Only two percent of Americans are paid that amount of money for a year’s work, but Lee Raymond is one of the lucky ones. Until he retired last December, Lee was CEO of Exxon Mobil for 13 years. Oh, mind you, he wasn’t paid $144,000 a year… or even a month… or for a week’s worth of work. Lee took $144,000 in pay each and every day of his 13 years at the helm. He drew this daily pay even on Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays. His total haul during his 13-year tenure was $686 million.
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And now we learn that Lee has been given another sweet dollop of largesse by Exxon Mobil. Instead of a gold watch and a pat on the back, Lee was given a pension package worth $400 million. Factor in this wad, and Raymond walked away with the equivalent of $229,000 a day for his years as CEO. Assuming he worked eight hours every day, that’s $28,000 an hour!
An official Exxon statement said simply that this kingly sum was a fair reward for Lee’s “outstanding leadership of the business.” Well, yes, Exxon Mobil flourished during the Raymond years, especially at the end of his term – and the executive suite at corporate headquarters even was dubbed “The God Pod.” But corporate governance experts note that the company’s success was not due to any god-like genius by Raymond, but to easy profits generated by the windfall rise in oil and gasoline prices. Exxon’s oil wells pump out more crude every day than Kuwait, and it is the world’s largest refiner of gasoline – so it’s wallowing in profits from both its wells and its gas pumps.
This is Jim Hightower saying… So remember, every gallon of Exxon Mobil gasoline you buy will be pumping a little more of your cash right into Lee Raymond’s pockets.