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Dear AIG, I quit - op-ed article

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Dear AIG, I quit - op-ed article [#permalink] New post 25 Mar 2009, 05:40
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Re: Dear AIG, I quit - op-ed article [#permalink] New post 25 Mar 2009, 06:20
Good for him. It's easy to forget that many of the AIG employees being made into villians lately have had nothing to do with what happened at AIG, and are guilty of nothing more than being highly compensated.
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Re: Dear AIG, I quit - op-ed article [#permalink] New post 25 Mar 2009, 06:49
Even after working in politics, the more I see the worse I like it.

This is a great article.
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Re: Dear AIG, I quit - op-ed article [#permalink] New post 25 Mar 2009, 07:15
That was a very well written resignation letter!

Finally, the other side of this AIG story is being told and it could not have come any sooner...
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Re: Dear AIG, I quit - op-ed article [#permalink] New post 25 Mar 2009, 11:59
... and a few thoughts in rebuttal:

Link: http://www.businessweek.com/careers/man ... _top+story
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Re: Dear AIG, I quit - op-ed article [#permalink] New post 25 Mar 2009, 12:44
Reply to the letter (saw in BW comments, thought it was pretty good :-)

Dear Mr. DeSantis,

As a taxpayer, and a defacto part owner of your failed employer, I would like to take this opportunity to gladly accept your resignation.

You, and those like you, apparently are oblivious to the fact that your employer is crumbling, and is presently only propped up by the U.S. Government. Had the Government permitted AIG to become insolvent, you would have certainly been facing a substantial likelihood of having the bonus contract nullified by a bankruptcy judge. And, you likely would have been looking elsewhere for employment anyway while the failing company reorganized.

In other words, you only had the opportunity to continue in your present position because of the American taxpayers--the same ones that you so roundly criticize in your resignation letter.

While you claim to have some sympathy for those in need, you clearly don't understand them. If you did, you would grasp why your receipt of a nearly $750,000 "bonus" from what has essentially become a ward of the federal government is so offensive to taxpayers in a country where the median family income is approximately $48,000. If "guilt" is an insufficient motivator to return the grossly unwarranted bonus, perhaps you should give shame a try.

Like you, I was raised by a schoolteacher and a blue collar worker. Like you, I worked hard and got through schools on scholarships. Like you, I have put in more than my share of 10/12/14 hour (and more) work days. Unlike you, I would never dream of taking an almost $750,000 bonus from taxpayer dollars, when that money could be used to help the unemployed, the homeless, or the hungry. Finally, unlike you, I would never be so pretentious to claim to be betrayed or victimized by the legitimate public outrage over this situation.

Please clean out your desk. Security will take your key, and will show you to the door.

Sincerely,

The Management.
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Re: Dear AIG, I quit - op-ed article [#permalink] New post 25 Mar 2009, 14:22
This response makes me furious. There is little that the general public understands about the job the AIG-FP people did. They're the ones that generated returns on investment of the premiums and capital of AIG. DeSantis stated (and probably can prove) that he (and his department) generated over $100M in returns. This type of stress/responsibility is going to come with higher pay or those returns will never happen. It's capitalism. Those individuals that are capable of generating such returns will demand a certain pay and if AIG won't pay then, then the job will go to someone else, who will not be able to generate those returns.

I would like to know if the author if this response to DeSantis has ever agreed to work for $1 per year like DeSantis did.

sajal09 wrote:
Reply to the letter (saw in BW comments, thought it was pretty good :-)

Dear Mr. DeSantis,

As a taxpayer, and a defacto part owner of your failed employer, I would like to take this opportunity to gladly accept your resignation.

You, and those like you, apparently are oblivious to the fact that your employer is crumbling, and is presently only propped up by the U.S. Government. Had the Government permitted AIG to become insolvent, you would have certainly been facing a substantial likelihood of having the bonus contract nullified by a bankruptcy judge. And, you likely would have been looking elsewhere for employment anyway while the failing company reorganized.

In other words, you only had the opportunity to continue in your present position because of the American taxpayers--the same ones that you so roundly criticize in your resignation letter.

While you claim to have some sympathy for those in need, you clearly don't understand them. If you did, you would grasp why your receipt of a nearly $750,000 "bonus" from what has essentially become a ward of the federal government is so offensive to taxpayers in a country where the median family income is approximately $48,000. If "guilt" is an insufficient motivator to return the grossly unwarranted bonus, perhaps you should give shame a try.

Like you, I was raised by a schoolteacher and a blue collar worker. Like you, I worked hard and got through schools on scholarships. Like you, I have put in more than my share of 10/12/14 hour (and more) work days. Unlike you, I would never dream of taking an almost $750,000 bonus from taxpayer dollars, when that money could be used to help the unemployed, the homeless, or the hungry. Finally, unlike you, I would never be so pretentious to claim to be betrayed or victimized by the legitimate public outrage over this situation.

