Feds knew about new AIG bonuses for months — but Geithner only found out last week; Update: “Complete confidence” in Geithner, says WH

posted at 3:35 pm on March 17, 2009 by Allahpundit

Just a speed bump on the road to government-managed glory. Nationalization fever — catch it!

The Treasury and Federal Reserve officials said they had known about the bonus program as far back as last fall. The program has provoked public protests from a handful of critics and at least one Democratic lawmaker in Congress — Representative Elijah E. Cummings of Maryland, a member of the House Committee on Government Oversight, who demanded without success in December that A.I.G. provide information about the bonuses.

Mr. Cummings said he had been communicating regularly with A.I.G.’s chief executive, Edward M. Liddy, about the bonuses ever since December. Mr. Cummings said he was particularly concerned that the bonuses were supposed to be paid by March 15, adding that he assumed Treasury officials had the same worries

But administration officials said that the Treasury secretary, Timothy F. Geithner, did not personally become aware until last week that an even bigger round of payments was due on March 15. Administration officials said Mr. Geithner learned of the deadline early last week, when the Federal Reserve Bank of New York alerted him that the bonus payments were coming due…

A.I.G. executives said they would never have proceeded with the bonus payments before getting approval from the Treasury and the Federal Reserve.

“We would never make any important business decisions without discussing them with our government managers and owners,” said one executive, who did not want to be identified because of the sensitivity of the matter.

They paid 73 retention bonuses worth more than $1 million in all, says New York AG Andrew Cuomo, and 11 people took the money and ran. Good riddance to bad rubbish? Not so much: Read Andrew Ross Sorkin’s analysis in this morning’s Times about the special danger of AIG employees walking away. Canceling the bonuses not only sets a bad precedent for abrogating contracts and scares away talent from a company that needs it, but those who leave “might simply turn around and trade against A.I.G.’s book.” In other words, having built the company’s complex-derivatives bomb, says Sorkin, they might be the only ones who can defuse it. Does that make the bonuses a form of ransom payment? Why not demand that we double them while they’re at it?

Lest it find itself out-populisted by The One and the Democrats, the GOP’s allegedly getting ready to float its own plan to recapture the bonuses. Exit question: Good politics or bad politics?

Update: Let me borrow my exit question from the Schumer thread and rework it here. Who’s going to last longer, AIG or Tim Geithner?

“The president has complete confidence” in Geithner, Gibbs told reporters.

In Washington terms, “complete” and “confidence” are the two words no public official ever wants to hear, often a harbinger of trouble. And with public and congressional fury growing over the $165 million in bonuses, Geithner’s role in the situation is getting close scrutiny…

Asked by a reporter if Geithner had failed to understand the magnitude of the political problem that the bonuses would represent, Gibbs said that would be “very unfair” to Geithner.


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March 15 is the deadline for paying bonuses if the company intends to write them off in 2008 tax year. The tax write-off was the reason for the deadline. I honestly see no obligation to pay them, even contractually unless AIG was looking for more writeoffs. But with all the losses, they did not need any further tax deductions.

Lori on March 17, 2009 at 4:28 PM

“The president has complete confidence” in Geithner, Gibbs told reporters.

“Brownie, you’re doing a heckuva job”

I know. I know.

Raaaaaaaccciiiiiist

Guardian on March 17, 2009 at 4:29 PM

The dreaded: Vote of Confidence… usually means a baseball team’s manager has about 2 weeks to catch fire in a bottle…

phreshone on March 17, 2009 at 4:30 PM

Update: Let me borrow my exit question from the Schumer thread and rework it here. Who’s going to last longer, AIG or Tim Geithner?

You’re doing a heck of a job, Brownie… LOL. Makes you long for the days of Hank Paulson.

Illinidiva on March 17, 2009 at 4:30 PM

AIG = White House deflection.

It’s the politicians, stupid.

beatcanvas on March 17, 2009 at 4:30 PM

Prompterbama

Atlanta Media Guy on March 17, 2009 at 4:04 PM

+100

NoFanofLibs on March 17, 2009 at 4:31 PM

I’ll give the award to the taxing tax cheat, Timmy G.

youngO on March 17, 2009 at 4:31 PM

“Us.” I do not think this word means what you’re trying to make people think you think it means.

Jim Treacher on March 17, 2009 at 4:25 PM

Ah yes, the loyalty oath.

Gee Jim, I guess ‘us’ means republicans.

But you seem to eshew being republican when the real work of party rebuilding is required.

Have you ever stopped posting the bile for five minutes to consider electoral strategy that will win us enough votes to win outside the regressive south?

I know, let’s all act like racist xenophobes. Like this electoral genius …
He can start a line of Curious Hussien Monkey dolls. Don’t forget the kaffia.

