Why not a maximum wage?

David Cameron writes today in the Guardian that Public sector chiefs earning hundreds of thousands of pounds a year would have their salaries cut back by a Conservative government under a radical scheme to link their earnings to the lowest-paid workers in their organisation.

The Leader of the Tories suggests a difference of 20 times between the highest and lowest paid worker in the public sector

An interesting idea where the Chief Executive of Stoke City Council earns over £190,000 more than the Prime Minister. His is not the only high post locally as the Guardian also revealed that the Vice Chancellors of both Staffordshire and Keele University earn £246,000 and £248,000 respectively. A number of other senior officers in the universities are paid over £100,00

One question which might usefully considered is the wage inflation that seems to have gripped the pay of senior executives especially in the City Council here the pay of Brian Smith the Chief executive of the City Council less than a decade ago was £120,000 whilst Mr Van Der Laarschott salary is £70,000 more than that. Could it be that it is in the interest of the agencies that are recruiting for senior officers to talk up pay because of commission that they might be had from pay inflation?

It seems absurd to me that the Chief Executive of the City Council should receive a higher age than the Prime Minister a man who has his finger of the nuclear button.

But why stop in the public sector?

In Britain billions in taxpayer’s money have gone to bail out banks whose top executives recklessly drove their enterprises straight into the ditch as they chased after personal pay windfalls. Those same banks, buoyed up by bailout subsidies are now re-stuffing their pockets. Enough! A maximum wage has a number of positives. Last year a book “the Spirit Level” outlined the damage to well being that inequality was doing .The disparity in society has had many damaging effects such as health inequalities. Major inequalities also have environmental consequences.

At the opposite end of the scale I fully support a living wage as much as supporting the concept of a maximum wage. Stoke is a low wage area. The average wage of the area is £22,000 a year about £6k below the average- although a significant proportion of the working population earn far below that. I also think we should have a basic liveable income ending the reliance on a creaking benefits system.

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