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(Some professor)   A half century ago America's full-time workers earned an average hourly wage of around $50, in today's dollars, including health and pension benefits. Today, America's largest employer is Walmart, whose average employee earns $8.81 an hour   (robertreich.org) divider line 135
    More: Fail, Wal-Mart, salary, big-box retailers, unfair labor practice, workers earned, Sam Walton, technological change, pensions  
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2997 clicks; posted to Business » on 22 Nov 2012 at 10:00 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-11-22 12:11:08 PM

Silverstaff: The problem with Unions is that both sides are right.

Without Unions, we probably wouldn't have a minimum wage, or a 40 hour work week, or any one of zillions of other workers rights. If you can be part of a union with any actual teeth to it (I know a few people in "unions' which basically just collect dues and roll over when Management tells them to), it's a good deal for the worker.

On the other hand, unions pull some shady shiat.

Here's one big example that always stood out to me of union attitudes.

A decade or so ago, a convention moved from one city, where it had been held for decades, to another, larger city a couple of states over. The new city had larger convention halls, more hotels, and was generally much better to hold a national convention in. The problem was, the new city was in a very union-friendly place, and everything was unionized.



You're talking about McCormick in Chicago. The shakedowns there are legendary.

A friend of mine who regularly displayed there always brought a stack of cash to grease the loading dock folks to make sure his shiat got unloaded early. Whoa unto thee who didn't do this and were left scrambling to get set up. The heavy handshake gets shiat done.
 
2012-11-22 12:11:13 PM
Wait a second, yes, things are cheaper now, but we expect that because of automation and technology, not because we've screwed over the people making them.

On one side the economy is based on unabated growth, on the other efficiency is based on less people doing more. Those are mutually exclusive, I think.
 
2012-11-22 12:15:39 PM
I always thought one of the temp-agencies was the largest employer in america.
 
2012-11-22 12:21:17 PM
At the peak of its power and influence in the 1950s, the United Auto Workers could claim a significant portion of GM's earnings for its members.

Unfortunately, the UAW didn't learn the lesson of successful parasites: don't kill your host.
 
2012-11-22 12:25:27 PM

Martonio: Your amazing reading comprehension obviously missed the point where the unions were doing a shakedown saying the vendors had to use the union contractors, or risk intimidation and/or vandalization of their booths.


Yet, apparently nobody was physically stopped from setting up their own booths if they didn't want to hire the union guys. So, they were basically pushy salesmen who some people found intimidating.
 
2012-11-22 12:27:19 PM

Ed Finnerty: So stop shopping at Walmart. It's not rocket surgery.


The left isn't about alternatives and personal choice, it's about making sure the One True Path is followed. WalMart and Fox News don't fit that template and therefore must be vilified and, if possible, destroyed.
 
2012-11-22 12:30:19 PM
50 years ago we were the only industrial power left standing after WWII. Competition does crazy things.

Now, if someone is going to say that quality of life was somehow better then, there's nothing I can do for you, because you're nuts.
 
2012-11-22 12:33:19 PM

Debeo Summa Credo: False. Robert Reich is a liar and is lying to you.


Just misleading you (again). It's an apples and oranges headfake.

Union workers today make over $50 an hour, there just aren't as many union jobs.

The girl who worked at the dimestore in 1962 was not making today's equivalent of $50 an hour. More like $1.15 an hour (the then minimum wage), which would translate to about $6.00 an hour today. $8.81 is close to 50% more.
 
2012-11-22 12:40:36 PM
One of the arguments I hear all the time for needing illegal immigration is, "You don't want to pay $5 for a head of lettuce do you? That's what you'd pay if farmers had to hire legal workers." Sounds like WalMart should hire nothing but illegals, because apparently it's okay to exploit them, and guys like Reich wouldn't be complaining how crappy the WalMart wages are. You wouldn't want to pay $20 for a box of paper clips, would you?
 
2012-11-22 12:42:28 PM
From the article:

But if retail workers got a raise, would consumers have to pay higher prices to make up for it? A new study by the think tank Demos reports that raising the salary of all full-time workers at large retailers to $25,000 per year would lift more than 700,000 people out of poverty, at a cost of only a 1 percent price increase for customers.

