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What’s Wrong With City Bonus Season? 4 January 2007

Posted by David in Uncategorized.

There’s a craze sweeping Britain. Everyone is getting in on the collest act in town. Everyone has an opinion. Welcome to the Envyfest, formerly known as the City Bonus Season. You can read some of the Envyfest here. Even the Times Business Column is getting in on it, although from a different angle. It seems everyone is moaning about “fat cat pay” and “riddiculously highpay and bonuses”.

“That’s not fair,” the envy ridden say, “why should they earn so much?”The odd few try to disguise their jealousy by affixing the reasoning “when there are so many people starving” – as if City bonuses and World poverty are related.

People such as Ken Livingstone, extremist comedian Mark Steele, and even an assortment of seemingly ordinary looking people suddenly feel they have the right to dictate and offer opinion on the remuneration of other people, employed by private bodies to which they have no connection.

Unless you are a shareholder in one of these respective firms, the bonuses and salaries of its employees are none of our business, because we don’t own it. It is a matter for them and their bosses – who are the directors and, ultimately, shareholders.

Fifty million, so what? It’s not our money. We should mind our own business. If they want to reward that individual because they think he is worth it, that is up to them. Snouts in the trough? So what, it’s their trough.

So when someone says “it’s not right that they earn so much”, I simply ask “how much do you earn?” Very few wish to reply.


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