From the Manchester, N.H. Union Leader — Originally published Thursday, March 19

Everyone in Washington is "outraged" that AIG paid $160 million in bonuses after being bailed out with $173 billion in taxpayer money. What did they think AIG would do with the money?

Back in the old days of welfare, Washington routinely wrote checks to people whose sole qualification for the checks was that they were irresponsible with money. When the taxpaying public finally had enough of that, members of Congress declared they were outraged to find welfare recipients squandering taxpayer money.

So what's more outrageous — that AIG squandered taxpayer dollars on executive bonuses, or that Washington handed AIG $173 billion without asking where it would go?

President Obama is a target for the people's outrage over these bonuses. He absolutely should have focused more of his energy on the bailouts issue instead of rushing on to green energy and health care reform. And his constant push for bailouts last year helped secure bipartisan support for them. But President Bush and his team are no less to blame.

... Maybe now Washington will finally stop throwing good money after bad, at least for a while.

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