Red_Vespa saidI suspect these executives come from very modest backgrounds, that they would be so dazzled by the temptations of wealth & privilege.
I don't think the propensity for being "dazzled by the temptations of wealth and privilege" is reserved for those of modest backgrounds. The wealthy are as enamored by and arguably more attached to the ideas of wealth, privilege and power. In fact, I would argue that many (if not most) people from wealthy backgrounds feel a sense of entitlement to those things.
The whole retreat debacle seems to be a manifestation of entitlement. If you asked any one of them during their brow waxing, or swedish massages if they thought they deserved it, 99% would say yes.
There's an obligation to acknowledge that there are, in fact, people who deserve the wonderful things they have-- who have worked hard and overcome obstacles to get where they are. They deserve to enjoy the fruits of their labors without guilt. In AIG's case, however, on the company dime, it seems excessive, irresponsible and blatantly gluttonous.