Updated from 11:57 a.m.EDT
Let's take a step back and respect history for a second.
AIG (AIG - Get Report), a $200 billion insurance behemoth, was started right after World War I by scrappy and persistent Cornelius Vander Starr as he went from boat to boat selling insurance at the ports of Shanghai with $1,000 in his pocket. Lehman Brothers was started 158 years ago by three cotton sellers from Montgomery, Ala., who, like so many others after them, decided to get into the trading game and began trading their cotton.
These were great companies, started by creative entrepreneurs who looked for every opportunity to make a dollar and resisted the temptation to quit when things were difficult. It's a shame that because of FASB 157, combined with a run on the banks, these companies are now out of business. But that was a risk the management of the companies took, and they lost their dangerous bet. Time to move on.To find out how, please click here.