The director of the Smithsonian resigned over the weekend.
On the face of it, it seems only sensible -- over the last 7 yrs he's been making between $400K and $1M a year, but also saw fit to charge the Smithsonian for $90K in unauthorized expenses (jet trips, gifts) and over a $1M for use of his house.
Understandably, some people thought that was excessive.
On the other hand:
I'm guessing one of this guy's main functions is to bring in money to the Smithsonian. Some people, by virtue of their talent, their charisma, their connections, or whatever are really good at that. And it appears that this guy was -- during his tenure, he apparently brought in a record one billion dollars (ie, hundreds of times more than they paid him).
Maybe it's just understood that in order to snag one of the guys that can bring in this kind of cash, you have to pay them a lot, and you're happy to pay for his housecleaning and his personal assistant and his pool boy and whatever else it takes so he can keep entertaining his rich friends at his house and organizing fundraising activities managing the endowment and raking in the green.
IOW, maybe he's not such a scoundrel -- maybe he's just taking advantage of a widely understood arrangement. Or maybe I'm totally wrong, I don't know.
And speaking of prima facie, i'm reminded of this quote:
Like a ski resort full of girls looking for husbands and husbands looking for girls, the situation is not as symmetric as it might seem.