Smug & Officious Rep Grayson (D, FL) Skewered by Cavuto

>> Thursday, April 2, 2009

What's a incredible about this video is the sense from congressman Grayson, the democrat from Florida, that he believes he is doing something constitutional. Neither Timothy Geithner, nor ANY Secretary of the Treasury, democrat OR republican, should be in the business of determining the salaries of every employee in a company. The bill is couched in terms of 'excessive compensation' for 'executives' but there's no provisions to keep Geithner from capping EVERY employees wage. As I stated in a previous post, government has given us a MINIMUM wage, and now they are poised to give us a MAXIMUM wage.

Granted, this bill is aimed, NOW, at companies that have received government bailout monies, but where will this bill end up? Will government decide in the months or years to come that its in THEIR best interest to determine EVERY company's maximum wage?


BenT - the unbeliever,  April 2, 2009 at 2:58 PM  

EL, from our conversations I see your position as opposed/disbelieving of any legal or ethical restraints upon the relationship between and employer and employee. I simply disagree with this position.

In this instance you posit a slippery slope where legislators lower/tightens a maximum pay cap until no one anywhere can be successful or wealthy. You fail to recognize that legislators have multiple forces acting upon them to slow slippery slopes. One of the biggest of these is wealthy businesses and individuals. How are politicians to raise money if they tick off all their wealthy donors?

Don't be a sheep.

Eric April 2, 2009 at 3:22 PM  

What Obama and the democrats are doing is fundamentally wrong. Too bad you can't see it.

BenT - the unbeliever,  April 2, 2009 at 3:38 PM  

Why? Why? Why?

Simple declarative statements will not advance your point.

Do you see market forces to bring executive compensation down?

Do you see a need for lower executive compensation?

Do you see forces that will raise middle class pay?

How do you see the free market correcting our current economic imbalance?

Explain what you see as the causes of our current economic crisis. If you provide answers with depth, I will respond with answers likewise.

If all you have a repetitions from ideological talking points, then you're a sheep! What economists can you point to as reference?

Jim April 2, 2009 at 10:45 PM  

where will this bill end up?

Inside the third ring of Saturn, no doubt. You infer fantasy in everything said or done outside of your small universe.

Man, you are SO SCARED!

Marshall Art April 3, 2009 at 2:37 AM  


Try posting something with a little substance for a change.

Marshall Art April 3, 2009 at 2:53 AM  

"Do you see market forces to bring executive compensation down?"

Hard to see much with all the government interference. If they'd stay the hell out of the way, such compensation would likely not exist because the companies wouldn't. That is, if they are allowed to go belly up when they are poorly run, how would the execs in question get any compensation? In all this rot I have yet to hear anyone explain or provide an example of an exec that had direct responsibility for the failure of the company and then get a bonus as a result. The closest I've heard is execs getting bonuses to stick around and help work through the mess. But I've not heard if any of these guys are the losers who "drove the company into the ground". All this is Dem rhetoric and distractions. Those who's pay should be restricted, lowered or withheld are the politicians who stuck their noses into the private sector to promote their agendas without having the forsight or even humility to consider negative consequences.

"Do you see a need for lower executive compensation?"

That's not for anyone to decide but the shareholders and boards of directors. For damn sure it's not for Washington to decide.

"Do you see forces that will raise middle class pay?"

Market forces and the middle class themselves. In terms of employment, there are two reasons why one remains middle class: 1) There's only so many slots in management, and 2) Many do little to show they're worthy of being more than middle class.

"How do you see the free market correcting our current economic imbalance?"

What "imbalance"?

"Explain what you see as the causes of our current economic crisis."

This will require some time for me personally. But I'd like to hear your explanations as well.

BenT - the unbeliever,  April 3, 2009 at 12:19 PM  

Marshall if you've never heard of golden parachutes and million dollar severance packages, you must live with your head in the sand. CEO's and company presidents are often being let go with lavish compensation when companies hit the skids. Just like college football coaches. If you truly have never heard of this, I can get you names and examples.

