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The real cost of cheap food

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Referencing the national cost supporting low wage earners
http://ourfuture.org/20131025/mcoutra...

  1. If the Jet averages 30 million and you divide that by 700,000 employees the expenditure for the jet comes to about $43.00 per employee which equates to about 3 pizzas or 2 buckets of KFC, hardly a poverty buster.

    For arguments sake, lets say we pay all fast food workers $15.00 hr. which is "conservatively" $20.00 hr after SS, Medicare, Workers Comp & Unemployment insurance.

    To that $20.00 Hr. cost lets add family medical insurance ($20,000 divided by 2080 hrs) = $10.00 p/hr.

    So the true cost for a full time burger flipper with family H/C comes to about $41,000 p/yr.

    At $41,000 a year for a full time burger flipper you just tripled the cost of a fast food meal and 700,000 people are now unemployed.

    48 Replies
    1. re: Tom34

      Isn't that the point? Putting high carb, high fat, low nutrition fast food meals out of business? And I'm not so sure about your math or estimates of worker's pay.

      1. re: hal2010

        Hi Hal,

        The cost of the Jet divided by the number of employees is pretty straight forward at about $43.00 p/employee.

        $5.00 an hour additional cost beyond what the employee actually receives is pretty close especially when you figure in the cost of processing payroll not to mention the cost of the Personnel Department.

        My family healthcare currently runs $26,000 so $20,000 is probably a little conservative. Full time 40 hr week x 52 weeks in a year = 2080 hrs. $20,000 \ 2080 hrs = $9.61 p/hr. If the same benefit is given to a 30 hr p/week employee its $20,000 \ 1560 hrs = $12.82 p/hr.

        Actually I DID make a huge math error.

        - $20.00 hr x 2080 hrs p/yr = $41,600.

        - $41,000 salary cost + $20,000 healthcare = $61,000

        - $61,000 p/employee

        If your goal is to put every fast food company out of business the above numbers ought to do a fine job of it.

        1. re: Tom34

          In 2012, the seven top executives at Macdonalds made $67,576,070.00.

          The CEO made $27.7 million dollars, over 1,400 times what their average server makes.

          When we have full time employees who need government assistance to survive and fat cat executives who are paid extravagantly enough to have shower curtains made out of real gold, we've shifted dramatically from the income equality that was espoused in the 1950's and 1960's during America's boom years of prosperity.

          The rising tide lifts all unless only the wealthy are in the boat. The boat goes higher with only 7, but then the masses are drowning. There is an inherent question of fairness, civic responsibility.

          The people of Switzerland recently voted for measures curbing Executive fat cat compensation with a 1:12 initiative which limits the pay of the top executive to 12 times the lowest paid worker. Meaning the CEO of Macdonalds would be entitled to $234,000 a year instead of $27,700,000.

          1. re: Pookipichu

            Need more companies like Costco. I believe the CEO makes 400k

            1. re: youareabunny

              I have not looked into it bunny but I am sure $400,000 is the tip of the iceberg. Many other ways (options) to compensate top executives both now and especially in the future.

              1. re: Tom34

                Jim Sinegal is not your run of the mill CEO.
                His total compensation (Base+Bonus) was $450K.

                He owns 0.57% of the company (receives no options) and 'makes' money as the stock price rises. By that same token, he 'loses' money when stock prices fall.

                The new guy makes $2.5 million
                http://www.forbes.com/lists/2012/12/c...

                Source: http://www.forbes.com/lists/2006/12/O...

                Given that he can't really sell his shares, his total salary is actually $450K.

              2. re: youareabunny

                youareabunny claimed, "Need more companies like Costco. I believe the CEO makes 400k"

                Try again...He makes over $4.8 million and that is just his fiscal year total (read the link). And that is before options and multiple other perks that he does not have to pay for.

                http://www.reuters.com/finance/stocks...

                  1. re: youareabunny

                    That is how lies get spread all along the internet. Did you even take the time to read the link I provided and notice the name of the CEO? Your snopes article even confirms the CEO you refer to is no longer the CEO.

                    1. re: Fowler

                      I understand that. New CEO got an increase.

                  2. re: Fowler

                    Read that again, $3.5 million was from an increase in stock prices, not options ( of which he doesn't get any, read the 10-K filing).
                    http://www.forbes.com/lists/2006/12/O...

                    Also, Sinegal left the CEO position and the new guy makes $2.4 million ($1.8 M from options
                    )http://www.forbes.com/lists/2012/12/c...

                  3. re: youareabunny

                    ><Need more companies like Costco. I believe the CEO makes 400k>

                    You are joking I hope. Just because his salary is 350K, it does not mean he makes 350K. Sinegal's salary is a very small portion of his total compensation.

                    For example, his salary (cash) is 350K, but Costo gives him 3.75 million dollar of stock every year. So his stock compensation is more than his salary cast compensation. Like Fowler said, there are many other perks. Different CEOs are different. Some earn mostly from stocks. Other earn mostly from salary. It would be very unfair to look at just one portion and not the others.

                    Just look at the pie charts:

                    http://www.forbes.com/lists/2006/12/O...

                    Sinegal's compensation is not less than that of Thompson (McDonald CEO)

                    1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                      Quick check shows similar for mcdonalds CEO except multiple each figure by 1.5 at least.

