New tax is just window dressing

Does finance minister Wouter Bos really think that any blue chip company is going to be discouraged from making mega payouts to departing executives just because he wants to tax them more?

If a company can afford to pay more than €500,000 to say goodbye to its CEO, what is an extra €150,000 on the bill?
Rather than discouraging firms from over-the-top golden handshakes, this law is a bit of window dressing to appease everyone who is angry about the payoffs that some executives – even those who have failed to do a good job – are walking off with.
And any self-respecting accountancy firm will soon be working out all sorts of ways to avoid the extra tax anyway.
The argument is always that it’s down to the market – you need to pay people the top dollar to attract the best. That may be the case in the private sector and it should be up to shareholders to decide how much to pay bosses anyway.
But in the public sector, it is the public that effectively foots the bill and that is where the government does have a role to play.
It is obscene that the bosses of home help organisations are paying themselves hundreds of thousands of euros while slashing the pay and conditions for workers on the shop floor – and then blaming market forces.

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