Today’s Strib had a little bug on the front page I thought I must have misread: “U courting McGuire to business school.” My head spun around. Had to be some other McGuire. Some other U. Some other world. A Jon Stewart satire.
But no, there it was, on page D1: “U considering McGuire as a business school expert.”
Are you fucking kidding me?
I’m sorry. I just can’t say anything more civil.
A seven-million-dollar fine to the SEC. A thirty-million-dollar settlement to make a class-action suit go away. Six hundred and eighteen million dollars he has to put back in the cookie jar in benefits and options. $7,000,000. $30,000,000. $168,000,000.
But wait, William McGuire, former CEO of United HealthCare, has admitted no wrongdoing in these settlements and procedings. Right. Bill McGuire’s just the kind of guy who throws around shiploads of money to get those pesky opposing lawyers out of the lawnchairs around his pool.
And the University of Minnesota Medical Industry Leadership Institute of the Carlson School of Managment is considering McGuire as an executive in residence. You can’t make this stuff up, as Dave Barry says. Leadership!?!?! Will he wear his ankle bracelet in residence? Keep your backpacks close when you go to classes that let McGuire in, students.
Backdating stock options is called lying. Cheating. And the whole options game has become a way for too many fatcats to manage companies for their own short-term gains, ignoring or damaging the interests of the community, employees, consumers and average stockholders investing for the long haul. Giving executives huge piles of options adds to the gross imbalance between executive and average-worker pay and can turn companies and execs away from sound business and smack into the roaring realm of speculation.
What values will you be teaching, University of Minnesota, by bringing McGuire in as an expert? The values of CEOs who run their companies into the ground, take their golden parachute and leave the federal taxpayers with the bill for their employees’ pensions? The values of the S&L executives who decided they deserved a fifth luxury car and a fourth vacation home more than a senior citizen deserved her savings? The values of executives who create shell corporations to siphon money overseas and avoid paying their fair share of taxes for the common good? Enron values?
What will you be communicating about the University of Minnesota if you do this?
University of Minnesota, you’ve got to be kidding. If you bring in Bill McGuire, you can have my diploma back. I’ll organize a diploma burning. I’ll line up hundreds of people to moon the adminstration from the Washington Avenue pedestrian bridges. Or I’ll just set up a lemonade stand outside the Carlson School of Leadership and Larceny where I’ll also, quite openly, sell test questions and answers. Hey, that’s how you get ahead in this game — that’s what you’re teaching us.
— Bruce Benidt, U of M MA 1974.
high yield investments fine