James, you are jumping to conclusions. I never use the words “excessive compensation,” for a reason. And I said the “main goal,” not the only goal. I DO want to give an incentive. But it’s a small one. I repeat, the “key rationale” for my idea — quite obvious in the context of the whole column, AND in the order of the proposals — is to use the windfall from one conservative proposal to bolster another conservative proposal. Meanwhile, if along the way, we can provide a small incentive for corporate boards to consider giving slightly lower executive compensation and instead put the money where it might do more good, well, so much the better.
I think the difference between our outlooks, as always, is that I am always thinking about practical political ramifications, not just as an outside observer. I worked in the political trenches for years. I followed Ronald Reagan when he made political deals in pursuit of (not in abdication of) his political ideals. If you think politically rather than as a philosphical purist, you see that using the windfall from one conservative proposal to bolster another conservative proposal while making some populist noises is a win-win-win. And, I remind you, it is NOT like I am proposing new taxes; I am proposing using a tiny smidgen of a humongous tax CUT for other purposes. If you don’t eliminate the corporate income tax, you don’t do any of these other things.