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    Tag: incompetence

    Sunday Talkies - Detroit Part III

    By JGillman, Section Multimedia
    Posted on Sun Nov 10, 2013 at 08:14:11 AM EST
    Tags: Detroit, Michigan, Decay Breeds Decay, Government, Incompetence, Corruption, Brownfield (all tags)

    In the third and last episode of the bankrupting America series, one of the business owners profiled seems hopeful for Detroit's future.

    In certain pockets, there is limited investment which he feels represents a turning point. His optimism is clearly tempered by what leadership might or might not do however.

    "The more city government gets cleaned up, and gets better organized, thats going to naturally help my business. Cause it changes the perception people have of the city, through city government."

    Whole Foods cannot anchor the ghost ship of Detroit by itself.

    The process which brought Whole foods there in the first place is legalized corruption in my view anyhow.  The site on which it stands was not a contamination site as far as I know, and the abuse of brownfield remains legendary.

    Comments >>

    Saturday Matinee - Detroit Part II

    By JGillman, Section Multimedia
    Posted on Sat Nov 09, 2013 at 09:28:57 AM EST
    Tags: Detroit, Michigan, Decay Breeds Decay, Government, Incompetence (all tags)

    Continuing Bankrupting America's series, this video touches on a couple of truths.

    First, that government will, if allowed, can become the biggest obstacle to free trade, and an individual's chosen occupation by sheer incompetence.  Secondly, that if something is seen as disrespected, the disrespect will be amplified by the sheeple.

    (3 comments) Comments >>

    A Message To Our Legislators - Beware False Choices

    Nothing to see here

    By JGillman, Section News
    Posted on Fri Sep 16, 2011 at 11:16:32 AM EST
    Tags: Jobs Act, Solyndra, Dingell, Obama, Brass Things, Brave New World, Incompetence (all tags)

    Move along.

    Our own long time congressman comments during the Solyndra hearing:

    Rep. John Dingell (D., Mich.), midway through the hearing: "I'm still waiting to see something that makes me concerned."

    Your self serving nature suits your party of choice congressman.  Never mind the rush through by your fearless leader's administration of the loan application.  Never mind the damage it may do to the green industries, while it demonstrates the sheer folly of investing so heavily in green tech at this point.  It wouldn't affect you at all sir.  A hundred years of feeding off the taxpayers, and none of this should matter to you.

    But to the president it may matter.  it should.

    Yet even in the face of this criminal enterprise that has the president and his cronies in the spotlight, and the utter failure that his administration is in general, it somehow seems to not bother him so much either.

    A new cover for the Jobs act he is touting is below the line.

    (4 comments, 205 words in story) Full Story

    AIG Bonuses Expose Hypocrisy and Incompetence All Around

    By The Wizard of Laws, Section Multimedia
    Posted on Tue Mar 17, 2009 at 06:48:04 PM EST
    Tags: AIG, bailout, bonuses, hypocrisy, incompetence (all tags)

    The news, the blogs, and the nation's water coolers are abuzz with outrage over the AIG bonus payments -- $165 million to various executives -- after AIG took about $180 billion in government bailout money.

    I have mixed feelings about this. We certainly should not reward incompetence, but as someone who would like a million dollar bonus one day, I don't think we should discourage dreaming either!

    As is usually the case with issues of this sort, the outrage exploded before the facts were known or contemplated (not that facts make much difference in Washington). Consider:

    1. The AIG bonuses represent less than 1/1000 of the bailout money, or less than 0.10 percent. During the presidential debates, the One dismissed McCain's concerns about earmarks because, the One claimed, they involved less than 0.5 percent of the federal budget. Even at 0.5 percent, the earmarks compared to the budget are more than 5 times the relative size of the bonuses compared to the bailout. As a percentage of the federal budget, the bonuses are less than 0.005 percent, or about 100 times smaller than the earmarks the One felt were not really a problem. So, it can't be the money itself that has everyone outraged.

    2. Perhaps it is the perception of greed that has everyone upset. What has been lost, however, is a fact revealed today by the New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo in a letter to Barney Frank -- the AIG executives who got the bonuses did so pursuant to renegotiated contracts in which they agreed to take the grand sum of $1.00 -- that's one dollar -- in salary for 2009, provided they got their 2008 bonuses. That surely makes things sound a little less greedy. You don't see the One, Frank, Dodd, Reid, or Pelosi agreeing to work for $1.00.

    3. You want to talk incompetence? Also revealed in Cuomo's letter is the fact that while AIG agreed with Cuomo that it would not pay bonuses out of its Financial Products deferred compensation plan (and it honored that agreement), the brilliant attorneys in the New York AG's office neglected to obtain the same agreement regarding the Financial Products retention plan from which the bonuses -- which were retention bonuses! -- were paid. If you lock up the savings account, you'd better make sure the checking account is covered; if you don't, you can hardly blame AIG for writing checks.

    4. Ah, but you say AIG has broken the law because the $787 billion stimulus plan puts limits on executive compensation, right? Well, sort of. There are limits, but they do not apply to the AIG bonuses. Why not? Because of a little provision inserted by Democrats (remember, Republicans had nothing to do with writing this thing) in the next-to-last section of the bill, specifically section 7001(b)(3)(D)(iii), which says:

    The prohibition required under clause (i) shall not be construed to prohibit any bonus payment required to be paid pursuant to a written employment contract executed on or before February 11, 2009, as such valid employment contracts are determined by the Secretary or the designee of the Secretary.

    Since the AIG contracts were signed before February 11, the limits in the stimulus don't apply.

    1. So we should change the law, right? Here comes the hypocrisy, by the bushel. The Enchanted Mitten's own Gary Peters has introduced a bill that he claims will effectively tax the bonuses at 100 percent. Who voted for the bill with its carve out for pre-February 11 bonus agreements? Gary Peters. Chris Dodd called the bonuses an "outrageous example" of executives "enriching themselves at the expense of taxpayers." Yet it apparently was Dodd himself who inserted the pre-February 11 bonus language and, of course, championed the bill. Any attempt now to write a law that attacks these specific bonuses will likely be challenged on the grounds that it violated the Constitution's prohibition on bills of attainder.

    2. What about the renegotiated contracts between the UAW and GM? Why shouldn't AIG executives be held to the same standard? They are! They renegotiated their contracts to take their salaries down to $1.00, which in many cases means a 50 percent cut in compensation. Sure, the numbers are much larger than auto worker wages, but don't tell me they didn't negotiate.

    I am not saying I approve of the AIG bonuses. Frankly, I haven't decided how I feel about them. But we should be able to discuss them without all of the misinformation and hypocrisy flying around.

    (2 comments) Comments >>

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