Friday Movie Night - The Fabulous Life of Wallstreet Brokers

hot buttered popcorn It's Friday Night! Party Time!   Time to relax, put your feet up on the couch, lay back, and watch some detailed videos on economic policy!


This is almost silly but considering the move today by the Federal Reserve to limit executive pay, the below video, in the tacky genre of Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous might jar some reality on executive compensation.

The Fabulous Life of Wallstreet Brokers


Now, flash backward to when the economy was all good, 2006, and watch the trailer from the documentary Waging a Living.


Now watch this excerpt from the Musical The Ruling Class!, discussing the working poor in the United States, again before this recession. This segment is an interview with Barbara Ehrenreich, author of Nickle and Dimed. She shows describes a host of jobs, which many Americans just lost, that cannot make rent the wages are so low.

Think some changes in executive compensation and corporate governance are in order by any means possible now? I thought so.



Thanks for these, R.O.

Lots of emotions cursing through me after watching these videos. I would have to say anger and shame are the most dominant.

I have to admit that I could only take 15 minutes of the first film, and that was a stretch. If ever there was a case for a "consumption tax", well there's your evidence.

As a contrast to your exhibits of greed and avarice, as well as the reality of our permanent underclass, I offer this bit from Hellasious this morning:

. . . the following facts about Denmark:
Denmark has the rich world's (OECD-18) second-highest total taxation burden at 48.8% of GDP (USA at #17 at 29.6%).
It probably has the highest environmental and energy taxes of any country.
There are taxes on drinking water and the disposal of waste water.
Every company pays waste disposal charges and households are charged for garbage collection.
Packaging is taxed.
Danes pay 25% VAT (Value-Added Tax) on all goods and services.
...and yet...
Forbes magazine - you know, the Capitalist Tool - just rated Denmark as the #1 country in the world for business. For the second year in a row.
Economist magazine just did the same and added that this is to be so for another five years.
Danes are #1 in life satisfaction (USA #11).
Since 1980 Danish GDP has grown 70% while total energy consumption has remained flat.
Obviously, low taxes don't make for an enviable economy and it follows that lowering taxes does not make for infallible public policy, as Bush II and his incompetent gang proclaimed.

Enjoy your weekend!

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This week has a wealth redistribution theme

But at minimum these super rich should be deincentivized to make these working poor poorer, which is what just happened.

Thanks for contributing to EP generally.

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some links on the latest in executive pay

Firstly, G20 hasn't even happened and they are already "compromise"

Bloomberg, G20, compromise

Then, Obama has more rhetoric, when we know the policy is to not set limits


Now there have been major studies, experts in both executive compensation and corporate governance who have identified how bonuses create incentives to literally destroy a company, do risky moves (AIGFP anyone) or bad mergers due to bonuses (HP being a great example with Compaq), so the entire compensation structure is decoupled from corporate performance. Or if it is not decoupled, the bonuses only go to very short term stock performance, even just quarter by quarter.

That is bad! Bad for the national economy, bad for the U.S. worker, bad for systemic risk, bad for shareholders, bad for long term corporate strategy....

i.e. bad for all involved except....those few collecting those compensation packages.

So, why is it so hard to get this modified? They could still get filthy rich as incentives if this entire structure was modified to tie into the long term corporate performance.

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