RUSH: Well, it’s amazing what can happen when you’re gone for two days. Before I left the Golden EIB Microphone a few days ago, the teleprompter was telling President Obama to be negative. While I was away at my charity golf outing, the teleprompter told President Obama to be positive. Obama’s teleprompter’s confident now. Obama’s teleprompter is positive. Obama’s teleprompter is bullish. Obama’s teleprompter told Larry Summers to tell you to buy stocks, everything is bullish out there, we’re back, folks, hey. Great to have you here. Rush Limbaugh in a brand-new week of broadcast excellence here on the Excellence in Broadcasting Network, behind the Golden EIB Microphone. Telephone number if you want to be on the program is 800-282-2882. The e-mail address, ElRushbo@eibnet.com.
Politico story yesterday, folks, they failed. The Obama administration failed. They’re now moving off of me. They say they’ve gotten as much out of targeting me as possible and the permanent campaign to destroy Republicans is moving on to another target or targets. They came after El Rushbo, and it didn’t work. I have to tell you, folks, many of you are not going to appreciate this. You’re not going to like me saying this. You aren’t going to understand it, you’re going to think I’m out of touch, lost touch, and all of that, but I’m laughing hysterically at all the hysteria this morning that I am seeing everywhere, including at Fox News, the hysteria over the AIG bailouts. Let me tell you something, folks. I am all for the AIG bailouts, and I am all for the AIG bonuses. Well, I’m not for the bailouts, well, in a way I’m for the bailout because I’m for the bonuses.
You see, ladies and gentlemen, I have all of my insurance policies, or most of my insurance policies with AIG, and it would be a hassle for me if AIG went bankrupt or if they were allowed to fail. I’m a longtime customer of AIG, and as such I have preferred pricing like Chris Dodd got at Countrywide. My preferred pricing is simply because I’m a good customer, however, and because I’m a volume buyer. I have a lot of insurance, I need a lot of insurance. I have a lot of insurance with AIG. If they went away, then there’d be a hassle. I’d have to get with my broker, sit down, start all over again, prices wouldn’t be as good, and I figure, why shouldn’t taxpayers bailout the company that underwrites any insurance. I’m paying a bunch of people’s mortgages out there. Fair’s fair, folks. If I’m going to bail out your mortgage and a bunch of other stuff, buy your gasoline, buy your home heating oil and so forth, the least you can do is underwrite the company that’s buying my insurance or insuring all of my needs. But seriously, it is hysterical to watch this because the dirty little secret is that all these people getting all these bonuses are friends of Barack.
Most of the people on Wall Street who have their homes in the Hamptons and in San Francisco and Hollywood and Chicago and New York, most of these people are wealthy, filthy-rich Democrats. A lot of this money is going straight to people who end up kicking it back to Obama in the form of campaign contributions and what have you. Now, AIG, the bonuses, which came to light yesterday, $165 million, it’s chump change when you get down to brass tacks. Oh, it is. I told you, I know you’re not going to understand me, you’re not going to agree with me, you’re going to think I’ve lost touch. We need some perspective here. Okay, so they’ve got $170 billion in bailouts, the bonuses are $165 million. The AIG bonuses are one-tenth of 1% of all the bailout money, not just for AIG, but for everybody else. It’s in their contracts. What is the number-one asset any company has? It’s people. It’s employees. This $165 million in bonuses is gonna help estimate the economy. It’s going to stimulate the New York City economy, $165 million, one-tenth of 1% of all bailout. The populist thing to do, the popular thing to come and do here today is bang my fist and be outraged over how in the world can they use my taxpayer money this way.
Let me read to you why they can use our taxpayer money this way. TARP. Section 1, Short Title, emergency stabilization act, Economic Stabilization Act of 2008. Section 2. Purposes. Provides authority to the Treasury secretary to restore liquidity and stability to the US financial system and to ensure the economic well-being of Americans. Folks, there were no strings. Congress attached no strings to the $700 billion TARP money, zilch, zero, nada. They gave the Treasury secretary, in this case Geithner — at this point it was Hank Paulson last fall — total czar-like authority to do whatever he wanted with that money. I warned you, I warned all of you back then about the unintended consequences of this. You know what I want to know? Here we have an outrage of $165 million, one-tenth of 1% of all the bailout money, because it’s going to people that work at AIG, and they’re Democrats. The vast majority of all these people getting bailouts are wealthy, filthy-rich Democrats. Look, I’m not playing the class envy card. I’m not doing anything of the sort. I’m just telling you who these people are.
The people getting this bailout money, the companies are for the most part headed up by wealthy Democrats; they are huge contributors; they are donors to Democrat Party causes. I have to laugh at these headlines, there’s just a fascinating story here in the New York Times today: ‘Bracing for a Bailout Backlash.’ Let me read this first paragraph to you. ‘The Obama administration is increasingly concerned about a populist backlash against banks and Wall Street, worried that anger at financial institutions could also end up being directed at Congress and the White House and could complicate President Obama’s agenda.’ Now, forgive me for pointing this out, but may I ask you to remember, who in hell has been trashing Wall Street every damn chance he gets when he stands in front of his teleprompter? It is none other than the president of the United States, Barack Obama. He’s the guy who’s been saying, ‘No more trips to Vegas, no more flights on the corporate jet, those days are over.’ He has been blaming Wall Street since the campaign. He has been dumping on Wall Street, he’s been dumping on the US economy — that is, until I left, then the teleprompter told him that it was all positive and rosy out there.
Anger at financial institutions could also end up being directed at Congress and the White House? This story in the New York Times is reported as if Washington’s unrelated to this mess rather than central to it. Washington is central to the story. They’re not innocent bystanders, and yet they get to be portrayed and they portray themselves as innocent bystanders. Who do you think wrote the TARP bill? Barney Frank, Chris Dodd, Nancy Pelosi. They wrote it. Did they put any accountability in it? No. Did they put any strings in it? No. They gave total authority to the Treasury secretary, and yet here’s Congressman Frank on the Today Show today.
FRANK: These people may have a right to their bonuses. They don’t have a right to their jobs forever. The federal government now is the 80% owner. It does appear to me we’re rewarding incompetence. So since the federal government now, thanks to the Federal Reserve’s use of its power under that 70-year-old statute now essentially owns that company, maybe it’s time to fire some people. We can’t keep them getting their bonuses, but we can keep some of them from continuing in their jobs. These people got retention bonuses. Well, if they were in high school, they wouldn’t have gotten retention, they would have gotten detention.
RUSH: Here we go again. We’re upset over $165 million. Folks, in the grand scheme of the federal budget, this is chump change. Do you know what we’re paying to pay mortgages for people that can’t pay their mortgages? Do you know what we’re paying people not to work? It is outrageous. Nobody is discussing here the outrage at the cost of government. This is part of it. Your government did this and this administration backed it up. This administration, Obama, voted for this. Don’t talk to me, ladies and gentlemen, about morality here. If you want to start talking morality, let’s just circle the House of Representatives of the United States Senate and let’s talk about the morality of what goes on in there with the money those people spend, the money they waste. This money went to American citizens. This money went mostly to American citizens who are registered Democrats. These people who got the bonus are going to spend it. That’s called private sector stimulus. ‘But, Rush, but, Rush, it’s our taxpayer –‘ you have no reason to complain.
If you supported this in the first place, and if you support bailing out people’s mortgages, people that can’t pay ’em while you’re having to pay yours — you can’t selectively complain, folks. Once you vote Big Government, once you think it’s the answer, you have to accept all the inefficiencies, you have to accept all the corruption, you have to accept all the outrageousness that you get, because you know using intelligence guided by experience that that’s what’s going to happen, particularly when there are no strings. So now where are we? Well, they got contracts, these clowns at AIG, so we can’t take their bonuses back, but we can fire ’em. You got the federal government talking about firing people in the private sector. You ever talk about firing people in the government sector? Do we ever hear about that? You know Nancy Pelosi’s got gall. Here she is flying around in all these Air Force jets wasting who knows what kind of money, being concerned about this. She issued the following statement today on news reports that AIG is given $165 million in bonuses to executives.
Here’s what Miss America had to say. ‘While American workers see their wages decline and face record job losses, it is unconscionable that AIG would permit such extravagant executive compensation practices without any accountability to the taxpayer.’ Miss America, there’s no accountability ’cause you didn’t put any in there. The ones who got the bonuses did so on the basis of sales success. These were reported as merit bonuses that they are contractually permitted to get. If you violate their contract, if you don’t give them their bonus, you have got a lawsuit on your hands and 80% of this company is now owned by Barney Frank and Chris Dodd and Pelosi, and so they would be sued, the government would be sued by these people. Now, I realize that I’m on the short end of this stick. I realize I’m in the minority here because I realize the popular thing is to trash AIG and trash this stuff that’s going on and on about taxpayer dollars being wasted and who do these rotten, dirty executives think they are.
As I told you, folks, I’m not a man of polls, I’m a man of principle, and this is chump change compared to the waste and the fraud that exists daily in the United States government. Nancy Pelosi said, ‘I have asked Chairman Barney Frank–‘ You know who he reminds me of? The Looney Tunes cartoon character, Sylvester the Cat. (doing Frank impression) ‘I thought I saw a puddy tat. I thought I saw a puddy tat. I thought I saw a bird.’ ‘– to examine options legally available to recover taxpayer funds of companies that abuse the privilege of taxpayer assistance.’ Larry Summers on Stephanopoulos’ show yesterday was asked about this. Stephy said, ‘I think a lot of people just don’t understand how this can be, especially when these bonuses are going to the financial products division of the company which brought the company down.’
SUMMERS: George, look, there are a lot of terrible things that have happened in the last 18 months, but what’s happened at AIG is the most outrageous. What that company did, the way it was not regulated, the way no one was watching, what’s proved necessary, it is outrageous. We are a country of law. There are contracts. The government cannot just abrogate contracts. Every legal step possible to limit those bonuses is being taken by Secretary Geithner and by the Federal Reserve system.
RUSH: Let’s stand up and give him a standing ovation. We’re going to go back and we’re going to get that money. We’re going to make sure that those slimeballs that gave themselves bonuses, they pay a price for this. We’re not going to just sit around and let all this happen. If you’re mad about it, fine, folks, just do me a favor and be mad at far worse transgressions, waste and outrage that occurs every day at the seat of government in Washington, DC.
RUSH: Okay. President Obama just started dumping on AIG at his little coming-out party for small businesses in the East Room of the White House. He said they got themselves into trouble because they were greedy, excessively greedy, yada yada yada yada. He’s dumping on Wall Street again because it makes populist sense to do so. He just started commenting on it when we started. In fact, our microphones are there. Can we JIP Obama ripping into AIG? I just want to… Yeah, let’s. I just wanna hear it. I want to hear how he does it.
OBAMA: Taxpayers help. (applause)
RUSH: All right! (mocking applause) Obama, ladies and gentlemen! President Obama, ripping it (garbled). Yes! Right on, right on, right on, right on, right on.
OBAMA: I want everybody to be clear that Secretary Geithner has been on the case. He’s working to resolve this matter with a new CEO —
OBAMA: — Edward Liddy —
RUSH: Oh, yeah.
OBAMA: — who, by the way, uhhh (pause) everybody needs to understand came on board after the contracts that lead to these bonuses —
RUSH: Yes, a Democrat! A good Democrat. Yes, yes, yes, yes, yes.
OBAMA: — were agreed to last year. But, I think Mr. Liddy —
RUSH: A Great CEO.
OBAMA: — uh, and certainly everybody involved needs to understand this is not just a matter of dollars and cents. It’s about our fundamental values.
RUSH: Right, exactly.
OBAMA: And all across the country, peop — there are people who are working hard and meeting their responsibilities every single day —
RUSH: And if not, we’re paying for them.
OBAMA: — without the benefit of government bailouts or multimillion-dollar bonuses. You’ve got a bunch of small business people here who are strugglin’ just to keep their credit line open that they are … duh, beh — they are forgoing pay, uh, as —
RUSH: Well, bail ’em out.
OBAMA: — one of our entrepreneurs, uh, talked about. They are, uh —
RUSH: Bail ’em out!
OBAMA: — in some cases mortgaging their homes, eh, and doing a whole host of things —
RUSH: Why are you letting ’em suffer? Bail ’em out!
OBAMA: — uh, just in order to keep things afloat.
RUSH: Bail out AIG.
OBAMA: All they ask is that everybody from Main Street to Wall Street to Washington, play by the same rules.
RUSH: Bail ’em out, then!
OBAMA: That is an ethic that we have to demand.
RUSH: Bail ’em out!
OBAMA: And what this situation also underscores is the need for overall financial regulatory reform.
RUSH: Ha-ha-ha. Yeah.
OBAMA: So we don’t find ourselves in this position again.
RUSH: Bail ’em out.
OBAMA: And for some form of resolution mechanism in dealing with troubled financial institutions so that we’ve got greater authority to protect American taxpayers and our financial system, in cases such as this.
RUSH: You mean…?
OBAMA: We already have (cough) resolution authority (cough-cough) Excuse me, I’m… (coughing)
RUSH: (coughing) I know how you feel.
OBAMA: — choked up with anger here.
RUSH: The teleprompter said, ‘Cough.’
OBAMA: Uh, we always — already have some of that resolution, uh, authority when it comes to a — a traditional bank. But when you start getting into AIGs and some of these other operations —
RUSH: We bailed ’em out.
OBAMA: — that have a whole bunch of different financial instruments then we don’t have all the fi– uh, regulatory power that we need, and this is something that I expect to work with Congress, uh, to deal with, uh, in the weeks and months ahead.
RUSH: All right! Bail ’em out, though.
OBAMA: Well, uh, we’re here today to talk about how my administration can help the millions of small businesses bearing the brunt of this credit crisis.
RUSH: All right, that’s enough. So he really didn’t do much except praise the current AIG CEO. He made it a point. Now, the current CEO is the guy that passed out the bonuses. He’s a guy named Liddy, Edward Liddy (no relation to Scooter). This guy passes out the bonuses because of contracts at AIG, and he comes in for praise from Obama. Now, what does that tell you? And Obama made the point, ‘Hey, he came in here long after all this stuff started. He didn’t have anything to do with this.’ A-a-ahem. He’s a Democrat. It means Liddy’s a Democrat, which leads me, ladies and gentlemen, to another point. This New York Times story talking about Obama and the Democrats… You know, for all their talk — and they’re always talking about senior citizens and ‘working people,’ and here was Obama just now. He was talking about the pain and suffering of small business, was he not? They can’t get credit.
They’re going to have to have another one of these sessions. It’s a summit here today. They’re going to go out into ‘breakout groups.’ They’re going to come back and report on what ought to be done with small businesses. They’re always talking about The Little People. Senior citizens, working people. But these clowns in the Obama administration are spending far more than Bush and the Republicans ever imagined to bailout their buddies. Most of these Manhattan business types are Democrats, not Republicans. What we have here in the Obama administration is a bunch of Ivy League eggheads who have never managed a thing, and they are working hand in hand with these big Wall Street types. They can sit there and complain about bonuses and all the rest, but they created this situation. They are funding failure, and they are making us all pay for it.
Everybody has forgotten that all of this financial problem has roots in the subprime mortgage and housing crises, and both of those crises were started by gov’ment officials. All of the pressure on lending institutions to lend money to people who had no hope of ever qualifying, much less being able to pay it back, all that was done on purpose by government officials: Barney Frank, Chris Dodd, President Clinton, under The Community Redevelopment or Reinvestment Act, whatever it’s called. The government created this situation. They are funding failure. I said a couple weeks ago, ‘Isn’t it time that we pronounce the political cure to this a failure?’ All these bailouts have led to no resuscitation on the part of the bailed-out firms, and the bailed-out firms are now starting to say, ‘No, we don’t want the money. We wish we’d have never taken the money. We should give the money back,’ because they don’t like all the controls on the business that are now part and parcel of having accepted the money.
So they’re funding failure, they’re propping up failure, and they’re making us pay for it. There is not a single businessman who has manufactured something, or been involved in import-export, advising this administration. They are all Ivy League academics. They are one-and-the-same mind in most cases, the Ivy League elites running this show right now including Obama, Larry Summers, Geithner. Where are the real businessmen who actually create jobs and create wealth? You will not find one in the Obama administration. So these eggheads and Ivy League elites are bailing out these failed big institutions. They are providing endless welfare programs for those who have made poor decisions or who are poor on the other end, but they’re killing the rest of us.
Even though Obama uses the middle class term to define all he’s doing, he’s doing just the opposite. He’s bailing out people that can’t pay their mortgages. He’s bailing out failed Wall Street titans. He loves the guy running AIG right now. AIG just makes everybody mad by awarding 165 million in bonuses, but Obama makes it plain and makes a point to single out the CEO at AIG as a great guy and absolve him of anything to do with any of this! ‘Cause these are his buddies. They are running the show. Geithner, Summers, Obama, are bailing out these big institutions, providing endless welfare programs. And by the way, I’m not talking about class welfare here, I’m talking about what they’re doing. If they get rid of impediments, if they cut taxes — if they just slash them, eliminate them, get rid of the impediments to success — if they help create an economic environment promotes wealth creation, these big institutions are probably still go under because they’ve destroyed themselves.
They’ve got too much debt. We’re trying to prop up failures because of who’s at these failures. All these people have giant homes in the Hamptons, second homes in ski resorts, and by all means we have to keep them in their homes. This is not class envy. Do not misunderstand. I’m talking about all these Ivy League eggheads hanging together and protecting their own. They’re all liberal Democrats, the vast majority of them are, and they’re not going the humiliated route of Bernie Madoff. They’re not going to be kicked out of their penthouse apartments. They’re not going to be kicked out of their summer places in the Hamptons or wherever. They’re not going to give up the parties. They’re not going to give up the social circuit. So they’re going to get bailed out, they’re going to get saved, regardless the damage they’ve done to these companies and the company that have invested in them.
The rest of society is going to keep on paying for this. Those who are poor or made poor decisions are going to have to participate in improving themselves despite setbacks as we all have, or they won’t succeed, either. That’s the way it works. But to destroy the core of our system, to bailout failed institutions and send wealth to those who have not earned it destroys the entire system — and what’s happening here is giant kickbacks, back and forth, from the administration, to wealthy Democrats at these firms who are being bailed out. The money will keep circulating in the form of campaign donations. Obama can’t let these people go under. It would hurt the Democrat Party. It’s a fine line here. I sound like class warfare, but what I’m saying is that this is about the Ivy League elitists, not the rich per se.
This is about a certain segment of the rich protecting itself, protecting its political investment in Obama. Obama is protecting their political investment in him. These are not… Let me tell you: these are the people who fund the Democrat Party. That’s who’s being bailed out. Let’s put it that simple. These are the people who fund the Democrat Party. They live in Manhattan. They live in the Hamptons. They live on the Main Line of Philadelphia. They have giant penthouses in San Francisco, atop Knob Hill and so forth. They live in Hollywood. They are the heart and soul of the Democrat Party. The really super-rich parts of our country are heavily Democrat now. We don’t grudge them. We don’t begrudge them their wealth. We don’t begrudge them their success.
But they begrudge us, and these are among the people who now are being bailed out by the Obama administration, because the elitists and the eggheads are hanging together. By the way, I’ve seen a couple stories recently. It’s actually a good point. Everybody says, ‘But, Rush, they may not be any business executives in the Obama administration, but see, these are some of the best of the best from business schools that are running these companies.’ Why is a business school at a major university like Harvard or Yale or Wharton, exempt from all the liberalism elsewhere at the university? They’re not. So you have all these big business types. They’ve been educated as, and part of, liberal dogma in the business schools.
