Chicago, Nov. 26 : US President-elect Barack Obama has said 'captains of industry' are out of touch with what's going on in Middle America, and said they should be ready to make sacrifices to get the country's depressed economy back on track.
In an interview with ABC's Barbara Walters, Obama said bank executives should forgo their bonuses this year as an example of taking responsibility in tough times. Executives should make sacrifices because so many other people are struggling, he added.
"I think that if you are already worth tens of millions of dollars, and you are having to lay off workers ... the least you can do is say, 'I'm willing to make some sacrifice as well, because I recognize that there are people who are a lot less well off, who are going through some pretty tough times," Obama told Walters.
According to Fox News, Obama said the Big Three automakers - General Motors, Ford and Chrysler are a 'little tone deaf to what's happening in America right now' -- a problem that has become chronic.
The heads of General Motors, Ford and Chrysler drew fire last week for flying to Washington in separate corporate jets to ask Congress for federal assistance for their ailing companies.
"We're sort of focused on them. But I think it's been a problem for the captains of industry generally," Obama told Walters in the interview, to air Wednesday.