US Catholic Faith in Real Life

Million-dollar bonuses are immoral

By Bryan Cones | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare

After reading John Gehring of Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good's case for financial reform, I can't help but ask: Is it immoral for anyone to get a bonus of tens of millions of dollars?

I know some readers will probably find this terribly un-American, but I simply do not see how such any worker should be compensated to such an obscene degree, especially when the companies that pay them are also responsible for wrecking the economy. I'm sure some great economist will tell me that the free market would come crashing down if some people weren't grossly overpaid while vast numbers survive on a pittance, but he or she will have a hard time convincing me.

Besides, is a banker's labor so much more valuable than a teacher's? Illinois school districts are likely to lay off 14,000 teachers this year, a number I bet will be replicated across the country, while financial industry execs will get enough in bonuses to pay the salaries of those teachers. That just doesn't seem right.