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The Wells Fargo Stumpf disgrace

John Stumpf, Chairman and CEO of the Wells Fargo & Company
Mark Wilson | Getty Images
John Stumpf, Chairman and CEO of the Wells Fargo & Company

Wells Fargo's outgoing CEO pay package is another black eye for the stock market and perhaps even capitalism generally.

Stumpf's $100+ million, headline-grabbing payout for a company under the shadow of a massive scandal is ridiculous, even for a capitalist such as myself. I'm sure others -and many potential investors - are just as disgusted.

The stock market runs on trust. Trust in the market - and banks in particular - is already bruised and battered. This kind of massive payout for a CEO whose leadership led to a $185 million fine for bad behavior is just another example of poor corporate governance; the kind many Millenials and young families can point to as another reason they may want to stay away from investing.

Without new buyers to replace the baby boomers who are aging out and cashing in, the market dries up. Without confidence in the system, there are no new buyers. Confidence is everything.

This story strips away another layer of confidence in companies and corporate America. Confidence that's needed to make sure there's ultimately some "capital" left in capitalism.

Commentary by Brian Sullivan, co-host of CNBC's "Power Lunch." Follow him on Twitter @SullyCNBC.