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William the Conqueror and CEO pay

Originally published at http://www.commondreams.org/views/2019/11/05/william-conqueror-and-ceo-pay

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The highly compensated CEOs are granted their pay by their board of directors, who ensure their own financial beds are feathered by the CEO.

No CEO can justify that their skills and prowess is worth the pay they receive. The game is rigged.

They use the argument that they are compensated similarly to other CEOs, because the executive market is extremely competitive. Bullshit.

Their cognitive abilities cannot withstand the basic arithmetic of pay per unit of time.

Paying someone $200,000+ per day is not only unsupportable, but is highly de-motivating for those earning much less.

Want to improve employee engagement? Significantly reduce executive pay and increase pay at the lower end.


A good article by Sam, and great news from Portland as to taxing companies who practice this unfairness. I’m glad to read it’s catching on elsewhere. Hoping for change.

“Back then, the feudal system was in full swing, with medieval peasants toiling while lords and ladies lived in sumptuous luxury.”

Actually, Feudalism wasn’t ‘in full swing’ at the time of William I’s Norman invasion of England in that he was the one who brought it to England as a way to control an unruly conquered population. Before the Normans Anglo-saxon society was essentially Scandinavian, much more egalitarian, kings were elected and rule was via witans or moots, assemblies of the populace. Women and citizens had rights that the Normans removed that they only got back as late as the 19th century. The period of Feudalism in English history was known as the Norman yoke and it’s hierarchical legacy still exists today in various institutions not just in the UK but also in the USA and other places.

Just like we need a minimum wage, we need a maximum wage.

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Excellent comparisons in this article. While not advocating for the return of the Eastern European dictatorships - certain practices and principles they adopted for half a century are worth scrutinizing. The highest salaries were no more than 3-4 times bigger than the lowest salaries, and (most) public goods and state support systems, were equally accessible by (almost) everyone.

It is not just the CEO’s in the US. The unjustifiable disparity in financial compensation is pervasive in the society i.e. lawyers, doctors, vs. poets, philosophers, mathematicians, etc.

“No one should have to labor a thousand years—or even a century—to make what their top bosses make in 12 months.”

Many thanks to Sam Pizzigatti for his work in reporting wealth and income inequalities. No matter how you look at them, the comparisons of CEO pay to median worker pay reported in this article are appalling. I would like to suggest, however, that the more meaningful way to report these disparities is not how long a median wage employee at a company must work to match the CEO’s yearly compensation, but, rather, how little a CEO must work to match what that median wage employee earns in a year. If, for example, the ratio of CEO pay to median worker pay is 365:1, that means the CEO “earns” in a day what a median wage worker accumulates in a year’s time on the job. How excessive a day’s pay for a CEO must be if it matches what sustains a median-wage employee and his/her family over the course of a year!