C'mon, Mr Prez, Nobody Will Run Bank for $500K

Obama, after pledge to be above the noise, falls prey to it instead
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 4, 2009 12:34 PM CST
President Barack Obama listens to Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner as he speaks about executive compensation today at the White House.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – Sure, bankers make too much money, but President Obama’s ceiling “is just a misguided attempt to quiet the peanut gallery,” writes Megan Barnett in Portfolio. The $500,000-per-year executive cap will discourage banks from taking needed government cash, and drive away top talent. “Money is what motivates people to come to Wall Street,” she writes. “It’s not a public-service job, nor should it pay like one.”

As one analyst tactfully put it, “You’re going to get a different variety of folks who are going to come in.” Translation: Only a lousy executive is going to work for $500,000. Obama is “swept up in the public-relations tantrum” over bonuses. It’s just noise—as when auto executives were called out for their plane rides—but it seems “it’s all he can hear.”