Kuffar on March 17, 2009 at 4:07 PM

Hey, that’s going to win back the heartland for us.

Yuck.

barkolounger on March 17, 2009 at 4:32 PM

Ready on day one? When is DAY ONE going to be? Want to pencil it in as soon as they decide.

billypaintbrush on March 17, 2009 at 4:35 PM

Really? Geither didn’t know when he helped DESIGN THE BAILOUT?

Doesn’t the American public need to know Geithner’s buddies at AIG used them as a conduit to help Paulson’s buddies at Goldman Sachs and FOREIGN BANKS?

PastorJon on March 17, 2009 at 4:13 PM

Paulson, the former head of Goldman Sachs, put together the deal that had AIG (using billions of taxpayer dollars) paying all of Goldman Sachs’ claims at par value, despite the fact that AIG was broke (except for the taxpayer infusions of cash). According to Hank Greenberg (former AIG head and current lead plaintiff in a shareholders’ lawsuit against AIG), Paulson never made any attempt to negotiate for Goldman Sachs to accept discounted claims pay-outs from AIG (even though GS would have ended up with pennies on the dollar, or even nothing, if AIG had been allowed to go belly-up and GS had to stand in line behind multiple other creditors in bankruptcy court).

How much did Paulson and his buddies at GS personally benefit from this crooked deal?

AZCoyote on March 17, 2009 at 4:35 PM

“The president has complete confidence” in Geithner, Gibbs told reporters.

Geithner = dead man walking!

Mallard T. Drake on March 17, 2009 at 4:35 PM

Let’s see now. When the bonuses were paid it was perfectly legal to do so. Matter of fact it was a contractual requirement. Correct?

Does not the Constitution prohibit taking actions, such as passing new laws, after the fact to punish any single individual or group for doing something that was legal when they did it?

Oldnuke on March 17, 2009 at 4:08 PM

+10. This horse has already left the barn. Congress and the Pres. failed in their duty to prevent bonuses from being paid with TARP funds. There’s no legal, fair way to reclaim those funds. Congress has almost certainly wasted $200 million dollars in other stuff that we don’t know about, while we debated this.

And they can always recoup the money, if they want to, by putting strings on future bailouts to AIG. Which are surely on the way. The GOP just needs to walk away from this. They won’t win by pointing out that workers deserve to be paid what they agree to work for, and they’re betraying the rule of law if they try to take the money back from the workers.

If the GOP feels COMPELLED to weigh in, then feel free to take shots at Geithner, the head of the NY Fed when the AIG bailout was arranged, and who was nominated as “the only man for the job.” Or take shots at DoddnFrank.

hawksruleva on March 17, 2009 at 4:38 PM

What ‘conservatives’ seem to forget is these forums are public. If people want to take shots at the president for stupid trivial make believe scandals they should do it on private chats. The bile, venom, and outright bigoted hostility found in every single thread here and most conservative forums will do nothing but turn off the very people we need to regain power and fix these policies.

It’s like smart conservatives have been replaced by retarded zealots.

barkolounger on March 17, 2009 at 4:16 PM

If you don’t like it, you can take your Moby ass someplace else. And drop the “we” and “us” crap.

ddrintn on March 17, 2009 at 4:39 PM

When is DAY ONE going to be? Want to pencil it in as soon as they decide.

billypaintbrush on March 17, 2009 at 4:35 PM

December 23, 2012

WashJeff on March 17, 2009 at 4:40 PM

The bile, venom, and outright bigoted hostility found in every single thread here and most conservative forums will do nothing but turn off the very people we need to regain power and fix these policies.

But of course, calling Palin a “religious zealot” is right on the money. Get lost.

ddrintn on March 17, 2009 at 4:40 PM

Have you ever stopped posting the bile for five minutes to consider electoral strategy that will win us enough votes to win outside the regressive south?

Hey barkolounger – the south ain’t regressive. We prefer the term “free”. Xenophobic? Yeah, that’s why we were the stomping ground of the young Clarence Thomas and Condi Rice. Southern xenophbia is what makes the rich culture of New Orleans, and votes for Bobby Jindal.

The South is an area that’s seeing more growth than the Northeast. And with California losing talent to tax hikes, it’ll probably grow even more in importance.

hawksruleva on March 17, 2009 at 4:43 PM

That idiot Republican calling for AIG execs to commit suicide should follow his own advice. Also, Geithner just needs to go away. For God’s sake if he’s on camera the market tanks.

John_Locke on March 17, 2009 at 4:45 PM

“The president has complete confidence” in Geithner, Gibbs told reporters.

