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Published on September 19th, 2011 | by Joe Hinds
Image © [caption id="attachment_3679" align="alignleft" width="150" caption="Excess bonuses on their way out. Is this enough to make capitalism responsible?"][/caption] Business Secretary Vince Cable has today announced new Liberal Democrat led plans to champion a model of 'responsible capitalism' in which companies will be forced to justify their pay policies in their annual reports. Cable will detail plans to ensure that shareholders of Stock Exchange-listed firms can view transparent information regarding company directors' remuneration, in what he has called an attempt to "call time on payouts for failure". In these reports the total value of directors' salary, pensions and share schemes must be clearly explained for all to see. Alongside this Numeration Boards will have to detail why they have paid any bonuses that  are not in line with their pay policy or have not been justified by positive performances, with shareholders to be given a legally binding right to block anything that they deem as excessive pay. These plans come in the midst of the Liberal Democrats' attempt to further distance themselves from various Conservative economic policies, as a succession of senior Lib Dem figures have on once again reiterated their vow to oppose any abolition of the 50p tax rate until a new form of wealth tax is introduced, ensuring that there will be no lost tax revenue from those who should be paying the most. However, the likelihood (and subsequent success) of such a plan to come into fruition, particularly with a Conservative majority government, seems rather slim to say the least. Whilst Mr Cable would like to see 'greedy' company directors named and shamed, what he seems to misunderstand is that these greedy directors are the very product of the government's own capitalist economic policy, while the notion of 'Responsible Capitalism' ,with or without a Tory government, seems like nothing more than an oxymoron to me.

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Cable Forces Fat Cats To Justify Bonuses

Excess bonuses on their way out. Is this enough to make capitalism responsible?

Business Secretary Vince Cable has today announced new Liberal Democrat led plans to champion a model of ‘responsible capitalism’ in which companies will be forced to justify their pay policies in their annual reports. Cable will detail plans to ensure that shareholders of Stock Exchange-listed firms can view transparent information regarding company directors’ remuneration, in what he has called an attempt to “call time on payouts for failure”. In these reports the total value of directors’ salary, pensions and share schemes must be clearly explained for all to see. Alongside this Numeration Boards will have to detail why they have paid any bonuses that  are not in line with their pay policy or have not been justified by positive performances, with shareholders to be given a legally binding right to block anything that they deem as excessive pay.

These plans come in the midst of the Liberal Democrats’ attempt to further distance themselves from various Conservative economic policies, as a succession of senior Lib Dem figures have on once again reiterated their vow to oppose any abolition of the 50p tax rate until a new form of wealth tax is introduced, ensuring that there will be no lost tax revenue from those who should be paying the most.

However, the likelihood (and subsequent success) of such a plan to come into fruition, particularly with a Conservative majority government, seems rather slim to say the least. Whilst Mr Cable would like to see ‘greedy’ company directors named and shamed, what he seems to misunderstand is that these greedy directors are the very product of the government’s own capitalist economic policy, while the notion of ‘Responsible Capitalism‘ ,with or without a Tory government, seems like nothing more than an oxymoron to me.

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