Monday, March 04, 2002

My worst job was with a government owned business, what we call an S.O.E. (State Owned Enterprise) - one of those lovely euphemistic oxymorons that bureaucrats get paid to dream up.

Anyway, here in NZ the law says that the number of employees of SOE's in each pay bracket (in 10K increments) has to be made public.

But, if an SOE owns a minority holding in a private company, any directors fees that, just as a hypothetical example you understand, the CEO of the SOE gets paid by the private company remains a commercially senistive piece of privileged information.

Needless to say, the directors of SOE's are thus incented to purchase minority positions in private companies, and thus to gain undeclared income as a result of their original employment.

It helps if you buy a share in a service company that can provide services to your SOE, and then you get the double pleasure of shitting all over your staff when they point out what a bunch of malingering fuckwits you've saddled them with, all the while the investment you've made with the taxpayers money gains you increasingly personally valuable returns.

I have to say that this situation is not the sort of situation that an honest and diligent employee will ever enjoy.

What, for example, can you possibly say to a CEO who, when presented with a commercial decision which saves his company over a million dollars a year while providing a significant uplift in the benefits thus purchased, responds:

"Why isn't it <insert name of private company here>?"

What can you say that isn't likely to get you instantly fired, I mean?

I should have said it, I quit the next day anyway.

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