Watch your back, Jack Tim. You might have bus tracks soon.

Dr.Cwac.Cwac on March 17, 2009 at 4:46 PM

Have you ever stopped posting the bile for five minutes to consider electoral strategy that will win us enough votes to win outside the regressive south?

That’s a mighty broad brush you’re painting with there, Junior.

Matticus Finch on March 17, 2009 at 4:46 PM

The bile, venom, and outright bigoted hostility found in every single thread here and most conservative forums

Guess conservatives really must literally look like Nazi Germany to our poor Mr. Hughley, here.

Kent18 on March 17, 2009 at 4:46 PM

hawksruleva on March 17, 2009 at 4:43 PM

Let’s see a victory without the “regressive South”. Yeah.

ddrintn on March 17, 2009 at 4:47 PM

ddrintn on March 17, 2009 at 4:39 PM

Go blow buddy. I’ll fight the creeps ruining our party to make themselves feel righteous until they go back to church for their religion and get the hell out of politics.

When did venting bile become conservative?

When did winning elections come second to taking racist pot shots?

Who called Palin a zealot?

I wouldn’t consider Palin the leader of anything right now. Nor does she.

But go ahead internet tough guy, keep telling people that disagree with your party orthodoxy to “get lost”.

Fool.

barkolounger on March 17, 2009 at 4:48 PM

Give credit where it’s due. Tapper was relentless about this today during the WH presser, despite Gibbs saying “we’re looking forward” dozens of times. He’s been pretty good these past two months.

LastRick on March 17, 2009 at 4:01 PM

Jake Tapper – maybe the last real journalist in the MSM. I wonder how much Obama will have pay to buy Jake’s pen?

hawksruleva on March 17, 2009 at 4:48 PM

Troubled insurance giant American International Group paid bonuses of $1 million or more to 73 employees, including 11 who no longer work for the company, New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo said Tuesday… Contracts written last March guaranteed employees 100 percent of their 2007 bonus amounts for 2008, “despite obvious signs that 2008 performance would be disastrous in comparison to the year before,” Cuomo said.

As Feb-March is HR musical chairs in NYC, these 73 who represented over 50% of the contested bonus pool were probably high end trader / sales types who could have easily jumped ship for multi-year 7 figure contracts at the time.

This was prudent managerial judgment, preventing a brain drain before any TARP money was received. This also represent normal compensation levels for these employees.

phreshone on March 17, 2009 at 4:48 PM

That’s pretty convenient considering the average rate with which Republican members of congress voted with President Bush is 94%.

As for BO, he kept Gates, appointed James Jones, voted for FISA, and his justice Dept. has fought to uphold Bush cases.

All the partisan hackery will win us nothing but contempt from the voting public.

What ‘conservatives’ seem to forget is these forums are public. If people want to take shots at the president for stupid trivial make believe scandals they should do it on private chats. The bile, venom, and outright bigoted hostility found in every single thread here and most conservative forums will do nothing but turn off the very people we need to regain power and fix these policies.

It’s like smart conservatives have been replaced by retarded zealots.

barkolounger on March 17, 2009 at 4:16 PM

Just because Republicans in office voted for him, doesn’t mean private citizens such as myself didn’t scream at President Bush when President Bush was doing things such as campaign finance reform, lack of border control, as well as introducing a number of new entitlement programs. And that is the problem with you view everything based in Washington and extrapolate it to all conservatives / republicans across the country.

As far as getting all bile and such…give me a break, so now you are trying to silent the people from speaking their mind? Furthermore, the only bigotry I have seen on conservative sites is the religious bigotry ( against fellow republicans ), not racism. Its an old card, play that one elsewhere.

As far as turning people off…if people are turned off because we aren’t playing nice…yet IGNORE the THEFT and strong arming of King Obama and his ilk Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid, ignore the hypocrisy of Barney Frank and the like…then I say good by, I don’t need you. The American Revolution wasn’t won with the majority of Americans, it was close to a third. And about a third was still for King George. And a third was the middle who stood around picking their noses. Its about what it is today. Which again is why we the people need to govern from principles not polls, not personalities, and last but not least not by party loyalty. Or we are doomed, and the great experiment is done. There is no where free men can run if America is no longer the land of the free and the home of the brave.

Conservative Voice on March 17, 2009 at 4:49 PM

barkolounger on March 17, 2009 at 4:48 PM

You’re funny.

ddrintn on March 17, 2009 at 4:50 PM

Wonder if Obama is loving this AIG bonus thing because it covers up all the money that AIG gave to European banks.

Ever wonder why European banks aren’t having such a bad time? The US government, via AIG, propped them all up.
How much $50, $60, $90 billion from the US taxpayer to the Europeans?
Saved the Europeans lots of money and angst.

