We did it, Snowball.
Hank Greenberg is 90 years old, so he may or may not be around the next time the global economy flirts with extinction. But just because there was no material reward in yesterday’s most Pyrrhic of victories to further cushion Snowball’s inheritance, when it is finally Hank’s time, he will dance into the mooonlight rejoicing in the certain knowledge that, when the next economic collapse does come, he’ll have made it incomparably worse for future generations.
The judge’s decision could have far-reaching consequences should another financial crisis occur — and if history is any guide, one will. Legal experts say that the ruling, coupled with certain provisions of the Dodd-Frank financial overhaul law enacted after the crisis, makes it unlikely the government would ever rescue a failing institution, even if an intervention was warranted.
Should that happen, and the government decides it is handcuffed by the law from any intervention, taxpayers can thank Maurice Greenberg, the company’s former chief executive and one of its largest shareholders.