Please clean out your desk. Security will take your key, and will show you to the door.

Sincerely,

The Management.

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Re: Dear AIG, I quit - op-ed article [#permalink] New post 25 Mar 2009, 15:14
There are some people that continue to be oblivious to what goes around them, unless they are spoon fed by the mass media.

Although there might have been several individuals that didn't deserve the high outrageous bonuses, I believe there were several that did deserve it just by pure percentage-to-quantity amount of return they generated for the company.

As a apartment renter, and not a home owner. It does piss me off that America is fixated on a small minority of people losing the homes they couldn't have afforded from the get-go. Mostly due to government officials making poor decisions. However, if AIG were to file Chapter 11, I was under the impression that more homeowners would have lost their homes, which would have been pasted all over the mass media, and would have "hurt" Obama's public image. (Natural course would have been better)

Regardless, the 7## billion spent is blown over, yet the $165 million has so much attention.
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Re: Dear AIG, I quit - op-ed article [#permalink] New post 25 Mar 2009, 18:00
That's so true. I took $765B divided by $165M aand the amount of money that is getting people so upset is 1/4636th of the total stimulus package. Just amazes me.

89nk wrote:
There are some people that continue to be oblivious to what goes around them, unless they are spoon fed by the mass media.

Although there might have been several individuals that didn't deserve the high outrageous bonuses, I believe there were several that did deserve it just by pure percentage-to-quantity amount of return they generated for the company.

As a apartment renter, and not a home owner. It does piss me off that America is fixated on a small minority of people losing the homes they couldn't have afforded from the get-go. Mostly due to government officials making poor decisions. However, if AIG were to file Chapter 11, I was under the impression that more homeowners would have lost their homes, which would have been pasted all over the mass media, and would have "hurt" Obama's public image. (Natural course would have been better)

Regardless, the 7## billion spent is blown over, yet the $165 million has so much attention.

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Re: Dear AIG, I quit - op-ed article [#permalink] New post 25 Mar 2009, 18:45
Toubab wrote:
... and a few thoughts in rebuttal:

Link: http://www.businessweek.com/careers/man ... _top+story

But of course it is a complete double-standard if the union employees aren't willing to give up their lifetime retirement and healthcare benefits in the case of GM or Chrysler to save the company. Those employees aren't considered greedy because they are blue collar workers, which are of course the central power of the Democratic party. It is only right to vilify the white-collar executive because of the wealth envy and populist vibe in this country. It just sickens me that if someone is successful, people try and use every excuse to pull that individual down. No longer is that success celebrated. What is wrong with this country when one party (Democrats) gains power by vilifying another group of Americans (the rich). Lincoln, Obama's hero, said that "A house divided against itself cannot stand", but yet people are divided into two different classes according to Democrats - the middle class, and everyone that keeps the middle class down, i.e. the upper class. That line of reasoning is so completely absurd, and it is the main reason I can never support a liberal political agenda in this country.
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Re: Dear AIG, I quit - op-ed article [#permalink] New post 26 Mar 2009, 03:26
Oh boy, maybe broader debate on democrats vs. republicans or liberal vs. conservative should move to a different thread so this one stays relatively on topic (AIG).
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Re: Dear AIG, I quit - op-ed article [#permalink] New post 26 Mar 2009, 04:43
jb32, I agree with you, there are certainly inconsistencies to put it nicely.

What gets me is that currently, politicians are trying to say there is something wrong with being wealthy and making over $250,000 a year. "The rich should pay their fair share." It's interesting how they define "fair share" as being a larger share because those making over $250k make more money? These politician's concept of "fair share" is absurd to me and it logically doesn't refer to progressive taxation. If the statement were "The rich should pay their share." that would be more accurate, because in my mind, when a person pays a larger % because they have a higher income does not constitute "fair". I would still disagree with progressive taxation, but at least the statement would be logical.

If we, as a country, create an environment where those that have wealth are treated poorly and taxed as a VERY high rate as in some european countries, it is my opinion that we are killing the incentive for people to keep gaining in their earnings. Many people, middle class too, are motivated by the fact that in America if you work hard, get some breaks, and make good decisions, then you can move from lower class to middle, middle to upper, etc. If we disincentivize (yeah that's not a word, but I"m using it anyway! ;-)) people from wanting to keep working towards upward mobility in society, we undercut a basic tenet of capitalism. We are now saying to people "Congratulations on getting into med/law/biz school and making a lot of money. Here's your punishment." There are many other ways for people to earn over $250k, but those 3 are more on the minds of people our age and our friends' minds. I'm not saying we should reward people for making a lot of money, but we certainly shouldn't punish them either.
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Re: Dear AIG, I quit - op-ed article [#permalink] New post 26 Mar 2009, 07:17
Sounds like we've got some Ron Paulies in here... ha! Look, a contract's a contract, but contracts actually get broken - excuse me, "revised" - all the time. No one seems to have had any problem demanding that blue collar GM workers revise their lifetime benefit contracts when the company was (is?) going under, even though Joe and Jane Assemblyworker were probably among the largest value-adding workers in that godforesaken company. Despite their hard work, the company was taking a nosedive because of dumb decisions up in management (by a bunch of MBAs). So everyone's compensation was affected, including the assembly line workers'.

