It occurs to me that a bureaucrat, even a female bureaucrat, might look askance at the controversy over Ms. Abramson's pay at the NYTimes. (I'm referring to allegations that she was paid less than her male predecessor, though the Times claims her total package was more.)
In the bureaucracy, when someone moves up to replace the boss, you don't normally start equal with the departing boss. For example, an instance where a co-worker was promoted to be my boss: her salary was totally independent of the departing boss. The slot was classified as GS-14, so her pay would have been the lowest step in the GS-14 scale that gave her a raise. For example, if the old boss was a GS-14, step 8, making $70,000, and the co-worker was a GS-13, step 3, making $55,000, she would become a GS-14 step 2, making $56,000 (all figures are b.s.), allowing her to get step increases over the years that would take her up to GS-14, step 10 making $75,000 (more allowing for inflation adjustments).
I guess maybe that's the difference with pay in the private sector--when you hire a boss it's a new negotiation and a new market; with bureaucrats the pay is the intersection of the personal history and the job's classification.
[Update--corrected spelling of name]