And of course those brilliant hawk-eyed dudes at Fortune are calling us on it. See here. Apparently we have like $15 billion in cash — frankly, I had no idea it was that much, but Peter Oppenheimer confirmed it to me. That’s more than IBM, Google, Intel or HP have on hand. Now I guess maybe it’s because I’m not a sophisticated financial guy, just an artist and an inventor, and a mathlexic one to boot, but it had always seemed to me that the more money you had, the better. But no. You let this shit pile up and suddenly you’ve got problems. Chief among them being that the asshole investors start clamoring for you to give the money to them. Fuckers!
Apparently, strictly speaking, the investors can try to claim that the money is actually theirs. This anyway is what Peter just told me and I’m like, You have got to be fucking kidding me, just because some douchebag on Wall Street bought some of our stock now he can have our money? Who the fuck invented this system? Peter swears he’s not kidding and that if we don’t find a way to do something with this money we’ll have to give it away to these dipshits who own our stock. Peter tries to put things in terms I’ll understand so he says it’s kind of like your flexible spending account where if you have money left over at the end of the year you need to go buy new eyeglasses or you lose the money. (Which reminds me: Buy glasses.)
But man oh man. Fifteen billion bucks. You know how hard it is to spend that? Fortune says we should buy TiVo, Netflix and Circuit City. Right. As if. I get hives just thinking about those companies.
Al Gore says we should use the money to save the planet from destruction, or actually what he says is we should pump some of the money into his greentard organization and put the rest into those greentech companies that Kleiner Perkins is running, and not because this will make Al rich, oh no, but because it’s the right thing to do. Bono says we should use the money to eradicate poverty and AIDS in Africa, and to buy Palm, which oh by the way his investment firm happens to own but wouldn’t it make a great fookin fit with the iPhone. Nicholas Negroponte says we should use the money to buy XO machines for every child in the Third World. To all of these ideas I’ve offered the same polite response: Blow me.
Best idea I’ve heard, however, comes from our most recent employee survey. Something like 99.9% of Apple workers surveyed believe that since that $15 billion all came about because of my doing and during my tenure as CEO, that the money should just go to El Jobso. I don’t really care about money, that’s totally not why I do this, but on the other hand fair is fair. Truth is I have added about a hundred and fifty billion to our market cap, and anywhere else in the world if you singlehandedly made that kind of money for your company then for sure you’d totally be getting a taste, and ten or fifteen billion sounds about right.
Problem is it’s a fucking huge amount of money and so far we’re not sure how to write it up in such a way that I can avoid paying taxes on it and one thing for damn sure is that no way am I letting those bastards in Washington slice part of this away from me. So how do we do it? Is it a gift? A salary? If we can make it work, we might do it. More as this develops. Peace out.