Wednesday, 25 March 2009

Where's My Pitchfork ?

Tom over at Labour and Capital doggedly works his way through the smoke and mirrors provided by the financial sector to justify its own behaviour. His patient unravelling of their arguments about executive pay and 'agency' theory are a model of intellectual engagement and sheer hard graft. Despite once describing himself as a 'weedy social democrat' in my comments box, but I think what he does is more useful than almost all the stirring denunciations of the evil bankers and the rule of capital from the Marxist blogosphere.

Well , mainly I do. But every so often one come across something like this on Bloomberg's about Hedge Fund pay levels:

"The industry’s top earners last year were James Simons of Renaissance Technologies Corp., who took home $2.5 billion; John Paulson of Paulson & Co., $2 billion; John Arnold of Centaurus Energy LP, $1.5 billion, and George Soros of Soros Fund Management LLC, $1.1 billion, according to a survey published in the April issue of Institutional Investor’s Alpha magazine.

Average pay at hedge funds was $794,000 in 2008, down from $940,000 a year earlier, Alpha magazine reported. ....Chief executive officers earned an average of $2 million last year, while chief investment officers made $1.4 million, according to Alpha’s survey. Senior portfolio managers took home $1.1 million and senior traders were paid $790,000."

This is a quote from an article about hedge fund pay falling by 25%.

At times like this Tom's social democratic patience is the furthest thing from my mind. I want a pitchfork, a burning brand and the rest of the peasantry to join me in in a Jacquerie. I really mean it. These levels of remuneration are beyond comprehension.

But even breaking a few windows seems a horrible crime of unpardonable magnitude according to the Press.

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