This bonus thing is nothing compared to the big billions that went to the European banks.

albill on March 17, 2009 at 4:50 PM

How can Geithner not know about the bonuses? They paid the first installment on these bonsuses in December. It was covered in the press at the time. And he ran the NY Fed when AIG got bailed out by the NY Fed. Did bonuses just not come up then?

From the SF Chronicle (who must’ve gotten it elsewhere)
December 2008: AIG distributes about $55 million in retention bonuses to the Financial Products unit.

Jan. 27: AIG says it will pay retention bonuses as planned to the Financial Products unit, explaining that the program had been contracted months before the government provided aid.

hawksruleva on March 17, 2009 at 4:52 PM

When did winning elections come second to taking racist pot shots?

Who called Palin a zealot?

Republicans are the opposition. Not some nebulous so called conservative movement that can’t decide whether a talk show host or a religious zealot is their leader.

barkolounger on March 17, 2009 at 4:01 PM

Ooops, sorry. You must’ve meant some other “religious zealot”. Maybe Huckabee or Romney. You’ve got to be more specific with your slurs, genius.

When did venting bile become conservative?

barkolounger on March 17, 2009 at 4:48 PM

You vent your share, Moby.

ddrintn on March 17, 2009 at 4:54 PM

Let’s see a victory without the “regressive South”. Yeah.

ddrintn on March 17, 2009 at 4:47 PM

Well we are truly screwed then. I can’t believe people are arguing that what gets Rs elected in the south is what loses us national elections, and will make regaining the whitehouse and congress next to impossible.

The South is an area that’s seeing more growth than the Northeast. And with California losing talent to tax hikes, it’ll probably grow even more in importance.

hawksruleva on March 17, 2009 at 4:43 PM

Ah yes. Smart of you to notice economic growth in certain southern states, pitiful of you to pretend those very states have, or are starting to, turn blue.

barkolounger on March 17, 2009 at 4:55 PM

Ah yes. Smart of you to notice economic growth in certain southern states, pitiful of you to pretend those very states have, or are starting to, turn blue.

barkolounger on March 17, 2009 at 4:55 PM

One election does not a trend make.

ddrintn on March 17, 2009 at 4:56 PM

Anyone else hear a death march being played in the background?

GarandFan on March 17, 2009 at 4:56 PM

barkolounger on March 17, 2009 at 4:55 PM

States are turning blue…Because of people like you who are concerned with winning elections…they don’t care as long as that person has an R next to them and aren’t “crazy religious zealots”
Your kind gave us McCain…how did that work?

Conservative Voice on March 17, 2009 at 4:58 PM

Does not the Constitution prohibit taking actions, such as passing new laws, after the fact to punish any single individual or group for doing something that was legal when they did it?

Oldnuke on March 17, 2009 at 4:08 PM

That is why we NEED a special breed of new Constitution Law scholars, Barry to lead in this, to redefine the Constitution for you and me.

Sir Napsalot on March 17, 2009 at 4:58 PM

“I am 1,000 percent for Tom Eagleton that young Tim fella, and I have no intention of dropping him from the ticket roof of the bus”…

Now for my best Bahbwah Soopahstah impression ~ sing along, Shriners:

Meeeemmmmmmmm’rieeeeeesssss, like the corners of my mind….

tree hugging sister on March 17, 2009 at 4:58 PM

I’m sorry. This whole financial situation is scary as hell and I can’t stop giggling as the Obama team flops, flounders, and gasps like the goldfish in the old “Faith No More” video. It’s either that or cry.

AP, you should made your exit question a 3- parter: Which happens first? Geithner leaves, AIG collapses, or the nation collapses into violent post- apocalyptic anarchy a la “Mad Max” complete with fortified city compounds and roving gangs of bikers wearing football pads and hockey masks?

I’m going to go polish my guns and hoard some more ammo. No extra food or water, however. With enough ammo, I can always get food and water.

Dukeboy01 on March 17, 2009 at 5:00 PM

Go blow buddy. I’ll fight the creeps ruining our party to make themselves feel righteous until they go back to…

barkolounger on March 17, 2009 at 4:48 PM

…the liberal Democrats who know the true paths of righteousness.

ddrintn on March 17, 2009 at 5:01 PM

It’s good POTUS has complete confidence in Geithner, because no one else does!

Halli Casser-Jayne
http://www.thecjpoliticalreport.com

The CJ Political Report on March 17, 2009 at 5:01 PM

“Canceling the bonuses not only sets a bad precedent for abrogating contracts and scares away talent from a company that needs it”

Actually, it scares away talent from ANY firm taking bailout money. That is why many firms are now refusing bailout cash or trying as fast as they can to return it.

crosspatch on March 17, 2009 at 5:03 PM

Your kind gave us McCain…how did that work?

