The Charlotte News
Sunday, April 9, 1939
Site Ed. Note: The remaining editorials of this date, added previously, are maintained here.
And we'll point out again on the subject of corporate wealth that, according to Forbes in 2006, the 793 individuals, as opposed to families, who are billionaires presently in the world control about 2.6 trillion dollars in wealth, somehwat more than one-fifth of the equivalent of the current annual gross domestic product of the United States, quite a far cry from that listed in 1939.
Who Makes What
This Comes Under Impertinent Information
Once more the sucker list has been published, that census of corporation officers who draw salaries of $15,000 and over a year. Just what good it does, beyond creating and satisfying an idle curiosity and providing tidbits of gossip--"you'd think Mrs. Machaming would dress better than she does on her husband's $18,000 salary"--has never been entirely clear. The harm it does, beyond making private matters public, is to expose the fortunates to all sorts of solicitations and propositions not of their own choosing.
Nevertheless, some of the more turgid New Dealers in the Senate have repeatedly refused to repeal the law which gives rise to the sucker list. It has been amended at last, so that next year only corporate salaries in excess of $75,000 will be made public. That will likely exempt all North and South Carolinians, while gratifying the tattling instinct in Congress.
A far more sensible procedure would be for the boys to pass a law requiring all corporations to report annually to all stockholders on salaries and bonuses paid officers. Stockholders are entitled to such information, and it is they and not the public who have a legitimate interest.
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