If it only costs 1% then why doesn't a major retailer do it? Oh that's right: because Reich is talking out of his ass again.

Retail jobs aren't a profession, it is staffed mainly by young people that will transition into higher paying jobs. Reich seems to want to desire a way to stop the world and have people be satisified working as a cashier all their life.
 
2012-11-22 12:54:02 PM

stiletto_the_wise: You know, I'd trade those cheap 2010-era batteries and stereos any day, for a 1960-era job that would let me buy a house, raise a family, afford medical care, and a pension to take care of me when I'm old--all on one income.


Yea, but in 1960 there was no Ceelo Green and if you wanted a sitcom you certainly didn't have "Two Broke Girls". My god man, you'd be stuck with Andy Griffith and "The Flintstones"! And if you want immersive evening entertainment there's no WoW, you'll have to read a book! Is the certainty of your future and reasonable job prospects really worth the loss of all these modern gems!?

/ shut up and enjoy your cheap bread and circus you ungracious peasant
 
2012-11-22 12:55:49 PM

jjorsett: Unfortunately, the UAW didn't learn the lesson of successful parasites: don't kill your host.


Don't use words you don't know the meaning of. I realize this would cut your vocabulary to nearly nothing, but I'm prepared to accept the risk that we'll never be assaulted by your "wisdom" again as a result.
 
2012-11-22 01:31:05 PM

jjorsett: At the peak of its power and influence in the 1950s, the United Auto Workers could claim a significant portion of GM's earnings for its members.

Unfortunately, the UAW didn't learn the lesson of successful parasites: don't kill your host.


Parasites? The people who build the products that the company sells to make money are parasites?
I guess that the managers and executives who dug the pit and drove GM into it are the host, then?

/You must be some kind of bizarro-fark.
 
2012-11-22 01:34:10 PM
farm8.staticflickr.com
.
 
2012-11-22 01:39:10 PM

cchris_39: Debeo Summa Credo: False. Robert Reich is a liar and is lying to you.

Just misleading you (again). It's an apples and oranges headfake.

Union workers today make over $50 an hour, there just aren't as many union jobs.

The girl who worked at the dimestore in 1962 was not making today's equivalent of $50 an hour. More like $1.15 an hour (the then minimum wage), which would translate to about $6.00 an hour today. $8.81 is close to 50% more.


$1.15 in 1962 is worth $8.81 today
 
2012-11-22 01:43:36 PM

HotIgneous Intruder: In 1961, things weren't so different:
Mr. Frederick Donner, Chairman of the Board of the General Motors Corporation, received in salary and bonuses an amount of $2,922,000 for the period from 1956 through 1960. By contrast, the wages of an average GM hourly worker totalled $28,329, assuming that he worked 52 weeks each of these years, which the average GM worker did not. Mr. Donner received in this period more than 100 times the compensation of a GM worker.

From here.

Further, using the b>BLS inflation calculator, I see that the average wage of the GM worker in 1960 of $28,329 is the 2012 equivalent of earning $221,384.44.


That $28k is for working from 1956 to 1960, not just one year.
 
2012-11-22 01:52:44 PM

Linux_Yes: .. el snippo...
and the owners think that is just fine, even though they are too stupid/short sited to see that they're undermining themselves and that they'd make more money in the long haul if our country had a prosperous thriving middle class.

Greed/selfishness blinds even those with the best eyesight.


Blindness? I don't see blindness at all - I see a careful and calculated strategy. You're undervaluing the notion of Globalization that needs to be in this discussion. The "owners" are quite willing to suck the West dry (not just the USA, but Europe, Australia and Canada) then move on to emerging markets like India and China. That is the general long term strategy that is being employed.

Part of that strategy is to get as rich as possible right now, so that you've got enough money to keep moving to where you get the lifestyle you want. Earn $100 Million right now and you can simply move from one country to another when the situation warrants. It also means a pretty nice retirement fund for yourself for when you finally do get out of the game, with interest building up from savings in transnational banks and investments in the new markets your former colleagues are now exploiting. By the time any of these owners will really need to deal with the consequences of their actions, they'll be dead of old age.
 
