13 July 2005

Not sure about Justice

It's nice to see that Mr. Ebbers got a nice big sentence for his part in the WorldComm debacle. Personally, I think if you have managed to swindle any public company into giving you a salary in excess of 10 million a year you deserve to go to jail for fraud. At the very least you should be required to have disclosures similar to what a public company is required to submit.

In this day and age, when world poverty is rampant, we can't afford to pay teachers, healthcare is outrageous and infant death to treatable disease is at an all-time high, a public company has a responsibility to the world to share the wealth.  I'm not talking charitable donations, simply issuing proper dividends and paying appropriate wages to the working class would suffice.

For a CEO to make 20 million a year for a company that has 5 thousand workers earning below the poverty line is just disgusting. The hourly laborers could all make 3 thousand more a year and still pay their CEO a respectable (5M) yearly salary. That doesn't include the perks and benefits consumed by these no-talent hacks; we're just talking about the number on their paystub.

Consider how much money that only the 20 highest paid CEOs remove from the economy every year.  Taking back the compensation only from the 20 highest paid CEOs would be a shot in the arm of the economy to the tune of 1.4 BILLION dollars. If only the 20 highest paid CEOs were reduced to 5M salaries that would be more than 1.3 BILLION dollars that could be shared amongst workers, shareholders, and reducing cost of goods and services. That sounds reasonable doesn't it?

Here's some tidbits to close:
  • Approximately 35.8 million people lived below the poverty line in 2003, or about 12.5 percent of the population, according to the US Census Bureau.
  • There were 12.9 million living in poverty last year, or 17.6 percent of the under-18 population. That was an increase of about 800,000 from 2002, when 16.7 percent of all children were in poverty.
  • The Census Bureau's definition of poverty for a family of four was $18,810, while for two people it was $12,015.
  • Nearly 45 million people lacked health insurance, or 15.6 percent of the population.
  • The median household income, when adjusted for inflation, remained basically flat from the previous year at $43,318.
I'm going to go weep now...

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