Saturday, January 23, 2010

Math with the details blurred out

I'm not giving any specifics here, not because I don't want to, but because it's best for job security. Hey, hey.

I'm about to start a new job, making a bit more money than I'm making now. I'm not going to be fantastically wealthy or anything, but for my lifestyle (no kids, no debt, few expenses), it will be noticeably above sufficiency.

Out of curiosity, I looked up the President & CEO of my new company to see how much he made. I was able to find his total compensation for 2008, in salary, bonuses, stocks, options, and "other" income, whatever that is. So admittedly, this figure is slightly out of date, but I'm going to use it anyway, because I'm sure it's accurate enough.

I divided that figure by 365, giving me the amount he makes every day (every day of his life, mind you, not just days he works--whatever "working" actually means for him). Then I divided that number by 24, to give me how much he makes every hour of the day, and again by 60, to give me the amount he makes every minute.

The number I got is only a small amount--under a dollar--less than the hourly wage I'll be earning when I start the job with his company.

In other words, what I will make in an hour of working for this man, he makes almost the same amount every minute of his life. Working, not working, waking, sleeping, whatever. And, remember, this job I'm about to be starting is, relatively speaking, pretty well-paying for your average not-CEO American. This is a state of affairs that apparently most people are perfectly OK with. Including me, I guess. Because, y'know, it's not like I'm planning to do anything about it.

3 comments:

Rachel said...

60:1 is actually pretty modest in terms of income inequality - I vaguely remember a Michael Moore book where he quotes that the major corporations, from the top of the pay scale to the bottom, have something like a 350:1 ratio. 60:1 is closer to the LAST Gilded Age. Congratulations on the new job.

Ethan said...

Thanks for the congratulations!

I should point out, though, that it's not 60:1, because he makes close to my hourly wage every minute of his life, where I only make it every hour I'm working. I'll get that amount forty times every week, whereas he'll get it almost ten thousand times a week. The real ratio is somewhere between 200:1 and 250:1.

Rachel said...

Ahh, thank goodness. My cynicism remains unsoiled.