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So how are workers doing this Labor Day?

More Americans living in poverty Census report also shows rise in uninsured.

>> Even with a robust economy that was adding jobs last year, the number of Americans who fell into poverty rose to 37 million -- up 1.1 million from 2003 -- according to Census Bureau figures released Tuesday.

It marks the fourth straight increase in the government's annual poverty measure. [corresponding to a year after the beginning of the Bush Administration; the graphs show the level clearly rising during Reagun/Bush I, falling during Clinton, and rising again during Bush ii -- sheer coincidence, I'm sure! DAK ]

The Census Bureau also said household income remained flat and that the number of people without health insurance edged up by about 800,000 to 45.8 million people. <<

But CEOs are doing just fine, thank you: CEO pay: Sky high gets even higher.

>> In 2004, the ratio of average CEO pay to the average pay of a production (i.e., non-management) worker was 431-to-1, up from 301-to-1 in 2003, according to "Executive Excess," an annual report released Tuesday by the liberal research groups United for a Fair Economy and the Institute for Policy Studies. That's not the highest ever. In 2001, the ratio of CEO-to-worker pay hit a peak of 525-to-1.

Still, it's quite a leap year over year, and it ranks on the high end historically. In 1990, for instance, CEOs made about 107 times more than the average worker, while in 1982, the average CEO made only 42 times more. <<

Happy Labor Day! -- Dave K, Speakeasy Moderator
click here to email semods4@yahoo.com

The opinions expressed above are my own,
and do not necessarily reflect those of CNET!
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I'd like to see

In reply to: So how are workers doing this Labor Day?

a study showing how many of these folks living at or below the poverty line are there by thier own action or inaction.
IOW, how many do not try to rise above this imaginary line you liberals throw at us achievers with such contempt.

Don Erickson
California Republican and very proud of it!

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Labor Day

In reply to: So how are workers doing this Labor Day?

[corresponding to a year after the beginning of the Bush Administration; the graphs show the level clearly rising during Reagun/Bush I, falling during Clinton, and rising again during Bush ii -- sheer coincidence, I'm sure! DAK ]

No dot.com, dot.com, No dot.com

--Cindi
Speakeasy Moderator
click here to email the mods
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Wonder why the media doesn't tell us the rest of the story

In reply to: So how are workers doing this Labor Day?

Census: Uninsured Can Afford It

Countering the commonly held notion that Americans who don?t have health insurance can?t afford it, the Census Bureau reports that nearly one-third of those without insurance live in households with an annual income of $50,000 or more.

About 16 million Americans in $50,000-plus households ? more than 13 percent of the total ? lack insurance, as do 8 million earning more than $75,000 a year. The number of uninsured people in $75,000-plus households actually went up by 114 percent over a recent 9-year period, while those in households with incomes under $25,000 fell by 17 percent.

The new Census Bureau report also reveals:

# About 14 million uninsured adults and children are currently eligible for government medical coverage, such as Medicaid, but have not enrolled in any program.

# The parents of 5 million eligible children have failed to enroll them.

# For people who lack insurance for a period of time, about 75 percent are without it for less than a year.

# 11.8 million of the uninsured are foreign-born, and 9.5 million of those are non-citizens.


As to the CEO's, that is irrelevant compared to establishing some fictional "poverty level" --that is an arbitrary and constantly moving goalpost.

Evie Happy
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CEO ration irrelevant? I'd disagree with that.

In reply to: Wonder why the media doesn't tell us the rest of the story

> In 2004, the ratio of average CEO pay to the average pay of a production (i.e., non-management) worker was 431-to-1, up from 301-to-1 in 2003, according to "Executive Excess," an annual report released Tuesday by the liberal research groups United for a Fair Economy and the Institute for Policy Studies. That's not the highest ever. In 2001, the ratio of CEO-to-worker pay hit a peak of 525-to-1.


