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Inquire into this: “CEO pay and benefits on the rise”
Posted: 03 September 2007 10:21 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 31 ]
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Well, this is only anecdotal evidence, but the CEO and the Executive committee of the last company I worked for raided the employee pension fund to take it down to the minimum required by law (paid the $30,000.000 75% tax required), voted themselves large bonuses including the $10,000,000 from the pension fund, then declared bankruptcy.  They then split the company and sold off the parts, again voting themselves a bonus.  Fortunately, I had taken early retirement two years before and was working for them as a consultant.  The stock I had was transferred to the new owners at a loss for me.  So I have a hard time seeing that most CEOs are worth much at all. 

Occam

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Posted: 04 September 2007 05:07 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 32 ]
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redmartian89 - 03 September 2007 04:13 PM
truthaddict - 29 August 2007 02:00 PM

CEO pay and benefits on the rise: report
http://biz.yahoo.com/rb/070829/usa_economy_pay.html?.v=1

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Top executives at major businesses last year made as much money in one day of work on the job as the average worker made over the entire year, according to a report released on Wednesday.
Chief executive officers from the nation’s biggest businesses averaged nearly $11 million in total compensation, according to the 14th annual CEO compensation survey released jointly by the Institute for Policy Studies based in Washington and United for a Fair Economy, a national organization based in Boston.

At the same time, workers at the bottom rung of the U.S. economy received the first federal minimum wage increase in a decade. But the new wage of $5.85 an hour, after being adjusted for inflation, stands 7 percent below where the minimum wage stood a decade ago.

How is this a bad thing?

CEOs deserve their millions for keeping the company profitable and productive.

As for the minimum wage, how many companies only pay their workers that?

*blank stare

you got to be kidding me.

how is this a bad thing? when so much wealth is generated, distributed so inequitably and those at the bottom - who do all the REAL work - have problems paying bills, etc. Id say thats a very bad thing. It says that there is no reason for mortgage crises, lack of insurance, or paying credit card bills.

CEOs “deserve their millions for keeping the company profitable and productive”? like brennen pointed out, the workers dont contribute to that?

you dont think minimum wage has an effect on other pay scales? you dont think it effects the customer service, call center and data entry level jobs that typically start out around $9-12 an hour? do you really think Aetna would pay $12 an hour if minimum wage was $10? come on now. by setting the bar so low while compensating a tiny, affluent minority so excessively we can see who suffers the most: the middle. Sure, what data entry jobs WaMu still hasnt outsourced to some third world country pays more than minimum wage, but to think MW doesnt effect starting pay for other lower and middle class jobs is foolish.

the decisions needed to run a company dont need corporate executives AT ALL. there is absolutely no reason why the workers themselves cannot make sound decisions on how to do their work. from my own experience of working in financial institutions, etc, I along with my coworkers can testify that we dont need them. We do all the leg work. We know what is going on, what we need to do to get our jobs done, etc. Spare me the ridiculous notion that some douche bag in a nice office, staring at his “admins” ass all day works hard or contributes anything to the success of the company.

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Posted: 04 September 2007 05:26 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 33 ]
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Well now, I wouldn’t necessarily go so far as to say that all CEOs are crooks or that they are all useless. It depends on the case. Some people deserve large salaries, others deserve to be behind bars. But that said, there is an awful lot of greed going about, and many of the most ambitious are also the greediest. I doubt that this can be well handled by telling companies what to pay their CEOs. If the shareholders themselves allow themselves to be bamboozled by stacked boards, there’s not much else we can expect. For that reason, we have to insist on high marginal tax rates and high taxation on estates. This assures at least that the money doesn’t get piled up in family dynasties, but keeps flowing through the economy to people who are in greater need of it. (E.g., to fund universal healthcare, for starters ...)

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Posted: 05 September 2007 12:03 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 34 ]
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eh, when I think about how wealth should be allocated I think it should be to those who do the hardest, most dangerous, productive and unpopular work. Janitors, laborers, factory workers, anything with sewers, etc.

CEOs dont come anywhere near that. They sit in isolated and comfy offices where they make decisions that the workers could make and then they either go play golf with their buddies or go home (EARLY!!!!) to play with their wives big, fake tits (corporate execs are still largely male dominated job positions).

The workers sweat their asses off to make those multi-million dollar salaries and stock option bonuses, but they get $15 an hour, with poor benefits (ie $100 decuctible, $20 copays, $100 emergency room visits, etc) and targeted by sub-prime lenders promising them the American Dream, only to have their mortgages increase after a couple of years (as if they are in a position to have financial advisers to say its a bogus deal).

A CEO is a job position that doesnt even deserve to exist, and especially not a salary that consists of 300 times the average worker.

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Posted: 05 September 2007 12:22 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 35 ]
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Doug, I think a situation in which:
. A person or a small group of persons derives their main benefits from the stock trading, and he/she owns a lot of money on this stocks
. This person knows in advance the facts that could rise or drop the stock price
. This person manage the pension fund, and has the power to exhange stocks with the pension fund
. This person hires the auditors who will build the balance, telling the rest of the world where the company stands, and is in charge of free/block their payments
is very corruption prone.

TA, I am not sure about what you say. I tend to think that the more skilled people, the people who are able to produce _real_ value (I mean, no speculative value) because of their education or talents deserve higher salaries. I think it is the way to encourage, again, real improvment in our life standard: reward people who could make our life easier and more confortable.

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Posted: 05 September 2007 12:39 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 36 ]
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the Mexican who can barely speak english, but cleans up the shit, piss and occassional vomit in our restrooms and does it with a smile….

... he deserves a big salary and the stock option bonuses.

the Mexican who can barely speak english, but landscapes the companies property in 100 degree heat so that it is nice and pretty…

... he deserves a big salary and the stock option bonuses.