Conservative Voice on March 17, 2009 at 4:58 PM

Absolutely mind-boggling, ain’t it? With all that huffily indignant whinnying and barking and harrUMPHing they mulishly insist on doing, re: What You Damned Piss-Ignorant Unwashed Conservative Heathen Really Need To Do If You Wanna Win Ever Ever Ever Again, etcetera, ad nauseum, ad infinitum… you’d think they’d actually WON against the Marxist empty suit last time out, or something! ;)

Kent18 on March 17, 2009 at 5:07 PM

One election does not a trend make.

ddrintn on March 17, 2009 at 4:56 PM

Huh? Demographics do however portend to trend.

Your kind gave us McCain…how did that work?

Conservative Voice on March 17, 2009 at 4:58 PM

Umm sorry. Bush, Cheney, and Rove gave us McCain when they abandoned the party.

Gave us McCain by leaving us with an emboldened religious right that demanded a pound of flesh.

They gave us sloppy seconds McCain because they cared so little for the party they ruined to get re-elected.

I am a religious conservative. But I was/am appalled at the way people in our party have cynically used religion for political expediency. A strategy that has hurt christian conservatism as much as it has hurt the republican party.

PS. The things you were upset about Bush doing were perhaps the only things he did that took the health of the party into consideration.

People like you would rather give every single vote that doesn’t conform to your rigid version of conservatism to the Democrats.

I guess people like you think Stephen Harper, or Merkle should stand for a more rigid conservatism rather than govern from the center right.

Dumb.

barkolounger on March 17, 2009 at 5:12 PM

I am a religious conservative. But I was/am appalled at the way people in our party have cynically used religion for political expediency. A strategy that has hurt christian conservatism as much as it has hurt the republican party.

barkolounger on March 17, 2009 at 5:12 PM

LOL…I’d like to have a dollar for every time I’ve seen something like “as a lifelong Christian conservative Republican, I must say that I am appalled by the _________” (fill in with some aspect of Palin, usually).

ddrintn on March 17, 2009 at 5:20 PM

“The president has complete confidence” in Geithner, Gibbs told reporters.

Kiss of Death….

Caper29 on March 17, 2009 at 5:26 PM

barkolounger on March 17, 2009 at 5:12 PM

wow, you are so fake and transparent its really funny. McCain was everything you wanted…he is everything you wanted…and you blame Bush?

And how, pray tell did President Bush give the religious right anything?

What proved my point that you are no conservative is you applaud President Bush for the very things that has caused the Republicans to lose…because you think by looking at the polls it helps republicans. Do you know the priority of campaign finance reform was when it was enacted? It was at the bottom. Its also a direct assault of freedom of speech, something President Bush raised his right hand and gave a solemn oath to defend. Border control…hmm again another McCain issue, and again cost votes…because most Americans are screaming for better border control. Entitlement spending…hmm another liberal idea, of which I would guess McCain probably supported, at least I don’t remember trying to create a bogus Maverick 14 group to undermine that one. McCain is everything you wanted…he just wasn’t smooth like Obama, but there is NO difference between them.

Conservative Voice on March 17, 2009 at 5:32 PM

That light at the end of the tunnel…is a fracking freight train headed right for us.

Wyznowski on March 17, 2009 at 5:34 PM

Conservative Voice on March 17, 2009 at 5:32 PM

You can pretend all you want that McCain lost because soccer moms thought he was too liberal but it doesn’t make it so.

What you advocate is a rigid conservatism that has been rejected by a voting public that wants moderation.

Sure things take a lot longer to happen with moderates in chgarge, but that is what people want.

The reason Bush, Cheney, and Rove are to blame is because you can’t name a single republican that could have beat the Dem this year.

The religious zealots were out in force for their wondercon princess and we STILL lost.

So give me a break on all this appease the base nonsense.

Our ‘base’ is so freaking small these days that for every pander to the base we lose twice as many votes as we secure.

I see you ignored my Harper/Merkle question.

barkolounger on March 17, 2009 at 5:49 PM

barkolounger on March 17, 2009 at 5:49 PM

Tell me something, barko. Why did McCain get a big boost in the polls only AFTER he chose Sarah Palin?

I see you ignored my Harper/Merkle question.

barkolounger on March 17, 2009 at 5:49 PM

If they were Americans, you’d have nothing but disdain for them, too.

The religious zealots were out in force for their wondercon princess and we STILL lost.

barkolounger on March 17, 2009 at 5:49 PM

Those friggin’ “religious zealots” pulled Dubya over the finish line in 2004.

ddrintn on March 17, 2009 at 5:55 PM

That light at the end of the tunnel…is a fracking freight train headed right for us.

