Sh*t CEOs Say: 6 Outrageous Statements from America's Big-Mouthed Overlords
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That was bad enough, but Mayer’s offenses don’t stop there. She has also taken it upon herself to expound upon how “easy” it is to have a baby: “way easier than everybody made it out to be.” Which, of course, it must be when you have a nursery built right by your office!
Mayer has also treated us to her dim view of feminists, whom she characterizes as negative Nellies whose bitching and moaning is unwelcome: “I don’t, I think, have sort of the militant drive and sort of the chip on the shoulder that sometimes comes with that. And I think it’s too bad, but I do think feminism has become, in many ways, a more negative word.”
Essentially, Mayer has waltzed through doors kicked open by the courageous women who have fought and organized to win her the opportunity to become a CEO, and then kicks dirt in their faces. Classy.
3. “We have a right to make a profit.”
Bank of America CEO Brian Moynihan is no stranger to controversy, having amplified his bank’s bad vibes in 2011 with an infamous $5 debit card fee that fizzled in the face of widespread criticism. The BofA chief whined that this was all grossly unfair, insisting that his company had a "right to make a profit" and that nobody understood "how much good" his employees do.
Moynihan neglected to mention that the debit card move was a classic example of what economists call “price leadership” –the signal given by the lead dog in an oligopoly that tells everyone in the group that it’s fine to raise prices. That the price increase has no connection whatever to the quality of the product or service is ample evidence that big banks like BofA do not operate in anything remotely resembling a free or fair market. They are dangerous parasites that suck the lifeblood out of the real economy and get away with it because of their political influence and their status as too-big-to-fail.
Somehow, even without the nasty debit card fee, Moynihan managed to suck up gargantuan amounts of money. Despite his dismal performance as CEO, in 2012 he received a 73-percent pay increase, largely because the bank was able to resolve various lawsuits launched in the wake of the financial crisis. BofA was able to do this of course, because financial crimes go largely unpunished in America. The $12.1 million pay package meant that Moynihan was one of the best-paid CEOs on Wall Street last year.
4. “We've got to get companies to regulate themselves…”
Of all the idiotic ideas we’ve heard since the financial crisis, this notion ranks high for sheer brazenness. And who uttered these words? None other than AIG CEO Robert Benmosche, whose company became the poster child for the culture of corporate dysfunction that helped tank the economy. AIG got a $180 billion bailout during the 2008 financial crisis, which it needed in part because financial institutions had been allowed to regulate themselves.
After the bailout, which came in the wake of several fraud investigations, huge bonuses were distributed to AIG executives. Unabashed, Benmosche explained to CNN that "the most important thing is that we've got to get companies to regulate themselves and to do the right thing.”
Mm-kay. Elizabeth Warren, among others, has been vocal about the pressing reasons why just the opposite approach is needed, explaining that such financial institutions “run the risk of taking down everyone’s job…everyone’s pensions…[and] the entire economy.”
Perhaps Benmosche should try regulating his mouth.