Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger's philosophy is as basic and old-school as their railroad investments. It's somewhat the same with their basic view of life; of working hard at what you love, not being infatuated with success and money, and giving back to your community.
What would pay look like if pay packages emphasized investment in the real economy over short term profits that emanate from the non-productive activity that got us into trouble in the first place? Citi might be a great place to experiment.
What does it mean to get compensation right? And why does it matter so much? Getting it right is called "fair and reasonable" by the IRS. It's what the law requires, it's what any CEO wants, and it's what any donor and member of the public expects.
The vote against Vikram Pandit's proposed pay package isn't binding on Citigroup. But it's a warning shot across the bow of every corporate boardroom in America. Shareholders aren't happy about executive pay.
Starbucks' growth doesn't come from "insanely great" gadgets with huge profit margins. The coffee chain shows how a good CEO can do right by his company, and how that can structure a CEO's pay to ensure he gets paid what he deserves.