2012-11-22 01:53:21 PM

FirstNationalBastard: Saw this in another thread, think it's appropriate to leave here...


It's essentially an extended bumper sticker argument. Tax policy was different enough that a direct comparison of marginal rates isn't an accurate representation. Nor is the social safety net as it asserted "weakened" today in comparison to the 1950s. If anything due to the Great Society programs of LBJ, our "social safety net" guarantees far more than the 1950s ever saw.

America is in a productivity funk. Everyone wants wealth but they think shuffling around doing menial labor or work will bring it to them. Please tell me what skills in the bulk of the American workforce justify paying people 50$ an hour?

Everyone wants the pay that a skilled machinist or master electrician pulls in but few want to actually have the duty or build the skills for it.
 
2012-11-22 02:40:14 PM

Mrbogey: FirstNationalBastard: Saw this in another thread, think it's appropriate to leave here...

It's essentially an extended bumper sticker argument. Tax policy was different enough that a direct comparison of marginal rates isn't an accurate representation. Nor is the social safety net as it asserted "weakened" today in comparison to the 1950s. If anything due to the Great Society programs of LBJ, our "social safety net" guarantees far more than the 1950s ever saw.

America is in a productivity funk.
Everyone wants wealth but they think shuffling around doing menial labor or work will bring it to them. Please tell me what skills in the bulk of the American workforce justify paying people 50$ an hour?

Everyone wants the pay that a skilled machinist or master electrician pulls in but few want to actually have the duty or build the skills for it.


I see you've been asleep for the past thirty-odd years, Rumplestiltskin. I suggest you review the welfare reform legislation of the past three decades and think about how that interacts with the radical redistribution of wealth and income since 1979 and get back to us.

I guess that this is what a "productivity funk" looks like

/Crack: You're smoking it.
//Just whose, I'm not certain.
 
2012-11-22 03:19:02 PM

HotIgneous Intruder: All the pesky comparisons aside -- which actually serve well to show that the more things change the more they stay the same -- the Wallyworld serfs should at least be given benefits or raises enough to cover health insurance. This would take the social welfare burden off the government, in other words, the taxpayers, you and me.
I'll bet Walmart could get a hell of a group rate on employee insurance.


Hate to break to all you farkers but Wal-Mart does offer decent insurance plans and benefits
And never heard of any personal manger sending workers to sign up for welfare.
/ 14 year employee of Wally world
 
2012-11-22 03:49:47 PM
False equivalency is false.
 
2012-11-22 03:54:30 PM

RickN99: A half century ago America's full-time workers at General Motors (not the entire US workforce) earned an average hourly wage of around $50, in today's dollars, including health and pension benefits. Today, America's largest employer is Walmart, whose average employee, if you include the 400,000 part-time workers, earns $8.81 an hour.


So why do we have fewer full time, quality positions?

Is Walmart offering their workers full time positions, and the workers are refusing?

Or is Walmart only offering part time position for the specific purpose of keeping salaries low?
 
2012-11-22 04:24:19 PM

demaL-demaL-yeH: Mrbogey: FirstNationalBastard: Saw this in another thread, think it's appropriate to leave here...

It's essentially an extended bumper sticker argument. Tax policy was different enough that a direct comparison of marginal rates isn't an accurate representation. Nor is the social safety net as it asserted "weakened" today in comparison to the 1950s. If anything due to the Great Society programs of LBJ, our "social safety net" guarantees far more than the 1950s ever saw.

America is in a productivity funk. Everyone wants wealth but they think shuffling around doing menial labor or work will bring it to them. Please tell me what skills in the bulk of the American workforce justify paying people 50$ an hour?

Everyone wants the pay that a skilled machinist or master electrician pulls in but few want to actually have the duty or build the skills for it.

I see you've been asleep for the past thirty-odd years, Rumplestiltskin. I suggest you review the welfare reform legislation of the past three decades and think about how that interacts with the radical redistribution of wealth and income since 1979 and get back to us.

I guess that this is what a "productivity funk" looks like. 

/Crack: You're smoking it.
//Just whose, I'm not certain.


Productivity has little to do with wages. If you have 1,000 highly productive workers competing for 1 job, the job will pay minimum wage.
 
