A New Ritual for Capitol Hill? - The American Spectator | USA News and Politics
A New Ritual for Capitol Hill?

Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), a prairie populist, has come up with an interesting idea for AIG executives:  kill themselves.  And he suggests a Japanese twist, which suggests the practice of ritual seppuku, whereby the person disbowels himself.  A “second” then stands by to finish the job if necessary.

Reports the Associated Press:

Iowa Sen. Charles Grassley suggested that AIG executives should take a Japanese approach toward accepting responsibility for the collapse of the insurance giant by resigning or killing themselves.

The Republican lawmaker’s harsh comments came during an interview with Cedar Rapids, Iowa, radio station WMT on Monday. They echo remarks he has made in the past about corporate executives and public apologies, but went further in suggesting suicide.

“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.

“And in the case of the Japanese, they usually commit suicide before they make any apology.”

I like the idea.  I can think of a number of Wall Street and corporate executives who should consider this option.

But the list of politicians who should follow suit is much longer.  Who voted for the TARP bail-out last September?  Who supported the previous three bail-outs of AIG?  Who voted for the Community Reinvestment Act, which pressured banks to make bad loans in poor neighborhoods?  Who shilled for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, whose irresponsible practices are at ground zero of the financial crisis?  Who voted for wasteful deficit spending, year in and year out?  Who backed the Medicare drug benefit, which added trillions more to Uncle Sam’s unfunded liabilities?  Who … well, you get my point.

How about a session of mass seppuku on Capitol Hill, led by Sen. Grassley? 

Doug Bandow
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Doug Bandow is a Senior Fellow at the Cato Institute.
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