AIG in the News ~ A Cross Border Comparison
This morning I was getting coffee here in Vancouver and, as I was waiting on line, noticed an interesting contrast on the newspaper rack. Both The New York Times and The Globe and Mail carried front page, above the fold stories on the testimony that Edward Liddy, the new CEO of AIG, gave before a subcommittee of the House Financial Services Committee yesterday  . As you probably know, AIG executives accepted bonuses, paid for out of their publicly financed bail-out funds. So much for performance-based compensation. And the Congressmen and women wanted to chat with Mr. Liddy about that slight impropriety. (The Congressional outrage is posturing mostly, since they signed the blank check last fall, but, hey ...)
So far, so good. But notice the contrasting images that accompany each story. The photographs from The Times are on top here, while I've lifted the entire front page from the G&M. From The Times we get tightly framed close-ups with no 'distractions.' Politics, after all, is serious business. From The Globe & Mail we get a sense of active citizenry - those inimitable folks from Code Pink giving Mr. Liddy the hard time he deserves. Democracy, after all, is not so neat. And while Mr. Liddy might well complain that he is only a public spirited individual who agreed to assume leadership of AIG once it had been bailed out, that hardly absolves him of accountability.
PS: In fairness, The Times story does note that "Mr. Liddy ... chatted with protesters as he entered the session for hours of testimony" and they did include some photos that showed protesters on their web page.
Labels: Media Politics