Suck It Up and Pay Those Bonuses

Keeping employees at AIG is paramount, says Sorkin
By Jason Farago,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 17, 2009 9:30 AM CDT
A man enters an AIG office building Monday, March 16, 2009 in New York.   (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)
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(Newser) – Everyone from President Obama down has been stung by the unfairness of AIG's planned $165 million in bonuses. But as Andrew Ross Sorkin writes in the New York Times, the best thing to do is shut up and pay. "As unpalatable as it seems," he writes, "taxpayers need to keep some of these brainiacs in their seats."

Working for AIG these days is, frankly, a terrible job—and its employees are reportedly being heavily recruited. But having built "complex derivatives that then wormed their way through the global financial system," they need to unwind them from within AIG rather than jump ship and trade against them. "In the end," writes Sorkin, after paying out $165 million "we may actually be better off."