Eric Boehlert writes that Clear Channel Communications is drowning in debt and struggling to stay in business (yes, we weep and we mourn). Already this year it has shed 12 percent of its workforce. The workers remaining are losing company matching contributions to their 401K plans.
Yet last year Clear Channel gave Rush Limbaugh a 40 percent pay raise. And Boehlert marvels at this, because it’s not as if any other radio entity could have offered him more money than what he was making before. Boehlert writes,
The astronomical worth of Limbaugh’s eight-year pact: $400 million. The amount of money Clear Channel execs have been trying to scrimp and save this year as they lay off thousands from the struggling company: $400 million. Ironic, don’t you think? …
…Last summer there was nobody else in a position to steal Limbaugh away. Clear Channel was basically bidding against itself and decided, in the end, to give Limbaugh a 40 percent raise, which included writing a $100 million signing bonus check to celebrate his contract extension. That right: A nine-figure signing bonus. At the time, it was a puzzler. Looking back at it today, the $100 million goodwill gesture, viewed against the backdrop of Clear Channel’s doomsday woes, makes no business sense whatsoever. (That $100 million bonus could have saved maybe 1,000 Clear Channel jobs this year alone.)
Lee Fang writes that at a recent Heritage Foundation dinner, Limbaugh mocked the poor and laughed at the very idea there might be a recession. One of his better lines was “So I always believed that if we’re going to have a recession, just don’t participate.”
Kind of fascinating, in an OMG that’s week-old roadkill way.