The New York Observer is an obscure weekly newspaper here in the Big Mango that those of us live here should pay more attention to. If you are middle class, you will notice that the paper is definitely not written for you.
That doesn't mean you should ignore it. The Observer tells you what the wealthy elites of our city are thinking and what they plan to do to us. It's like spying on the enemy.
The Editorials practically drool over Michael Bloomberg, the worst NYC Mayor since Jimmy Walker (Tammany man from the early 20th Century). But, they don't always wax foolishly on behalf of the jerk who bought our mayor's office. Sometimes, they pander to other rich scumbags.
Their 2/3/09 Editorial, "Don't Blame the Bonuses," is a hoot. These people have no shame in showing how completely out of touch they are with the overwhelming majority of people in NYC. They also show how completely out of touch the New York Observer is with reality.
One can’t blame President Obama and Vice President Biden for taking target practice at that $18.4 billion. It’s probably a relief to unload some ammo, as a distraction from the gut-wrenching business of administering a $900 billion (why can’t we just admit it’s going to be a trillion?) taxpayer-funded stimulus package. But both Obama and Biden know, better than most, that compensation on Wall Street is structured so that banks pay low base salaries and that bonuses are generally considered part of one’s “true” salary, so the $18 billion number is overstated anyway. Moreover, the 2008 bonus figure represents a drop of 44 percent from 2007, and thus can be said to accurately reflect the wider economy. And the top executives of several banks—most notably Goldman Sachs—did in fact forgo bonuses to serve as an example, despite having proven their worth by navigating their firms through treacherous waters.
After you stop howling, examine some of this comedy gold.
1) Get this: "compensation on Wall Street is structured so that banks pay low base salaries." Compared to what ordinary Americans make, these base salaries are astronomical. The average American's job performance also is far superior to that of the banksters.
2) "Moreover, the 2008 bonus figure represents a drop of 44 percent from 2007, and thus can be said to accurately reflect the wider economy." This is more comedy gold. These figures accurately reflect that they were even more shockingly overpaid before.
3) "Despite having proven their worth by navigating their firms through treacherous waters"??? Considering that they have done so by bilking the taxpayers for hundreds of billions of dollars, the notion that the banksters have "proven their worth" is so loopy that you can't help but laugh. Every Wall St. bankster and broker executive deserves to be fired. Those companies have been horribly mismanaged for decades.
The Editorial gets even sillier.
One wishes, therefore, that Mr. Obama and Mr. Biden had not gone for the easy political points. Already they are facing a Congress whose members have floated the idea of punishing bankers by taking back money they’ve already been paid. Fairness—such as putting a cap on future compensation of executives at firms that receive government assistance—is one thing; punishment is juvenile and counterproductive.
When muggers and shoplifters steal, you won't read the Observer saying that "punishment is juvenile and counterproductive." Yet, the banksters have robbed and looted our Treasury out of trillions of dollars (when you count the amount of money they are getting from the Federal Reserve which dwarfs the congressional bankster bailout). In the minds of the Observer, punishment is for the little people.
Is it any wonder that the Observer has a paid circulation of only 51,000 in a city of over 8 million people (not counting suburbs)?