While some CEO may be like a few superstars in sports, they ain't all worth that much comparitively. It's just become 'the norm' and those numbers are BS. Most do nothing worth that much for their companies, but since (just like politicians in Congress) they and the Board of Directors scratch each other's back, what's going to be done about it? NOTHING, that's what.

JMO

Roger

click here to email semods4@yahoo.com
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None of your business what CEOs make

In reply to: CEO ration irrelevant? I'd disagree with that.

YOUR opinion of what people are worth is meaningless. Sheer envy.

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Shrug, your opinion, my opinion

In reply to: None of your business what CEOs make

I'm not asking what the individuals make.

BTW, why is my opinion of what a CEO makes any more meaningless than his of what I make? Power is the answer, and power begats desire for more power.

Do you really think every CEO out there is worth 400 times the average pay of the people working to produce the products that creates the job he has? I'm not for knocking them down to the same pay for everyone type BS either.

But I think CEO and many board jobs have run away inflation in their scales.

Again, my opinion, shrug, I don't insist you share it, I don't recognize anyone's authority to say my opinion is worthless. After all, that's just someone's opinion too, no difference, eh?

JMO

Roger

click here to email semods4@yahoo.com

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Is it any of my business what you make?

In reply to: Shrug, your opinion, my opinion

NO!
Is it any of your business what I make?
NO!
Then why is it any of your business what some CEO makes?
It is NOT.

It doesn't really matter whether I think someone is "worth" 400times what someone else makes. It's none of my business. Yours either.

You can have any opinion you want. Doesn't make it right.

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Sure enough

In reply to: Is it any of my business what you make?

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You didn't address my other questions

In reply to: Sure enough

What this is about is class warfare. It starts by pointing out that certain people, in this case CEOs make a lot more than other people. Then the question is, "Do they deserve it?" The next step is "We should take some and/or punish them. Often combined with the claim that they are stealing it or victimizing the rest of us.

It's an old Bolshie trick, the politics of envy. I don't believe it IS "only" my opinion that it is none of your business what CEOs make; I believe it is a fact. Show me how I'm wrong if you can, please.

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Ok, if you want to

In reply to: You didn't address my other questions

I'm not sure where the line is to be. And actually while I think it sucks, don't believe I even suggested that any type of government force be used to cap the salaries or ratios.

Class warfare heh? Shrug, historically it has always existed. Those with, try to keep it, be it power or money you're talking about. Those without desire it. And actually once you get into the incomes we're discussing, money is only a way to track who's winning the game, not a real incentive in and of itself. Or to buy power, the drum beat that most politicians want money for, IMO.

Stealing? not perhaps in a clinical or legalistic sense. And yet, some are, they're breaking rules and regulations on how they manipulate things to benefit themselves while harming employees future and stockholders (at least smaller) income and assests.

Victimizing? that's a more difficult term IMO to categorically deny or affirm. It depends on your sense of what is moral in business as well as personal sense.

If the CEO's salaries are damaging the long term health of the company, then they can be considered to victimizing all that depend on the company for income and necessities, even at low levels. If they harm the employees to the point of placing many of them out of work only for the CEO's gain, they hurt the economy of the nation.

Business often requires hard choices, and people suffer sometimes even when businesses are fair.

The politics of envy? Hmmm, I may be jealous some, heck most people are sometime. But I don't think I'm suppose to have a $500K house or something like that just because I'd like it.

I don't believe it IS "only" my opinion that it is none of your business what CEOs make; I believe it is a fact.

Moving from opinions to faith? from I think to I believe? Don't see the difference in you believing it to be a fact and it being your opinion honestly.

Runaway CEO salaries are just scorecards they use compare themselves to other CEO's and other shakers&movers.

Hell, if someone gave me $10 million a year, I'd probably love it. Shrug, and if I had $1 million a year, in couple of years I'd probably be greedy and want more.

Actually, that word is probably the entire underlying problem. Greed and the envy you mentioned are old habits of humans since the first caveman saw someone with a warmer fur than his.

