It’s not even 4th-quarter yet this year, and I think we can safely call the Asshole of the Year: AIG CEO Robert Benmosche. This is the cat who, after getting a 24% pay raise this year to $13 MILLION (while AIG’s numbers sucked), managed to compare the plight of .00001%ers like himself to that of, wait for it, lynched slaves. You really can’t make this stuff up.
I can’t possibly write a better analysis than Matt Taibbi, over at Rolling Stone, so I’ll link to his story, with a pull-out of the money quote:
“For sheer ‘Let them eat cake’-ness, this ranks right up there with Lloyd Blankfein’s ‘I’m doing God’s work‘ riff and Berkshire Hathaway billionaire Charlie Munger’s line about how it was proper to bail out Wall Street, but people in foreclosure should ‘suck it in and cope.’ A few notes:
First of all, any white guy anywhere, rich or poor, who steps out in public wearing the mantle of 400 years of black suffering instantly shoots to the very top of the world asshole pyramid. Most white people grasp this instinctively. If they don’t already teach it in kindergarten to make sure the rest get it, they ought to.
But when you’re a white guy who just presided over a year of declining across-the-board sales but got a 24% pay raise anyway, to $13 million a year, largely because your company is invested in a market that’s overheating due to massive Fed intervention, and you’re so grateful for your cosmic good fortune that you immediately go out and publicly nail yourself to the cross of black victimhood – and not while stone drunk and with buddies at a bar, mind you, but sober and sitting in front of a Wall Street Journal reporter – that’s like a whole new category of asshole. Try to compute just exactly how obnoxious that is – you’ll be doing it until the end of time, like someone trying to figure pi.”
Full article here.
My view: It’s hard to believe that the supposedly hyper-intelligent corporate CEOs who utter these thoughts have an emotional-intelligence blind-spot for how these statements will be perceived by the public. My belief, which happens to be similar to that of Nobel Prize winner Dr. Paul Krugman, is that these cats just don’t care how they’re perceived, and that they’re locked into some weirdly adolescent “Atlas Shrugged” victimhood-complex.
Really, the only viable strategy for keeping my inner rageaholic at bay is to link to an appropriate song. Have a good weekend everybody!: