Sure, popular opinion is against AIG, putting any of their defenders in the uncomfortable position of going against the crowd. And I'll admit, I wasn't exactly on their side when the story about their bonuses first broke, but I've come around and am firmly in their camp. This will get me labeled by some as a corporate toadie or worse, but what changed my mind was a simple question, one that should be on the minds of everyone with an opinion on the AIG situation.
With all of the attention focused on AIG right now, it's frightfully easy to overlook the possibility that this is either a first step or another step in some grander plan. Either way, the AIG situation became a testing ground for Leftists to see how they could turn public opinion against a company with a few well-placed lies that fed into the "eat the rich" mentality that is prevalent in today's society. And, boy, did we get played for suckers by the Left. With a few statements from the real criminals (that's Congress for those of you playing along at home) feigning outrage over a condition they knew was happening (because, well, they created the loophole for it to happen), we were ready to pick up torches and pitchforks to storm AIG.
Now, it's only a matter of time before another company gets targeted, and we're whipped into a frenzy again.
We're already seeing some rumblings that could become the next AIG. For example, the NAACP has filed a lawsuit against Wells Fargo, claiming unfair business practices used against African-Americans to force them into bad loans. And given how mortgage companies have already taken a PR beating due to the subprime mortgage crisis, it's not outside of the realm of possibility that Wells Fargo or some other mortgage company/bank to get demonized, thus the cycle continues. Then, it will be another company, and then another, and so on until the public loses all faith in the corporate world and becomes fully vested wards of the state.
Sorry, folks, but I don't swing that way. I kinda like my freedom, and for all its faults, capitalism is the socioeconomic system that gives me the best chance of retaining my freedom.
That's why I defend AIG. And that's why you should, too.