Friday, April 21, 2006

And there's more...

In the same piece, the comments are a scream. Although whether one of laughter, horror or fright is a matter of conjecture. One bright spark by the name of Deepheat:

High salaries are a form of graft pure and simple. Banker and public company salaries are not dissimilar to the payments made by tin-pot dictators to themselves and their henchman. They do it because they can. Although, it is interesting to note that Robert Mugabe received less than £50,000 last year. Although a great deal more than the average Zimbabwean, it is a great deal less than a 30 year old investment banker would have earned.

Since his new palace cost the Zimbabwean economy anything between £3.75 and 6 million, it makes you wonder he afforded it doesn't it? When I was first in Zimbabwe in 1997 a copy of Time Magazine was banned because it identified Mugabe as one of the ten richest men in Africa. Apart from that, yes he's much more ethical than a thirty year old banker, if you don't count the murders, rapes and so on.


Blogger DeepHeat said...

Hi there Tim J. Was looking for another thread I had left a comment on and found this. So I thought I would reply ('tis the same DeepHeat)

First of all I should point out that I have worked in corporate finance for a number of years. Second, I should mention that I am a white Zimbabwean. Now without the farm my great, great grandfather was given following his involvement in removing Lobengula - King of the Ndebele at the time.

Now, whilst I am not quite sure about the details of the ownership of Mugabe's palace, I wonder whether it might not end up under the ownership of the State - a bit like Chequers or Dorneywood. Certainly, when the next tyrannical leader emerges in the country, I am sure it will be reclaimed whatever its current status. Certainly, he won't have much use for it in exile which looks like the most likely outcome.

Secondly, if Time were able to put a figure on Mugabe's wealth I am sure you should draw that to the attention of the police as Time may well be able to assist in the identification of his assets which are now subject to a freezing order - which arguably leaves him no longer the 10th richest person in Africa if he cannot access his wealth.

Now the point re the banker: if a banker gets rich profiting from a company which has been involved in Zim, or the Congo (which he would have done if involved in any of Anglo America, De Beers or Ashanti Gold) then that banker is complicit in Mugabe's abuses - he is feeding at the same trough. Say nothing of bankers who deal in the stock of Bechtel or Haliburton - war profiteers. I am sure you will point out, as your writing smacks of solicitordom, that such activities are not illegal and therefore not a problem. Asking whether it is moral, or even distasteful is unlikely to come into it?

If you'd like to offer a rebuttal of why large salaries are not graft (bar relatively few instances)when they extract the value from others' labour, I'd be interested to see your reasoning - for my time in IB failed to convince me as to why I had any right to the money I was earning.

10:58 pm  

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