Thursday, February 5, 2009

The Whole 'Executive Pay' Business

Okay, so Obama's rhetoric is spot-on, but rhetoric and a quarter will get you a gumball. Nor am I in the trenches in Washington--maybe this plan is the best one we can get away with.

That being the case, there are a few things I really don't understand:

1. Why are congressmen and financial analysts so worried that companies won't seek financial assistance from the government if it comes with executive-pay-limit strings attached? If they don't need it to survive, then don't give it to them; if they DO, then they will come and get it anyway. That's like being worried that a homeless man might not like braised lamb--if he's hungry enough, he'll eat it.

2. Why bother inserting a clause that gives shareholders a nonbinding vote as to whether or not stock option incentives paid out to executives, in lieu of a higher salary, are fair or not? What the hell is the point of a nonbinding vote?

"Well, the shareholders unanimously think it's a horrible idea, but what the fuck, Bob--here's 20 million shares of JPMorganChase. See you in the Vineyard next weekend--oh, and happy Easter!"

"The rules would not prohibit a lower-level executive, like a stock trader or investment banker, from continuing to receive tens of millions of dollars in pay."

3. Why the distinction limiting only the pay of 'the most senior executives' to $500,000 cash per annum? Why not say 'every single fucking employee?' What this useless distinction will create among the higher-ups is a sudden desire to climb down the ladder a few rungs, become a 'personal finance advisor' to the biggest client, and take home a $3 million salary. He wouldn't even give a shit if he's answering phones--he wants the MONEY!

Let us not forget what created this crisis in the first place--the uncanny ability of senior executives to exploit loopholes for short-term personal financial gain.

If the craziness continues on this path, I foresee a world where janitors are hourly-paid CEOs with no benefits and CEOs are millionaire janitors with a pension plan that could choke a dinosaur.

Save me, Seymour! My world is upside-down!


1 comment:

Darwin said...

I really don’t understand why we can’t stipulate that in order to get money from the government you have to put a salary cap of (I’ll be generous) 200K for EVERY employee. Don’t worry Republicans; we’re not regulating your business, just the ones that have FAILED. If you need hundreds of millions from the government than perhaps your business plan is flawed. I don’t know maybe it’s that you pay your stock broker millions while incurring massive debt. Just a thought.