Income-inequality warrior to earn $225,000 per year for doing nothing in particular about income inequality

posted at 2:41 pm on April 16, 2014 by Allahpundit

Upwards of a quarter mil annually for one seminar plus a “modest role” at events organized by the City University of New York. I’m tempted to call it a sinecure (which it is) but it’s really more of an endorsement deal, like those Hanes commercials where Jordan makes a two-second cameo and never says a word. Basically, they’re buying Krugman’s high profile among progressives and the media to elevate the stature of their Luxembourg Income Study Center, which is devoted to studying …

…income inequality.

Maybe this is some sort of meta-experiment on the subject, a la “The Shape of Things”? Krugs shows up to a presentation by the dean on how the topic of income inequality is exploited for gain and it turns out he’s the showpiece. Deep.

About that. According to a formal offer letter obtained under New York’s Freedom of Information Law, CUNY intends to pay Krugman $225,000, or $25,000 per month (over two semesters), to “play a modest role in our public events” and “contribute to the build-up” of a new “inequality initiative.” It is not clear, and neither CUNY nor Krugman was able to explain, what “contribute to the build-up” entails…

CUNY, which is publicly funded, pays adjunct professors approximately $3,000 per course. The annual salaries of tenured (but undistinguished) professors, meanwhile, top out at $116,364, according to the most recent salary schedule negotiated by the university system’s faculty union. And those professors are expected to teach and publish. Even David Petraeus, whom CUNY initially offered $150,000, conducted a weekly 3-hour seminar…

$225,000 is more than quadruple New York City’s median household income.

What are the rules these days for when it is and isn’t hypocritical for rich people to rail against income inequality? I remember hearing in 2007 when John Edwards was still a lefty darling that there’s no contradiction in sitting on a fortune worth tens of millions and demanding more money for the poor. FDR and RFK are sainted liberals despite their wealth; our own president has earned several million in royalties but isn’t expected to cough any of it up voluntarily just because income inequality’s a core part of his agenda. It’s the income equivalent of celebrities jetting around while demanding that the world lower its carbon emissions in the name of fighting global warming. There’s no imperative, apparently, to act individually towards your goal unless and until there’s a collective will for it, as official policy.

But never mind that. Krugman’s going to spin this, I take it, by claiming that $225K annually is kinda sorta rich but not really rich. See this post from January, via Guy Benson. It may be true that people earning $200,000 or $300,000 deserve their money, he says, but most of the explosion in wealth is among people even richer than that, the CEOs and hedge-fund managers who haven’t earned their wealth the way, say, a guy who accepts a lucrative professorship that requires him to do nothing does. We’re lucky to have him.


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Kruggy, you hot gassing hypocrite.

22044 on April 16, 2014 at 2:45 PM

Somewhere a garden is missing its gnome.

Chuck Schick on April 16, 2014 at 2:47 PM

What are the rules these days for when it is and isn’t hypocritical for rich people to rail against income inequality?

Rules?? For rich people??

bofh on April 16, 2014 at 2:50 PM

Progressives must have somehow found a way to vaccinate against irony. They seem completely immune to it.

gryphon202 on April 16, 2014 at 2:50 PM

What are the rules these days for when it is and isn’t hypocritical for rich people to rail against income inequality?

Rules?? For rich people??

bofh on April 16, 2014 at 2:50 PM

I rarely hear people I would consider “poor” railing against income inequality. Maybe that’s just because they don’t have a platform. Thanks, Paul Krugman!/

gryphon202 on April 16, 2014 at 2:54 PM

So consulting on income inequality nets about four times the US Median income for 2012? Wow! Did I ever get into the wrong career path.

Happy Nomad on April 16, 2014 at 2:54 PM

You resemble a ferret, but I guess you’re a wealthy ferret.

MikeinPRCA on April 16, 2014 at 2:55 PM

It’s remarkable how quickly the lefties start understanding merit pay, capitalism, credentials, free market economics and high salaries when it’s their people getting them.

Good Lt on April 16, 2014 at 2:56 PM

Liberalism is a mental disorder since to be a liberal is almost always opposite to the way the liberal wants to live in the real world… So someone has to have a mental disorder to preach something and lives the opposite way… Yes we call it hypocrisy and it is in fact a mental disorder… It is a must to be a liberal…

mnjg on April 16, 2014 at 2:57 PM

What are the rules these days for when it is and isn’t hypocritical for rich people to rail against income inequality?

