The NY Times is waxing indignant about the high salaries paid to employees of universities. I predicted this 10 days ago. Of course, I share their dudgeon as I don’t make that kind of money. Obviously these guys are paid too much. Of course, if I did make as much money as they do I would think I was appropriately paid and well worth a seven figure income.

The people listed in the Times article are all doing rather well at their jobs which may be an argument for their high salaries. I know this is lame, but I’m trying to be fair. Tamar Lewin who wrote the Times piece is doubtless a dandy reporter. She has a vastly larger audience than do I. She’s on to something and should pursue it.

The compensation packages for the NY Times’ top five executives are listed below. As you can see the information for the top two is N/A which could stand for not available, but not ashamed.

Mr. Arthur O. Sulzberger Jr., 57
Chairman and Publisher of The Times
Ms. Janet L. Robinson , 58
Chief Exec. Officer, Pres, Exec. Director and Member of Foundation Committee
Mr. Michael Golden , 59
Director, Publisher of the International Herald Tribune and Member of Foundation Committee
$1.10M $66K
Mr. P. Steven Ainsley , 56
Publisher of The Boston Globe and Head of New England Media Group
$814K N/A
Mr. John Geddes ,
Managing Editor

Mr Golden makes more than $1 million so it’s reasonable to assume that Mr Sulzberger makes considerably more. What kind of job has he been doing? Look at the chart of the Times’ stock price below and see what you think.


In one year under Mr Sulzberger’s leadership the share price has gone from about $20 to $4.  Five years ago a share of the Times sold for $50. And for this he gets millions! Why is he hiding his salary? Where’s the transparency? Ms Lewin needs to splash this across the front page. I bet she’s already on to the story. Good for her. There could be a Pulitzer here.

All this salary envy reminds me of Babe Ruth. In 1932 he was asked to explain why he earned more than President Hoover. His answer: “I had a better year.”