2012-11-22 04:29:04 PM
That is perhaps the best cartoon that Tom Toles has ever done (not the funniest, wackiest or most orignal, maybe, but very likely the most acute and elegant expression of fundamental truths of the type that Tom Toles endeavours to convey with humour and wit each week or so).

Mais revenons à nos sheeple.

$50 in 1955 was fairly good pay. The work week was six days for many, but was probably reduced to Saturday half-day off towards the end of that period. That $50 was earned in more hours than most salary or even wage workers consider "full time" today, although the notional 37.5 hour week is more like 42 hours on average.

This reduces the value of that $50 slightly because it was less per hour. Leisure is worth a little something. I believe economists value it at about $2.50 an hour. I would put the price higher.

According to Measuring worth, $50 in 1955 was the equivalent of:

If you want to compare the value of a $50.00 Commodity in 1955 there are four choices. In 2011 the relative:
real price of that commodity is $420.00
real value of that commodity is $530.00
labor value of that commodity is $538.00(using the unskilled wage) or $656.00(using production worker compensation)
income value of that commodity is $964.00

If you want to compare the value of a $50.00 Income or Wealth , in 1955 there are four choices. In 2011 the relative:

historic standard of living value of that income or wealth is $420.00
contemporary standard of living value of that income or wealth is $530.00
economic status value of that income or wealth is $964.00
economic power value of that income or wealth is $1,820.00


If you want to compare the value of a $50.00 Project in 1955 there are four choices. In 2011 the relative:
historic opportunity cost of that project is $342.00
contemporary opportunity cost of that project is $530.00
labor cost of that project is $538.00(using the unskilled wage) or $656.00(using production worker compensation)
economy cost of that project is $1,820.00

In other words, the worker who got $50 in 1955 was as well of (if unskilled, like WalMart employees, as if she was getting $538 a week). If a line worker (semi-skilled, unionized) they were as well off as if they were pulling down $656. And in terms of how well other people were off, they would be making $964, because people were poorer then. Mr. Ford's pay packet looked a lot better when other people were more likely to be making $35 a week. Your status was higher with the same amount of purchasing power than it is today. Lots more rich people today.

In terms of what you could buy relative to your fellow Americans (let alone those beggers overseas), that $50 was like $1820.00, even if it only bought $580 worth of stuff. A TV set was still a luxury in 1955 although roughly half or two thirds of homes had one, almost certainly a BW set with a tiny screen by today's lowest standards (non-TV owning hipster standards). Or roughly the size of a computer monitor with a cathode tube.

So people who got $50 a week were quite happy with their pay in all likelihood. They were definitely better off than WalMart employees, because the WalMart pay packet usually has no benefits and the WalMart masses are usually working part-time and shifts. NASTY. And they may be locked into the store if they are night crew. REALLY NASTY IF THE STORE BURNS.

It was a fire and locked doors that created the reforms that lead to unions in the first place. People died because the FIRE DOOR was locked at a sweat shop in New York. A sweat shop that is so famous now that a GOON comic book had an issue based on the story. This was before Mr. Roosevelt went commie on you. Well, went liberal. He was an American aristocrat, of sorts, being distantly related to the Oyster Bay Roosevelts, who were just that much more tony.

The idea that $50 in 1955 was better than $8.81 an hour in 2012 is moot. Maybe it was, maybe it wasn't. Depends on how much you value your freedom, your leisure time, clean hands, and job portability.

Some WalMart workers (mostly illegal and semi-legal types from low-income backgrounds) might think they were better off than you would in the same place.

But $8.80 times 20 hours a week is not enough money for anybody to be really happy unless they are totally retarded and living in their Mother's basement. Please feel free to confirm this, Fark Conservatives!

That much is bang on.

It's not so much the absolute disappearance of benefits, pensions, home-ownership and hope. And it definitely isn't Obama. When you get down to brass tacks, it is the disappearance of manufacturing and full time jobs with unions.

CURSE YOU ONE PERCENTERS! And curse you Republican 47 percenters. You stupid schmucks. You hate immigrants, blacks and liberals so much you handed your owners your balls and said, do with 'em as you please, just hurt other people more!