One of the problems with executive pay is that majority shareholders and board of directors are themselves composed of executives in similar corporations. Just like Congressmen should not vote and decide their own pay. There exists an old boys network where executives serve on boards of directors in each others companies and vote each others pay and compensation packages. There is no countervailing market force to limit white collar compensation. Nor is there any representation or market force beyond unions and the dept of labor to push for increased blue collar pay and benefits.

Beginning in the 1980's executive compensation took off like a rocket, while blue collar wages stayed flat. in 1980 CEO compensation averaged 50 times what the average worker earned. Today the average CEO makes 200 times what the average worker does. What caused this? Did CEO suddenly become so much more productive and valuable to their companies?

No. What happened was we entered an era of prosperity where the economy produced a lot more wealth. Unfortunately that wealth was not shared among everyone. The upper 10% of the country sucked up almost all the new wealth created in the last 30 years.

The white collar classes used all this new wealth to create and practice ever more complex financial transactions and investments to further create wealth.

Eventually some bright boy got the idea that you could bundle triple-A investments with subprime investments and the new package would have less risk. Then someone else sold insurance against this new investment failing. And someone else bundled all those insurance policies together and sold them as an interest and investment opportunity. So that in the end one small loan or mortgage was leveraged through all sorts on financial wizardry to create massive amounts of interest and wealth for the upper 10%.

Then the housing bubble burst and a the portion of the population who financially couldn't sustain their mortgages didn't. Now whose fault is it that the economy collapsed? The subprime borrowers who wanted a home when they couldn't afford it? Or the financial services companies and investors who unwisely tried to spin straw into gold?

One of the best ideas I've heard recently is that as financial institutions grow larger their capital requirements (the money they have on hand to payoff losing investments) should increase. This anti-capitalistic regulation would keep those banks that get too big to fail from actually failing. If AIG had been required to keep another 1-billion on hand in case its CDS's failed then we wouldn't have this mess.

I've also seen regulation relating to how companies determine/rate risk for investments that looks promising for avoiding this exact crisis in the future.

Provided some bright-boy in Congress doesn't think deregulation is the be-all end-all.

Mark April 3, 2009 at 2:01 PM  

Bent, That's the way the free market works. That's the American dream. We are(or were) permitted to make as much money as we can. What's wrong with that? Those executives worked hard to get what they have. They did what they needed to do to reach their individual goals.

What do you have against people working and striving for their little piece of the American dream? Do you want to take it away from them simply because they make more than you?

That's selfish and preposterous.

If you had the opportunity to make millions in bonuses whether you deserve them or not, would you turn them down? Of course you wouldn't. Would that make you un-American? Of course it wouldn't.

Stop being so jealous. Stop being a Liberal sheep.

If you want to be as rich as these executives, get yourself a white collar job and work to earn the same benefits instead of sitting around complaining that it's all unfair. This is the way the free market system is intended to work. You find a job you want to do, and you work as hard as you want or need, and you reach for your goals. If you are satisfied with less than millions you are welcome to make less than millions. If you aren't, don't complain. Complaining isn't going to make you rich. Only hard work (plus sometimes just being in the right place at the right time) will do that for you.

You don't like others being richer than you? Tough. That's the way it is, and that's the way it always will be. Only you can change that fact. Instead of sitting around wallowing in your jealousy, go to work and make your own millions.

Look. If you want to go live in some sort of a Utopian society where everyone is equally impoverished, and only the leaders are wealthy, go live in Red China, or North Korea, or Venezuela.

Do that, or stop your whining.

Marshall Art April 3, 2009 at 2:14 PM  


Of course I've heard of those types of packages. I say, if you can get 'em, good for you. If I want to be eligible, I'd need to do what those guys did in order to be considered for such. If you want to talk about who's worthy, we could list hundreds of execs, politicians, athletes and entertainers who could also be eligible for gov't interference in their pursuit of financial happiness. Envy seems to be what's driving the current outcry and that's being directed by YOUR shepherd in chief. But though I'm still not prepared to answer that question about causes, I do have the following comments:

