It’s no news the gap between the “haves” and “have nots” in this country has been widening dramatically in the past few years. But nothing drives the point home more than the behavior of corporate executives in failing industries of late. These men are not stupid — they simply live in a different reality than you and I. How else to understand the logic of the AIG executives, who marched off to a luxury conference center on the heels of receiving a $152 billion bailout from us, the taxpayers. Completely ignoring the inappropriateness of discussing federal bailout money over steaks and cocktails, their defense was that most of the cost was picked up by sponsors. (I’d like to contact those “sponsors,” because I have some things I’d like them to “pick up,” as well!)
And the latest installment of “What? I deserve it!” concerns the auto industry executives. Even putting aside the fact that everyone in America — except the auto industry, apparently — has known for years that throwing all your money towards large SUVs was a disastrous long-term plan, the executives have now come to Capitol Hill to beg for help.
But they flew on private luxury jets!
To quote one Congressman, “There is a delicious irony in seeing private luxury jets flying into Washington, D.C., and people coming off of them with tin cups in their hand, saying that they’re going to be trimming down and streamlining their businesses.”
Hmmmm. I wonder how else the auto executives could have gotten to Washington? Oh, I don’t know — how about drive!
At Wednesday’s hearing, Rep. Brad Sherman, D-California, pressed the private-jet issue, asking the three CEOs to “raise their hand if they flew here commercial.
Let the record show, no hands went up,” Sherman said. “Second, I’m going to ask you to raise your hand if you are planning to sell your jet in place now and fly back commercial. Let the record show, no hands went up.”
It’s no wonder that American industries are failing left and right. The people in charge have lost touch with the rest of us, and have not an ounce of concern about that fact.