I read this story about the protest in front of AIG. Here is a link. As I view the images of the people in the street and the employees looking down at the crowd I am overcome with a feeling of sadness. I am struck with the notion that we have all been duped. We have all fallen for the “banana in the tailpipe.”
As a nation we have collectively experienced something called inattentional blindness. Inattentional blindness is the concept that you are not able to see what is actually there. You are so focused on one thing that you fail to see what is going on around you. Here is an example.
Everyone has been manipulated to focus your attention on these bonuses and to vilify the people that are accepting these bonuses. Put away your anger for a second and look what is happening to our country.
- We are creating class warfare: Look at the picture of the AIG employees staring down at the protesters in the street. The angry mob has arrived. Most of Congress and the President are feigning outrage over these bonuses, fueling this firestorm of anger directed toward employees of a “private company.” From “tax the rich”, to “greedy Wall Street” this is just the latest in a series of attacks on the evil, wealthy, producers.
- Punitive Taxation: As Dave and Jim note a bill has been passed in the House that would tax bonuses paid to AIG as well as a host of other banking executives, at a rate of 90 to 100 percent. The government is selecting a tiny sub-set of our population and deciding to impose an exorbitant tax on them. Surely, the constitutionality of this is at least in question, but, think about what our founding fathers might say about this. Ironically, it’s likely that some of the same protesters in front of AIG today are people that support the growing list of grass roots tea parties. And yet the Boston Tea Party was a protest of the punitive tax and tariffs that the British Crown had placed on tea. It was a protest against government taxation, not an angry mob seeking revenge against its fellow citizens. And consider this: what if Congress decides at some point to tax all persons that drive foreign cars at 90%? Don’t laugh. If the car companies are nationalized (not entirely unlikely), it could very well be next move by an overreaching government and would be equally insane.
How many more wrongs will it take Congress to make this right? If Washington never bailed out AIG we would not be talking about bonuses, and we would not be talking about the money that AIG has contractually paid to foreign banks. Instead they bail out AIG and three bad laws later we are looking at imposing a 100% tax on less than 200 people.
Stop directing your attention at these executives. It is useless. Start directing your attention toward the politicians that HAVE CREATED ALL OF THIS. Stop marching in front of AIG and Goldman, start marching in Washington. Start marching in front of the office of your representatives.