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Obama: 'Robert Gibbs paid relatively modest pay' ($172,200 annual)

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posted on Jan, 8 2011 @ 07:27 AM
Perhaps Obama was saying that the guy deserves more considering how much he supposedly does. Perhaps Obama is just used to his own big income and doesn't understand that for most people, $172,200 is NOT 'modest pay'.

In NYC $172,200 wouldn't get you very far. But DC?
Does what Gibbs is doing mean that he deserves more money than he's getting?
Truth is .. this guy is just putting in a couple of years at the White House at this allegedly
'modest pay' rate and then can go out and earn a very, very good living making speeches and being a
talking head ("news contributor") on that left wing shill network - MSNBC (or where ever).
Two years of being Press Secretary at the 'modest' pay of $172,200 ... with the perks ...
it's not like the guy is starving and he's putting himself in position to make a ton later.
Kinda like folks who intern for a few years and then can go out and make a killing financially.

Ya'll can decide. Here's what's in the news on this ...

New York Times

President Obama, who is in the middle of making final decisions on the first major reorganization of his administration, said in a brief telephone interview on Wednesday that Mr. Gibbs would remain a close adviser and “will continue to shape the dialogue politically for many years to come.”

“We’ve been on this ride together since I won my Senate primary in 2004,” Mr. Obama said. “He’s had a six-year stretch now where basically he’s been going 24/7 with relatively modest pay. I think it’s natural for someone like Robert to want to step back for a second to reflect, retool and that, as a consequence, brings about both challenges and opportunities for the White House.”

The Atlantic - No Pity for Gibbs and his 'Modest' Salary

In bidding a sort-of farewell to White House spokesman Robert Gibbs, he noted the "relatively modest pay" for which Gibbs has labored. In fact, he earns $172,200 in a nation where the average family income hovers around $55,000, unemployment is high, record foreclosures persist and wages for most folks are at best stagnant. ....

It's a world in which a one-hour appearance can bring more than many Americans earn in a year, with the elite in the roughly $50,000 to $75,000 range. You offer a few benign inside anecdotes, take some questions and then get taken back by limo to the airport and a seat in first-class (assuming your deal doesn't include a private jet, as is the case for some journalists I know).

Disconnect? Obama pities Gibbs for his modest $172,200 gov't salary

The comment has drawn fire from both sides of the aisle. The Atlantic’s James Warren wonders if the president is suffering from “tone deafness.” Gibbs, Warren points out, “earns $172,200 in a nation where the average family income hovers around $55,000, unemployment is high, record foreclosures persist and wages for most folks are at best stagnant.” And by exiting the White House and entering the lucrative speaking circuit, Gibbs is joining a “world in which a one-hour appearance can bring more than many Americans earn in a year, with the elite in the roughly $50,000 to $75,000 range.”

The Washington Post

Even by West Wing standards, Gibbs is highly paid: Junior White House staffers earn between $40,000 and $60,000, and Obama, conscious of austerity, froze West Wing salaries early in his administration.

Rank and file federal workers earned an average $67,691 in 2008 -- about $7,600 more than private sector employees, according to Bureau of Labor Statistics.

When pay and benefits are calculated together, feds earned an average $123,049 in 2009 -- topping non-government workers by at least $60,000, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis.

Federal union leaders prefer "apples to apples" comparisons of workers performing the same job in the public or private sectors. But here again feds come out on top: According to BLS, federal "public relations managers" (the position description closest to Gibbs's press secretary work) earned an average $132,410 in 2008 -- about 44,000 more than private-sector PR bosses. (In fairness, top-earning outliers working as spokespeople for Fortune 500 companies or major non-profits surely earn more than Gibbs.)

edit on 1/8/2011 by FlyersFan because: (no reason given)

posted on Jan, 8 2011 @ 07:48 AM
reply to post by FlyersFan

Obama really should refrain from making statements like these. He is so totally out of touch with everyday Americans it is painful to watch. It's interesting though, that there are so many news outlets covering this statement. I wouldn't have expected that.

posted on Jan, 8 2011 @ 09:16 AM
Although I would LOVE to make $172k per year, and don't consider it modest, Obama said, "RELATIVELY modest". That means relative to something. I think he was probably saying relative to how much Gibbs could make in the private sector as opposed to relative to peons like ourselves.

Of course, the pay of the typical American is probably not the benchmark Mr. Obama (and indeed Mr. Gibbs himself) would use to determine whether Mr. Gibbs’s pay is modest, or im-. They would have to consider the opportunity cost of working for the White House — that is, what Mr. Gibbs could be earning if employed elsewhere.

Take, for example, Peter Orszag, who was the president’s first director of the Office of Management and Budget. In that role, he earned an annual salary of $199,700 in 2010. Mr. Orszag recently took a position at Citigroup, with an estimated salary of $2 million to $3 million. Certainly by comparison, his White House pay looks modest. Probably Mr. Gibbs’s does, too.

