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    Corporate Greed


    --- In boomersinternational@yahoo, bigwheelie54m wrote:
    Good stuff YY, thanks - 'Dumbest Business Moments'.
    
    However, strikes me as a rather 'genteel' title they've
    chosen for such societally serious, wide reaching and
    flagrant corporate / senior management malfeasance,
    if not (what should be) criminal activity.
    
    The frightening part is that as extensive as your list
    is -- it is only the tip of the iceberg -- if not
    indicative of public corporations worldwide
    (Nortel Networks / Cinar / Corel / Bre-X Gold etc
    in Canada) and their increasingly rampant total
    disregard for not only the "letter of the law", but the
    "spirit of the law" -- much less basic, civil honesty
    and ethics towards general shareholders, employees
    and societal responsibilities (paying their fair share
    of taxes).
    
    Obviously the losers in all this are ordinary citizens
    and taxpayers, either directly through loss of job
    and family financial security, loss of pensions,
    savings and being forced to take on greater debt
    against whatever few assets they might have left
    (house equity) as a stop gap or interim survival means.
    
    Having said that and ironically, I always find our
    complicity interesting (disconcerting) and marvel
    at how easily we human beings out of greed and
    self-interest can, as individuals and en masse,
    suspend our disbelief and "take our place
    at the trough" expecting an illogical, unrealistic
    return of 10-15-20% from our investments,
    stocks, mutual funds etc when the reality is that prime
    rate and SAFE GUARANTEED investments are less
    than a third of that!!
    
    What?? -- we don't think that prospective and unrealistic
    high rates of return don't carry a direct and
    proportionally high risk??
    High risk -- that returns will ACTUALLY ACHIEVE the
    magnitude we covet or deluded / allowed ourselves to be
    led to believe were possible?
    High risk -- that even if so -- HOW LONG can they be
    sustained before the underlying "house of cards" or ponzi
    scheme collapses and our investment and money with it???
    
    The stock market, and thereby mutual funds, long ago
    ceased being simply a legitimate or straight forward
    source of raising money to support the growth and
    future of WORTHWHILE companies and their products.
    It now is nothing more than an AUCTION, and
    crap shoot manipulated by the owners of the exchanges
    themselves, banks, brokerages and corporate executive /
    management insiders.
    
    Even the money / currency market is nothing more than a
    manipulated auction, with literally the INTRINSIC value
    of a dollar (anyone's, including the U.S.) literally
    not being worth the paper it is printed on.
    
    Presently, a dollar has only a RELATIVE value -- worth
    only what someone is willing to pay, or exchange
    for it -- as a result of Bretton-Woods agreement and U.S.
    led move away from GOLD STANDARD thirty years ago or so.
    
    Why world government interest in doing away with a
    gold standard? Basically because all countries by 60/70's
    were technically bankrupt. The cost of World War II
    (still makes up a major portion of lingering U.S.
    and Canadian national debt today), plus post war spending
    on infrastructure, job creation, social programs etc.
    resulted in all countries (some more than others) having
    printed, or approaching having printed more paper
    currency than they had gold reserves to back.
    
    "ENRON's Fiasco"
    
    The ONLY thing short of anarchy that is going
    to significantly change western governments,
    corporate mentality and action / inaction is
    having ALL citizens vocally and adamantly --
    "in their face".
    
    Unfortunately the political process in most if
    not all major western countries has degenerated
    to such a degree, and along with this such
    a questionable quality and caliber of candidates
    that thinking (or assuming merely because we
    have a "vote") we have a TRUE, working
    democracy is a farce.
    
    Politics, the electoral process and the operation
    of governments including those of Canada and
    the U.S. are nothing more than shams, scams
    and the epitome of self/vested interests and
    flagrant incompetence.
    Where IS the ACCOUNTABILITY by politicians and senior governmental departments and operations????? Why, as citizens / taxpayers don't we "hold their feet to the fire" more often and consistently?? Why don't we demand more of our leaders, senior bureaucrats, administrators and governmental departments than what we are getting??? Surely we haven't been bought off by the puny 'tax rebates' and political / election shell game they represent??? Big Wheelie Rob


    Angry that a company you own -- as a shareholder you are a partial owner, remember -- is being run into the ground? Or that the company's executives are lining their own pockets at shareholders' expense? Or that the company's management is just too cozy with relatives, consultants and accountants? Then vote the directors -- the people who are supposed to make sure the company is managed for the benefit of its shareholders -- out of office. The proxies that companies are sending out right now as part of this spring's annual meeting season offer investors just that chance. 8 companies whose boards need a scare Cooked books. Bad loans. Cozy deals. Who's to blame for this mess? The board of directors that wasn't looking out for its boss -- the shareholders. Jubak Journal
    Archived Here:Jubak's Journal
    From: yingyangdingdong Date: Sat Apr 6, 2002 1:04 am Subject: Re: Throw the rascals out! well, now he recommended some of those stocks on his list lol...Cisco, WorldCom etc..... Jubak's 50 best stocks in the world.. "I think these 50 stocks have a good chance to outperform the market with less than market risk. That's a tall order, but each company here is set to take advantage of our increasingly global economy and has a sustainable competitive edge in its industry that should keep earnings growing over the next five years at rates higher than analysts now predict...." http://moneycentral.msn.com/articles/invest/jubak/fifty.asp

