Friday, April 13, 2007
Revenge Of The Blobs
The Business Roundtable, composed of 160 of America's fattest CEOs, lobbies for the interests of corporate executives in Congress. Together, these dudes employ 10 million people, earn an average of $9.9 million a year, and helm companies that "account for 'nearly a third of the total value' on U.S. stock markets." When they stomp their feet, Congress listens.
The Business Roundtable "publicly supports" new SEC rules on the disclosure of executive pay. According to the article at the link below, they can well afford to do so because the disclosed pay figures "actually understate the real pay gap in today's Corporate America. [They], for instance, don't count the value of the towering stashes of deferred pay and pension dollars that await top execs on their retirement day." The Business Roundtable is, of course, dead set against any extension of the disclosure rules to cover these huge fortunes being made under the boardroom table.
Meanwhile, the Senate has passed a change to the tax code that will place a $1 million cap on all executive compensation that can be deferred or otherwise shielded from income tax. This has the Business Roundtable hopping mad. Business Roundtable head honcho John Castellani has protested the deferred pay cap, and that is only the beginning. The Business Roundtable is one of most powerful and potentially dangerous groups in Washington. Predictably, they don't exactly want to play ball with the rest of the American people. As the article below says, "This enormous Business Roundtable clout on Capitol Hill, if truly focused on ending the corporate pay abuses that have average Americans upset and alarmed, could make a real difference. That's a difference that CEOs in the Business Roundtable, so far at least, apparently don't feel they can 'afford' to make." Let us pray that our Senators can emerge from the squeeze play of the fat boys with their moral character unflattened.
"Fat CEOs Strike Back At Congress" from AlterNet