When money is provided by the government, it is certainly legitimate for the provider of the money to specify how the money shall be used. There is no reason that millions have to flow to the leaders of failing companies. When I was the executive director of a medical foundation some years ago, we were able to fund research projects with the stipulation that the money would flow directly to the research being funded, without supporting overhead costs.
It seems to me that the government should be able to specify that the money provided flows directly to such needs as funding loans, operational expenses, and other fundamental needs, rather than executive salaries and bonuses. Rescuing these failing financial houses does not mean restoring all aspects of the company, just keeping it going.
Why is it called a “bailout”? Perhaps that is indicative of the fact that the companies did something wrong. We don’t need to bail out the companies. We just need to keep their operations going.