Bending the Third Rail
Because We Should, We Can, We Do
Friday, April 06, 2007
Big Bidness
You may have heard that Kirk Kerkorian has put a bid in on Chrysler. The deal likely hinges on cooperation (meaning pay cuts) from the auto workers. On the same day, there's this story:
The Ford Motor Company paid its new chief executive, Alan R. Mulally, $28.18 million in his first four months on the job, the automaker said in a regulatory filing yesterday.

His compensation included an $18.5 million bonus that Ford, which reported a record $12.7 billion loss last year, disclosed in September when it hired him from Boeing.

Figures in Ford’s annual proxy statement show that his pay was more than three times that of any other executive at the company. That includes the executive chairman, William Clay Ford Jr., who has kept a 2005 promise not to accept any new salary, bonus or stock awards until Ford consistently earns a profit.

The second-highest pay, $8.67 million, was also for only a few months’ work; it went to James J. Padilla, who retired as president and chief operating officer in July.

Three executives received bonuses for their roles in reducing manufacturing capacity, cutting costs and achieving other goals as part of Ford’s overhaul plan, known as the Way Forward. The awards were part of a retention program that the company recently abandoned.
Ford is giving the usual excuses about acquiring talent, the market rate blahblahblah. The news channel I was watching interviewed a few Ford autoworkers who looked like someone had stuck a really sour lemon in their mouths.

Good luck Chrysler in your negotiations. I hope the unions hang tough. They're already losing jobs at a prodigious rate so they really don't have a lot to lose.