Throughout all your explanation is the total lack of gov't activity in compelling the actions of both the guys with the dough and the people who want to borrow it. Back when the thought of buying a home was a real goal in my own life, you couldn't get a loan without a downpayment of 20% and a cavity check to make sure you were good for it. If I didn't qualify, a renter I would become. "Risky"loans were few and far between in the housing industry. Then, some asshole in Washington decided that everyone should have a home and put pressures on lenders to provide for more people. Quotas were placed that sometimes were half their total loans. From this point, all else followed. Just as in taxation, when the gov't changes the rules that affect our incomes, our behavior changes to deflect as much pain as possible. Before that gov't interference, things were working well enough. No "bubble" was forming as prices were moving in a natural manner.

The preceding was my "Reader's Digest" explanation. If you insist on pretending that the gov't is guiltless as the source of these troubles, I'll be more detailed.

As to your ideas, the first I wouldn't call "anti-capitalistic" except that it is a regulation which makes it so. But the idea itself is simply smart business. Though most businesses don't like having money lying around doing nothing, building a nest egg for uncertain times is wise for businesses as well as for individuals. However, would you suffer easily the gov't stepping in to your personal life to tell you how much to save to cover your own ass in uncertain times? If not, why not? What's the difference. A couple million individuals defaulting on loans or losing their homes is part of today's situation. I think businesses should have dough on the side for self-defense against a down market, but I don't think anyone has the right to tell them they have to. If they fail, they fail and when the gov't keeps bailing people out, they stop thinking defensively because they don't have to. That, too, is part of today's situation.

"I've also seen regulation relating to how companies determine/rate risk for investments that looks promising for avoiding this exact crisis in the future."

This, too, is a good idea, but from the standpoint of smart business, not regulation. Risk is part of investing and doing business. It's part of life, for that matter. If you can't handle the stress of taking risks, you remain middle class with arm outstretched and tin-cup in hand. Those who take the biggest risks are rewarded or punished accordingly. I don't want to hear about the poor employees, because they have their own self-regulating to do. If they get caught up in the failure of the company that employed them, they should have been securing their own version of nest eggs and risk assessments.

On top of all this, we still have in our government, the people who developed this situation, protected it when others saw problems developing, and now point fingers at those who tried to find ways to negotiate that which should never have been imposed upon them. I don't want these bastards anywhere near discussions of regulating the private sector.

Eric April 3, 2009 at 2:42 PM  

On top of all this we have a government which has poured literally billions in stimulus into the auto industry to prop it only to come to the realization that certain companies will likely have to file for bankruptcy, so.... the government has wasted untold billions supporting an industry that should have been allowed to belly up.

There should be no such thing as companies "too big to fail." The government doesn't prop up citizens who fail, neither should the government be in the business of propping up business that make stupid decisions.

BenT - the unbeliever,  April 3, 2009 at 4:31 PM  

It amazes me that as a group conservatives decry the loss of social morals and ethics. Everything from sexual pervasiveness in modern culture to baggy jeans. But when it comes to business and corporate ethics, you all are pleased as punch to say that no one owes anyone. There's no social or ethical obligation from a business to its employees or other businesses or the community or even the nation.

Just look at the bills and regulations that republicans press.

At one point corporations felt an obligation to their employees. To share profits, or growth. Today if there a sales spike, all the bonuses go to the CEO's and CFO's. Human resources searches for ways to pay as little as possible for employee health insurance and benefits.

I'm not envious of white collar workers or stockbrokers with their millions in bonuses. I'm angry that I work for a company that sees me as a less than valuable resource. That most American companies see their workforce as interchangeable. That beyond my immediate boss, Gray Television doesn't care about the work I do for it, my job, or my tenure at the corporation. If they could save $0.10 an hour hiring someone off the street, I'd be gone like a snap. I am angry that the television station I work for is individually very profitable and well run, but because of consolidation and corporate mergers, No one here will get a raise because of poor performance in other Gray television stations. I am angry that I am treated as a small replaceable cog in the corporate machine. That the white collar workers at many corporations see those below them as less than people. You exhibit much the same attitude, Eric, Mark and Marshall.

Pretending that I must want to be at the work level I am.