Viceroy Hairy Greed answered that question with a video , remember ?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vP7V0hrt1aw

burrata on April 16, 2014 at 2:57 PM

It’s ok, Krugman is a Fascist-Democrat, the rules don’t apply to them.

rbj on April 16, 2014 at 2:57 PM

Rules?? For rich liberal people??

bofh on April 16, 2014 at 2:50 PM

More accurate.

iurockhead on April 16, 2014 at 2:57 PM

This makes me wonder how much Goebbels was paid by Hitler???

Deano1952 on April 16, 2014 at 2:59 PM

He needs to be smacked with some hockey sticks and steam ironed on the irony board.

vnvet on April 16, 2014 at 3:00 PM

Oops, I forgot that when you make comparisons to Hitler, you’ve already lost the argument. That must have come from liberals.

Deano1952 on April 16, 2014 at 3:02 PM

Bed Wetter

jake-the-goose on April 16, 2014 at 3:05 PM

Will he donate his “salary” to a charity..?

d1carter on April 16, 2014 at 3:07 PM

Progressives are scum…

PatriotRider on April 16, 2014 at 3:09 PM

Hypocrisy – thy name is Paul Krugman.

bw222 on April 16, 2014 at 3:12 PM

Top men

Murphy9 on April 16, 2014 at 3:13 PM

Do they have alfalfa @ the salad bar in the teachers lounge?

CBWV99 on April 16, 2014 at 3:20 PM

Krugman and all the other like him in the “income inequality” business don’t care about the poor. They care about pretending to care, because it gets them sweet jobs like this one. From the potilicians of this stripe, the plan goes like this:
1. Pretend to care in order to buy some votes from LIVs, get elected.
2. Advocate policies to take from the “rich” (your political opponents) and give to favored donor classes/LIVs while exempting yourself.
3. Get money back from said donor groups and LIV as campaign donations
4. Repeat, while collecting your salary and exempting yourself from the laws you pass.

Doc Holliday on April 16, 2014 at 3:24 PM

Krugman learned income equality while serving as an consultant to Enron. I guess he will bring a new prospective to treating all fairly.

jimwesty on April 16, 2014 at 3:26 PM

Basically, they’re buying Krugman’s high profile among progressives and the media to elevate the stature of their Luxembourg Income Study Center, which is devoted to studying …

Kinda like the deal his trophy wife got…she would marry him if he would let her write his columns and endorse her crackpot ideas.

kcewa on April 16, 2014 at 3:27 PM

Fools are those who pay.

He’s as big a charlatan as AlnotsoSharpton.

Schadenfreude on April 16, 2014 at 3:29 PM

He sure looks like a professor. Got a beard and everything. Probably has a dozen sport coats with elbow patches hanging in his closet.

butch on April 16, 2014 at 3:30 PM

Krugman and all the other like him in the “income inequality” business don’t care about the poor. They care about pretending to care, because it gets them sweet jobs like this one. From the potilicians of this stripe, the plan goes like this:
1. Pretend to care in order to buy some votes from LIVs, get elected.
2. Advocate policies to take from the “rich” (your political opponents) and give to favored donor classes/LIVs while exempting yourself.
3. Get money back from said donor groups and LIV as campaign donations
4. Repeat, while collecting your salary and exempting yourself from the laws you pass.

Doc Holliday on April 16, 2014 at 3:24 PM

This is exactly what liberals have been doing for the last 120 years to get elected…

mnjg on April 16, 2014 at 3:31 PM

Maybe now that he has such a cushy job, Klutzman can do us a favor and stop writing editorials for the New York Slimes.

Steve Z on April 16, 2014 at 3:31 PM

That’s Former Enron Advisor Paul Krugman. He would have sold lots on Love Canal if Century 21 had better tailors.

cbenoistd on April 16, 2014 at 3:33 PM

That’s the Rosa Luxemb[o]urg Income Study Center, yes? Either that, or it’s in Luxembourg.

Gene Hunt on April 16, 2014 at 3:41 PM

That’s his Prostitutional right to earn that much money.

