Barney Frank pushing for government control on ALL salaries
To say that somebody has been “Borked” is to suggest that they have had their character viciously assassinated, the verb being an addition to our language likely first made in 1987 by New York Times columnist William Safire in response to how Democrats–and turncoat Republican Arlen Specter–absolutely savaged the good name Robert Bork, the eminently qualified and competent originalist Appellate Judge who had been nominated for the Supreme Court by President Ronald Reagan.
Similarly, the International Monetary Fund has an action associated with its acronym as well. To pull an “IMF” maneuver is essentially to loan a nearly incomprehensible amount of money to a desperate third-world country, knowing full well that the loan will never be paid back, and that the only possible recompense would be increased influence and control.
This is what our own federal government has been doing, starting in the latter half of former President George W. Bush’s second term. For me, the reality of this disturbing pattern hit yesterday, when the new president of the United States essentially fired a private sector chief executive.
Personally, I don’t think we should be bailing out anybody at all, but rather let the forces of a truly unencumbered free market guide us out of the economic doldrums. But if we do want to take such previously unimaginable action, the prospect that we pick and choose according to some nebulous standard concocted in windowless offices in the Treasury Department and at the Federal Reserve is absolutely insane. If we’re going to do it at all, if we’re going to continue down the road so diametrically opposed to what our founders would have wanted, we should at least be somewhat equitable.
General Motors, for example, had posted roughly $84 billion in losses over the past four years, and as a result of those financial difficulties has received about $44 billion in federal bailout money and watched as the White House fired the company’s CEO. Meanwhile, AIG posted a staggering $64 billion loss in the fourth quarter of 2008 alone, but even in the wake of total fiscal meltdown in that organization, not only have there been no Washington-forced management shakeups, but after such an astouding display of failure, our federal government actually provided another $130 billion in aid, bringing the total to $180 billion.
If we’re going to take this stance at all, let’s at least do that with solid principles and criteria. Instead, this reminds me of a bunch of kids in a schoolyard with a deflated ball, making up rules to some new game as they go along.
They rescue some banks, but not others. They specifically allow for retention bonuses, but then retroactively and punitively–and unconstitutionally–tax them at a 90 percent rate. They push for caps on the pay of executives whose companies take bailout funds, but then advocate the application of such caps on executives regardless of whether the funds were taken or not.
Now, we see that Barney Frank is pushing legislation which would essentially permit those on Capitol Hill to set salaries for all employees, not just chief executives, in companies which take federal bailout money. If we continue to buy into the populist outrage being sold by congressional Democrats, we’re going to have just enough panic that this Bolshevikesque measure could gain enough ignorant public support to pass.
A little before midnight last night, I heard Fox News host Bill O’Reilly actually argue in favor of Barack Obama’s constructive termination of GM CEO Rick Wagoner, taking the position that we shouldn’t be bailing out entities which refuse to make the necessary changes in the way they operate, that the American taxpayers shouldn’t be sending good money after bad leadership.
We shouldn’t have to send good money after bad leadership?
Perhaps I’ll keep that very argument, as well as the likes of Chris Dodd and Barney Frank and Nancy Pelosi and Barack Obama, in mind as I do my taxes this weekend.