You not what they did with your balls, Amerika-ka-ka? They threw them out the window, just like anybody who cuts off your balls, stupid!

Personally I love Lady America, but her Evil Twin, Amerika-ka-ka is a real BIOTCH with a CAPITALIST B, which stands for Bullshiat, and which you are deep, deep in, seeing as your heads have been up your arses for over 400 years now.

They say on the far right (or K-K-Konservative Middle America, as they call themselves) that they want a Second American Revolution. They deserve one, but not the one they want. Not a counter-revolution, but the real drag-'em down and string 'em up from the lamppost revolution that they thrill to fear every time a Democrat (mealy-mouthed, useless wimps though they may be) gets elected.

Say hello to your balls if you ever find them. Oops! Stepped in something squishy. Gotta run!

Amerika-ka-ka can bite me. If I ever find where she ditched her democratic, liberal and kindly sister, there is going to be Hell to Pay.
 
2012-11-22 04:31:49 PM

BarkingUnicorn: I see you've been asleep for the past thirty-odd years, Rumplestiltskin. I suggest you review the welfare reform legislation of the past three decades and think about how that interacts with the radical redistribution of wealth and income since 1979 and get back to us.

I guess that this is what a "productivity funk" looks like. 

/Crack: You're smoking it.
//Just whose, I'm not certain.

Productivity has little to do with wages. If you have 1,000 highly productive workers competing for 1 job, the job will pay minimum wage.


It used to. So you agree that government and tax policies that allowed for and subsidized manufacturers exporting good-paying jobs - and the successful attacks on unions - were stupid, short-sighted moves. Thanks for your support.
 
2012-11-22 05:02:41 PM

demaL-demaL-yeH: I guess that this is what a "productivity funk" looks like.


Reminds me of a comment about peasants making boars hair soup.

Someone else took the rest of the pig.
 
2012-11-22 05:10:02 PM

demaL-demaL-yeH: Mrbogey: FirstNationalBastard: Saw this in another thread, think it's appropriate to leave here...

It's essentially an extended bumper sticker argument. Tax policy was different enough that a direct comparison of marginal rates isn't an accurate representation. Nor is the social safety net as it asserted "weakened" today in comparison to the 1950s. If anything due to the Great Society programs of LBJ, our "social safety net" guarantees far more than the 1950s ever saw.

America is in a productivity funk. Everyone wants wealth but they think shuffling around doing menial labor or work will bring it to them. Please tell me what skills in the bulk of the American workforce justify paying people 50$ an hour?

Everyone wants the pay that a skilled machinist or master electrician pulls in but few want to actually have the duty or build the skills for it.

I see you've been asleep for the past thirty-odd years, Rumplestiltskin. I suggest you review the welfare reform legislation of the past three decades and think about how that interacts with the radical redistribution of wealth and income since 1979 and get back to us.

I guess that this is what a "productivity funk" looks like. 

/Crack: You're smoking it.
//Just whose, I'm not certain.


My names not Rumpelstilskin, Rip.

The argument was 1950s versus 2012. Not 1979 versus 2012. Also the largesse of social spending is easy when the GDP is growing. We've seen America abandon advocating for work since then and everyone wants in on the dole. You can't have a strong safety net when you gut your economy.
 
2012-11-22 05:20:13 PM

Mrbogey: My names not Rumpelstilskin, Rip.

The argument was 1950s versus 2012. Not 1979 versus 2012. Also the largesse of social spending is easy when the GDP is growing. We've seen America abandon advocating for work since then and everyone wants in on the dole. You can't have a strong safety net when you gut your economy.


So you see my point, then, Ms. Frank?
You obvious logic and history flaws aside, then, you agree that government and tax policies that allowed for and subsidized manufacturers exporting good-paying jobs - and the successful attacks on unions - were stupid, short-sighted moves. Thanks for your support.
 
2012-11-22 05:21:36 PM

demaL-demaL-yeH: Mrbogey: My names not Rumpelstilskin, Rip.

The argument was 1950s versus 2012. Not 1979 versus 2012. Also the largesse of social spending is easy when the GDP is growing. We've seen America abandon advocating for work since then and everyone wants in on the dole. You can't have a strong safety net when you gut your economy.

