Mr. Diller evidently observed no harm in the abuses typified by the dot.com bubble or the excesses in market valuations across the board which ultimately saw seven trillion dollars in shareholder wealth wiped out. He had nothing to say about the jobs and savings lost by Enron employees and offered no ideas about the epidemic of corporate ills that shook confidence in American capitalism more than at any time since the Great Depression. And he’s not offering any ethical prescriptions for the current scandal involving backdating of stock options. But if anyone dares hint that his $295 million in compensation last year might be a tad over the top, the hurt becomes unbearable.
Physicians are supposed to honor the Hippocratic oath. Mr. Diller seems to be practicing something that sounds like it, but has a very different meaning.