We have heard in state after state that teachers’ pensions and wages must be curtailed because they–and other public workers–are destroying the economy. Those greedy, selfish teachers and principals!

However.

The Economic Policy Institute in DC reports that in 2012 the average CEO made 273 times the wages of the average worker.

Now it is very important to understand the concept of shared sacrifice. Your typical CEO might have insisted on wages 500 times that of the workers, but they graciously consented to a ratio of only 273:1.

Here are a few key findings:

“Average CEO compensation was $14.1 million in 2012, using a measure of CEO pay that covers CEOs of the top 350 firms and includes the value of stock options exercised in a given year (“options realized”), up 12.7 percent since 2011 and 37.4 percent since 2009. This is our preferred measure.”

Also:

“From 1978 to 2012, CEO compensation measured with options realized increased about 875 percent, a rise more than double stock market growth and substantially greater than the painfully slow 5.4 percent growth in a typical worker’s compensation over the same period.

“Using the same measure of options-realized CEO pay, the CEO-to-worker compensation ratio was 20.1-to-1 in 1965 and 29.0-to-1 in 1978, grew to 122.6-to-1 in 1995, peaked at 383.4-to-1 in 2000, and was 272.9-to-1 in 2012, far higher than it was in the 1960s, 1970s, 1980s, or 1990s.”

Think how busy they must be outsourcing jobs to low-wage nations. Tough job, but someone has to do it.