The funniest skit I saw this past election season was on SNL. It was a parody of Hillary and Sarah Palin doing a press conference. At one point Palin says, "It just goes to show that anyone can be president...all you have to do is want it." Hillary replies, "Hahahah, oh yeah. Yeah. You know Sarah looking back if I could change one thing, I probably should have wanted it more. Hahahahaha."

And the reverse question is true. Do you just not want to be employed badly enough Mark? Do you not want to be rich badly enough Marshall?

Jim April 3, 2009 at 9:27 PM  

Cavuto is an idiotic ass here. He either does not get it or he is a blow hard.

Cavuto - "What is to stop a mid-level manager from thinking the government is out to get him?"

Grayson - "What would make him think that other than paranoid delusion?...This is paranoid fantasy."


Marshall Art April 6, 2009 at 12:07 AM  


You are what you called Cavuto because you have no real capability for reasoning. The idea here is that the gov't is considering stepping in to determine what anyone in a company is making or whether they have what they consider to be true worth. Under those conditions, everyone is at risk at any time at the discretion of the gov't.

Try paying attention.

Marshall Art April 6, 2009 at 12:36 AM  


The issue here isn't whether or not conservatives have lost their moral voice where business is concerned. It is whether the gov't is the proper overlord for business. Particularly THIS gov't, where the same morons who got us to this point are calling for gov't oversight. So I could turn the statement around and say that it amazes me that as a group, liberals decry the idea of legislating morality, but when it comes to those of wealth, they're all for it.

"There's no social or ethical obligation from a business to its employees or other businesses or the community or even the nation."

A business provides jobs which allows for income for employees and the community benefits by the tax dollars paid to the community by that business, directly and indirectly, and it's presence helps to keep property taxes lower.

"At one point corporations felt an obligation to their employees."

If that were true, there'd be no need for unions. There have always been both Scrooges and Fezziwigs in the business world. But even the Fezziwigs are wealthier than their employees.

And there has always been the dynamic of employers wanting to pay the least for the most work, and workers wanting to work the least for the most pay.

What you seem to be suffering from is the notion that an employer owes the employee more than what was agreed to at the time of hiring. When you bust your ass every day, it's because you agreed to when you took the gig. The employer has every right to expect that you will continue to do so because you agreed to by taking the job in the first place. How many people ask for a detailed definition of "good day's work"? Without it being spelled out, you have to bust it.

The employer's generosity is also left undefined at the time of hiring. No one's likely to demand these explanations for fear they won't get the gig in the first place. So we're left with nothing but the assumption that we must do more than we'd like to keep the job or to get properly recognized (a raise).

The fact of the matter is that each of us ISN'T worth much or we'd be doing what the boss is doing. But even with the most evil Scrooge, if we prove ourselves to be invaluable, the purse strings will loosen to the extent that it's possible to do so. Should that not occur, then our options are clear:

1. Quit and go work elsewhere.
2. Shut the hell up and deal.
3. Lobby for considerations.

When we are paid crap, it's because it is assumed that we can be easily replaced. That isn't right or wrong, but a business decision that may or may not be true in reality, but true enough in the mind of the employer. Keep in mind that our job is really to make the boss rich. That IS the job no matter what our field. The pay and bennies we get are our reward for doing so.

It's not that white collar guys see you as less than human, but as unworthy of getting more than you're getting until you prove your walking out would be costly to them. (That's not to say that there aren't indeed assholes like that---it's just that it is too easy to take that attitude when it is merely how business works.)

The boss owes nothing beyond what was promised when you were hired. That's simply the way it is. If you don't like that fact of life, you have the three options listed above.

Jim April 9, 2009 at 11:22 PM  

I'm paying attention just fine.

The idea here is that the gov't is considering stepping in to determine what anyone in a company is making or whether they have what they consider to be true worth. Under those conditions, everyone is at risk at any time at the discretion of the gov't.

If that is the "idea" here, then you are off your rocker. There is no one in the country, much less in the White House, who is "considering" anything of the sort. It is simply wingnut paranoid delusion. Purely. You guys are really, really losing it.

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