And since those days, some went and got there own, some out and out robbed another, and some figured out a way to convince everyone they deserved the best more than someone else did so they got it.

AS far as my right to know what someone makes. Uh, individually? probably not. Are you suggesting that no one ever should know what any class of work makes? Besides, since these are public numbers it appears, that seems a little late to argue over.

Same ole' same ole'

Have your opinion, have your faith, have your beliefs.

Doesn't change mine that the difference ratio has gotten too high between average worker bees and queen/king bee.

Even if I agree with DaveK on that point, I'd probably disagree on everything he thought we should do to change it.

Unfortunately, I see it as a symptom of individual greed, and envy if you like, perculating up to form a society of the same. And that applies pretty much to the haves and have nots, everyone wants just a little more than someone else.

And that's the way I see it. Prove you're wrong and I'm right? No way do that, since belief, opinion, faiths are unprovable.


JMO (Just My Opinion)

Roger

click here to email semods4@yahoo.com

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Not moving from opinion to fait.

In reply to: Ok, if you want to

You can have an opinion that the sky is green. It's demonstrable that the sky is blue, so my opinion that the sky is blue is not faith based, nor is it "just" an opinion.

You have not demonstrated that you have a right to know what a CEO's salary is or that it's your business.

I understand your concerns, but they don't give you that right.

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Ok, one question, then I'll just agree to disagree

In reply to: Not moving from opinion to fait.

since it's obvious that's the case.

You have not demonstrated that you have a right to know what a CEO's salary is ...

And how have you demonstrated that I have no right to know what is obviously (published in a study) public information? How have you demonstrated your opinion that their pay shouldn't be anyone's (inclusding the stockholders?) business is fact?

Sorry bub, neither of us can claim fact, since there is not absolute definition here of rights or privacy. Indeed, unfortunately the way things are going, there soon will be no legal standing of privacy regarding anything. But that's a different argument.

And I mentioned that I was more concerned with the class of jobs pay, not an individuals, so it's not a CEO's salary. It's an evaluation that as a class, the claim they're overcompensated for their value to the company.

Have a nice weekend, I'm sure we'll never share the same opinion.

JMO

Roger

click here to email semods4@yahoo.com

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You're asking me tot prove a negative

In reply to: Ok, one question, then I'll just agree to disagree

The onus is on you to demonstrate that you have the right to know what an individual's salary is and that it's your business. The fact that this information has been published somewhere is irrelevant. It doesn't prove that it's anyone's business.

And pointing to it as a class makes even less sense because the indsividual amounts may vary wildly.

Look, I can say that I feel athletes are overpaid. That can be my opinion. But, really, what business is it of mine what they make?

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Not a particular individual

In reply to: You're asking me tot prove a negative

the class of jobs vs the workers, and in fact everyone else, in the company.

Anyway, it's obvious that you think I'm clueless because we disagree in opinion on if it's right or not for them to make that much more.

Again, have a nice weekend.


Roger

click here to email semods4@yahoo.com

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"Just my opinion"

In reply to: Shrug, your opinion, my opinion

I'm not trying to jump on you, but "JMO" is claptrap. Opinions, ideas and words have consequences. It was just Hitler's opinion that Jews were vermin and needed to be exterminated.

The next step, "no one's going to do anything about it" is a step down a very dark path.

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Not yet...

In reply to: "Just my opinion"

Not yet, it must be done in steps, one step at a time. First label them to isolate them into a group in peoples' minds. "The rich" will do quite nicely as a label. Then you start the propaganda saying that they control everything. Then you say that economic problems are due to their actions, as they are in control. Finally you go to the idea of doing something to "them" as a solution.

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So my opinion that CEO salaries are out of line

In reply to: "Just my opinion"

brings up Hitler? Not a very appreciated comparison. Consequences do exist, witness getting compared to Hitler for stating my opinon.