But do they get the big salary? No. The fat gringo/contractor who bitches about the Mexicans in his nice, company-paid truck with air conditioning and pays them under the table rakes in the dough; as well as the corporate shill who gives an occassional speech to the Department about team work, but doesnt know how to do one single function or what’s going on because he’s too busy pretending we cant make the same decisions.

I had a back office job once and we were complaining about our pay. The corporate stooge comes in, we talk and he feeds us this line about how because we are back office and dont come into much contact with the customers, thats why we dont get more. So, to clarify I ask, “What youre saying is what determines how much we make is how much contact we have with our customers?” He tells me, “Yeah.” So, naturally my next question was, “when was the last time you talked to a customer and how much do you make?” That ended the conversation. I was insubordinate.

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Posted: 05 September 2007 12:47 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 37 ]
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I don’t doubt that the laboral market is plenty of abuses. I am quite sure about this, and for this reason I don’t agree with the libertarian: pretend that a person and a big corporation holds a ‘free agreement’ is a joke. I don’t know the laboral conditions of the mexicans there, but I can tell you about the conditions of some inmigrants and natives here, and I am sure they deserve a higher salary.

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Posted: 05 September 2007 04:01 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 38 ]
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It seems to be a problem with an easy solution.  Make the income tax strongly progressive such that any earnings (no matter what form they’re in) above $500,000 are taxed at the 80% rate; over $1,000,000 are taxed at the 90% rate; and any earnings over $2,000,000 are taxed at the 99% rate.  This would tend to flatten the income curve, and might even help pay down our national debt without decreasing educational funding and social security and health benefits.

Occam

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Posted: 05 September 2007 04:08 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 39 ]
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occam,

and we could have free education, housing, healthcare and sony play stations for ALL!

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Posted: 05 September 2007 06:51 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 40 ]
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That’s not what I said.

Occam

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Posted: 06 September 2007 02:16 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 41 ]
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Occam - 05 September 2007 04:01 PM

It seems to be a problem with an easy solution.  Make the income tax strongly progressive such that any earnings (no matter what form they’re in) above $500,000 are taxed at the 80% rate; over $1,000,000 are taxed at the 90% rate; and any earnings over $2,000,000 are taxed at the 99% rate.  This would tend to flatten the income curve, and might even help pay down our national debt without decreasing educational funding and social security and health benefits.

Occam

I don’t know what governmental system you live under that would make this solution easy. In the US the people who write the tax laws are not very keen on subjecting themselves to higher tax rates and neither are the people who fund their camapaigns.

The easiest thing would be to write off the debt by way of a Presidential Executive Order, drop the entire tax rate to zero and nationalize healthcare and education with mandatory government service to staff the homeland defense, police, civil engineering, health care, civil service, social welfare, education and supporting professions. The term of service starts at 5 years and adds one year for each year of post HS education one uses. One could serve right away, or wait for not more than 10 years, but for each year a person waits, they add one more year of service to their obligation. No one gets paid for those years, but they get free housing, medical and food. A person can voluntarily extend for as long as they choose with a guaranteed pension post-service of free housing, medical and food for each year of their extended service.

The government just nationalizes the raw materials and infrastructure it needs to run these systems, which would be an indirect tax because the companies would pass on the lost revenue in terms of higher prices to the consumer, but since no one is paying any other tax, it’s not much of a burden. The various levels of government can supplement their costs with direct user fees on a graduated scale.

There. All done.

About as likely as Occam’s solution, but doesn’t have the potential problem of all that tax money going to fund invasions of sovereign nations and killing of innocents.

***

Regarding the original topic: I don’t care a whit what wage or salary other people make who earn more than me except to the extent that their salary is subsidized with tax money. Unless someone can show me how Warren Buffet’s riches make me poorer, I just want to learn what rich people do so I can do it too ... so long as it fits within my code of ethics which includes only entering a business deal that is win-win.

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Posted: 06 September 2007 02:24 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 42 ]
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WattaQuestion - 06 September 2007 02:16 PM

Unless someone can show me how Warren Buffet’s riches make me poorer

X amount of money is produced, Y amount is given to corporate executives and Z amount is left for the workers who made X amount of money.

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Posted: 06 September 2007 02:27 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 43 ]
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truthaddict - 06 September 2007 02:24 PM

X amount of money is produced, Y amount is given to corporate executives and Z amount is left for the workers who made X amount of money.

Well, in this case, Buffett makes $100,000/year. That’s his salary, and has been so for many years. Virtually all of his wealth is tied up in ownership of shares of Berkshire Hathaway, which he is giving to the Gates Foundation.

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Posted: 06 September 2007 02:57 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 44 ]
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that example reminds me of the time someone sited one scientist to you who thinks global warming is a product of miscalculating global temperatures. do you remember what you said?

“thats one out of many.” (paraphrasing)

my point (of contention) was not and has never been about one particular CEO. the average CEO of americas top companies make 300 times the average worker. for X amount of money to be generated Y to be 300 times that of the average worker who gets Z amount is a form of extortion.

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Posted: 06 September 2007 03:15 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 45 ]
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truthaddict - 06 September 2007 02:57 PM

that example reminds me of the time someone sited one scientist to you who thinks global warming is a product of miscalculating global temperatures. do you remember what you said?

“thats one out of many.” (paraphrasing)

my point (of contention) was not and has never been about one particular CEO. the average CEO of americas top companies make 300 times the average worker. for X amount of money to be generated Y to be 300 times that of the average worker who gets Z amount is a form of extortion.

Certainly many CEOs are quite greedy, and executive pay in the US is out of control. My point was that Buffett isn’t a good example.

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