I don't see why this is so different. Okay, so DeSantis and his colleagues were actually pulling in revenue for the company. Great. But the company itself was still going under - and like the commenter pointed out, his contract likely would've been voided anyway if AIG had gone into receivership because there wouldn't have been any money to pay it with! There are such things as extenuating circumstances that can modify or invalidate clauses of a contract, including, say, your company going bankrupt and not being able to pay those "contractually obligated" bonuses.

And Democrats love the rich and corporations as much as Republicans do. They just happen to control much less our party's public policy. The rest of what you said was nonsense.
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Re: Dear AIG, I quit - op-ed article [#permalink] New post 26 Mar 2009, 07:49
Toubab wrote:
I don't see why this is so different. Okay, so DeSantis and his colleagues were actually pulling in revenue for the company. Great. But the company itself was still going under - and like the commenter pointed out, his contract likely would've been voided anyway if AIG had gone into receivership because there wouldn't have been any money to pay it with! There are such things as extenuating circumstances that can modify or invalidate clauses of a contract, including, say, your company going bankrupt and not being able to pay those "contractually obligated" bonuses.

Let's make this really simple. So as the owner of a company, in this case AIG (because you do own it as a taxpayer), would you pay someone $750,000 if they could bring in $100 million of revenue? If you would, then this arguement is over. If you wouldn't then you have no business owning a business...EVER. Me personally, I would have gladly paid every single person in the Financial Products group that was bringing in revenue as much as it took to get them to stay, because if they all left, I'd be twice as fvck*d as if they had stayed. Then would I not only have losses near $100 billion, but I would also have $0 revenue to offset those losses. As for the people that caused the $100 billion in losses, they were either fired or had already quit, so whatever happens to them I don't care. They royally fvck*d everyone, but there is nothing I can do about that now, so why even get worked up over it. The best thing to do is make sure it doesn't ever happen again.
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Re: Dear AIG, I quit - op-ed article [#permalink] New post 26 Mar 2009, 08:31
Look, I get that you want employees who will bring in more revenue than they cost the company. Problem is, despite those guys' great work (funny how success has many fathers, but failure is an orphan, isn't it?), the company is now bankrupt anyway. So no one gets a bonus. It's that simple.

Of course, this whole bailout is a loan, right? So if and when AIG manages to right the ship and becomes profitable again - at which point, presumably, it will begin paying down its debt - it will also be able to pay performance bonuses.

Moreover, in this climate, I have strong doubts about how many employees will be jumping ship from their erstwhile secure financial sector job, even without a bonus this year. I also have big doubts about whether they'll be able to match their profitability last year.
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Re: Dear AIG, I quit - op-ed article [#permalink] New post 26 Mar 2009, 09:12
Another 2 high ranking managers in AIG's French subsidiary left today, which is causing some trouble over there since it may trigger some adverse consequences for the company.

Toubab - comparing this to GM is apples to oranges. The equivalent action for GM would have been the government imposing a 100% tax on the GM assembly line workers' income that exceeded the income of their counterparts at Nissan, Honda, Toyota, etc. I do not think there would have been nearly as loud an outcry if the government told AIG that any aid would be dependent on AIG renegotiating or cancelling the bonus contracts (similar to how they made the auto bailout contingent on renegotiated labor agreements with the UAW). What people have taken issue with is the government imposing a punitive tax on an action that the government explicitly allowed just a few weeks ago.
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Re: Dear AIG, I quit - op-ed article [#permalink] New post 26 Mar 2009, 21:18
Jerz wrote:
Another 2 high ranking managers in AIG's French subsidiary left today, which is causing some trouble over there since it may trigger some adverse consequences for the company.

Toubab - comparing this to GM is apples to oranges. The equivalent action for GM would have been the government imposing a 100% tax on the GM assembly line workers' income that exceeded the income of their counterparts at Nissan, Honda, Toyota, etc. I do not think there would have been nearly as loud an outcry if the government told AIG that any aid would be dependent on AIG renegotiating or cancelling the bonus contracts (similar to how they made the auto bailout contingent on renegotiated labor agreements with the UAW). What people have taken issue with is the government imposing a punitive tax on an action that the government explicitly allowed just a few weeks ago.


Right, comparing the two are very different.
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Re: Dear AIG, I quit - op-ed article [#permalink] New post 28 Mar 2009, 07:19
I am glad these AIG guys appeared..I was starting to feel sorry for the Octo-Mom.. :)
Re: Dear AIG, I quit - op-ed article   [#permalink] 28 Mar 2009, 07:19
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