simply an effort to cover up the real story, that the economy is on the brink of total collapse?

the economy already collapsed.

i find it amusing that you constantly defend the people who lost all the marbles and critisize the peopl holding the roof up over all of our heads....

contracts cannot be broken lightly..

the right to do so is Federally Constitutional, but is reserved to the court system...

the case will/would take years to settle, and in the meantime? we would all be in bread lines. even people with "cash flow"

of course all banks have to remain solvent for said cash flow to continue.

This whole debocle could have been avoided had they not bypassed the B/K system in place. The government still could have come in as the white knight and supported the economy but the rules of business would be firmly in place and this wouldn't look like a three ring circus. JMO

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Let's Go METS!!!

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glassman
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maybe you are correct Lock,

however, bankruptcy courts are already swamped with bkrptcies.. they were up 70% year over year at the end of '08

have you ever played Q stocks? i've played a hundred.. i read up on them deeply before i jump in too... they are very complicated procedures and the cases stay in bkrptcy courts for years not months or weeks.


we may still see many (like AIG) go into bkrptcy BUT the taxpayers will be paid first.

i find it intersting that conservatives who distrust the "liberal" court system to suddenly calim it's the best place to fix this.

IMO? there is no "best" place or way to fix this.

however, what they did in '29, which is what conservatives are claiming should have been/be done now did not work did it?

the strongest argument against bankruptcy court is that what has happened has been caused by traders trading to KILL, not just win but literally to destroy the market and they did.

this is not a simple situation like limbugger says it is,

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glassman
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The economy certainly hasn't collapsed yet.

that's funny, you admit it's being held up by funny money (true) and then you contradict yourself by saying it hasn't collapsed...

at some basic cognitive level you are seriously confused. sad really sad. a human mind is a terrible thing wasted.

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glassman
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even during the worst depression, "all" of us will not be in bread lines. During the great depression, unemployment only reached 25%. Of course, they didn't have a base unemployment rate of 15% to 20% - people that are too lazy to work and living on government handouts. When you add that to our current government provided unemployment numbers, the true unemployment is probably already 25% today.

you have no idea how the modern "just in time" economy works.

everything wholesale is on margin, groceries, cars, houses. your whole rentla business is on margin, and every bank is at risk if AIG were not bailed out. every single one.

and don't tell me your bankers assured you that they are fine, so did every other banker that failed until the minute they did. [BadOne] ..

you cannot eat cash.

why do you think i've begun a serious garden? i have the land to do so...

in the 30's? country folk fed the nation out of their gardens. do you have any idea who feeds the nation now? i do.. and they use credit cards to buy a million dollars worth of seed and fertiliser evey year. [Wink]

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Don't envy the happiness of those who live in a fool's paradise.

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Propertymanager
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quote:
The economy certainly hasn't collapsed yet.

that's funny, you admit it's being held up by funny money (true) and then you contradict yourself by saying it hasn't collapsed...

Obviously, it hasn't collapsed if it's being held up. When the government can no longer hold it up, that's when it will have failed. That day is approaching.

A collapse will be indicated by the actual failure of these businesses, banks, and a very high unemployment (measured with the government's bogus numbers). I'll write a post so that you'll know when this occurs!

The key issue is pain. So far, the government has prevented most of the pain we should be experiencing. They've temporarily kept the "too big to fail" companies open; they've extended unemployment; and they've given more deadbeats welfare. Where's the pain? When the REAL, WIDESPREAD pain finally occurs, you'll know that the economy has finally collapsed.

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glassman
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quote:
Originally posted by Propertymanager:
quote:
The economy certainly hasn't collapsed yet.

that's funny, you admit it's being held up by funny money (true) and then you contradict yourself by saying it hasn't collapsed...

Obviously, it hasn't collapsed if it's being held up. When the government can no longer hold it up, that's when it will have failed. That day is approaching.

A collapse will be indicated by the actual failure of these businesses, banks, and a very high unemployment (measured with the government's bogus numbers). I'll write a post so that you'll know when this occurs!

