Campaign Cartographer 3

September 17, 2008

The Fairborn News-Packet
by Walker Mann, business desk

Arthur Bowen, disgraced former CEO of global insurance giant CJH, used his forum as a frequent guest host on WNAC's Morning Business Blast to deliver an impassioned message to his successor, Garry Nickels. “I'm here to help in any way that I can,” said Bowen, as CJH faces either a billion dollar federal bail-out or possible insolvency. “The death of CJH could well be the death of the world economy,” Bowen declared, “and I'm ready to do whatever I can to pitch in. My depth of advice is available gratis, of course,” he added.

Bowen was ousted from his CEO perch in 2005 under a cloud of controversy. New York Attorney General Geraldine Kolby filed a complaint charging Bowen and CJH executives with fraudulent practices, securities fraud, and other violations of insurance and securities laws. Critics have blamed Bowen for instituting the risk policies and accounting practices that led to the CJH crisis.

“It's rich to hear Bowen grandstanding now,” commented business analyst Rhonda Kobayashi. “His whole-hog play on default credit swaps directly caused in CJH's ratings downgrade, which in turn caused its liquidity crisis. He was the one who decided to place an absurdly high value on the swaps—at 1.7 to 2 times what Lehman was valuing them at. And we all know what happened to Lehman. Bowen's offer of help should be valued at exactly what it's worth—negative value. If he couldn't have done more damage to the company, and the economy at large, if he'd been trying.”