Wyznowski on March 17, 2009 at 5:34 PM

I didn’t know you were a part of AIG.

sethstorm on March 17, 2009 at 6:04 PM

Tell me something, barko. Why did McCain get a big boost in the polls only AFTER he chose Sarah Palin?

B/c until then we had an anemic sloppy seconds candidate and zero party leadership from the outgoing administration.

For crying out loud Bush and Cheney didn’t even speak at the convention.

Oh and we STILL lost.

If they were Americans, you’d have nothing but disdain for them, too.

Huh? How does that even make sense? Oh wait, that was another loyalty type test wasn’t it?

Those friggin’ “religious zealots” pulled Dubya over the finish line in 2004.

Yes indeed they did. But at what cost?

Could it be at the cost of future elections, and the decimation of our party? Nah…It’s all the ‘rinos’ fault.

Sad.

barkolounger on March 17, 2009 at 6:10 PM

You can pretend all you want that McCain lost because soccer moms thought he was too liberal but it doesn’t make it so.

What you advocate is a rigid conservatism that has been rejected by a voting public that wants moderation.

Sure things take a lot longer to happen with moderates in chgarge, but that is what people want.

The reason Bush, Cheney, and Rove are to blame is because you can’t name a single republican that could have beat the Dem this year.

The religious zealots were out in force for their wondercon princess and we STILL lost.

So give me a break on all this appease the base nonsense.

Our ‘base’ is so freaking small these days that for every pander to the base we lose twice as many votes as we secure.

I see you ignored my Harper/Merkle question.

barkolounger on March 17, 2009 at 5:49 PM

McCain lost because he ignored his base. And this is the problem, looking at groups of people and creating policies and strategies to get that group…usually on false premises. How did the Democrats over take the house a couple of years ago…oh ya thats right, they ran as conservatives.
As far as who would of beaten Obama, I think Romney or Rudy would of faired better. But to tell you the truth no one really excited me on the republican side. I was going to vote for Bob Barr, until Palin came on. Isn’t funny as soon as Palin came on, Obama ran against her instead of McCain?

The voting public wants moderation? What does that mean exactly? Because I bet if you were to tell people we need to balance the budget and cut taxes and trim back the fat in government, that we need to enforce the borders, and that we need to give power and responsibility back to the people…they would of won a landslide. But no one was saying that…oh wait, many of those things are things Obama ran on, silly me.

When Palin came to the scene, it wasn’t the “religious zealots” pushing her…though they were certainly excited about her. And McCain’s numbers shot up so fast, that Obama stopped running against McCain, and ran against Palin.

Bush lost popularity not because of the war, people lost trust in him, because of the very things I pointed out, that you hold so dear.

As far as not answering your question, I don’t know who they are, and don’t feel the need to research them out either…because I believe in principles, not personalities.

Conservative Voice on March 17, 2009 at 6:21 PM

Dear Mr. Geithner,

Beware the bus.

ajacksonian on March 17, 2009 at 6:25 PM

“The president has complete confidence” in Geithner, Gibbs told reporters.

IOW he’s looking for his replacement.

PattyJ on March 17, 2009 at 7:15 PM

Ah yes, the loyalty oath.

Gee Jim, I guess ‘us’ means republicans.

Who you think are indistinguishable from conservatives. You’re bona fide, alright.

Jim Treacher on March 17, 2009 at 7:27 PM

Have you ever stopped posting the bile for five minutes to consider electoral strategy that will win us enough votes to win outside the regressive south?

There’s that “us” word again.

Jim Treacher on March 17, 2009 at 7:28 PM

There’s that “us” word again.

Jim Treacher on March 17, 2009 at 7:28 PM

Yup. Him and The Voices. ;)

Kent18 on March 17, 2009 at 7:51 PM

“Complete Confidence” sounds like what the soccer team owners says just before they announce that they are actively looking for a new gaffer to replace the man they fired yesterday.

todler on March 17, 2009 at 7:56 PM

B/c until then we had an anemic sloppy seconds candidate and zero party leadership from the outgoing administration.

barkolounger on March 17, 2009 at 6:10 PM

Bush wasn’t even invited to the Republican convention. But you knew that didn’t you? Both candidates ran as ‘not Bush’.

RickZ on March 17, 2009 at 8:06 PM

If they were Americans, you’d have nothing but disdain for them, too.

Huh? How does that even make sense? Oh wait, that was another loyalty type test wasn’t it?

Nope. It’s pretty easy: if a Harper- or Merkel-type were governing here, they just wouldn’t be as cool as Barack in your view.

