Thursday, May 02, 2002

$30 Million After Tax

If you look at it from former President Clinton's point of view, it's not such a crazy idea. As The Los Angeles Times reported today, Mr. Clinton met with NBC Television executives to talk about his doing a chat show for the network. According to The Times report, Clinton is asking for $50 million for his services. Assume that a deal is reached. This means that sometime in the fall of next year, Mr. Clinton would have roughly $30 million (after all agency fees and taxes) in his private banking account at Bessemer Trust (or wherever it is that he does his banking). Which would put him, as they say, free and clear of all debts and would make him a very wealthy man.

He can get to $30 million in the bank by continuing to do what he has been doing (speeches, books, etcetera), but it will take him a much longer time to get there. And remember, the likelihood is that the show will bomb and be cancelled after 26 weeks. Mr. Clinton will surely insist on full payment regardless. So the only "issue" would be the tawdry/tacky thing, which involves shame, which does not apply in Clinton's case.

And be honest: we'd all watch, at least at the start. How could we not?