Monday, May 22, 2006

The Observer tells us that Tony Blair's salary is £184,000 per annum. Now, can anyone tell me what John Major's salary was? I seem to recall a figure of £112,000 or thereabouts.

Which means that Tony has managed to ensure that he has had a 61% pay rise in the last 9 years. Bearing in mind that cumulative inflation—if we take an average of 2% for every year—is 18%, if he were the CEO of a company that you were a shareholder of, would you feel that he had delivered value for money: would you pass this disgustingly large increase through on the nod?

Remember, this is your money...

11 comments:

Neil Harding said...

I don't think anyone deserves 184k. But considering the Chief Executive of Brighton Council gets even more than this and hundreds of company directors get millions, as rip offs go, the PM's salary is one of our least worries.

You seem to forget that when a private company director votes himself a pay rise that is OUR money as well. We all pay for Murdoch, ITV, Coca Cola, Unilever execs salaries etc, with higher prices. A lot of the time we have little choice but to buy their products because they have used their monopolistic advantage to drive real choice out of business.

Devil's Kitchen said...

You seem to forget that when a private company director votes himself a pay rise that is OUR money as well. We all pay for Murdoch, ITV, Coca Cola, Unilever execs salaries etc, with higher prices.

Not so, Neil. Of all of those you've listed above, name me one product that we cannot choose not to buy or, for those that we need, a product for which there is no alternative.

DK

Neil Harding said...

I try my hardest not to use any of them, but...

If I want to watch Test Match Cricket or Live Premiership Football, my choice is not to watch it or pay Murdoch. That is hardly a choice.

Also virtually every product in the shops has advertising on ITV or Sky or in one of Murdoch's papers. It would be impossible for me not to line their pockets.

I went to a festival once where Coca Cola products were the only soft drinks available. It was either drink their sugar-loaded rubbish or die of dehydration.

As for Unilever, they seem to own virtually everything. Unless I walked around with a directory listing all the products they make, I could never avoid giving them money.

chris said...

when a private company director votes himself a pay rise that is OUR money
You have shares in all the listed companies then? Lucky thing.

AntiCitizenOne said...

"That is hardly a choice."

No that is EXACTLY what a choice is. You want somewthing, but selfishly demand that others pay for it.

This is boilerplate lefty thinking.

Serf said...

A lot of the time we have little choice but to buy their products because they have used their monopolistic advantage to drive real choice out of business.

Rather ironic that one of the companies you mention is in competition with the BBC. Now that is an organisation that "used their monopolistic advantage to drive real choice out of business".

Neil Harding said...

I see nobody denies what I say. Just because the fat cats are in the private sector doesn't mean we are not reluctantly paying for them.

If I wanted to avoid paying towards fatcats earning over 100k, I would have to take a suicide pill (and even then some bod at a pharmaceutical company would be getting my money for making the pill).

MatGB said...

Ignoring Neil's belief that market choice doesn't exist (it does Neil, I don't give Murdoch any money in my personal life thank you very much, and that festival you chose to go to? I rest my case)...

There is a sort of point. Major, considering his position, was horribly underpaid. Paul Dacre, of the Mail, earns significantly more than Blair, for example. Now, market conditions determine Dacre's salary, but Govt jobs don't really have a market, and I'd rather the guy in charge of the country were given a decent wage.

It might encourage a better class of business/economics inclined person to get involved if they were. Might. Doubt it, but the point stands.

Yup, big pay rise for Blair, But Major was underpaid, and arguably the PM still is. Of course, Blair is overpaid, but that's a different issue to the office that he holds.

Devil's Kitchen said...

Unless I walked around with a directory listing all the products they make, I could never avoid giving them money.

What is your obsession with what private businesses pay their bosses? Are the vast majority of products cheaper -- in real terms -- than they were 20 years ago? Yes. The businesses are therefore doing a good job: what concern is it of yours how much they pay their CEOs?

You make a choice to watch a match. If you don't want to give Murdoch money, then don't watch it; you won't get fined or go to prison for not doing so. You will get fined or go to prison, however, for not paying your license fee; similarly, for not paying tax. There is no choice there.

Given that this money is extorted from us -- and we have no say in how much is taken -- we do have a right to know how it is being spent.

DK

lars ulrich said...

"That is hardly a choice."

No that is EXACTLY what a choice is. You want somewthing, but selfishly demand that others pay for it.

This is boilerplate lefty thinking.


the most sensible thing said on this entire topic

as far as blairs salary goes,, he makes harder decisions than anyone of us here,, if he had my job (pilot) i wouldnt expect him to be paid that much,, but since he has the overall say on national issues and has hard international issues that he is responsible for i think he is under paid. should the owner of nike get paid more for making trainers than blair does for running a country and being a international political heavy weight? i think not

Anonymous said...

Blairs salary is fine with me but the myth that CEOs salaries are driven by the market is indeed a myth. There is a well-connected, corrupt circle of various board members approving salaries for each other "independently", that is by shuffling themselves around different boards each of which approves salaries for the members not listed in this particular board. Easy, and perfectly legal.

Some years ago, CEOs in this county complained about regulations stopping them from receiving US salaries. Well, they got greenlight from Tony. The problem for you and me that here we have nothing like US laws and law enforcment to fight corporate crime. The US CEO do get huge pay but they get huge prison terms, too, if caught red-handed. Here, old boys managed to get the best of both worlds.

DR

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