Paymaster-in-chief

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The Obama administration, being one of the most statist in American history, just loves appointing”czars” to run various sectors of our increasingly nationalized economy. The sole job qualification for a nominee to rule over one of these fiefdoms is that he or she should be a lawyer, and preferably one having absolutely no experience whatsoever in that industry.

The latest is the announcement of a new Pay Czar. This bird’s job will be to set compensation levels for all executives working for companies receiving federal “bailout” funds- a rapidly increasing number of companies, indeed! The man chosen for this exalted job is Kenneth Feinberg, a lawyer whose main previous governmental experience was in administering the federal compensation fund for 9/11 victims. Whether he will allow the companies that receive the bailout money enough leeway to hire executives talented enough to actually turn these companies around is anybody’s guess.

The theory here is that since the public has contributed money to the companies, why, naturally, the public (read: the federal government) should control them. Of course, the government is controlled by the Democrats, so when the suggestion was made that the czar set the level of compensation for the executives of labor unions representing the employees of those same businesses, why, it was immediately dismissed as crazy.

Now, prominent Democrats have made no secret of the fact that they would like to extend the concept to any publicly traded company. Barney Frank in particular has long lusted after that power. The general idea is that filthy, greedy capitalists are earning too much money and need to have their salaries capped.

This all prompts the question, “why stop at business executives?” There are plenty of other filthy, greedy people earning too much money. Probably the most obvious are entertainers. Think of all the movie stars who rake in millions and millions of dollars for making pictures you don’t like? Worse yet, think of all those singers who record music you don’t appreciate. Hannah Montana (a.k.a. Miley Cyrus) is reputed to be get- ting close to a net worth of a cool billion, and she is barely an adult. Why isn’t Barney Frank bellowing about capping her salary and the salaries of all other singers – say, setting the amount of money a singer can receive at five times the average salary of a music store clerk? Wouldn’t that be fair? We need a music czar!

Ah, but we have to remember that entertainers, like union officials, are typically big supporters of the Democrats. So don’t look for that czar any time soon.

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