Oregonians Poll: Should Government limit Wall Street bonuses of firms receiving TARP money

Almost a thousand Oregonians were asked whether they agree with Congress placing a limit on the amount of employee bonuses in Wall Street firms that received Federal assistance or TARP funds.

Clearly they see the need for government to oversee executive’s compensation. Only about one third felt the government’s power would be overreaching.

No: 359; 38%
Yes: 596; 62%
Total Respondents: 955

“Pay Czar”, Ken Feinberg, whose official title is Special Master for TARP Executive Compensation ordered five companies overseen by the Obama administration to cut cash compensation to top executives by 33%. As a result, total pay in 2010 will fall by about 15 % for 119 executives at AIG, General Motors Co., GMAC, Chrysler Group LLC and Chrysler Financial Corporation. While Feinberg only has control over companies that were bailed out, he wants to see other Wall Street companies following suit.

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Posted by at 05:45 | Posted in Measure 37 | 15 Comments |Email This Post Email This Post |Print This Post Print This Post
  • Bob Clark

    I think yes since tax payers have kept the companies afloat, and taxpayers now wanting their monies back in most expedious manner.

    A broader issue to me is how shareholders can do a better job of keeping compensation of all public traded companies in check. Compensation at the top seems to have gotten way out of proportion to the value of leadership. I think shareholders have to work to get a stronger say in compensation. Maybe, individual pension and mutual fund holders should be given a direct vote in the underlying pension and mutual fund company shares rather than pension and mutual fund boards which might have developed certain biased relations with the leadership of the company’s they’ve invested in. Not sure.

    • Ron Marquez

      And I say yes until the TARP funds are repaid but then no. However, I do agree shareholders should have a a voice in executive compensation. To what degree and how to do it, I don’t know.

      Once the TARP funds are repaid, I believe any financial institution should be 100% responsible for their business successes and failings…..translated “no governments bailouts under any circumstances”.

      I also favor breaking up large financial institutions into smaller pieces so that reckless business practices do not have the potential to bring down the domestic and world financial communities.

  • valley p

    We sure hate government except when we want it to do something. At least we are consistent about this.

  • Rupert in Springfield

    We sure hate government getting involved in things it shouldn’t, when it does some like to limit the damage. At least they are consistent on that.

    • valley p

      That is 2 sentences worthy of Rumsfeld. I have no freaking idea what you just said and don’t want to take the rest of the morning trying to figure it out.

      • Rupert in Springfield

        Then lemme splain it to you:

        I’m making fun of you.

        • valley p

          Oh. Ha ha. Good one there Rupert. You really got me. I don’t know if I can ever recover. You really know how to cut a guy to the quick. Wow. I know who not to verbally spar with from now on that’s for sure. You should take on John Stewart next.

  • Scatcatpdx

    Oh sure first government gives the money then it takeover and nationalize the company. Is it wonderful how one can use handouts to spread totalitarianism and get the people who should be weary of big government to swallow the statist pill.

  • Pat Ryan

    Some firms accepted the money and some didn’t. Since it was my money, I want accountability.

    If they didn’t want me looking over their shoulders, they had the option of not taking my money.


    There are libertarians and there are mercantilists. We fought a revolution to get rid of the latter.

  • Anonymous

    Should goverment cut congressional pay?


    Goldman Sachs, ACA Capital, IKB Deutsche Industriebank and even the rating agencies never had any duty to protect us from their greed. There was one entity that did — our government.

    But it was the purported regulators, including the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and the Office of Thrift Supervision, that used their power not to protect, butrather to prevent predatory lending laws. The Federal Reserve, which could have cracked down on lending practices at any time, did next to nothing, thereby putting us at risk as both consumers and taxpayers. All of these regulators, along with the S.E.C., failed to look at the bad loans that were moving through the nation’s banking system, even though there were plentiful warnings about them.
    More important, it was Congress that sat by idly as consumer advocates warned that people were getting loans they’d never be able to pay back. It was Congress that refused to regulate derivatives, despite ample evidence dating back to 1994 of the dangers they posed. It was Congress that repealed the Glass-Steagall Act, which separated investment and commercial banking, yet failed to update the fraying regulatory system.
    It was Congress that spread the politically convenient gospel of home ownership, despite data and testimony showing that much of what was going on had little to do with putting people in homes. And it’s Congress that has been either unwilling or unable to put in place rules that have a shot at making things better. The financial crisis began almost three years ago and it’s still not clear if we’ll have meaningful new legislation. In fact, Senate Republicans on Monday voted to block floor debate on the latest attempt at a reform bill.
    Come to think about it, shouldn’t Congress have its turn on the hot seat as well? Seeing Goldman executives get their comeuppance may make us all feel better in the short term. But today’s spectacle shouldn’t provide our government with a convenient way to deflect the blame it so richly deserves.
    Bethany McLean, a contributing editor for Vanity Fair, is writing a book about the financial crisis with Joe Nocera of The Times.

  • eagle eye

    “Goldman Sachs, ACA Capital, IKB Deutsche Industriebank and even the rating agencies never had any duty to protect us from their greed.”

    A perfect example of why the capitalistic financial industry, is in such terrible trouble, and so detested by the citizenry. Yes, that was their attitude, exactly.

    • valley p

      They had a single ethic, which was to maximize their own gain regardless of the damage to others. They were simply practicing Ayn Randism. Selling people rotten products? Caveat emptor.

      • valley q

        Selling people rotten opinions? Caveat emptor.

        We have been warned. (as if we needed any warning…. idiotic opinions have a skunk-like smell that wards off smart people)

  • Kirk Benson

    The government shouldn’t be involved in this, just like they shouldn’t be involved in corporate bailouts. Competition and failure is a part of progress and only the strong should survive. Government should only step in to curb monopoly or for national defense reasons. We need leaders in Washington who believe this too. This is exactly why we need to clean house in Washington. We need new leadership with fresh ideas. That is why I support Doug Keller, who is running for congress in the 1st Congressional District. Doug is a retired Naval Officer and Naval Academy graduate who comes from a family who lived the American dream through hard work and perseverance. Doug has great ideas and he would represent us well in DC. I encourage you to learn more about him. https://keller4congress.com/platform/

  • JR

    Better poll:

    “Should the public be permitted to limit organization, compensation & retirement benefits for ‘public servants’?”

    I live in a State full of buffoons that side with a minority country-wide seeking to destroy that which made this country great. Pardon all the PC-talk: These people (progressives & liberals) are enemies of the Constitution and deserve commensurate treatment.

    It should be the pledge of all incoming politicians to completely dismantle progressive/liberal areas of government & society. We WILL ‘give back’ in ways they can’t possible imaging, given the chance.

    Vote ‘non-incumbent’ this Fall and demand a pledge of some dozen points promoting a US return to greatness & solvency.

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