HAHAHA "There's no way in god's green earth in our lifetime or children's lifetime that AIG is going to pay back $185 billion." http://finance.yahoo.com/tech-ticke...rd"-AIG-Shares-Soar-on-New-CEO's-Bold-Claims? "Totally Absurd": AIG Shares Soar on New CEO's Bold Claims Posted Aug 20, 2009 04:55pm EDT by Aaron Task in Newsmakers, Banking Related: AIG, C, BAC, XLF, SKF, FAS, FAZ AIG shares soared over 21% on volume of nearly 132 million shares Thursday after new CEO Robert Benmosche halted the auction of the firm's investment advisory unit and made some very aggressive statements in an interview on Bloomberg TV. "We believe we will be able to pay back the government and we hope we will be able to do something for our shareholders as well," Benmosche told Bloomberg TV in an interview from Croatia, where he owns a vacation home. Bloomberg also reports the former MetLife CEO made some bombastic comments during an Aug. 4 town hall-style meeting for employees, including: * "I'm appalled at how much pressure has been put on all of you to just sell [the investment advisory unit] no matter what, because the Fed wants out, or the Treasury wants out. If they want out in a hurry, they shouldn't have come in in the first place." * "I want to make sure we all get paid competitively. If you shoot the lights out in a given year, we should have enough flexibility to give you a big increase." (As discussed here, Benmosche been given an annual salary of $7 million, which Pay Czar Kenneth Feinberg has approved "in principle.") Barry Ritholtz, CEO of FusionIQ and author of Bailout Nation, praised Benmosche for his boldness and agrees the government never should have bailed out AIG in the first place. Benmosche is also right to want to pay his best employees top market rates, "as long as appropriate risk management is in place," Ritholtz says. "I'm assuming this guy isn't a complete and total lunatic [and] isn't going to start leveraging up and write a $1 trillion in derivatives [contracts]." But Ritholtz calls it "completely and totally absurd" to think AIG can pay back the government - which has given or promised over $180 billion in bailout funds to date. "CEOs are supposed to say really optimistic, really stupid things and everybody looks the other way," he says. "There's no way in god's green earth in our lifetime or children's lifetime that AIG is going to pay back $185 billion."