A Great Disconnect in Our Economy - Executive Pay and Laid Off Workers

It was reported on March 16 that the New York Times paid their CEO 4.9 million in 2009.  That's a good income although it might be low by executive standards in the present environment.  That story by itself is really no big news. 

On October 19 of last year, the New York Times announced plans to eliminate 100 newsroom jobs.  They claimed that enough people were not accepting buyouts and that the company would have to let workers go to save money.  These cutbacks would eliminate 100 jobs.  By my calculations, if they would pay their CEO a good income of $500,000, they would have been able to keep fifty-five $80,000/year jobs and not have incurred a single extra expense than they had already incurred. The article reported, "The newsroom already has lowered its budgets for freelancers and trimmed other expenses, and employees took a 5 percent pay cut for most of this year."  They definitely have one position that could take a pay cut and still have a great standard of living, but they chose to go after the little guys.

Each high earning CEO in a company that lays off workers is just taking from the workers to live his or her extraordinary lifestyle.  That should be a tough decision to justify in an ethical society, but it's pretty easy to justify in our society.  It saddens me.