Maurice "Hank" Greenberg has an op-ed piece in the Wall Street Journal complaining that the federal government's takeover of AIG was "done without shareholder approval, a clear violation of Delaware law, the state in which AIG was incorporated."
It sent me back to read "Confidence Game" and "AIG's Correction," two editorials of the New York Sun published in September of 2008. The second concluded, "Our point here isn't to tell AIG's shareholders how to vote, but to underscore the principle that if we want to preserve a distinction between what is happening now and Communist Russia, it has to be that before the government takes control of a company the company's owners — the shareholders — deserve a say on whether they want to sell it."
It'd be a fine topic for Martin Feldstein, who was a director of AIG for more than 20 years before stepping down in 2009, to discuss on May 3 when he receives the Irving Kristol Award at the American Enterprise Institute's annual dinner. I enjoyed and learned from Professor Feldstein's economics class as a college student, and it would sure be interesting to hear his thoughts on the responsibility of a corporate director in a situation in which the federal government is attempting, as Mr. Greenberg described it, to essentially nationalize a company.