Brisk NYT column by Maureen Dowd.
How could Citigroup be so dumb as to go ahead with plans to get a new $50 million corporate jet, the exclusive Dassault Falcon 7X seating 12, after losing $28.5 billion in the past 15 months and receiving $345 billion in government investments and guarantees?
(Now I get why a $400 payment I recently sent to pay off my Citibank Visa was mistakenly applied to my sister-in-law’s Citibank Mastercard account.)
The “Citiboobs” — as The New York Post, which broke the news, calls them — watched as the car chieftains got in trouble for flying their private jets to Washington to ask for bailouts, and the A.I.G. moguls got dragged before Congress for spending their bailout on California spa treatments. But the boobs still didn’t get the message.
The former masters of the universe don’t seem to fully comprehend that their universe has crumbled and, thanks to them, so has ours. Real people are losing real jobs at Caterpillar, Home Depot and Sprint Nextel; these and other companies announced on Monday that they would cut more than 75,000 jobs in the U.S. and around the world, as consumer confidence and home prices swan-dived.
Prodded by an appalled Senator Carl Levin, Tim Geithner — even as he was being confirmed as Treasury secretary — directed Treasury officials to call the Citiboobs and tell them the new jet would not fly.
“They woke up pretty quickly,” says a Treasury official, adding that they protested for a bit. “Six months ago, they would have kept the plane and flown it to Washington.”