Versailles 1789 levels of corruption

Politico had an usually enlightening article earlier this week that showed in no uncertain terms that there is only one party in Washington.

American International Group — once one of the most scorned corporations on Capitol Hill for its pivotal role in the financial crisis — got a Washington birthday bash on Monday night with help from House lawmakers.

Little more than a decade after the U.S. government committed $180 billion to avert the collapse of the insurance giant, AIG used the hearing room of the House Ways and Means Committee to host a "centennial congressional reception” to mark the New York-based company's first century in business.

"AIG used the hearing room of the House Ways and Means Committee" has got to be one of the most offensive statements I've ever read. This is shameless.

Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard Neal (D-Mass.) presided over the event, which featured AIG CEO Brian Duperreault and other company leaders.

"We believe in the power of relationships to make a better world for everyone," AIG said in an invitation obtained by POLITICO.

The packed reception had waiters offering trays of snacks, an open bar serving a signature "Centennial Smash" cocktail and an a cappella group that closed with the Pharrell Williams hit "Happy."

More importantly, it had bipartisan support, with senior House members from both parties in attendance alongside finance industry lobbyists.
...
"AIG will live forever in history as the poster child for greed, recklessness and incompetent if not delusional management," said Dennis Kelleher, who advocates for stricter Wall Street regulation as president and CEO of the group Better Markets.

But things have returned to normal for the storied insurer in recent years, as the company shrank itself and paid back the bailout funds. AIG has ramped up lobbying and restarted spending by its political action committee.

In 2017, AIG was successful in convincing federal regulators to undo the company's designation as a "systemically important financial institution" — a label imposed on the insurer after the Wall Street meltdown that carried with it stricter government oversight.

No wonder so many people want to see the whole building burn down.
In case you've forgotten, AIG paid nearly $200 million in bonuses straight out of the taxpayer bailout.
And that's only the start.

Late on Tuesday, the central bank lent $12 billion to AIG. The next day, it lent another $12 billion. This was only the beginning. The AIG operation became a gigantic spigot for circuitously distributing public money to private banking interests. As the New York Fed pumped more money into AIG, the insurance giant pumped it right out the door to satisfy the demands from counterparties like Goldman Sachs. Having helped scuttle the private rescue, Goldman collected $13 billion from this backdoor public assistance. The Fed did not stop AIG’s hemorrhage. It began financing it, with no questions asked.

If you're not angry then you are not paying attention.

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9 users have voted.

@gjohnsit
One astonishing thing about Pavlichenko is that she was only active for about a year, before being injured in combat.

According to wikipedia, the Russians had 2000 sniper women in WWII, and only 500 survived. Those are really, really bad odds for a soldier.

The effectiveness of those women is a disturbing yet potent reminder of the price any society might be paying when it allows dimwitted bigotry to keep one or another class of citizens from contributing at their highest potential. In the US military, women were largely limited to clerical work.

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9 users have voted.

The earth is a multibillion-year-old sphere.
The Nazis killed millions of Jews.
On 9/11/01 a Boeing 757 (AA77) flew into the Pentagon.
AGCC is happening.
If you cannot accept these facts, I cannot fake an interest in any of your opinions.

@UntimelyRippd
One thing the video didn't mention: the Nazis' nickname for Pavlichenko was "Lady Death"

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@gjohnsit
infantry combat veteran never even fires a gun directly at a visible enemy soldier -- never really comes very close to killing anyone at all.

(If anyone doubts that claim, realize that most combat casualties -- wounded and/or killed -- are caused by artillery and by airborne bombing; if you consider that most soldiers in any army are neither killed nor wounded, it's pretty straightforward that there just "aren't enough enemy casualties to go around".)

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7 users have voted.

The earth is a multibillion-year-old sphere.
The Nazis killed millions of Jews.
On 9/11/01 a Boeing 757 (AA77) flew into the Pentagon.
AGCC is happening.
If you cannot accept these facts, I cannot fake an interest in any of your opinions.

snoopydawg's picture

We got to be a bank that loaned money out to our classmates for some reason. Memory eludes me except for how every member that got to touch the money became corrupt and abused the power they had over it. I was the top person I think and I did the same thing. This is what I think of every time I read about how the government or federal reserve is just shoveling money to people who continue to commit fraud. This is helping to keep the oligarchy in power and increasing wealth inequality for most of the world. It is a deliberate act to make the 1% even more wealthy.

Jimmy's show on this explains how congress passed Dodd Frank on purpose. The banks no longer have to ask congress for a bailout cuz they can just get one any time they want one. And remember that Chase bank is on probation and it should have been charged under the RICO act after it committed more crimes. But Jaimie is doing gawd's work.

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23 users have voted.

America is a pathetic nation; a fascist state fueled by the greed, malice, and stupidity of her own people.
- strife delivery

thanatokephaloides's picture

"AIG used the hearing room of the House Ways and Means Committee" has got to be one of the most offensive statements I've ever read. This is shameless.

Why?

It's traditional for caterers to use unused rooms for such things.

Now as to the reception itself, I can see where that would burn your butt a bit. But why does the venue grang you?

I'm just curious.

Smile

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2 users have voted.

"I say enough! If Israel wants to be the only superpower in the Middle East then they can put their own asses on the line and do it themselves. I want to continue to eat."
-- snoopydawg

edg's picture

@thanatokephaloides

Perhaps because the vast majority of receptions are held in the Rayburn House Office Building or the Capitol Visitor Center, not in Ways & Means hearing room. And relatively few receptions are hosted at the Capitol by private corporations, especially disgraced corporations. Oh, and also because the reception seems to violate the House's gift rule on widely attended events.

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@edg
Agreed on all accounts

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3 users have voted.

I do not know where to begin with the wrongness of the event.
While I hate the content of the message, I appreciate you being the messenger. I would have otherwise missed the cluster f... news.

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gulfgal98's picture

and my jaw dropped. I honestly could not believe that this happened in the halls of Congress. No wonder Congress polls so low with the average citizens. These people are so corrupt and tone deaf that they do not even put up a pretense of caring about the people any more.

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"I don't want to run the empire, I want to bring it down!" ~Dr. Cornel West

"Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable." John F Kennedy

I especially don't agree with his opposition to gay marriage.
But his point about wokeness = neoliberalism is interesting and largely correct

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lotlizard's picture

https://www.salon.com/2004/06/21/moon_7/

Congress jumped the shark a long time ago.

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