What do you think they’ve been taught? Well, we’re seeing that they don’t know how to run businesses. We’re seeing that they know how to run businesses into the ground, and we’re also seeing they know how to petition government to get bailed out; because they have greased the skids with donations, contributions, friendships and the good-old-boys network. But they’re largely Democrats. They’re largely eggheads. They’re largely Ivy League elites. That’s who’s circling the wagons to protect themselves with all this, and when Obama comes out and trashes these people, he doesn’t really mean it — and they know it. They know he’s just got to sound populist to sound like he relates to you. But again, the bonuses are one-tenth of 1% of all bailout money so far, roughly.
RUSH: Already the e-mails are pouring in, Mr. Snerdley. People wishing to take potshots at their host because of this Obama-bailing-out-AIG business and the bonuses. I said that these people are Democrats, they’re being treated well by government, they’re being bailed out ’cause it’s a close clique of Ivy League rich Democrat eggheads and so forth. And somebody said, ‘Rush, when you joined President Obama’s address on your show, President Obama said that he’s told Geithner to go out there and do everything he can to get the money back that went for these bonuses.’ Oh, tsk-tsk, ladies and gentlemen. Of those you — and it’s a relatively few number who have e-mailed me — disappoint me. You wound me to the heart ’cause you’re not listening. Obama’s statement is meaningless. Already Geithner and Larry Summers have said there’s nothing they can do. AIG has contracts.
If they get this bonus money back, if they do not allow the bonus money to be paid, these employees of AIG can sue and get punitive damages. Obama just said this. The expiration date on this statement was one half second after he made it. That statement’s not even on the shelf anymore. Here’s what he said. He said, ‘I’ve told Geithner to pursue every legal avenue,’ which means after the pursuit they’ll find there isn’t one open. Every legal avenue will have a stop sign. There’s nothing they can do. But all you’re supposed to hear is, ‘Damn it, those greedy SOBs, I’m getting your money back, gang. I’m Barack Obama, and I’m getting your money back.’ By the way, he has a small business meeting, had small business owners up there to talk about his plans for them. Where was the small business plan in the Porkulus bill? Why even have to do this? Why weren’t there any plans for small business in the stimulus bill?
We have time for a quick phone call. Let’s grab Gainesville, Florida. Rita, you’re first. Great to have you on the EIB Network. Hi.
CALLER: Hi, Rush. The media never mentioned the role of Eliot Spitzer in AIG’s failure because in his lead-up to his —
RUSH: Why, he was screwing them, too?
CALLER: He hounded Hank Greenberg out of the chairmanship and forced the board to install a successor to Hank Greenberg who is acceptable to Eliot Spitzer.
RUSH: You know what, Rita? You are exactly right. Hank Greenberg is the former CEO of AIG who built it.
CALLER: Over 40 years. It was a sterling company.
RUSH: And he was a major Republican.
CALLER: I actually did not know that.
CALLER: All I know is three years later, they needed rescuing.
RUSH: A major Republican and Republican donor.
CALLER: I know Spitzer hated him.
RUSH: Spitzer hated him. Spitzer never officially charged Greenberg with anything.
RUSH: He threatened to. This panicked the AIG board.
RUSH: That was how Spitzer operated.
RUSH: He threatened all of these places. And Spitzer, I think, was in large part just getting rid of Republicans at these outfits.
CALLER: Well, he was on his way to run for governor, nice populist causes he would take up and target executives.
RUSH: All right. So they get rid of Greenberg and three years after forcing Hank out, bam.
RUSH: We’re in the circumstance that we’re in now with the current CEO, who I’ve never met, but my insurance underwriter is AIG and again I’m happy for the bailout because if I’m paying your mortgage, you can underwrite the company doing my insurance, folks, the way I now look at it, fair is fair, right? But this new CEO, Liddy, was singled out for praise by President Obama mere moments ago during the small business seminar. Who is in charge when these bonuses get paid out? Ed Liddy, who was just singled out for praise by President Obama. You connect the dots.