    From: femmefataleca Date: Fri Apr 5, 2002 8:04 pm Subject: A touch of corporate class In light of Enron's and other corporate execs' grabbing up their "bonuses" (for what? running the company into the ground and syphoning off $millions to off shore shell corporations?), I thought Carly Fiorina showed a bit of class in returning her bonus for years where the company did not perform as it should. She may still get an obscene amount when the merger with Compaq occurs, however, but much of it will continue to be tied to performance--stock, profitability -- not just showing up for work, as many corporate execs get nowadays, goals accomplished or not. Let's also realize that she has pulled off one of the most contested M & As in recent business history and still has her battles ahead of her to make it work. As an HP stockholder, I sure hope she pulls it off. Go, girlfriend! FIORINA SET FOR PAY HIKE ON COMPLETION OF COMPAQ DEAL Reuters, 04.05.02, 5:58 AM ET NEW YORK, April 5 (Reuters) - Hewlett-Packard Co. (nyse: HWP - news - people) has promised certain executives, including Chief Executive Carly Fiorina, a pay rise after the completion of its merger with rival Compaq Computer Corp. (nyse: HWP - news - people), according to a regulatory filing on Thursday by the computer and printer maker. Palo Alto, California-based HP said in a proxy filing that it expects the new job contracts following the $19 billion merger would include increases to the salaries of some executives to reflect their expanded responsibilities within the combined company. They will also have the potential for a bonus equal to, or bigger than, their base salaries, the filing said. Currently, Fiorina receives a base salary of $1 million a year and is eligible for a performance-related bonus of about $1.25 million a year. However, Fiorina returned her bonus of $625,000 for the second half of fiscal 2000 after the company fell short of achieving its profit goals. She didn't receive a bonus in fiscal 2001 either, according to the filing. In late February, merger opponent Walter Hewlett said HP had discussed a lavish pay package worth $70 million over two years for Fiorina after the Compaq acquisition. That package and a $48 million one proposed for Compaq CEO Michael Capellas -- who would be the No. 2 executive in the merged firm -- was criticised by compensation experts as excessive. At the time, HP did not deny the content of the proposed pay packages but said the talks had been aborted. The new employment contracts following the completion of the deal are also expected to grant stock options, linked to continued service with HP and achieving certain goals, the filing said.

    From: yingyangdingdong Date: Sat Apr 6, 2002 1:33 am Subject: Re: A touch of corporate class While it is admirable, I still want to question the way HP is treating one of its founder's son who is on the Board of Director... There is rumor going around that Walter Hewlett is very unhappy about a plan for more than 15,000 job cuts after the merger!!!!!!!!!! "BusinessWeek Online How Investors Could Win the HP Battle By Peter Burrows and Andrew Park Even after a bitter five-month proxy fight, it looks like Hewlett-Packard (NYSE:HWP-news) managers and dissident board member Walter Hewlett will trade blows all the way to the closing bell. On Mar. 28, nine days after CEO Carly Fiorina declared victory in the still-undecided shareholder vote over HP's purchase of Compaq Computer (NYSE:CPQ-news), Hewlett sued the company in a last-ditch attempt to stop the deal. The board, which days earlier had decided to renominate Hewlett at the company's annual meeting on Apr. 26, fired its own volley. It announced that Hewlett's name won't be on the upcoming board slate -- marking the first time no member of either the Hewlett or Packard families will be represented on the company's board. Says one top shareholder: ``I'm disgusted by the whole thing.'' ..." yydd

    From: femmefataleca Date: Sat Apr 6, 2002 9:35 am Subject: Re: A touch of corporate class --- In boomersinternational@y..., yingyangdingdong> wrote: > While it is admirable, I still want to question the way >HP is treating one of its founder's son who is >on the Board of Directors... Because he's being a stubborn ass and, knowing the merger is going through, is wasting shareholder profits by suing the company on an apparent trumped up charge (saying Deutsche Bank was coerced, when they'd alreay casted most of their proxies). On top of that, his dissension has hurt the stock as much as any merger, especially if he keeps fighting after the fact. > There is rumor going around that Walter Hewlett is > very unhappy about a plan for more than 15,000 > job cuts after the merger!!!!!!!!!! Well, what they're doing is adding a needed element to their high tech balance and a highly profitable division (Compaq's 13% v. HP's 6-8%). HP needs the servers, which will allow the company to expand competitively. The estimated job loss may be embellished and Compaq may feel it as much as HP. But from what I've read, they need it to stay competitive and a leader in many areas...not just 1-2. Also, HP has always been very generous to its people when they've had layoffs...which has been very seldom compared to most Silicon Valley companies and almost always give several months' warning.

