You probably know that Maurice R. “Hank” Greenberg is suing the U.S. government for $40 billion over the bailout of his American International Group Inc.
Yes, this is precisely a case in which a drunk swimmer who’s also been raping and pillaging and stealing and sniffing coke is suing the Coast Guard for forcing him out of the water.
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Chutzpah, thy name is Hank Greenberg.
Now, the Wall Street Journal reported thy name is that the former AIG chief is on the list of witnesses the government is planning to call on as part of its rebuttal arguments.
The Journal expects the testimony to be “a lively event, with the feisty 89-year-old squaring off against government lawyers who may seek to use Mr. Greenberg’s own words against him.”
Greenberg left AIG after then-New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer accused the company of accounting improprieties, and has been critical of the AIG’s board for hanging him up to dry back then.
Should the government call on Greenberg to testify, he will no doubt be asked to read for the record a letter he wrote in May 2008 to AIG’s board, four months before the bailout. He noted back then that AIG’s problems extend “far beyond its subprime credit exposure or approach to capital management… Core businesses are also deteriorating … AIG is in crisis.”
According to the lawsuit, Greenberg’s successors at AIG “refused to take any blame for the crisis they brought upon AIG.”
Greenberg blames the government for frustrating AIG’s efforts to obtain private-sector help as the crisis reached its peak, and forced it brutally to accept the bailout of billions of dollars against their will.