I didn't know that Presidents could fire CEOs but seeing how as the government is giving companies billions of dollars to companies, business leaders should be held accountable. Obama pressured GM CEO, Rick Wagoner to step down; here are five other CEOs he should consider firing.
1. Edward Liddy CEO AIG
Liddy was hired by former Treasury Secretary, Henry Paulson in 2008. Paulson had previously given Liddy his job at Goldman Sachs. One of Liddy's first acts as CEO was throwing a $440,000 luxury retreat for top executives while the government gave his company $84 billion because retreats were "standard practice in our industry." Guess what Liddy, your industry has gone to shit and you need to reconsider those practices. In a debate with McCain Obama said of the retreat "The Treasury should demand that money back and those executives should be fired." There has been no record of AIG giving that money back so Obama should fire the AIG executives, including Liddy. Despite appearing outraged before congress about the infamous AIG bonuses, it turned out that Liddy had accelerated more than a quarter of AIG's bonuses by three months.
2. Rex Tillerson CEO Exxon Mobil
While the country went into a major recession last year, Exxon Mobil posted its biggest profits. High gas prices from last year were undoubtedly controlled by Tillerson and other oil and gas CEOs. The high gas prices helped lead us into the recession we are in, while helping Mobil record those record profits. Exxon Mobil has fought and lobbied to continue America's dependency on oil, while extorting Americans' dependency on foreign oil. Not only is Exxon responsible for a good deal of the environmental damage that affects the world, but also the tensions and wars in the middle east. Obama should fire the company man Tillerson and replace him with someone who has a long term vision for energy and our environment.
3. Smith and Wesson CEO, Michael Golden
Smith and Wesson is the largest gun manufacturer in the world. They also give a lot of money to the NRA which in turn lobbies government for easier gun laws. 2000 Smith and Wesson had a deal with the Clinton administration to make their guns more safe and fight against the illegal flow of their guns into urban neighborhoods. After Bush was elected, In 2001 Smith and Wesson was bought by another company and reneged on their agreement. Smith and Wesson's CEO should be fired and they should go back to their pre-Bush philosophy of keeping guns safe and out of the inner cities and criminals rather than selling the guns and not caring where they wind up. Obama needs to send a message to the gun industry that they need to take responsibility for the guns that they sell.
4. Halliburton CEO, Dave Lesar
After milking America for billions of dollars through his Dick Cheney connection, it is time for Halliburton's whole leadership to be removed. A defense contractor should not have close relationships with the leaders who decide if we go to war especially since they have no bid contracts. Lesar does not even work out of the US, but instead works in the more oil friendly Dubai. Halliburton has been involved with trading with Iran, covering up rape in Iraq, overcharging the Pentagon, using off shore companies and foreign subsidiaries to avoid paying U.S. taxes and bribing Nigerian officials. In order to rid the USA of the awful legacy of Cheney and Halliburton all of Halliburton's contracts should be nullified and Obama must press Halliburton to pay their taxes and fire their CEO.
5. Clear Channel CEO, Mark Mays
Clear Channel owns a lot of billboards and a lot of radio stations. Clear Channel was also one of Bush's biggest corporate allies. They tried to subdue freedom of speech and stop on air personalities from criticizing Bush, yet Mays himself stood up for Limbaugh when Harry Reid criticized him for his "phony soldiers" comment using the freedom of speech defense. Clear Channel has also ruined urban radio by turning "Hip Hop" stations across the country into identical entities playing the same water downed negative sterotypical Hip Hop. Obama needs to rid the US of the Bush cronies who helped shape his misguided agenda and promote bigotry.
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