|Tim Cook became the CEO of Apple computer last August, on the same day the late Steve Jobs formally resigned. Apple, we learned last week, gave Cook a hearty welcome to his position. Enormously hearty.
Cook began his CEO stint with a new pay deal that grants him one million shares of Apple stock that will vest a bit down the road. The value of those shares last August: $376 million. The value last week: over $422 million.
We also learned something else last week, from a public radio broadcast by a self-professed “Apple fanboy,” monologist Mike Daisey, about his visit to plants in China that make his iPhone. Daisey found 36-hour shifts and suicide nets outside the factories, an Apple supplier’s response to a series of worker suicide leaps. On Friday, an official Apple report acknowledged still more horrors.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., had he survived, would have turned 83 this past week. He could still be preaching. What would he be saying about Tim Cook and suicide nets? We won’t speculate. We will, in this week’s Too Much, explore the latest release of the annual report that updates the state of the Dr. King legacy.
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PETULANT PLUTOCRAT OF THE WEEK
Don’t mess with Sheldon Adelson. Or any of his buddies. Casino mogul Adelson sent that message out loud and clear a week ago Friday when he dumped $5 million into the “super PAC” that backs the wobbling White House bid of former House speaker Newt Gingrich. Those dollars are this week bankrolling a $3.4 million TV ad buy in South Carolina against Mitt Romney, the GOP front-runner who bashed Gingrich with an ad blitz of his own before the Iowa primary. Adelson and Gingrich have been close buds ever since Gingrich helped Adelson hone his anti-union patter. Adelson now ranks as the 2012 election’s most generous giver. He can afford to give more. His $5 million for Newt equals less than 0.1 percent of his $21.5 billion fortune.