by Pa Rock
Mr. Kenneth Lewis
Bank of America Corporation
100 North Tyron Street, 18th Floor
Charlotte, NC 28255
It has been exactly one month since my last letter, and I was hopeful that you would have used that time to smarten up, but, as this week's news demonstrates, that was wishful thinking on my part.
You were in New York a couple of days ago to speak to the state's attorney general, Andrew Cuomo, regarding the $3.6 billion in bonuses that Merrill Lynch doled out to its executives just hours before they were taken over by Bank of America. When that story first broke you prattled on about it happening before your watch and it was all beyond your control. But then when Mr. Cuomo asked for names and amounts this week, you stonewalled. That pesky little New York lawyer could go fuck himself. You are Bank of America, and, as such, you answer to no mortal.
But not only did you stick your thumb in Cuomo's eye, you also put that colored boy in the White House in his place. Yep, you sure did! When President Obama said earlier in the week that the days of bank executives flying around in corporate jets were over, he didn't count on coming across a bank executive with cajones the size of yours. You hopped right in that $50 million corporate jet to fly off to New York to put Cuomo and Obama in their places. Yes, you did!
Ken, you are one arrogant bastard - and about as concerned with public opinion as Marie Antoinette was when she sneered that the Paris rabble could eat cake if they had no bread. That uncaring bitch sneered all the way to the guillotine. These are mean times, Ken, and heads are going to roll. A modicum of tact might might lessen the impact of your impending fall.
Andrew Cuomo is going to lay a big, fat subpoena on your butt, Ken, and he is going to find out who at Merrill Lynch got how much bonus money - and he is going to publicize that information, much to your chagrin. But see, Ken, he has to publicize all of that information that you regard as personal. The bosses have a right to know how much their employees are being paid. The bosses, Ken, have that right. The bosses have a need to know how their business is operated and how their money is being spent. I am one of the bosses, Ken, one of over 300 million taxpayers who own a big chunk of your company - and I damn sure want to know!
And you know what else, Ken? I think that it's high time we started selling off that fleet of corporate jets. You need to experience life flying coach, in a middle seat, back close to the restrooms.
As long as you are operating on taxpayers' money, you work for us. And while I can't speak for all of your other bosses, I am very unimpressed with your job performance thus far. If you can't generate some sense of humanity in your plush boardroom, it may be time for us to jettison your flabby ass - without a golden parachute!
The bosses are watching, Ken. It's time to shape up or ship out!