Friday, February 27, 2009

How many seats

If we as a nation own more than a third of Citigroup, it should go without saying that we get to appoint the board chair. The question I have is how many other seats do we get on the board? And, no, Robert Rubin doesn't count.

I'm not happy with strictly proportional allocation, which understates the importance of our capital infusions. I'm looking for one less than a majority, thus chair plus six other seats on the board of 15.

Who should be kicked off? Start with the inside directors, Win Bischoff, Vikram Pandit, Richard Parsons, and Bob Rubin. They royally screwed up; this is known in my plebeian circles as accountability. But no:

Under the deal, a majority of Citigroup's independent directors will be replaced. Pandit and Chairman Richard Parsons will retain their positions.
The idiots in charge of the asylum are not in the mood for justice. They and their diluted (deluded, too) investors still feel entitled:
"Will Citigroup be run for the shareholders, or is Citigroup going to be run for public policy goals or some other purpose?" asked Michael Mayo of Deutsche Bank.
Uh, dipshit, we are the shareholders.

The truth is that these guys couldn't find their well-fed asses with both hands. (Don't they have people for that?)
"We do not think [the Citi brand has] been permanently damaged. We still have a very strong brand globally," [Ned Kelly, head of global banking for Citigroup,] said. "Clearly when you're in the spotlight, there's going to be some negative impact. But it's had no economic impact."
They're still dithering about their brand, when anyone with two brain cells to rub together can tell that the bank's survival is what's at stake.

They still think these times are normal, that their membership in the elite will protect them from justice. Self-perpetuating and mutually defending elites are a big part of what's wrong with the economy, the media, the government, and America in general. My proverbial pitchfork says they're wrong.

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