JMO is included in my signature to emphasize I realize others may disagree and that I'm expressing my views, just like the rest of you are.

When I link and quote others or statistics, then that particular point is considered more solid than others.

The next step, ''no one's going to do anything about it'' is a step down a very dark path.

Well since you feel the topic of CEO salary ratio to workers and whether they earn it by value to the company is none of anyone's business, I have to assume you feel nothing should be done about it, so why the worry?

As I think I mentioned before, I see most of the problem as greed, and their greed is just a reflection of the way greed has permeated our society and is no longer considered distasteful, much less wrong.

JMO

Roger

click here to email semods4@yahoo.com

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Answer

In reply to: So my opinion that CEO salaries are out of line

"Well since you feel the topic of CEO salary ratio to workers and whether they earn it by value to the company is none of anyone's business, I have to assume you feel nothing should be done about it, so why the worry?"

Because apparently you, and lots of others DO, that's why.

But I think we've already gone too many steps down the path.
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Note, I didn't make a comparison to Hitler.

In reply to: So my opinion that CEO salaries are out of line

I am not sure if you misunderstand on purpose or not.

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(NT) (NT) No? ok, but why mention him. Oh well, we disagree.

In reply to: Note, I didn't make a comparison to Hitler.

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Because it was a very pertinent illustration...

In reply to: (NT) No? ok, but why mention him. Oh well, we disagree.

of how ''just my opinion'' can be dangerous.

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None of your business what CEOs make

In reply to: None of your business what CEOs make

It would be your business if you happened to be a stockholder in the business.

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And then you get your vote ...

In reply to: None of your business what CEOs make

... just like all of the other stockholders, and if you don't like it, you can sell your stock and buy a different one in what you consider a better managed company.

There are lots and lots available!

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p.s. The article's prime target ...

In reply to: None of your business what CEOs make

... as the posterboy for overpaid CEO was Sandy Weill of Citigroup. He was "overpaid" 1.1 billion (which included bonuses -- often "paid" in the form of stocks -- and options). Waaaaaahhhhh!

Let's see, he has been there since 1980. The stock price then adjusted for what it is now, was under $1/share. First, you don't suppose a sh!tload of his "pay" was because of the stock performance that shareholders shared in and profitted along with him?

I don't hear Citigroup stockholders complaining.

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No., EdH.

In reply to: None of your business what CEOs make

It matters to the shareholders of the companies -- the bloated CEO (and upper managerial) pay means that more and more of what should be stockholder equity is being siphoned of to the overpaid managers:
The Growth of Executive Pay.

Bloomberg summary: >> Lucian Bebchuk of Harvard Law School and Yaniv Grinstein of Cornell University's Johnson School of Management found that the top five executives at public companies received $92 billion in total compensation from 2001 to 2003, amounting to 10.3 percent of their firms' total net income. The ratio was more than double the 4.8 percent from 1993 to 1995, the authors said.

The authors also concluded that mean compensation in 2003 was twice what it should have been, based on the relationship to company size, performance and industry classifications a decade earlier. Bebchuk and Grinstein reviewed data from 1993 to 2003 in ExecuComp, a database maintained by Standard & Poor's. <<

Y'all claim taxation is theft -- what's this??!

-- Dave K, Speakeasy Moderator
click here to email semods4@yahoo.com

The opinions expressed above are my own,
and do not necessarily reflect those of CNET!

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Buy stock in a different company then

In reply to: No., EdH.

I'm guessing that Citigroup's shareholders aren't complaining like the author about Weill's compensation over a decade and a half of pretty darned good performance.

Y'all claim taxation is theft -- what's this??!

Life in a free society.

Evie

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Y'all claim taxation is theft -- what's this??!

In reply to: No., EdH.

It is supply and demand.

A good CEO is a precious commodity worth just exactly what a corporation is willing to pay.

