Well-heeled tie

A couple of $400,000 men

Elliot Hirshman now shares the title.
  • Elliot Hirshman now shares the title.

The long reign of San Diego State University president Elliot Hirshman as the highest compensated president of the California State University system has ended, barely. First known as the $400,000 man and blasted by governor Jerry Brown for his record pay when he was hired in July 2011, Hirshman’s current total compensation package of $492,469 was just slightly eclipsed in 2015 by the $492,694 made by Cal Poly San Luis Obispo president Jeffrey Armstrong, per numbers of TransparentCalifornia.com.

Democratic assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez, who married Republican-turned-Independent-turned-Democrat Nathan Fletcher on New Year’s Day, got an early wedding present from the Barona Casino on October 4 in the form of a “Gift of Pottery and El Capitan book” worth $45.86, according to the tribe’s lobbying disclosure report.

Gonzalez also got a $16 free meal. Democratic assemblywoman Toni Atkins received the same on October 17. Since elected a state senator, Atkins and her district director Myrna Zambrano each picked up $22.50 worth of free food from the tribe at Bertrand at Mr. A’s restaurant on October 17.

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Why does the headline refer to "$400,000 men" when their pay is almost $500,000? That fuss about Hirshman getting $400K a year is history from six years ago. The need now may be to report about how many CSU presidents are exceeding that figure. I'd guess that just about half of them are being paid $400K or very close to that figure.

Wow, $492,469 represents SECOND place? Some of this is private compensation, right? Not just hard-won taxpayer dollars? But then again, this is the Age of Trump, where big-bucks salaries mean you are first-rate, gilded, highly competent and a very desirable friend to be cultivated by developers and wheeler-dealers who will take public land in the middle of Mission Valley and turn it into a windfall for themselves and your institution of so-called higher education.

Oh, come on Monahan, Trump has nothing to do with these fat CSU salaries. Give us all a break! This pattern can as easily be blamed on the Dems as on the GOP. In fact, these fat pay packages have all come along under a Brown administration and a super-majority Dem dominance of the state legislature. Oh, who has appoints the CSU trustees and UC regents? Why it's the governor, and now he seems utterly unable to get either of those bodies under control. Doh, they are set up to be able to avoid control by politicians.

If anyone wants to see an end to these abuses, the best bet is to reestablish a functioning two-party system in this state. Supermajority dominance of a state has always led to massive abuses, waste, and misallocation of resources. And don't forget that those CSU execs are to a man/woman, political liberals.

What does the SDSU president do anyway? In my years there I never knew him to make a public appearance. I don't suppose they punch a time clock, but I wonder if they ever visit the campus. Exactly how do they earn that money?

Maybe you've hit on a dirty little secret. When Day and later Weber were the presidents, suspicions about their dealings ran rampant. Sometimes it appeared that Weber was actually trying to play land baron, and shove his development schemes down the throats of neighbors, the city, the CSU system, and the world. As to Hirshman making no public appearances, well, maybe he's just a shy scholarly guy. Yeah, right.

These are 'posts' not jobs. They are sub-royalty awarded to the socially talented and connected. It's like my home has a nice garden but those folks have 'grounds.'

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