The bonuses at AIG keep on coming:
“… AIG, the fallen insurer, paid out an additional $100 million this month, much of it to the very financial products division whose rampant risk-taking took the firm to the brink. And there’s another $75 million coming…[Treasury Secretary Tim] Geithner, and pay czar Kenneth Feinberg, say that while lamentable, the AIG payments must legally be honored.”
But yet last May during the General Motors–United Auto Workers negotiations, which the government insisted be a part of a GM bailout:
“People familiar with the UAW agreement said it largely mirrors concessions the UAW granted Chrysler LLC last month, including a suspension of cost-of-living allowances, bonuses and some holidays.
…The deal is the latest concession by the UAW after several years of cutbacks. Unlike past negotiations, which often dragged on for months and went past deadlines, the parties — under pressure from the Treasury, which has lent GM $15.4 billion — moved quickly to revise a contract approved in 2007.”
Compare that $15.4 billion for GM, which came with “pressure from the Treasury” to re-negotiate existing contracts, with the $182 billion given to AIG, no strings attached, and contracts that must be “legally honored.”
Sure sounds like a double-standard to me. White collar contracts? Sacred. Blue collar contracts? Toss ‘em in the garbage. But then again, Geithner wasn’t laundering money through GM to pay off his buds at Goldman Sachs, like he did through AIG (allegedly).