29 March 2009

Obama to CEOs: "Show Some Restraint"

President Barack Obama said he "made clear" to bank CEOs who visited him Friday that they need to get rid of lavish bonuses and perks that have "angered the American people". 

"Show some restraint," Obama said he told the executives, according to an interview he taped Friday with Bob Schieffer of
CBS News. "Show that you get that this is a crisis and everybody has to make sacrifices.

And these executives should tell this rabble-rousing hypocrite to stuff-it.

Obama takes a private jet to Hawaii for a lavish vacation, spends $18,000/hr on Air Force One to jet-out to the Left Coast and mock the disabled on the Tonight Show (no work more pressing in DC?), cranks-up the White House thermostat to Waikiki, throws garish,  extravagant parties every week while Rome burns... then feasts on $100/lb Wagu Beef on the taxpayers' tab.  

Such behavior is pretty crass when portraying himself as the champion of the oppressed masses- no different than Nancy Pelosi's expecting Air Force planes to be there whenever she snaps her fingers.  But what else should we expect from a President that has tongue-lashed the Detroit automakers repeatedly for not aggressively pursuing hybrids and green technologies... while his last car before heading to the White House was a two-ton, 300hp Hemi-powered Chrysler 300C? How could the President possibly take issue with appearances at AIG- has he no sense of irony?

If it's not appearances, then perhaps it's the actual dollar amounts involved that bother him so much.  But in actuality, -as Charles Krauthammer noted- the AIG bonuses in question amount to  "less than 1/18,500 of the $3.1 trillion federal budget... It's less than one-tenth of 1 percent of the bailout money given to AIG alone."  Seems that this bonus issue is being given attention out of all proportion to it's actual relevance- and for what appears to be political purposes.

Is it the legality that stokes Obama's sense of outrage, then?  Trouble there is that the only way to break a contract legally is Chapter 11....short of that, a contract is a contract. The AIG bonuses were agreed to before the government takeover- and are perfectly legal. These executives salaries, bonuses, and perks were written in stone prior to the crisis, and before Obama got involved... and he's known about all of it long before he saw a political opportunity in feigning "outrage". It should have deeply insulted anyone's intelligence who observed the spectacle of him with a frog-in-his-throat at last week's presser cynically remark "see, I'm choked-up with anger"-

The disingenuous Obama attacks perceived "class enemies" like the cigar-chomping Limbaugh and executives who got their perks and salaries from companies that were glad to provide them in exchange for services and talents... so where is the injustice there that offends him (and his infantile zero-sum economic view) so much? Perhaps one could argue that some of them are "overpaid", especially in the wake of the banking crisis- but that's what the market and the resultant contracts offered them- and they took it. Unlike Barack, they've got actual management abilities and resumes that have real value that someone is willing to pay for... some jealousy there, perhaps?

Someone needs to tell Obama that he can't just keep trashing the business class that made America a powerful machine of innovation and efficiency- nor can he just put all the CEO's on a rack and wring the money from them... regardless of what his wacked-out Marxist professors and Saul Alinsky told him.  There's a reason those losers drove a '74 AMC Hornet and lived in a studio apartment. And, the funny thing about eating-the-rich is... they know when to climb off the plate.

Enough already with calculated, specious drivel about a few million dollars while the Democrats drive this country into the ground with outlandish trillion-dollar spending sprees... the money for which will be drained from these same successful individuals when Obama-Reid-Pelosi crank-up their taxes to dig-out of the hole they're putting us in.  If anyone thinks it's in the nation's interest to discourage our best and brightest from working 15/hrs a day creating wealth and jobs by having them do it for $1/year, while taxing 90% of their bonus away (all the while telling them what bad people they are)- they're nuts. Those with talent and ability will simply abandon companies entagled in the government's draconian tenacles and go work for some boutique firm, offshore if necessary, where there isn't any leveraged job-creation... and they'll do fine no matter what.

The press and public keep taking-the-bait in Team Obama's red-herring attacks on Limbaugh, Cramer, Santorelli, business executives... while they enact a radical agenda with no debate in committee, skipping most standard appropriations proceedings... and breaking all promises for online disclosure prior to legislative votes.  Maybe a little public "outrage" there would be in all of our interests before we gamble our future away on unproven, exorbitant programs that we clearly cannot afford. 

Why aren't we talking about the inordinate spending proposals that Senator Judd Gregg  said "will bankrupt the country"... instead of further enabling the administration's Alinsky-inspired diversionary tactics and demonization of opponents? Said the Senator: "These are staggering numbers and represent an extraordinary move of our government to the left." (thanks Gateway Pundit and Free Republic)

As Barack lays his mojo on us -keeping approximately half the US electorate in the ether- it seems like the invisible hand of the market Obama so abhors is already drawing the line- and it's nowhere near where he wanted it to be.   The recent failed UK bond auctions and calls for an international reserve currency are bringing a harsh reality to Obama's radical spending fantasies, which of course depend on endless borrowing from those who now fear we will devalue our way out of it... or even eventually default. Hopefully the realization is dawning upon the American public that not only do we not have the money... but the day is rapidly approaching when nobody is willing to loan it to us, either. Maybe a decade with the fiscal pedal-to-the-metal isn't such a good idea after all.

It's about time for President Obama to "show some restraint" himself, instead of changing the subject and hectoring useful political targets- and not only in appearance, but in the unfathomable amounts of money he proposes that we borrow and spend, in his disdain for irrepressible market forces, his contempt of legal obligations that run contrary to his desires, as well as his growing disregard for the Constitution of this country.