The key issue is pain. So far, the government has prevented most of the pain we should be experiencing. They've temporarily kept the "too big to fail" companies open; they've extended unemployment; and they've given more deadbeats welfare. Where's the pain? When the REAL, WIDESPREAD pain finally occurs, you'll know that the economy has finally collapsed.

so you admit it would have collapsed if the govt had not stepped in.


and you are then forced to admit that it was Bush and his conservative team who was on watch when both happened.


this is the best part.

the pain we should be experiencing.

you hate people so much that you would like it if little old ladies were broke and in the street.

go away, you are not a well person. find a psychotherapist and let us alone

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Don't envy the happiness of those who live in a fool's paradise.

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jordanreed
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quote:
Originally posted by Propertymanager:
quote:
The economy certainly hasn't collapsed yet.

that's funny, you admit it's being held up by funny money (true) and then you contradict yourself by saying it hasn't collapsed...

Obviously, it hasn't collapsed if it's being held up. When the government can no longer hold it up, that's when it will have failed. That day is approaching.

A collapse will be indicated by the actual failure of these businesses, banks, and a very high unemployment (measured with the government's bogus numbers). I'll write a post so that you'll know when this occurs!

The key issue is pain. So far, the government has prevented most of the pain we should be experiencing. They've temporarily kept the "too big to fail" companies open; they've extended unemployment; and they've given more deadbeats welfare. Where's the pain? When the REAL, WIDESPREAD pain finally occurs, you'll know that the economy has finally collapsed.

it sounds like this is what you hope for...lets hope you really dont want that... [Eek!]

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jordan

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CJim
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Nobody has mentioned the facty that this bill is probably unconstitutional, the courts will have to decide.

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A million unemployed comedians and you are trying to be funny, have you no shame?

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glassman
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quote:
Originally posted by CJim:
Nobody has mentioned the facty that this bill is probably unconstitutional, the courts will have to decide.

it's not law yet, it's merely an expression of outrage so far...

if it became a law? in order for the court to decide? somebody has to file a suit.

given the mood of the country right now? i doubt there's a lot of people that want their names all over the newspapers as plaintiffs in this type of case. these people wish to remain anonymous..

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CJim
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unconstitutional still

Section 9 - Limits on Congress
No Bill of Attainder or ex post facto Law shall be passed.


Attainder
attainder n. The loss of all civil rights by a person sentenced for a serious crime.
In the context of the Constitution, a Bill of Attainder is meant to mean a bill that has a negative effect on a single person or group (for example, a fine or term of imprisonment). Originally, a Bill of Attainder sentenced an individual to death, though this detail is no longer required to have an enactment be ruled a Bill of Attainder.

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A million unemployed comedians and you are trying to be funny, have you no shame?

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glassman
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when did the money get issued? this year or last...

if it came in last years paychecks? then why are people blaming Obamas admin?

if it cam in this years pay? then whether it is ex post facto is highly debatable in court, it wouldn't be ex-post facto until the end of this year (IMO)...

remember when congress passed the bill making the telecoms immune from lawsuits for assisting the govt after 9-11? that was ex post facto by several years yet nobody has tested it (yet) that i know of...

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Don't envy the happiness of those who live in a fool's paradise.

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glassman
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check this out:

SUPREME COURT OF THE UNITED STATES

Syllabus
UNITED STATES v. CARLTON
certiorari to the united states court of appeals for the ninth circuit

No. 92-1941. Argued February 28, 1994 -- Decided June 13, 1994

As adopted in October 1986, 26 U.S.C. § 2057 granted an estate tax deduction for half the proceeds of "any sale of employer securities by the executor of an estate" to "an employee stock ownership plan" (ESOP). In December 1986, respondent Carlton, acting as an executor, purchased shares in a corporation, sold them to that company's ESOP at a loss, and claimed a large §2057 deduction on his estate tax return. In December 1987, §2057 was amended to provide that, to qualify for the deduction, the securities sold to an ESOP must have been "directly owned" by the decedent "immediately before death." Because the amendment applied retroactively, as if it were incorporated in the original 1986 provision, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) disallowed Carlton's §2057 deduction. The District Court entered summary judgment against him in his ensuing refund action, rejecting his contention that the amendment's retroactive application to his transactions violated the Due Process Clause of the Fifth Amendment. The Court of Appeals reversed, holding that such application was rendered unduly harsh and oppressive, and therefore unconstitutional, by Carlton's lack of notice that §2057 would be retroactively amended and by his reasonable reliance to his detriment on pre-amendment law.

http://www.law.cornell.edu/supct/html/92-1941.ZS.html

the Supreme Court found that tax laws aren't expostfacto protected.

