The G.W. Bush severance package.

The G.W. Bush severance package.

The G.W. Bush severance package.

Dubious and far-fetched ideas.
Jan. 11 2007 1:43 PM

The G.W. Bush Severance Package

His stock is falling. He has lost the confidence of shareholders. So how much would it take to make him go away?

Dear Mr. Bush:

This memo sets forth the terms of the severance agreement reached this morning between your representatives and the Board of Directors regarding your contemplated departure as Chief Executive Officer of United States of America, Inc. (Hereafter: "USA, Inc.").


The Board acknowledges that you believe you are doing "a heck of a job" and that, if not for weak-willed defeatists in Congress, the White House, the news media, the Democratic Party, the military, Iraq, the G7, and the voting public, the rest of the world might agree. The Board acknowledges that your representatives have produced evidence that you believe supports your assessment of your job performance and challenges the expertise and motives of your detractors. Without passing judgment on such evidence, the Board will try to honor your request that it be made available to "patriotic" historians.

The Board agrees to accept any hypothetical resignation you may decide to offer. If you decide to resign, the Board understands that you will do so "for personal reasons" and "to spend more time with your family." The Board agrees that any such resignation would be voluntary.

Lastly, the Board agrees that, if you resign, Mr. Richard Cheney will immediately be sworn in as the company's 44th President. Mr. Cheney will issue two executive orders—the first anointing you the "Freedom, Democracy, and Victory President," and the second pardoning you. Having ensured his presidential legacy, Mr. Cheney will then resign, citing health reasons.

About Your Severance Package:


Your representatives provided the Board with a recommended hypothetical severance package developed by your severance consultants. The Board acknowledges that your severance consultants have extraordinary experience and expertise in this arena, having advised on 185 CEO departures in the last three years. The Board agrees that, should you resign, your Hypothetical Severance Package will become your Severance Package.

Terms of Your Hypothetical Severance Package

In gratitude for your past six years of service as the War President and your future years of service as the Freedom, Democracy, and Victory President, you will receive:

  • A lump-sum equivalent to a modest 0.02 percent of the Gross Domestic Product of USA, Inc. in your six years of leadership (calculated by annualizing the final year), as well as an additional bonus of 0.02 percent of projected GDP for the next two years. Your severance consultants note that this percentage is less than half of that recently received by another departing Chief Executive, Home Depot's Robert Nardelli. (The Board thanks you for your sacrifice.) The special additional bonus will compensate you for the inconvenience of having to relocate two years earlier than expected. 
  • The Board recognizes that the above lump-sum payment of $21 billion will create a substantial tax burden for you and your family. The Board regrets that it cannot decree that income taxes on Chief Executive Officer severance packages "be temporarily waived to stimulate the economy and create jobs." As a result, the Board will accept your alternate recommendation that the sum be structured as a Special Ex-CEO Trust, from which you will receive interest and dividends tax-free. Your consultants estimate that this will produce a lifetime income of $1 billion per year.
  • Because the above income may not support the lifestyle to which you are accustomed, you will also receive the following nonmonetary compensation:

*Lifetime use of U.S. military transport aircraft, as well as complimentary joy rides in all new fighter planes, tanks, assault vehicles, and moon rockets.

*Right of first refusal on all future military contracts for any companies you work for, serve as a director of, or own shares in.

*Full military pension for your service as a member of the National Guard and Commander in Chief.

*Full Social Security and Medicare benefits, even if such programs are eliminated.

*Full government pension and benefits, including full health care, dental care, psychiatric care, and drug and alcohol rehabilitation coverage.

*Full memberships at any clubs you wish to belong to, including Augusta National and the Dick Cheney Memorial Quail Sanctuary and Wildlife Refuge Hunting Club.

*Four full-time assistants to handle your communications needs.

  • If you predecease your wife, Laura, the above benefits will accrue to her (except, for obvious reasons, the membership at Augusta National). If you and Laura predecease your children, the above benefits will accrue to them. If your family predeceases your fellow patriot Mr. Karl Rove, the above benefits shall accrue to him.

The Board agrees that the terms of this hypothetical severance agreement are merely hypothetical, that you have not decided to resign, and that you may not decide to resign. The Board recognizes that you alone are the Decider, and it does not in any way wish to influence or rush your decision. The Board regrets, however, that given the rate at which USA, Inc. shareholder frustration is increasing, the terms of this hypothetical severance agreement will expire at sundown.

The Board of Directors
USA, Inc.

Henry Blodget is the founder, editor, and CEO of Business Insider. Follow him on Twitter.