Capitalism is predicated on rewarding people and businesses for adding value to society. Unfortunately, corporate America continues to set a horrible example for our economy.
Former CEO of Hewlett-Packard Leo Apotheker was awarded -- yes, awarded -- at least $13 million in cash and stock for doing a shitty job and erasing $40 billion in value from HP in merely 11 months. On top of the $13 million, Apotheker stands to receive millions of dollars more in perks such as a cash payment if his current house sells for below a certain price. This, my fellow hard workers, is per se legal stealing.
What I'm about to say is nothing new, but it's time we address it: the shareholder, employee, and entrepreneur class must eliminate the system of cronyism acting as a malignant cancer embedded in our economy. So long as we accept boards of directors who sign employment contracts with their buddies to enrich them for simply breathing air and waking up in the morning, we are showing the world our brand of capitalism is nothing more than a joke. Who wants to work hard, play by all the rules and end up a sucker when captains of industry can do a worse job than the janitor and make more money than most people earn in a lifetime?
Getting out of the current economic crisis has sucked. However, it's also an opportunity to make intelligent changes to show the world capitalism in the U.S. will continue to evolve into a more superior form of benefitting one another. We need to extol business people who work their asses off to create value. That's the message people need to receive if they are to ante up their life energy and contribute to the economy. If they continue seeing more Leo Apothekers, then you can expect more people milking the welfare system (because it's really the same underlying philosophy when we make an honest comparison).
Don't get me wrong: this is not a populist rant about the evils of big business. CEOs should make millions if they manage successful companies. This is a plea for legislators, shareholders, employees, and entrepreneurs to eliminate the ability to steal money from companies in the name of "executive compensation." We need all hands on deck to resurrect the U.S. economy and less people wasting time using thieves like Apothekers as an excuse to game the system. Let's be real: how much do you expect from the general populous if General Electric pays no taxes and Leo Apotheker makes tens of millions of dollars for being a complete failure?
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