Those friggin’ “religious zealots” pulled Dubya over the finish line in 2004.

Yes indeed they did. But at what cost?

Oh, my! By winning they LOST!!! Er, YOU lost.

Could it be at the cost of future elections, and the decimation of our party? Nah…It’s all the ‘rinos’ fault.

Sad.

barkolounger on March 17, 2009 at 6:10 PM

Which is why part of me would like to see a completely “moderate” ticket in 2012. Let it get pummeled on its own.

ddrintn on March 17, 2009 at 9:58 PM

Quit lecturing the Socialist Trolls that pretend to be Republicans. It makes you look like your teaching nuclear science to a five year old know-it-all. It’s an annoying little conversational merry-go-round that never leads anywhere except back to where you started. I don’t debate principals. Conservativism is and will always be. You either believe in it or you are no conservative. If you have to explain it, change it, mold it because you’re ashamed of it, you are no conservative. If you believe doing things that makes conservatives look like they are ashamed of their principals because they represent homophobic, racist, sexist, and bigoted views you are no conservative. You will not win the hearts and minds of others if you don’t proudly believe in the principals of the ideology you claim to represent. I would never looked to ashamed people for political direction or any direction whatsoever because they are by that very definition lost themselves.

Sultry Beauty on March 18, 2009 at 4:29 AM

Quit lecturing the Socialist Trolls that pretend to be Republicans.

There’s great fun to be had, occasionally, poking slow, stupid things with a pointed stick. ;)

Kent18 on March 18, 2009 at 7:16 AM

us enough votes to win outside the regressive south?

Ef You.

You need to form a new party arse-licker, call it the Populist Party. You go take that centrist ground with no social principles and read your daily polls…and take David Frum with you. You make me more sick than the libs, because at least I expect the libs to be against us, trying to tear down this country at every turn. You RINOs, or maybe you’re PCs (Pretend Conservatives), stab us in the back at every turn. Not to mention your elitist attitude guarantees me that you’re a PoS.

Philosophy and principles win, not policies that change with the blowing wind. Not that I care what you do now…and I really don’t give a flying f@rk if I win or not, because I don’t think winning without my principles is a “win”. Your type of thinking is a disease in the party because you stand for NOTHING (which means you’ll fall for anything)!

You do know why Americans are fed up with politicians, right? They don’t trust them. They don’t trust them because they know they’ll bend over for anyone with enough cash because they are UNPRINCIPLED hacks, and likewise will move wherever the polls tell them to stand. Congratulations, you have discovered the absolute surest way to lose every election between now and the end of time. You think you need to appeal to the “center”, and yet you don’t even know where the center is, let alone what will draw out the voters that will make a difference in an election.

Simple quiz for you:
How many voters on the right would (a) vote for John McCain, (b) vote for Barack Obama, (c) not vote, (d) vote for another candidate?

How many voters in the “center” would (a) vote for John McCain, (b) vote for Barack Obama, (c) not vote, (d) vote for another candidate?

How many voters on the left would (a) vote for John McCain, (b) vote for Barack Obama, (c) not vote, (d) vote for another candidate?

It isn’t rocket science; at best McCain and Obama split the center. Because Obama is a leftist, he gains ~100% of the left. Because McCain is a centrist, he gains ~50% of the right only because that 50% are concerned enough to try and counter the Obama left votes (holding their noses while doing so). Numerically, the 50% of the right can’t defeat a 100% of the left, so the centrist LOSES, every time.

idiots

Geministorm on March 18, 2009 at 12:28 PM

Sultry Beauty on March 18, 2009 at 4:29 AM

+1

Geministorm on March 18, 2009 at 12:30 PM

People like you would rather give every single vote that doesn’t conform to your rigid version of conservatism to the Democrats.

I guess people like you think Stephen Harper, or Merkle should stand for a more rigid conservatism rather than govern from the center right.

barkolounger on March 17, 2009 at 5:12 PM

You are quite close here RINO, we will NOT change our principles to sway voters, which is what will WIN voters, not lose them. You assume that because we adopt rigid principles, that the “center” will *not* vote for us because of it. You are the idiot.

If I said that I was going to lower taxes across the board, get government out of our lives, enforce the 2nd amendment in areas I’d seen it weakened, and place originalist judges on the SCotUS, do you think that people in the center would be more likely to vote for the tax-n-spend Democrats instead? Voters typically have to decide which candidate best represents their views and is best for their country/family. Elected officials that pander to the middle are a guaranteed failure because they don’t differentiate themselves from the *promises of the left* enough to give anyone a clear choice. By abandoning the social positions of the far right, you are GUARANTEEING that you will not win their votes or that they will not vote. By taking up the center, you must fight for center with the left which will already have sewn up the left.

