Skip to main content

Why is there no major backlash at ~$350 billion in taxpayer money being corruptly distributed to the nation's wealthy?

Merrill’s Thain Said to Pay $1.2 Million to Decorator in Dec 2008 (Update1)
http://www.bloomberg.com/...

Merrill Lynch gives out $4 billion in bonuses in Dec 2008
http://tpmmuckraker.talkingpointsmem...

Courtesy of TPM:

  • - 9/14/08: Bank of America buys Merrill. Over the previous four quarters, Merrill had posted losses of more than $17 billion.
  • - 10/14/08: Bank of America gets $25 billion in bailout funds, largely in order to help it take on Merrill's losses.
  • - Fall 08: A proposal is made to Merrill's compensation committee that Thain receive a $10 million bonus.
  • - 12/05/08 - Merrill and Bank of America shareholders vote to approve the takeover.
  • - 12/08/08 - Merrill's compensation committee declines to approve the proposal on Thain's bonus, but nonetheless approves payouts to staff totaling $3-4 billion.
  • - Days later: Bank of America learns that Merrill's fourth-quarter losses were greater than expected. B of A begins lobbying the federal government for more TARP money to ease the takeover.
  • - 12/29/08 - Merrill pays bonuses paid ($4 billion), at least a month ahead of the usual schedule.
  • - 1/16/09 Treasury says it will give Bank of America another $20 billion in TARP money, to help it absorb the larger-than-expected Merrill losses.
  • - 1/16/09: Merrill reports a $15.3 billion fourth quarter loss.

And from NYDailynews:

The decorating expenditures included: $87,784 for an area rug; $68,179 for a 19th century credenza; $35,115 for a commode on legs; $28,091 for curtains; $25,713 for a mahogany pedestal table; $18,468, for a George IV chair, $2,741 for six wall sconces.

And from FinancialTimes:

The bulk of $15bn in compensation was paid out as salary and benefits throughout the course of the year. A person familiar with the matter estimated that about $3bn to $4bn was paid out in bonuses in December.

These people looted the government for upwards of $3-4 billion. I've got some questions:

  • Why is Obama or any NY official not attempting to at least punish these people in some way?
  • Are we just supposed to let it go? Why was there no oversight?
  • Why is John Thain, former CEO of Merrill Lynch, who is credited as the main culprit in all this looting, still chilling out at his multi-million dollar mansion?
  • Why at the very minimum, is John Thain not subject to greater scrutiny among the media?
  • Why is there not major backlash among the American public at this?
  • Why is there no big oversight panel for all this money?
  • Why is no one holding Barney Frank accountable? He said back in October that there would be full transparency, and then in November, after the fact, he states that transparency can't be had because it would "disturb the market".

These guys get away with stealing billions of dollars from the U.S. federal government while people are put in jail for microscopic things in comparison.

Originally posted to JohnAdams999 on Fri Jan 23, 2009 at 10:02 AM PST.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site