So. RELATIVE TO $2-3 Million, $172K is quite modest.


I'm sure Obama is not thinking in terms of someone making $45K a year or he wouldn't have said that $172 K is modest. That makes absolutely no sense.

posted on Jan, 8 2011 @ 10:01 AM
Well, I think the tax laws on private property are relatively enslavement, but who am I to judge.

Yes, there seems to be a complete disconnect from reality in government circles.

Government was never meant to be a permanent teat for people to suckle on. That includes our representatives.

It is the mindset that permeates our society though. This entitlement mentality. What is good for collective so to speak. Of course you will have those argue that if they are not paid higher amounts that would breed corruption. Not so much, it would breed people wanting to get off the teat and get back to the private world where they belong.

The arguments being made basically are saying that in the private world, Gibbs would have made more. Yeah how do we know that? In the private world, jobs do not just fall into the laps of people. That is where hard work, experience and ambition drives the environment. Not in the government circles though. Just any ol run of the mill community organizer can become president.
If the liberal media can be assured he has the same mentality of the JournOlists.

edit on 8-1-2011 by saltheart foamfollower because: (no reason given)

posted on Jan, 8 2011 @ 10:12 AM
reply to post by FlyersFan

Actually I tend to think of Federal wages, including those paid to Mr Gibbs, as a pretty good yardstick for what should be thought of as average or median. If one takes a few minutes to logic out the cost of living, currently, then Federal wages are in line with what would be required to live a middle class, or upper middle classed life.

Where the disconnect seems to happen is that the very people who benefit from a fair wage then can somehow think that eight bucks an hour is enough to live on in this day and age. The minimum wage is this country is truly laughable and is one of the lowest minimum wages in the western world.

The long story short of what I am saying is that, if we had a system that wasn't so damned polarized - with such a great gulf forming between poor and well off - then this story would be a total non-issue.

Then again... We are willing to pay tens of millions of dollars per year to a guy who can swing a baseball bat with force - so who knows...


posted on Jan, 8 2011 @ 10:25 AM
Obama is wrong again. A $172K salary for someone who doesn't contribute one thing to production in the US economy and does nothing but relay messages to the public from his superiors is, IMHO, is ridiculously overpaid and underworked.

This guy would be in the soup line or on the dole in the real world. He doesn't have any idea of what real work is.

The "working man" of todays society consists of wear a suit, get a haircut, shave, and say, "Yes sir" "No sir" "How high do you want me to jump" "What kind of lies may I tell for you today" "Cream and sugar?" catch my drift?
edit on 8/1/11 by Intelearthling because: (no reason given)

posted on Jan, 8 2011 @ 10:37 AM
Would Gibbs make that much in the private sector?

He has a BA in political science. How does that translate to profit unless it's in the public sector working to funnel extorted tax dollars to the suits in charge?

I know sever folks with poli sci degrees from better schools that Gibbs went to living/working in major cities. None of them are making anywhere near what Gibbs was making. Most of them arent even working in the field since it's a largely bunk field in the first place.

He's like the idiot with a communications degree skilled at absolutely nothing but knew the right people and kissed the right asses to get lucky sucking off of the public tit.

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posted on Jan, 8 2011 @ 12:11 PM

Originally posted by Benevolent Heretic
That means relative to something.

Yes, that's why I said pretty much relative (compared to) to how much he deserves.
(or how much Obama thinks he deserves)

I think he was probably saying relative to how much Gibbs could make in the private sector

The only reason Gibbs could make more in the private sector is if he does a few years of what he's doing now first. Otherwise, he's just another hack with a Political Science degree. It's the experience and connections that he's getting NOW that will bring him in the big $$ later.

So. RELATIVE TO $2-3 Million, $172K is quite modest.

He's not worth 2-3 million a year. Not without putting in the time where he is now first.
Even after that, he'll be able to make 2-3 million a year like the other talking heads and
useless over paid speech makers (Palin, Fletcher, etc) who contribute nothing substantial.

Originally posted by thisguyrighthere
Would Gibbs make that much in the private sector?
He has a BA in political science.

There ya' go! He couldn't make that much in the private sector without first doing his time
at the White House. So his pay there is not 'modest'. It's in line with what he should be making
at this time in his career and for the position he holds at this time. If he were to leave before this
then he wouldn't be worth millions per year and therefore Obama is wrong. (again).

edit on 1/8/2011 by FlyersFan because: (no reason given)

posted on Jan, 8 2011 @ 12:14 PM
I wish I could get paid that much to come up with heaps of BS to feed a media that won't question a bit of it... but alas I'm stuck in that "real world" place where people actually have to work.

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