Righteous Anger, a Dangerous Lesson


Thursday, March 19, 2009 and the lead sentence in the New York Times article says: “Spurred by anger over A.I.G. bonuses the House voted 328 to 93 to levy a 90 percent tax on bonuses paid by any company owing more than $5 billion in bailout money.”

Now we know what it takes.

A healthy dose of good primal anger—that’s what is takes to get action.

I heard on the news that AIG is receiving all kinds of threats. Reporters are saying that taxpayers are really angry, threatening bodily harm to AIG employees. No kidding!  Does the phrase, “Let them eat cake!” ring a bell?

Remember what happened to that queen?

We are taught in kindergarten that ours is a society where hard-working, honest people get ahead. And honesty is its own reward—that’s another elementary school saying. Well, gag me with a spoon! (Old expression, but perfect for showing how I feel now.)

Class, has anyone seen any example of hard work and /or honesty lately?

What we have seen is incompetence displayed nonchalantly and being rewarded with riches far beyond what we here on planet Earth will ever see. We witness rampant greed repeatedly reaching into our pockets because helping oneself to the public’s money seems to have become an addiction some cannot break. Meanwhile, elected officials behave as if blind, stupid or uncaring.

Hello? Remember us?

Now we know what it takes to get attention.

“Look, Dick, public servants working. “

“Yes, Jane, taking care of the business of running the country like they are supposed to.”

Now we know what it takes. Show righteous anger. Write threatening letters. Shout from the rooftops.

And next time? We’ll show even more anger. And the time after that?  Well, I do worry about the time after that.

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One thought on “Righteous Anger, a Dangerous Lesson

  1. I had a different — though not necessarily inconsistent — take on the AIG bonuses, in this blog post.

    I agree that the populist anger is basically useful and healthy, even though I think the bonuses have been blown up out of proportion with their actual importance. As the governor of Pennsylvania said on the last Meet the Press, the general public doesn’t understand the crisis as a whole (I’d certainly apply that observation to myself), so they grasp onto the AIG bonuses because they are graspable.

    BTW, I will respond to your email eventually! I’m just a little slow…

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