Held: The 1987 amendment's retroactive application to Carlton's 1986 transactions does not violate due process.

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Don't envy the happiness of those who live in a fool's paradise.

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CJim
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But a bill of attainer is a punishment, which is what this bill is essentially doing to anyone who received a bonus. Punishment is up to the judicial branch, not congress.

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A million unemployed comedians and you are trying to be funny, have you no shame?

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glassman
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hmmmm... i dunno 'bout that attainder chit...

all i know is that congress does what it does and the courts don't see the laws until somebody brings them to them, and they can refuse to see them if 'n they're awant'n

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CJim
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Interestingly enough,

Section 8 - Powers of Congress

The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States;

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A million unemployed comedians and you are trying to be funny, have you no shame?

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CJim
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I saw over lunch that AIG is probably going to change it's name after this diasater. I have one for them, PIG.

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A million unemployed comedians and you are trying to be funny, have you no shame?

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glassman
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yeah, any bonuses in the whole US would be taxed 100%?

has anybody read this thing? i haven't had time..

as far as i'm, concerned? i dunno what the fuss is... AIG put collateral up to borrow the money...

it ain't like it was just given to them...

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Don't envy the happiness of those who live in a fool's paradise.

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glassman
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quote:
Originally posted by CJim:
I saw over lunch that AIG is probably going to change it's name after this diasater. I have one for them, PIG.

LOL...

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Don't envy the happiness of those who live in a fool's paradise.

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jordanreed
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as far as i'm, concerned? i dunno what the fuss is... AIG put collateral up to borrow the money...


did they use the business as collateral??

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jordan

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The Bigfoot
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I don't really care for it....but I don't really feel much against it either. Let em do it and see what happens. I am more interested in hearing that contracts are being renegotiated and all bonuses will be based off performance rather than retention. WE are the largest shareholder of record. We should be able to insist on that.

Retention pay is a fools idea.

I wonder if we will hear a CEO utter the words "What the market will bear" anytime this year? Wasn't that a mantra for the past decade? Why haven't I been hearing that lately???

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No longer eligible for government service due to lack of tax issues.

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glassman
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quote:
Originally posted by jordanreed:
as far as i'm, concerned? i dunno what the fuss is... AIG put collateral up to borrow the money...


did they use the business as collateral??

yes, we own 80% of AIG

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buckstalker
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If we own 80% of AIG then I want a friggin BONUS too...A BIG FREAKIN BONUS at that...

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***********************

It's all in the timing...

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glassman
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the "deal" is that parts of AIG will be sold off as the market improves... we get 80%..

it ain't that different from bankruptcy except that it won't be a fire sale...

there's no capital out her to buy peices of bkrpt co's right now anyway...

Chinese Capital is all there is in that league...

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T e x
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The House bill is for companies with more than $5 bil bailout money. In other words, they ain't private, no more. Hence, no private-type bonuses, til they get back under $5 bil.

It woulda been better to tell 'em, tear up your contracts, if you want the dough. Isn't that what the union boys got told?

It's all jacked up, but it's good to see a Congress respond to outrage from the public, for once.

Now, if they'd revoke their own, automatic cost-of-living raises until the chit ain't hitting the fan...

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Nashoba Holba Chepulechi
Adventures in microcapitalism...

Posts: 21062 | From: Fort Worth | Registered: Apr 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
glassman
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but it's good to see a Congress respond to outrage from the public, for once.


yeah, and i still can't find an honest answer as to who is really responsible, but the outrage is bipartisn even if i don't share it...


to be honest? i am just about out of pre-outrage neurotransmitters [Big Grin]

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glassman
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quote:
Originally posted by glassman:
hmmmm... i dunno 'bout that attainder chit...

all i know is that congress does what it does and the courts don't see the laws until somebody brings them to them, and they can refuse to see them if 'n they're awant'n

oh yeah, i forgot to add that unless you have standing in a case? you can't bring it...

you have to be direclty affected by the law in order to file a case to get the law found uncosntitutional...

this has stopped quite a few gun control laws from being challenged in the past...

in specific? the sawed off shotgun law...

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T e x
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quote:
who is really responsible,
lol...responsible for *which* part?

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Nashoba Holba Chepulechi
Adventures in microcapitalism...

Posts: 21062 | From: Fort Worth | Registered: Apr 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
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