You idiots just don’t learn. The left won because they stood on the left during the primaries and then moved to the center during the general. McCain stood in the center and stayed in the center gaining no one on the right until he picked Palin. If Fred Thompson or Mitt Romney had been the candidate, they could have then shored up their gaps with their pick (if the far right was weak, then get Palin, if the center was weak, get McCain), even McCain (or his team) knew this, thus the Palin pick.

Newsflash to the elitist morons cracking on Palin: You can’t win from the center.

Geministorm on March 18, 2009 at 12:48 PM

Last one, I promise;

If you’re a “moderate” Republican, would you vote for a far-right Republican, vote the Democrat or not vote at all?

If you’re a far right Republican, would you vote for a moderate, vote for the Democrat or not vote at all?

I think what the moderate members of the Republican party fail to realize is that the population in the middle is exactly that, in the middle and thus split between who they will vote for (look at a bell curve please). Assuming the country is center-center (which, its normally assumed to be center-right), that 50% of the middle cannot overcome the 50% of the middle + 100% of the left unless they can secure 100% of the right.

Perhaps the “moderates” believe that the country is now center-left, which I believe is a huge mistake. Just for the sake of educating yourselves, go back and look at the newspaper articles in 75-76 and again in 79-80 and read what was said about Ronald Reagan, about how the Ford Republicans (moderates) said he was too far right, and how he would never appeal to the middle…two landslides later, they were shown to be the fools they were. You know what is said about people who don’t learn from history?

-sigh-

Geministorm on March 18, 2009 at 12:58 PM

barkolounger on March 17, 2009 at 5:12 PM

barkolounger,

I don´t quite understand what the example of Merkel should tell us. I live in Germany. Merkel is not conservative. She is a cautious, basically decent politican who usually tries the steer the middle path. Which is fine. I like her. She is not a reflexive socialist or anti-American like so many Germans.

But there is nothing that would qualify her as a conservative, not on social issues, not on economic or security issues.

Unless of course NOT being a doctrinaire leftwinger makes you a conservative by default.

I do not agree with that because it would mean that the left gets to define and redefine where the middle ground is. And suddenly someone like Merkel gets called conservative. That is a game that we must never play.

If I have a problem with your comments, it is that you seem to concede that. Liberal get to define what is normal and that means they get to define what is out of bounds. In the end, we will be told that all our positions are too radical.

But nothing leftists say and do, however disgusting, ever seems to taint the Democrat party or diminish their electoral chances. Somehow the foaming-at-the-mouth manicas (who are much evident on the web) don´t alienate or drive away anybody. Obama gladly took their money and help. Is it possible that the other side understands that you do not win by ceding ground? And that blog comments are for keeping the base fired up, not to sway voters out there? The average voter doesn´t follow politics anyway. Maybe your zeal to clean up a couple of blog comments is a bit excessive?

el gordo on March 18, 2009 at 1:02 PM

Can’t let it sit, sorry.

The South is an area that’s seeing more growth than the Northeast.

Let me elaborate on that;

The northeast is a failure due to liberal policies. A moderate conservative like Rudy was needed to clean up NYC or it would still be a gutter in a 3rd world country. But, does that change the voting habits in NY? Hell no. So, Northerners move to Florida and start introducing their destructive policies here as well. They are like locusts, having destroyed the environment they were in previously, they bring their crap here without any consideration that they ARE the problem.

Just the fact that there are Republicans that berate people in the South as “regressive” tells me all I need to know. Any time you want to compare intellectual prowess or accomplishments, you let me know. You are an ignorant arsehole (ever been to the South?) to think that you are somehow superior to us just because you live somewhere that calls itself “progressive”. Its typical leftist class warfare, just in case you didn’t realize that you’re a leftist.

Look in the mirror and then go join the Democratic party, you’ll feel better about not having to lie about who you are anymore.

Geministorm on March 18, 2009 at 1:09 PM

If the Obama way of winning elections is something for us to emulate, then surely the fact that he has no enemies on the left, no supporter that is too radical or beyond the pale, is also instructive.

Personally, I don´t think so. But then I´m not running around all panicky telling people to reinvent their party and movement because the big O lied his way to victory. At the same time, Bush was a two-term winner and we are supposed to be ashamed of him and all he represents? I´m not, for the record. Not at all.

el gordo on March 18, 2009 at 1:11 PM

Here’s another one in whom Obama had complete confidence:

http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601087&sid=aqzNl1lfRS.I&refer=worldwide

Better dust off your resume Tim

Christian Conservative on March 18, 2009 at 3:16 PM

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