Once you win the Nobel Prize in Economics for being able to give the correct change to a McDonalds customer, you got it made! If you’re a columnist at the New York Times (AKA the Shady Gray Lady, All the Communist Propaganda We Want to Print since Walter Duranty), you’ve got it made in the shade.

ZeusGoose on April 16, 2014 at 3:42 PM

For doing nothing in particular? Hardly.

Keynesian’s are the biggest single cause of income inequality, IMO. They and their cronies get richer at the expense of everybody else. They use taxpayer money and generational theft to buy the complacency of the underclass and, like parasites, squeeze the middle class to death; not that they care because they’re globalists and there’s fertile ground elsewhere for them to exploit. They profit from the destruction of the American middle class.

Keynesianism and cronyism are synonymous and that is the biggest cause of the growing income inequality.

FloatingRock on April 16, 2014 at 4:07 PM

Demagoguery is always a growth industry.

Mr. D on April 16, 2014 at 4:16 PM

You resemble a ferret, but I guess you’re a wealthy ferret.

MikeinPRCA on April 16, 2014 at 2:55 PM

Didn’t we see an article this month that said people with wide-set eyes were seen as intelligent, and those with close-set eyes were perceived as stupid?

slickwillie2001 on April 16, 2014 at 4:17 PM

So some guy who saves a $ 10 Billion a year company from bankruptcy isn’t worth his multi-million dollar salary but a semi-retired columnist who has been phoning it in for years is worth every penny of what he can get from the government trough? At least the CEOs are responsible to their share-holders, if your duties are to do nothing much, who are you responsible too? And how are you judged a success?

Fred 2 on April 16, 2014 at 4:27 PM

I really don’t hate any public figures. It’s not good for the soul. But this guy really, really tests my resolve.

damage done on April 16, 2014 at 4:29 PM

bayam! Come out and play with us…

Del Dolemonte on April 16, 2014 at 4:35 PM

…I think he wears panties!

KOOLAID2 on April 16, 2014 at 4:40 PM

If you look up “P.T. Barnum” in an encyclopedia, they have Krugman’s photo on his bio. What the Hell?…same premise.

a5minmajor on April 16, 2014 at 7:03 PM

Just like his fellow NYT leftie, Friedman, live in mansions and make 50 times the average US worker but America is an unequal and unjust country according to them. Hey guys, try working paycheck to paycheck and then face the prospect that your employer says screw you and dumps your health care.

jaywemm on April 16, 2014 at 8:51 PM

Progressives must have somehow found a way to vaccinate against irony. They seem completely immune to it.

gryphon202 on April 16, 2014 at 2:50 PM

Just an irony deficiency.
Maybe they have pills for that now …

AesopFan on April 16, 2014 at 10:55 PM

A NOTE TO THE BOARD, CHANCELLOR, and STAFFS OF CUNY:

Just a note to thank you for working for CUNY and especially because of the upcoming “inequality initiative” that it will sponsor to bring more light to the disparity between those earning high incomes and those earning low incomes. We need more progressive events like this.

CUNY said it will pay progressive newscaster Paul Krugman $245,000 (or $25,000/month over two semesters plus $20,000 in expenses) to “play a modest role in our public events” and “contribute to the build-up” of a new “inequality initiative.” He won’t be teaching or supervising students but he will have to host one seminar in return for those payments.

Please keep payments to him out of the public eye as much as you can since that is taxpayer money and lots of people would be upset about it, especially those with low incomes and the parents of students attending (or planning to attend) CUNY. Keep it low-key and possibly secret if you can. Also do not let the public know that he wants to increase taxes on New York and New York City residents since it would just rub salt into the wound if they were reminded of that.

I’m glad to see that neither CUNY nor Krugman were able to explain what “contribute to the build-up” entails. The fewer details released to the public, the better. Take a page from President Obama’s play book about that. Do not create any problems by providing details or transparency.

Also, do NOT make it public that Krugman’s payments of $225,000 are more than 4 times the New York City’s median household income. That would diminish and make a mockery of CUNY’s large payments for an “inequality initiative”. Do not let people see the irony in that by calling attention to it. Worse, it would show how hypocritical CUNY is so PLEASE do not make it public or at least do not emphasize it.

Thanks again for working for CUNY. Keep up the good work on behalf of us progressives.

opunmind on April 17, 2014 at 1:15 PM