What’s The Point In Outing The AIG Bonus Babies

Is there a point in divulging the names of the AIG executives who received bonuses? There seems to be a frenzy on the part of some blogs and the MSM to identify the recipients and even publish their pictures.

Given that credible threats have been made towards AIG and those that received bonuses, publishing information that could lead some lunatic to them seems awfully irresponsible. Whatever possible good may be accomplished (I can think of none) the potential for causing great harm would seem to argue strongly in favor of some reticence.

One could argue simply that those who received bonuses are deserving of the same right to privacy as any of us. I know that argument will be attacked with lots of pious counters about receiving government money, our right to know as shareholders etc. So be it. Let me throw something else out there.

How about granting a presumption of innocence to some of these guys. Do you know who took the money and contributed nothing in return? Of course you don’t and neither do any of the other high minded accusers. Quite probably there are some pretty smart guys in AGIFP who could have checked out at the first sign of trouble and walked across the street to a job that would have paid them as much or more than they made by sticking around. It’s also pretty likely that some of them saved us more than a little bit of money just because they knew where the bodies were buried and how to unwind part of the mess at the least cost.

Damning all of them without knowing all of the facts is unfair. Putting their welfare and that of their families in jeopardy is not something I want to be responsible for. 

Barring any more lunacy, I suspect that this will be the last I write about this issue. It’s a media inspired tempest that means little in the larger scheme. Thankfully, the Fed came along this afternoon and pretty much sucked the air out of it.

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