By Peter Ferdinand Drucker
The Unseen Revolution 1st variation
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Additional resources for The Unseen Revolution. How Pension Fund Socialism Came to America
But almost no management I know has made the simple calculation which puts together the percentage of pre-tax profits that goes into their own company's pension fund and the percentage of post-tax profits that already belongs to the "institutional investors," that is, to other companies' pension funds. Few therefore realize that pension funds, their own and those of others, already get as much of the company's profits as the tax collector and more, far more, than anyone else. Let us look at the 1973 figures for six companies in the chemical industry, ranging from a large one with sales of $1 billion to two fairly small ones with sales of $100 million a year each.
Senator Russell Long (Democrat for Louisiana), one of Kelso's disciples, pushed through the Congress in the fall of 1975 a bill giving special tax privileges to pension plans which invest their monies exclusively in the company the workers work for. He ignored the massive evidence that the American worker, for sound investment reasons, much prefers the GM-type private pension fund that gives him what he needs, namely, financial security for his retirement years. He surely did not realize that his bill is essentially an incentive to expropriate workers' pension funds so as to finance weak companies that otherwise could not get capital.
40 · The Unseen Revolution And exclusion of investment in the world economy is hardly the right action for a very small country today, whether in the interest of the future pensioners or of the country itself. Even advocates of these plans admit their shortcomings and are bothered by them. " Clearly, they have never even heard of the American development. The opponents of these plans —including some of Scandinavia's most knowledgeable economists, bankers, and business leaders—are equally unaware of the American development and have no idea, apparently, that American pension fund socialism exists; that it already has gone much further toward "socialism" and "employee ownership" than the most radical of the European plans; and that it has done so with far more financial and economic flexibility and far less danger of trade union abuse of pension fund power and wealth.
The Unseen Revolution. How Pension Fund Socialism Came to America by Peter Ferdinand Drucker