"Knowledge will forever govern ignorance

 and a people who mean to be their own governors

 must arm themselves with the power which knowledge gives."

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

On Demagoging Gas Prices and Executive Compensation

What’s behind the high price of gas? If you’re interested in the facts, read this article on NPR and send it to your friends and family members. (H/T: Betsy’s Page)

Perhaps someone should send the piece to Senator Bob Menendez and others demagoging the oil/gas price issue. We also suggest someone send these same folks information about Jon Corzine’s severance package from Goldman Sachs which had almost the identical value of the retirement package received by Lee Raymond, the former chairman of Exxon, so much in the news.

When Corzine left, he owned about 4.5 million shares of Goldman Sachs stock, which made up the vast majority of his financial portfolio, then valued at more than $400 million.
The differences between the circumstances surrounding Corzine’s package and Raymond’s? Corzine was co-chairman of Goldman Sachs for about 5 years and was fired, while Raymond was the chairman of Exxon for 12 years and retired. Raymond headed up an oil company that creates jobs, pays billions in taxes and brings products to market that make our way of life possible. Corzine shared the top job at an investment banking firm, which among other things, helped make the Enron scam possible.

As BusinessWeek and The Wall Street Journal recently reported, Corzine's former firm directly contributed to Enron's collapse by creating and marketing a financial instrument that the failed energy trader used to hide as much as $3 billion in debt between 1993 and its collapse last year. So when Corzine talks about the "despicable" behavior that made Enron possible, he may be implicating himself.
There is one more difference - Corzine is now a politician and a liberal Democrat.



3 Comments:

At 1:46 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Making Corzine/Menendez even more hypocritical on gas prices is the fact that Goldman Sachs, as an investment banking firm, directly helped run gas prices up last year by predicting that the price of oil would soon go up to $105/barrel. Immediately afterwards, the price spiked.

Liberal Democrats elected someone who got paid as much as Exxon/Mobil's CEO, and someone who worked for an organization that had even more influence in inflating oil prices than Exxon/Mobil itself. The hypocrisy is astounding.

 
At 9:04 PM, Blogger Jack said...

Doesn't it seem sort of ironic that you talk about demogogues and then go on about Corzine's retirement package? Goldman Sachs decided that he was worth that much. They made that decision when they hired him. It's capitalism.

- Jersey Perspective

 
At 9:16 PM, Blogger Enlighten said...

Welcome back Jack! We have no problem with Corzine's Goldman compensation, or anyone else's in the private sector for that matter. We were pointing out the hypocrisy of those making a big deal out of Raymond’s compensation because he worked for "big oil." Corzine makes a good comparison don't you thinK?

We have no doubt Goldman believed it was worth $400 million to cut Corzine lose. Maybe New Jersey could make him a similar offer.

 

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