So you see my point, then, Ms. Frank?
You obvious logic and history flaws aside, then, you agree that government and tax policies that allowed for and subsidized manufacturers exporting good-paying jobs - and the successful attacks on unions - were stupid, short-sighted moves. Thanks for your support.


Your. (I get a freebie due to your missing apostrophe.)
 
2012-11-22 06:05:41 PM

Mid_mo_mad_man: Hate to break to all you farkers but Wal-Mart does offer decent insurance plans and benefits


Offering and being able to afford are entirely separate matters.
 
2012-11-22 06:42:27 PM

starsrift: Okay, so what's a GM worker earn today, in wages and benefits? Let's compare apples to apples. Anyone know anyone who works for GM?


when my dad retired from Ford 3 years ago, he was making $74K a year. And he wasn't in any sort of management position.
 
2012-11-22 06:58:34 PM

Generation_D: What would be great is if Obama turned out to be a true socialist, and did something like said "American can't tolerate subsidizing the Walmart family any longer" and then nationalized the business, just took it over.

Epic lulz. Won't happen, but America needs an aggressive prosecution of companies that shove their expenses out onto the public (not providing health care, underpaying its employees leading to them being on food stamps, etc) .. while pocking billions in profits.

All so you dumb sh*ts can have cheaper crap from china.


// haven't shopped a wal mart in decades.

/// still visits peopleofwalmart.com though


Just try buying any consumer item that isn't made in China. There is very little choice.
 
2012-11-22 06:59:43 PM

EnviroDude: What do you expect when the currency is devalued by overprinting? 50 years ago? I would settle for 5 years ago.


This over printing would not have happened if Bush hadn't rogered the economy.
 
2012-11-22 07:03:34 PM

Generation_D: Snarfangel: "America's full-time workers earned an average hourly wage of around $50, in today's dollars--"? That made me furrow my brow, forcing me to read the article. Curse you, subby!

In the interest of accuracy, how about:

A half century ago, the biggest private employer (GM) offered the inflation-adjusted equivalent of $50 an hour in wages and benefits. Today, the biggest private employer (Walmart) offers an average of $8.81 in wages, with a third of the employees ineligible for benefits because they work less than 28 hours per week

/I know, it's more boring that way. "People making cars a half century ago earned a lot more than people in retail do today" is not much better, though.

I'm sure a hell of a lot of those retail workers would be delighted to be making cars instead. Oh but wait, we can't. Unions are to blame for high wages.

You see how it is, Tea-mitters?

High wages are to blame, not sh*tty management decisions, not vulture capitalists, not execs making 300 times what they used to, oh hell no.

Its those damn union guys again. Eff those guys.

Now back to work Thursday Retail .


Walmart is a classic example of why we need unions to stand up for workers. How the hell does anyone live on $8 an hour?
 
2012-11-22 07:19:38 PM

Therion: Remember 2008 and all of the calls for guillotines in the street, conpared to now when we're holding our breath and hoping that taxes on income over $250,000 can go up just a tiny little bit, please?.


As one of those households with incomes over $250,000 I don't necessarily mind contributing a little more than people who earn less than I do. I would just like a little something extra for my extra contribution. Not anything that cost money really, mostly just time, how about we all carry around our tax returns and when you come to a line the person who pays the most taxes gets to go to the front of the line? Or how about the more you pay in taxes the faster you can drive and people have to get out of the lane I want to drive in an let me go by?

And yes, I really am serious. If I have to pay more to make up for those who earn less than I should get perks for it, seems fair to me. And yes, I get nicer things for the larger income I receive but I worked for that larger income, through putting in more time, more education and more devotion to my career.
 
2012-11-22 07:27:14 PM

MasterAdkins: Therion: Remember 2008 and all of the calls for guillotines in the street, conpared to now when we're holding our breath and hoping that taxes on income over $250,000 can go up just a tiny little bit, please?.