    Well, why, I would rather invite our friend RobBigwheelie to reply to this.... the more, the merrier, LOL. Rob, I appreciate your thought on this topic. What do you think of HP based on your opinion from your previous messages here?? #23819 yydd
    Message#24100 From: bigwheelie54m Date: Tue Apr 9, 2002 0:32pm Subject: Re: A touch of corporate class - YYDD message#24100 Aside from having a lot of respect for Packard and Hewlett SENIORS as being inventive pioneers in the areas of electrical, electronic and techology fields, my thoughts are that this merger is just one more of the "same old, same old" mega deal of the nineties and recent years. That is, once the pre-merger broker/analyst hype and stock price pumping is done, with thousands of jobs having disappeared -- HP/Compaq will turn out as a large portion of past mega-mergers so far have -- being unworkable due to continued clash of corporate cultures, "churning" of senior executives sucking more money out of the equation, and with the "perceived and expected" benefits NEVER being achieved. Or if so, not at the value added basis, nor of signifcant, substantive benefit as in the original "bill of goods" sold to average shareholders and/or their pension/mutual fund managers. Seems to me, mega-mergers, despite the hyperbole about trumped up need to increase competitive position, sales, efficiencies of scale etc etc -- really are simply corporate "smoke and mirrors" for the ELIMINATION / REDUCTION of competition. Obviously the impact is higher prices and/or less product choice to consumers somewhere down the road. Certainly Carly Fiorina deserves recognition (first as a business person, second as a woman) for "hangin' tuff" through all this. However, and although I haven't been an avid Walter Hewlett watcher, I would bet that in five years time he will still have connections / significant influence with whatever corporate entity remains once the dust has settled. Carly I doubt will be anywhere to be seen. I say this not due to personal / professional lack on her part, but just the "nature of the corporate/broker beast" -- it can't be satiated (no mere mortal can please that many greedy masters for long). The transition from corporate/market HERO or darling to BUM, can be lighteningly fast -- ask Ted Turner, Warren Buffet, John Roth of Nortel, or the past three CEO's of Coca Cola (over about roughly the same number of years). My thoughts anyway, for what they're worth (those and 5 bucks won't even get ya a coffee at Starbucks THESE days!!) LOL Regards all ... Rob :O)

    Rob, I hear ya on that one... Packard and Hewlett SENIORS = The HP WAY. Bill Hewlett and David Packard helped craft the first set of corporate objectives in 1957. The document is at the center of the company's management style called "The HP Way." profit customers fields of interest growth our people management citizenship http://www.hp.com/hpinfo/abouthp/corpobj.htm While it is necessary to maintain the profitability of the company, I can see the disparity between management and workers rank. In June of 2001, "June 29, 2001 The H-P way: Voluntary pay cuts High-tech equipment maker Hewlett-Packard Co. is asking its 45,000 employees in the United States to take voluntary pay cuts. The Palo Alto-based company says employees can sign up to take a 10 percent pay cut for the next four months or take a 5 percent cut plus take four additional paid vacation days in the same time period. A third option is to take eight additional paid vacation days, the company says. The H-P moves are designed to cut costs to keep figures in line with Wall Street expectations. Similar voluntary programs are expected for H-P's operations in other countries." The H-P way: Voluntary pay cuts HP Board Of Directors = VOTE for the Merger "why support this merger By merging with Compaq, the new HP will become the market leader in servers, storage, management software, printing and imaging, and PCs, improving our ability to offer the end-to-end solutions customers demand. We will double our profitable and growing services business, enhance our R&D efforts, and extend our customer reach in 160 countries. We will achieve annual cost savings of $2.5 billion, adding $5 to $9 in present value to each HP share; and increase earnings per share by 13% during the first year following the merger. By improving profitability in enterprise computing systems, in PCs and access devices, and in IT services, we will have the financial strength to extend our successful imaging and printing franchise into new multi-billion dollar categories like digital imaging and digital publishing. All of this, of course, requires that we execute well; and we will. Indeed, those who suggest that the challenges ahead are beyond us greatly underestimate the people of the new HP. The closer you look, the more you will see that the merger of HP and Compaq is the single best way to strengthen our businesses and improve our market position, deliver more of what our customers need, enhance opportunities for our employees, and increase the value of your investment. Future > Status Quo " http://www.votethehpway.com/about/closelook.phtml yydd

    Cont'd
    EDITOR'S NOTE: We should mention that these messages are archived from our Boomers International Group discussion board.

    We welcome your feedback
    NOTICE:
    We live in an open-minded society. We believe in Freedom of Expression and Free Speeches but the opinion expressed here belongs to the perspective authors. We may or may not agree with all of the opinions presented in all of our articles/columns here.


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