Two great myths and con jobs

The first of the greatest cons is that abstract ”art” is actually art. The fact someone would pay millions, even tens of millions for the results of someone throwing paint on a canvas is ample evidence.

The second, and current con on the American people is that there is a connection between CEO – of the largest employers only – pay and worker pay.

No doubt many CEOs are over paid, some don’t earn their keep with results, but their pay – total compensation – does not take away from workers.

Let’s look at the total compensation – most in stock awards – of the CEO of one of the largest telecom companies. We will give him an 80% cut in pay and give that money to workers in the company.

Each worker receives a pay raise of $2.65 per week and if we want to be equal in compensation source, only about $1.06 of that is cash. Take away all the CEO’s compensation and each worker gets $3.30 per week more.

The constant drumbeat about CEO pay is designed to create envy, animosity and an easy target simplified for people – to reinforce the inequality theme.

If sincerity were involved in the argument for higher worker pay, it would be based on profit sharing, fluctuating with the fortunes of the employer.

AND THERE WOULD BE an analysis of the impact of lower company earnings on its stock price and then on the investments Americans are making in their retirement and other accounts.

But you see it’s much easier to run a con than to deal with facts and consequences.


  1. Staw man argument. It’s not —just— the CEO. It’s also the CFO, COO, CPA, attorneys, engineers, marketing, etc. A wise man said the advantage of capitalism, or free interprize, is that if you work harder (or smarter) you earn more. But it’s hard to imagine someone working 10,000 times harder than I do.

    If the lowest paid don’t earn enough to survive (and even, God forbid, prosper, relatively) your system is doomed, like an engine that doesn’t get lubrication and cooling to even the least significant parts. Enlightened self interest. For want of a nail, the shoe was lost. Etc., etc., etc.

    Also, abstract art really is art. As one of my art teachers said, looking at a very realistic (and beautiful, in my opinion) painting… “If I want a camera, I’ll buy a camera.


    1. Labor is a commodity, and like any other commodity, prices vary on supply and demand. The demand for those capable of successfully running a major corporation exceeds the supply, whereas the supply of unskilled labor is in excess (and getting worse as the current administration imports more unskilled labor). How many unskilled or semi-skilled laborers are there for each CEO capable person? If they are one in a thousand, it explains and justifies getting a salary 1000 times higher.


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