Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Show the Wall Street ‘talent’ the door

President Obama wants to put a cap of $500,000 on executives who work at companies that are getting bailout money. In the aftermath of this announcement, there came a lot of comments that it was unrealistic for ‘top Wall Street talent’ to make such as a paltry amount - that the ‘top Wall Street talent’ would exit their companies. A recent NY Times article detailed the travails of a $500,000 salary - how a person would have to forgo things like their nanny (45k), gowns for social events (35k), personal trainers ($12k), two vacations (16k) - and we won’t even get into second homes out on Long Island.

The ‘talent’ will all bolt, people claim, if you put a choke on salaries. The ‘talent’ that lost us $800 billion?

Hmmm….I say, awesome. If they’re so offended at making 500k, then they can go. If they’re so fraking talented, someone else will scoop them up so they can run their business into oblivion.

It never stops amazing us how much importance people can place on themselves. We’ve got a group of self-absorbed, arrogant people who act as if they possess the most precious and rare skills in the world.

Here’s the news to you - you’re replaceable. Very easily, replaceable. People can - and will - learn your job. Maybe even learn it so they don’t lose $800 friggin’ billion. Very few of the Wall Street ‘talent’ have some ingrained skill or ability that makes them irreplaceable. You can’t replace a 100 mph fastball on a pitcher - that’s a skill that simply can’t be learned. But other people have the skill set necessary to become a Wall Street executive.

Are there people on Wall Street who are really good at their jobs? Of course. You don’t get there by being an idiot. But we’ve established a culture that overvalues what they do, and thus created a class of individuals who feed off each other. They give each other big pay raises and bonuses, they tell each other how amazing they are, they tell each other how important they are to the world.

So, before you argue that the Wall Street talent will be stampeding for the doors if there’s a salary cap imposed - just remember, the current group of ‘talent’ has put this nation in its greatest economic peril since the Great Depression.

If they don’t want to help clean up the mess they made, then show them to the door and don’t let your foot get caught up their ass as you boot them to the curb.


Labels: ,


Post a Comment

<< Home