COMMENTS: Motorists Beware

Not surprisingly, economic news inspired economic features. CBS' Life and Debt in America sent Michelle Miller to Buffalo NY where "debt collection has become a top industry." The empty office cubicles of Northstar, currently specializing in credit card delinquencies, are expected to fill up this summer, as motorists fall behind on their auto leasing payments. CBS also had John Blackstone file a feature on siphoning scams in response to the high cost of diesel and gasoline. Motorists beware! When you put a self-service hose in your car's gas tank do not leave the pump running and walk away. Somebody may drive up while your back is turned, keep the gasoline pumping, transfer the hose and fill up, return the nozzle to your car before you return--you get one tank for the price of two.

ABC's A Closer Look publicized a Forbes magazine analysis of the most overpaid corporate executives in America. Compared with 1980, Dan Harris pointed out, every CEO is overpaid: back then a chief executive earned 40 times the income of an average worker; nowadays that ratio is 433. Harris cited critics of the system: "All too often boards of directors, which set CEOs' pay, are filled with the CEO's cronies." Forbes' worst offender was Angelo Mozilo of Countrywide Financial, paid $66m annually "while his company nearly collapsed" losing 9% of its market value in an average year.


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