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Archive for March 23rd, 2009

During an interview with Steve Kroft On the CBS network program 60 Minutes, Barack Obama suggested that Wall Street executives should travel outside of New York City, and recognize that in North Dakota or Iowa an executive would be content to earn $75,000. per annum with out any consideration of a bonus.

This is but another example of the failure of President Obama to understand the dynamics of executive compensation. It is also another shot across the bow of of the business class in the class war that Obama continues to promote in the double speak that he is so effective at. He suggests that he is supportive of the free enterprise system but also believes the federal government should be able to place limitations on private sector compensation.

President Obama believes the playing field should be leveled. He believes that the economy should be realigned by substantially decreasing the compensation of executives and raising the income of the “working men and women” of America. It is as if by being an executive a person is no longer a working man or woman which is a populist mantra continually promoted by Barack Obama.

Being a senior executive and a CEO who has worked on both coasts over the past 25 years I am dismayed with the President’s populist rhetoric and the off handed way that he addresses something as sacred to Americans as the compensation they receive for services rendered in their place of employment. The cool manner that Obama projects when he is speaking about this issue is reflective of a true believer. In Obama’s world executives are over paid.

The President and Congress need to step back from the  compensation issue lest they promote disincentives across the business sector and condemn American business to the same mediocre performance we experience every day from government.

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