Op-Ed: Cameron guns for boardroom parasites

Posted Jan 8, 2012 by Alexander Baron
British Prime Minister David Cameron may have no friends on the left, but after today's pronouncements, he won't have many left in the boardroom either.
Prime Minister David Cameron
Prime Minister David Cameron
The Prime Minister's Office
Cameron must go! - they’re all in it together was the headline in Socialist Worker last July. Well guess what? Call Me Dave isn't in it with them! When he appeared on this morning's Andrew Marr programme, he had a new target, the cronyism of boardroom parasites (no, he didn't use that word) who sit on each others' boards of directors and vote each other pay rises while workers and shareholders have to grin and bear it.
Cameron said that he wanted shareholders - the people who actually own the company - to determine who gets what. This certainly sounds reasonable; it also sounds reasonable for shareholders to say how much of a severance package company supremos get. If Joe Sixpack is sacked (gets his P45 as we say in Britain), he'll be lucky if he receives a month's or even a week's pay. And a reference? Probably not.
Call Me Dave appears to have done his homework, he mentioned the Work Foundation as a consultant. Pressed by Andrew Marr on bringing ordinary workers into the boardroom, he said he wouldn't rule it out. One thing at a time, eh Dave?
It is fair to say that since the riots, Britain has seen an entirely new face to Cameron, first he clamped down on the disorder, then he took on Europe, the Coalition Government is taking on the banks, albeit with caution, last week he outlined plans to bring people power into our hospitals, and now he's bringing the fat cats of the City into line. Of course, there is no pleasing some people, and the comrades will doubtless continue to rail at him as being in the pockets of big business. Let them, but the likes of Bob Diamond had better not make the same mistake!