As one of those households with incomes over $250,000 I don't necessarily mind contributing a little more than people who earn less than I do. I would just like a little something extra for my extra contribution. Not anything that cost money really, mostly just time, how about we all carry around our tax returns and when you come to a line the person who pays the most taxes gets to go to the front of the line? Or how about the more you pay in taxes the faster you can drive and people have to get out of the lane I want to drive in an let me go by?

And yes, I really am serious. If I have to pay more to make up for those who earn less than I should get perks for it, seems fair to me. And yes, I get nicer things for the larger income I receive but I worked for that larger income, through putting in more time, more education and more devotion to my career.



iseeahappyface.com
 
2012-11-22 07:32:36 PM

Ed Finnerty: So stop shopping at Walmart. It's not rocket surgery.


Show me one time in the history of mankind where "ignore it and it goes away" actually worked.
 
2012-11-22 07:34:08 PM

MasterAdkins: Therion: Remember 2008 and all of the calls for guillotines in the street, conpared to now when we're holding our breath and hoping that taxes on income over $250,000 can go up just a tiny little bit, please?.

As one of those households with incomes over $250,000 I don't necessarily mind contributing a little more than people who earn less than I do. I would just like a little something extra for my extra contribution. Not anything that cost money really, mostly just time, how about we all carry around our tax returns and when you come to a line the person who pays the most taxes gets to go to the front of the line? Or how about the more you pay in taxes the faster you can drive and people have to get out of the lane I want to drive in an let me go by?

And yes, I really am serious. If I have to pay more to make up for those who earn less than I should get perks for it, seems fair to me. And yes, I get nicer things for the larger income I receive but I worked for that larger income, through putting in more time, more education and more devotion to my career.


The biggest perk is one you already get: You live in a country where you have been able to acquire lots of nice stuff.

(Also: Poor people don't break into your house/car, kill/eat you/and your pets/spouse/kids and take your stuff.)

/I know you were just trollin'.
//If not, I have a question: What, precisely, do you build/grow/mine?
 
2012-11-22 07:37:51 PM
If the owners weren't dicks, we wouldn't need unions.

If unions weren't dicks, the owners couldn't so easily demonize them.
 
2012-11-22 07:41:22 PM

Silverstaff: The problem with Unions is that both sides are right.


So vote CEO.
 
2012-11-22 07:51:50 PM
I'd like to see the SEC get a spine and just suspend Walmart's stock until it fixes things so the public is no longer picking up the tab for their employees. And if Walmart doesn't want to play along, take away their being a publicly traded company all together.
 
2012-11-22 08:00:08 PM

PowerSlacker: False equivalency is false.


Red is red
Blue is blue
water is water
earth is earth

/that's easy.
 
2012-11-22 09:20:56 PM
Rumplestiltskin /= Rip Van Winkle
 
2012-11-22 10:35:20 PM

Any Pie Left: Rumplestiltskin /= Rip Van Winkle


And what was Rumplestiltskin's special skill?

/I know you know, but please enlighten the troll shoot down that bogey.
 
2012-11-22 10:44:13 PM

Mid_mo_mad_man: HotIgneous Intruder: All the pesky comparisons aside -- which actually serve well to show that the more things change the more they stay the same -- the Wallyworld serfs should at least be given benefits or raises enough to cover health insurance. This would take the social welfare burden off the government, in other words, the taxpayers, you and me.
I'll bet Walmart could get a hell of a group rate on employee insurance.

Hate to break to all you farkers but Wal-Mart does offer decent insurance plans and benefits
And never heard of any personal manger sending workers to sign up for welfare.
/ 14 year employee of Wally world


The Wal-Mart my sister works at has Medicaid applications in the HR office. She has been scheduled less than 40 hrs. TWICE in the past 11 months, and each of those were 32 hrs, yet she is denied benefits because she works a "part-time" position.

Go sell that bullsh*t somewhere else. We ain't buyin' it 'round here.
 
2012-11-22 10:47:20 PM

schrodinger: RickN99: A half century ago America's full-time workers at General Motors (not the entire US workforce) earned an average hourly wage of around $50, in today's dollars, including health and pension benefits. Today, America's largest employer is Walmart, whose average employee, if you include the 400,000 part-time workers, earns $8.81 an hour.

So why do we have fewer full time, quality positions?

Is Walmart offering their workers full time positions, and the workers are refusing?

