The Ultimate Bailout: Senator Proposes Suicide Pact With Business

seppuku3 Iowa Sen. Charles Grassley has come up with the bailout for executives: suicide. Grassley suggested that AIG executives do the honorable thing and commit Seppuku. The problem is of course that ten of his colleagues immediately demanded $10 billion for the study of Seppuku techniques and the creation of Seppuku centers as part of the proposed second bailout bill.

Grassley was speaking with the Cedar Rapids, Iowa, radio station WMT when he said: “I suggest, you know, obviously, maybe they ought to be removed,” Grassley said. “But I would suggest the first thing that would make me feel a little bit better toward them if they’d follow the Japanese example and come before the American people and take that deep bow and say, I’m sorry, and then either do one of two things: resign or go commit suicide.”

Of course all of the outrage on the Hill is meant to distract attention from the fact that members and the White House did not care enough to properly structure the bailout to bar such payments. Instead, as is often the case, they rushed to spend hundreds of billions of dollars without proper time or preparation on the details like an economic Patriot Act debacle. It is little surprise that we now have members seeking a formal suicide pact with business.

Grassley may have hit upon the ultimate Obama-esque plan for change. After all, as the song says “Suicide is painless. It brings on many changes.”

For those AIG executives considering the final option, here is a tape of Suicide is Painless from MASH and the lyrics are below.

For the full story, here.

Through early morning fog I see

visions of the things to be

the pains that are withheld for me

I realize and I can see…


that suicide is painless

It brings on many changes

and I can take or leave it if I please.

I try to find a way to make

all our little joys relate

without that ever-present hate

but now I know that it’s too late, and…


The game of life is hard to play

I’m gonna lose it anyway

The losing card I’ll someday lay

so this is all I have to say.


The only way to win is cheat

And lay it down before I’m beat

and to another give my seat

for that’s the only painless feat.


The sword of time will pierce our skins

It doesn’t hurt when it begins

But as it works its way on in

The pain grows stronger…watch it grin, but…


A brave man once requested me

to answer questions that are key

is it to be or not to be

and I replied ‘oh why ask me?’


‘Cause suicide is painless

it brings on many changes

and I can take or leave it if I please.

…and you can do the same thing if you please.

20 thoughts on “The Ultimate Bailout: Senator Proposes Suicide Pact With Business”

  1. They should not be allowed to commit suicide, they should be executed by lethal injection, preferable in public and so should their children and grand children.

    Money is life. It is a fact that poor people do not live as long as rich people. This being so it would be appropriate if really big thefts should be considered as serious as equivalent to capital murder. One might set the value equivalent to life at a million dollars, and then someone who steals a ten million dollars would be considered to have murdered 10 people.

    Since the proceeds of such thefts benefit the families of the thieves, these should be considered to inherit the guilt and to deserve the same penalty.

  2. rafflaw:

    Now after a bit of googling myself I see why you picked Louden. Father of Rufus and a folk singer who would have made sense for the period. And good on you for not cheating …

  3. Great movie. And I’m thinking you’re messing with me a bit …

    You mean Rufus Wainwright? Guess again.

    Happy Patty’s Day to you, sir. But the lyrics were by somebody more connected to the film.

    Okay, Google it if you must; it’s an interesting story.

  4. Quick:

    Without Googling (and no wiki-ing either) can anyone identify the original lyricist of the song, Suicide Is Painless, that the professor quoted at the top of this post?

    Hint: Was also, “in some minor way”, related to the film M.A.S.H.

    A little movie trivia on Patty’s Day …

  5. It is unfortunate that Grassley didn’t get this upset when Bush lied to Congress and to the public about WMD’s!

  6. Mike A.,

    That brings up another point. The articles I keep seeing the say Obama’s lobbyist limiting rules are hindering him filling positions. As you pointed out as to finance, “[i]t may be wiser to bring in complete outsiders who have no business or social relationship baggage and who are not opposed to stirring things up.” There are plenty of unemployed out there with the skill sets to do the jobs in question and zero connection to the K Street Graft Machine.

  7. While it makes a certain amount of sense to appoint those with insider knowledge to help deal with the financial mess, the downside is that those individuals are being asked to question the actions and motives of long-time colleagues, people whom they have previously trusted, and whose representations they are inclined to accept. It may be wiser to bring in complete outsiders who have no business or social relationship baggage and who are not opposed to stirring things up.

  8. Just like you, I call AIG’s actions economic terrorism, Patty. Time for playing nice is over. Unlike those on the Hill, I can spell RICO. Then again, I can spell pitchforks and torches too. By my watch, it’s getting close to mob:30. When that chime rings, no amount of private security will be enough to protect them. And the only thing the cops will be good for is cleaning up afterwards. AIG will encounter violence at some point in the very near future unless the guilty are brought low and but soon. Their only hope is that the Obama Administration gets some cajones and starts putting these sociopaths in prison and taking our tax money back – and I don’t mean the left handed solution of withholding it from their next extortion, er, bailout payment either. That’s my prediction and I’m sticking to it.

  9. Somebody needs to extract the foot from Larry Summer’s mouth and place him on a No-Microphone Diet – permanently!

    And if Tim Geithner isn’t up to this task, then he needs to resign.

    There’s no way these two can say they didn’t know about these bonuses until last week. I ‘knew’ about them and I don’t work for AIG or the new administration.

    The only winning argument there is against big AIG payouts and bonuses, in light of the reasons for the bailout in the first place and rushed through under George Bush, IS the argument that these guys don’t deserve contract bonuses, based on poor performance and fraud.

    Hank Greenberg, himself, once said in an interview, that the United States could not financialy afford another terrorist attack.

    What do you call this?

  10. This is the first thing I’ve agreed with Senator Grassley with in ages. By the way has anyone else called the White house today saying that Summers and Geithner must go because of their statements regarding the inviolability of the traders contracts?

    Any legal comments on the following plan, it seems viable to me in light of the airlines gambits with destroying labor contracts via bankruptcy.

    This man should have been either the Chief Economic adviser and/or Secretary of the Treasury.

    I’m still an Obama fan, but sometimes criticism of incorrect behavior is the best love you can give. Trusting someone like Summers was a big mistake and Geithner is Summers guy.

  11. frankly i wish they would feel that sort of remorse.

    p.s. i have the song on a 45. bought it as soon as i saw the movie.

  12. Jill,

    One lives to be of service, just as perhaps some should die to be of service. 😀

  13. I fear that some members will opt out of the worthwhile Seppuku ‘improvement’ program when learning that they must wear those digs and wigs…

    The song’s hauntingly beautiful melody and lyrics must be a stark reminder to humans that all war is, in fact, suicide.

  14. Seriously,

    This post was great! There will be a big stink made by the administation about finding a way to stop the bonus payments. This will be excellent PR for the WH. In the meantime Paulson will slip them the money through the Federal Reserve. This program that has about as much oversight as contractors in Iraq. Here’s a great anaylsis of all the crap on Terry Gross: “Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Gretchen Morgenson discusses the latest news in bailouts and banking — including the recent revelation that insurance giant AIG plans to pay $450 million in executive bonuses.”

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