December 6, 2009

Bono: "I'm overpaid, so shoot me"

Read this on its original site, The Telegraph, here.


Bono: 'I'm overpaid, so shoot me'

Bono, the multi-millionaire rock star and frontman of U2, has admitted that he is overpaid but dismissed claims of hypocrisy for preaching about poverty in developing countries.

Bono has dismissed hypocrisy claims for preaching on poverty
Bono has dismissed hypocrisy claims for preaching about poverty Photo: AP
The U2 frontman made the comments after launching a campaign supported by Nike and Apple, urging people to buy clothes and electronics to help fund aid project in Africa.

When asked if he thought people were sympathetic to a campaign fronted by someone with his wealth, he told the Daily Mail: “You can still contribute even if you are not as fortunate as I am.

“I've been blessed and I've been over-rewarded for what I do and I'm trying to give my time and my resources but you know, I'm a rich rock star, so shoot me.
“I'm having a great life and even though I can be a pain in the a*** going on about all this stuff, the band feel strongly about it too.”

On Monday Bono launched the Lace Up Save Lives campaign – a partnership between Nike and the (RED) brand, which he co-founded.

Gap, Apple and Dell are among others to sign up to the initiative, with money spent on certain products going to the campaign.

Bono said he was not asking people to put their hands in their own pockets, but the pockets of big corporations.

Earlier this year, leading charities including Oxfam attacked U2 for moving their business to the Netherlands where there is virtually no tax on royalties. It deprived Ireland of revenue and the government then cut its overseas aid budget.

The move came in 2006 after the Irish government introduced a cap of €250,000 (£230,000) on tax-free incomes for artists. It meant the band would have faced a multi-million pound tax bill because of their huge album sales, tour receipts and royalties. It is believed to have saved them around £15m.
Bono, whose real name is Paul Hewson, said he did not mind criticism from people “doing their bit”.

“I think it's OK to criticise me as long as the ones who are doing so are doing their bit,” he said.

“With this campaign, I'm not asking people to put their hands in their pockets. I'm asking them to put the hands in the pockets of the companies like Apple and I'm not sure people really get that.

“I'm surprised that people are interested in talking to me any more. They must just think, ‘God, he's back again’.”

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