Thursday, 26 March 2009

Rat Leaves Sinking Ship

Jake DeSantis, an executive vice president of the American International Group’s financial products unit, sent a letter on Tuesday to Edward M. Liddy, the chief executive of A.I.G. The letter was published on 25th March in the New York Times . The fact that the letter was published in the New York Times appears strange, since most letters of resignation are not publicised. Maybe he was doing a Pontius Pilate, and washing his hands in public.

Mr. DeSantis, who has worked for the company for 11 years, explained that he felt unable to continue working for the company which he called dysfunctional, and that he and his staff in the financial products unit had been betrayed by A.I.G and unfairly persecuted by elected officials. He goes on to state that his unit was not responsible for the credit default swap transactions that have hamstrung AIG. He will not be returning his bonus, as requested, but after the tax has been taken off he is going to give it to charity, to 'those most affected by the economic downturn'. His intent is not to keep a single cent of the money for himself and his family.

He also states that he feels that Mr. Liddy, the chief executive of A.I.G., was not responsible for the mismanagement at A.I.G either.

Which begs the question, what are these high paid executives actually being paid for? Mr. DeSantis has worked the last year for a $1.00 fee, on the understanding that he would receive a bonus payment in March of this year. In view of the fact that the company was being dismantled where exactly did he think the profits were that would pay his bonus? Surely bonus payments are being paid at the end of a financial year based on the performance of the company paying the bonus. Of course, he thought the bonus payment would come from the American Taxpayer, his bonus actually being paid out of the BailOut Fund which is American Taxpayers' money.

So for 10 years Mr. DeSantis worked for a dysfunctional company that was creating an artificial finance bubble, but he failed to see that and he was in no way shape or form responsible for that. So what did he see? He must either be very gullible, in which case one wonders how he ever made it to vice executive, or he is a hypocrite, who now that the A.I.G. ship is sinking fast does what most rats do.

Needless to say, the readers 'comments in the New York Times were many, and the discussion is now closed, so no further comments can be added to it.

Perhaps the most succinct statement of all is from Rolf, New York
' Hint : If your company accepts tens of millions of dollars from taxpayers, consider your bonus renegotiated'

Well said Rolf, I am sure most taxpayers will agree with you on that.

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