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The Most Overpaid Team In Town

April 25, 2012

The Boston Globe’s Brian McGrory is on a roll:

So enough said about Ted Kelly’s exquisitely obscene $50 million annual compensation package at Liberty Mutual.  It’s time to move on to other things.

Just kidding.  Of course there’s more to say about Kelly and Liberty Mutual.  There will always be more, which coincides with their philosophy on executive compensation—more, more, more.

This is the 4th extended column McGrory has written this month about the entirely legal scandal of Liberty Mutual’s standards for paying its top executives.  Today he reports on non-CEO executive compensation.

By my calculation, that’s $63 million in compensation for Kelly’s executive team in 2010, $108 million when you factor in Kelly’s pay….  The Boston Red Sox, by the way, pays its starting lineup less per year than Liberty Mutual’s favorite nine—even with the surly $17 million-a-year Josh Beckett on the mound.  I did the calculation and let it be said, the Red Sox are not the most overpaid team in town.

That’s a doubly damning assessment, considering that the Red Sox are alone in the AL East cellar this morning.

McGrory then calls out by name each and every member of Liberty Mutual’s board of directors, documenting who returned his calls, who had their assistant’s return his calls, and who (a solid majority) ignored him completely.

These columns are a textbook example of a journalist using the “power of the pen” (“power of the pixel?”) in service of the basic standards of economic justice that ought to exist in a commonwealth worthy of the name.  It’s a limited power to be sure, and McGrory is well aware of that fact:

On it goes, a system contrived and protected by a moneyed few, to nobody’s advantage but their own.

Nonetheless, it’s good to see that power being exercised so, well, powerfully.

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