The pseduonymous Edison Rex, the AIG IT executive director who started blogging last week on LiveJournal, has taken down his blog. But he hasn’t stopped commenting about what he views as”all of the lies being told” about AIG. Some of you may have caught his post in our comments section this weekend. But for those you who missed it, here goes:
I’m the guy who wrote that blog that got lifted, without even a a please or a thank you from Mr. Carney. I’m the Husband of the Whiny Bitch (thanks for the so kind words for all of you who don’t know her, or me, personally).
Since I do understand how the internet works, and since I don’t effectively have any other channel to explain anything, I’m going to stop by, not for interviews, since we really are gagged from talking about AIG to the press, but, at least I can comment on my own life.
For those of you who call bullshit, well, that’s your opinion. Whether you think I’m real, or not, if you have any google-fu you can find me, as Mr Carney obviously has. I’ve been on the internet a long time, and this nick has a history of its own, not in any way associated with FP. I long ago integrated my home and work life, because that was something that had to happen to manage the job.
For those of you who keep insisting we’re looking for sympathy, you obviously can’t read.
I not only do not want your sympathy, or your pity, I want you to wake up and see the real issues. I’m not actually that important, other than your whipping boy for the day. I am not keeping this bonus at this point. Once we sort out the taxation issues, since y’all have given 50% of mine to the UK government, it will get returned. I am not sorry about that. I was promised money by the company. I am actually very sorry about the whole situation, that the company is such a disgrace, and that I have found myself such an object of negative interest. I am not, however, sorry about the work I’ve put in. It is experience I can say I’ve done.
I took my LiveJournal blog down for personal reasons. We had a reporter stop by from the NY Post. Like I said, no interviews, please, Christina Pretto and Nick Ashooh will probably not know my name, but I’m pretty sure I’m going to get a talking to about all this anytime now.
To the guy who guessed my income, you forgot to take UK taxes and FX drift into account, and yeah the bonus was a bit more, and yeah it costs a lot to be an expat, and if you want my job, please apply for it. We won’t play 20 questions however, I have been expecting that all our details will be outed sooner or later. Oh yeah, my car is 11 years old. I don’t own any houses, let alone two – we sold the house in Fairfield 11 years ago. Hope that sets the record straight. We didn’t buy here in London because you need 20% down, and I would have therefore needed about a half million dollars to buy a 4 bedroom house around here – no previous housing bubble equity. Can’t bring money from the States, unless you want 40% tax on it, so that’s out. The guy who wrote that IT guys are relatively unsophisticated financially is partially right. I didn’t cheat. I paid my taxes. Which was about 50% a year, if you figure the UK tax, and the US tax on investment earnings there. I can say I don’t have any debt, though. I was always careful not to overextend. I wasn’t as heavy into the DCP as some, but I took a bath on the 401(k) and my mutual funds. Much of our savings is out of reach in the USA. I’m not sure you care, but there it is.
The thing about the school is, as an expat, you can either put your kid into the British system early, or you pay for the American system. Please don’t call them. I did tell them that there would be press attention, and they have some awesome security. All of this, we did for our kids, even when I started to hate the job a lot, so keep them out of it. Really.
To those who dismiss my simplistic view of the business, well, I didn’t write that blog for you anyway, nor my other entry, but hey, since we’re talking about it, there is one guy who can explain that particular CDO/CDS business, actually a couple of them, and they aren’t talking yet. I personally do hope they get to sit before Congress soon. My involvement in that business was only to get their market data, and make sure their systems ran. So no, I don’t know anything about it, and I’m glad I don’t. If I did, I’d have more money right now, and I wouldn’t be here writing this.
Which brings me to my job description. I noted lots of people who seem to think my job was as easy as anybody’s in the tech business. Maybe so, but if you also do market data, facilities management, health and safety (you would not believe the imaginative ways these guys can injure themselves) and pretty much everything operational and managerial, you should get in touch. Once, one of the guys at work asked me to fix his scooter. Also, as I think both my wife (who you may think is whiny but I love her dearly, having been married for 23 years) have blogged about me helping out with the investigation so that we will all know the truth someday, because really and truly, we don’t know the truth either. In short, if you want the job, you probably should apply for it – be assured that the pay now sucks, and the job just got a lot harder to do.
As to my job prospects, I was prepared to walk on September 15th. I was actually prepared to walk sooner, back around March 2008, when the management delayed our December payments for three months. That’s when the ERP happened, and we were assured there was still a business. I don’t live in America and, to be honest, I’m not expecting to get a job there (or even live there anytime soon), so don’t worry about me (your rotten tomatoes won’t cross the ocean either). I landed this job as a consultant, and back to consultancy I will go. I’ve done this between every substantial job I’ve ever had. And it has always paid my bills.
I told my management on Friday that I will stay until further notice, until it becomes clear what’s going on. Matter of fact, the ERP agreement requires me to stay employed, since they paid us. It was put in place to retain us.
The whole company is reeling from these events. Your sentiments, I can assure you, were heard loudly, and I don’t really have any defence for them. Quitting is one defence, I suppose, but it does leave a messy ending. You probably should consider that and learn about it. I mean that, if the American Taxpayer owns us, you really should read the prospectus before you fire the fund managers. Or the back office, for that matter. Those guys really didn’t deserve the trashing they got. I’m back office, as many of you have guessed.
One other explanation. The job titles. Did you ever walk into a bank and ask to see the manager, and get a Vice President to come over? I remember this from 25 years ago. It impressed the shit out of me. The guy was the floor manager. But he gets a great title. I was hired as an AVP in 1994, and got promoted to VP the next year. When I went to London the title changed to Executive Director. This is normal in the financial world, and title inflation is reality. In a normal job, I’d be something like Director of IT for Europe or something. So yeah, we’re all executives. Is it silly? Well, if you shine a big light on it, maybe it’ll change. Like the so-called “discretionary” bonus. It’s the reality in the industry.
Finally about my balls. I read a lot of stuff about how I’m an enabler, a whiner, a ball-less wonder who should have quit long ago. I don’t really know what to say to you, except here on the internet we’re free to say what we want. Perhaps posting here tells you something about me that you don’t know, or care. And your flaming, well, I’m used to it, I’ve been on the internet a long, long time. Got a death threat? You in America? I’m shaking, no really. That’s not to say my American friends haven’t been completely terrorized by y’all, but I’m not in America. The UK hasn’t really found any of this to be big news, except maybe a lesson about how in America, contracts can be broken for political reasons. AIG aren’t bankrupt, and yes, thanks to the government. Maybe it should have been bankrupted like Lehman. I don’t really know, at this point, but you and I are stuck with a trillion and a half worth of unwind and if you don’t manage your investment right, we all get to watch what happens. I do think you should educate yourself about the investment.
Mr. Carney, you are an arsehole to have printed our names. I sent you a note as well, and thanked you for the less than your usual brutal treatment. Since you did not respond to it, I bet it went in your spam filter. Sucks to lose news that way.
In closing, my British friends think I’m crazy for responding. Unfortunately, honesty is a strong personal influence, and my friends know I am telling the truth. People can make all the fun they want – hey, it’s the Internet – I’m used to it. I’m an IT guy, if I hadn’t known anything about the Internet I’d have really been a weenie.
Anyway, enjoy. We’ve been trashed enough, I can’t think of much more y’all can say to me, but I am reading your comments, since you are all so imaginative.
I would like to thank those of you who do get it, and have said so. I really appreciate that you’ve taken the time to read and comment.
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