Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Money for nothing

While a wage freeze prevents most ordinary workers within the Tribune Company from getting even any raise whatsoever, a judge authorized that executives of the bankrupt company receive some $45.6 million in bonuses. Apparently, Tribune is following the Wall St. model of completely eliminating any relationship between a bonus and good performance. Corporate executives of a company IN BANKRUPTCY get "historic[ally] high" bonuses. Ordinary workers who perform well get no raise whatsoever.

The $45 million in bonuses for a tiny cadre of executives is actually lower than the company's original spending spree of $70 million.

This is the same media company whose flagship newspaper editorialized against huge bonuses paid to AIG executives.

The plan was objected to by some groups including labor unions but their pleas were ignored by the bankruptcy judge.

You'd think a media company based on selling image and branding would be a little less tone deaf on potential public relations disasters.

Update: Not surprisingly, the story was apparently not reported by Tribune's two most prominent newspapers, The Chicago Tribune and The Los Angeles Times. Maybe this is their notion of 'crisis management.'

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