Saturday, January 31, 2009

Bailed Out Investment Banker and Brokers Still Pay Billions in Bogus Bonuses

The Wizards of Wall Street have fallen from grace due to greed and some should be in jail due to corruption and fraud. The tone deaf insensitive and PR deficit CEOs of the Big Three automaker how took their private corporate jets to Congress to beg for taxpayer bailouts was seen as ignorance, arrogance and insouciance – which it was. It was child’s play compared to the almost $20 billion of bonus payout the investment bankers blessed themselves in New York alone, after they got billions of taxpayer money.

The next time some superficial self-satisfied captain of commerce tells me governments should be run more like business I think I will explode. Given the greed, corruption and indifference too many of these self-satisfied sanctimonious scumbags has shown to serving the public interest and lack of respect to their social license to operate I think the business community better shake its collective head and do some serious soul searching about its roles and responsibilities.

I don’t like over regulation but I detest under regulation even more. It was the latter that led to a lax governing philosophy that was bred by too much of the small government, regulation elimination mantra of the fundamentalist conservative politicians that helped to get us into this mess and economic meltdown.

Those neo-con politicians and their “free enterprise” campaign funders have forgotten that the economy is a social value system that we humans invented. It is intended to serve the needs of our society - not the other way around.

When the economic system gets distorted to the point where greed and corruption become normalized then citizens have to get reengaged and start insisting some heads get banged together and some other heads roll. We need to start making some serious demands of the politicians, regulators and to start to tar and feather, Internet style, those psychopathic self-satisfied corporate privateers who are cheating us and rip us off and then begging for taxpayer bailouts.

The cost of taxpayer cash to corporate bailouts must be much more public and regulatory scrutiny, operational transparency, fiscal accountability and governance controls on the private sector that gets the cash. They must be expected to satisfy the same ethical rigour, operational accountability and disclosure diligence that we expect of government officials and public servants. It is time we insisted that industry acted according to the same level of social service standards as we expect from government if they get a taxpayer bailout.

If you Masters of the Universe types expect taxpayer bailouts to be invested, lent and granted to your “free” enterprises in order to save your asses, then expect serious on-going open and transparent public accountability and scrutiny as one of the cost of raising that social capital from us citizens.

You supercilious business guys always knew that you are the “smartest guys in the room” - in any room - right? So I am sure you will have no trouble getting this new reality of accountability and transparency that will be imposed on you in exchange for taxpayer money.