‘We are all in this together, everywhere in the world,’ [former ExxonMobile CEO] Lee Raymond told Congress [concerning executive pay].
The statistics speak otherwise. If ‘we’ were indeed in this together with Mr. Raymond, our compensation would be rising alongside his. However, the report documents how average CEO pay has risen almost 300 percent since 1990, while corporate profits have increased a little more than 100 percent and average worker pay has risen only 4 percent–and the minimum wage has actually decreased almost 10 percent (all in 2005 dollars). If we were all in the same boat with the same rising tide as CEOs, we average workers would be earning $108,000 instead of $28,000 today, and minimum wage would be $22.61 instead of $5.15.
Offers a sense of proportion, eh? (It would be one thing if the compensation correlated with profit increase, but it seems it doesn’t. Which leads to the question of why shareholders permit this use of their money.)