Or is Walmart only offering part time position for the specific purpose of keeping salaries low?


They are hiring workers for "part-time" positions but working them full-time so that they don t have to give them benefits or raises, and they can still brag about how well their full-time employees have it.
 
2012-11-22 11:53:52 PM

Silverstaff: The problem with Unions is that both sides are right.

Without Unions, we probably wouldn't have a minimum wage, or a 40 hour work week, or any one of zillions of other workers rights. If you can be part of a union with any actual teeth to it (I know a few people in "unions' which basically just collect dues and roll over when Management tells them to), it's a good deal for the worker.

On the other hand, unions pull some shady shiat.

Here's one big example that always stood out to me of union attitudes.

A decade or so ago, a convention moved from one city, where it had been held for decades, to another, larger city a couple of states over. The new city had larger convention halls, more hotels, and was generally much better to hold a national convention in. The problem was, the new city was in a very union-friendly place, and everything was unionized.

The day before the convention was due to open, the trucks for the exhibitors and vendors rolled in. They'd been going to this convention (and others in the same field) for years, or decades. They knew the normal deal, roll in, set up your booth, unload your merchandise, get ready for tomorrow when tens of thousands of visitors would be strolling by.

Now, when they showed up, there were union reps waiting at the convention center. That convention center was a union shop. Since the vendors weren't part of the Union, they couldn't unload their own trucks, they couldn't set up their own booths, they couldn't even plug in their own lamps for their tables. They had to hire union laborers, union carpenters, and union electricians to get everything done, at union rates and union rules. Basically each vendor was being shook down for around a thousand dollars, on-the-spot, or they wouldn't be allowed to set up. Pay 3 guys for a minimum of 8 hours of labor despite only working about 1 hour each, at $30/hour, plus some hefty fees directly to the union). The workers could collect a full day's pay for simple unpaid labor (you shouldn't need a freaking electrician to plug a lamp into a socket on the wall, or a carpenter to set up a folding table and a couple of signs) at three times a reasonable rate for an hour of work, then do it again for a different vendor, getting paid for an entire weeks work at union rates in one afternoon.

There was a bit of a showdown, as you might imagine. Many vendors & exhibitors didn't have a thousand dollars or so to just throw at Union organizers on the spot to let them set up the trade show booths they'd already paid for with the convention organizers. Apparently some of the vendors from large corporations just threw them the money to end it, but some of the small businesses refused and started to do the work themselves (to threats and intimidation by the union members, and apparently formal complaints by the unions to venue management demanding they be banned from ever being allowed there again). The small businesses that ignored the unions said they basically had to keep a worker at their booth around the clock during the convention because occasionally, including late at night, goons would come by to see if the booth was unstaffed, presumably so they could damage/vandalize it.

After that, the convention stayed in the city, but some back-room deals had to be made with the unions between the convention organizers and the venue management. Unions didn't harass the vendors again in future years, but there was a curious spike in the cost of a booth at next years show.

It's behavior like that, that makes people not like unions.


If this was the case, then the venue management or show organizer wasn't that good at their jobs. I've worked in a union arena. The show promoters know up from the union costs, and should pass that information on to the vendors. I'm not saying the costs weren't excessive, they can be. But there is no reason that shouldn't have been communicated to the vendors ahead of time.
 
2012-11-23 12:21:14 AM
Too many workers. Supply and demand. We should be keeping our population in equilibrium with declining demand as it is displaced by robots. Automation has put employers in a tyrannical negotiating position. If they had a harder time finding workers, they would have to offer more money. We should be restricting immigration and disincentivizing large families through the tax and welfare codes.
 
2012-11-23 12:41:46 AM

IlGreven: Ed Finnerty: So stop shopping at Walmart. It's not rocket surgery.

Show me one time in the history of mankind where "ignore it and it goes away" actually worked.


The last Ice Age?
 
2012-11-23 01:04:12 AM

Tommy Moo: Too many workers.


No such thing. Oh sure you can argue too much supply leads to depressed wages, but if there's tons of workers around and no one is coming up with new ways to employ them, after all there's not a lot of market pressure prohibiting it, then you have a market failure.
 
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