Tell us what makes you more valuable to that University than that newest housekeeping hire (you know, the one who empties the trash baskets)?

Theft? How much is an associate professor worth and how much is a secretary worth? A professor hired as such but doing work that a secretary could is stealing from the taxpayer isn't he?

What is the price of a cup of coffee? Now the price of a cup of gasoline? The price of neither has anything to do with the other, nor does "shoulda, woulda, coulda", regarding salaries and bonuses relate to the reality of a limited supply of potential CEOs.

I think most people are just as jealous of the earnings of CEOs as you but most of us are smart enough to see that somewhere along the line they managed to do something that made them more valuable than most of us. Some few of us on the other hand simply attack them out of inadequacy or inability.

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The reason I say its irrelevant ...

In reply to: CEO ration irrelevant? I'd disagree with that.

... is that in the whole scheme of things you only have ONE CEO per company.

If we're going to discuss how much someone is "worth", I would say that your average mediocre baseball player making 6 million a season has a lot of 'splaining to do! And when you think about it, how many actors or actresses are paid what they are "worth" for their acting skills? Case in point Julia Roberts -- who is hired because for some reason I can't fathom, she puts butts in theatre seats.

I just think the CEO is easy to hate. It's the bad ones that get all the publicity. But their salaries really are a drop in the bucket. Whether it makes you angry or sad, if the CEO were paid less, the "little people" wouldn't necessarily be paid more. That's because you have millions in the pool of workers so they are paid what the market will bear. There is a much smaller pool of CEO's and only one per company. So I can see how a company might pay what seems an outrageous amount to get a *star* that might turn fortunes around, etc. It doesn't always work, but we have examples of that all over the sports and entertainment worlds. I wonder if DK gets as upset about the billions raked in by attorneys in the tobacco suits?

The cumulative pay of the top 10 highest paid CEOs in the past 15 years totaled $11.7 billion.

When I read things like this I wonder how much they paid someone to come up with this statistic!

"Pay" in this instance refers to total compensation ? including salary, bonuses, restricted stock awards, payouts on long-term incentives and the value of options exercised during the year.

With some companies, do they add all of the financial benefits, company matching for 401K's insurances, etc. and stock options too? Doubtful, and I know a LOT of lower level workers that have all of these. Since almost nobody actually makes minimum wage, that comparison is ridiculous.

The thing is that the CEO making 12 million a year for a multibillion dollar company isn't effecting the bottom line much. You can triple his salary and it still won't. Give even a 5% raise to all of your workers and that WILL.

Evie Happy

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Drop in the bucket

In reply to: The reason I say its irrelevant ...

No more a drop in the bucket than workers who don't work.

Whether it makes you angry or sad, if the CEO were paid less, the "little people" wouldn't necessarily be paid more.

Not particularly the point. Overpaying a CEO (and Board of Directors) is a symptom of mismanagement. A penny here a nickel there, it shows more interest in competing with other "shakers and movers" with salary & perks being the scorecard than it does in doing what is best for the company.

Extreme example of course is Enron, and the other still showing up where money and perks for the top brass became more important than the health of the company.

Sorry, I think overpayment of a CEO, whether the 'bottom line' immediately reflects it or not, hurts the company, the employees, their communities, and the country.

Heck, I'm probably overpaid on a strictly compared to local competition basis. And just like the CEO's and Board members, I'm not refusing it.

Difference is, even with a negotiated contract I don't get to set my salary. CEO's, along with their back scratching buddies Board of Directors, are just like Congress, they get to dip into the money pool of their company for their whims just as politicians dip into our taxes.

And they hurt people by overdoing it just as Congress does.

JMO

Roger

click here to email semods4@yahoo.com

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So what do you want to do?

In reply to: Drop in the bucket

Take the money away? Pass a law saying no one can make over a certain amount? Kill them?

As far as I know these are private individuals and their salaries are perfectly legal. It's true there may be mismangement; but there also may not be.

This is still America, I think.

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