                      I mentioned salary just out of simplicity. I think most people are aware of how Costco operates especially re: worker compensation in relation to other companies. They're a successful company that doesnt rly on cheap, high turnover labor

                      1. re: youareabunny

                        Hey Bunny,

                        After reading many of your posts I know your heart is in the right place but from its beginning the fast food industry has relied on cheap labor. When I was in high school (quite some time ago :-) fast food chains exclusively hired kids at minimum wage with no benefits. Unfortunately, today, with the blessing of their parents and fat allowances given by same, many kids choose not to work and many fast food positions today are filled with older folks with far more needs. Unfortunately, the math dictates that significantly higher salaries & full medical benefits are not part of the business model. On a positive note, government assistance is available to most and very few people would argue against such assistance for those that turn off the tube, get up in the morning and go to work.

                        1. re: Tom34

                          Certainly. I guess it's just hard fathoming exactly why a temporary job for teenagers becomes a lifelong career for so many. I'm sure complacency is part of it but there's much more at play here. I understand in a way considering I got two degrees and loads of certifications and can't even land an in interview in my field.

                          1. re: Tom34

                            +1.

                            The business model hasn't changed (why should it?). What's changed is who's working at McDonald's & why - does the company bear responsibility for that?

                            I'm usually not a hardass or taking mgmt's side over labor, but if you're trying to support yourself (& a family?!) working at McD's in NYC or Chicago, should you:
                            - get out of the big city with the high cost of living?
                            - prepare yourself for a career with a future?
                            - blame your employer?

                        2. re: Fowler

                          Hey Fowler,

                          Unfortunately this entire thread was geared toward powerful emotions that completely lack a factual basis. I question my wisdom for indulging in it. Wild Turkey 101 is helping though :-)

                          1. re: Tom34

                            Tom,
                            What sort of grade did you get in Wild Turkey 101? Was the homework hard?

                            (yuk yuk)

                            1. re: Tripeler

                              Straight "A" 's and the homework got easier the more I did :-)

                        3. re: Pookipichu

                          Hi Pook,

                          Lets say we eliminate the top seven executives at McDonalds altogether and divide their combined $67,575,070. by the remaining 700,000 employees. Each employee gets a whopping one time bonus of $96.00 each, hardly a poverty buster.

                          Now lets say you have kids that plan to go to college and you plan to retire someday. Being a smart squirrel, you long ago realized that McDonalds was a good place to stash a good % of your hard earned nuts that you sacrificed for so many years to save.

                          Your financial planner tells you that you will need an annual average return of 7% to reach both your kids college education requirements & your retirement needs. He says the Executives at McDonalds have made very sound key decisions and the companies future outlook in the segment is therefore very strong and the 7% return you need is very realistic.

                          So I ask you, do you want to keep the 7 executives or get rid of them so the remaining 700,000 employees can divide up their salaries and get $96.00 each?

                            1. re: Tom34

                              What is missing out of most of this is that McDonalds does not have 700k employees. Most of those are employed by franchises, not McDonalds per se. So the whole argument linking the executive salary and redistributing it to line workers is irrelevant. You could not do this without significantly changing the franchise fees that the operators of most mcdonalds have to pay.

                              The bottom line is that if someone does not want to earn what they pay at mcdonalds, get education, training, and pull themselves up by their boot straps. It is individual responsibility not the job of the government, to look out for number 1.

                                1. re: cwdonald

                                  Amen. Why should someone working an honest full time job feel entitled to not live impoverished? And if their children suffer, fuck em. Their parents shoulda done more bootstrap pulling. And if those same children come to see American style hardass capitalism as a trap and turn to crime, well, we have prisons. More people in em than the Soviet Union ever did, in fact. Course, the government pays for that too. But its clearly better than paying for social justice and that kind of liberal nonsense.

                                  "You could not do this without significantly changing the franchise fees that the operators of most mcdonalds have to pay."
                                  _______
                                  Back on topic, there are several options. If you raised the minimum wage, franchises would become unprofitable for their owners. And in order to sell franchises, McDs would have to lower their fee structure to continue selling em. Alternatively or additionally, using government funds to offer services that everyone can take advantage of (things like healthcare, education, daycare) functionally improves the standard of living of the working poor even if you don't increase their income.

                                  1. re: cowboyardee

                                    A free capitalist economy sets the prices for the value of employment by supply and demand. Unemployment and underemployment are problems in our society right now. However, ridiculous schemes like doubling the hourly wage of the least productive and valued members of our economy is not going to fix the problem.

                                    1. re: cwdonald

                                      <Unemployment and underemployment are problems in our society right now. However, ridiculous schemes like doubling the hourly wage of the least productive and valued members of our economy is not going to fix the problem.>

                                      I must confuse you with another cwdonald. I swear this is opposite from what you would usually write. Has someone stolen your account and posting random messages?

                                      1. re: cwdonald

                                        "A free capitalist economy sets the prices for the value of employment by supply and demand."
                                        _______
                                        Such a society has never existed outside of fantasies. The closest we've gotten, the Robber Baron era, was kind of a shitty time.

                                        It is purely ridiculous to call someone working full time in food service 'the least productive' members of our economy. Though I agree they are among the least valued. Capitalism tends to reward jobs that serve little societal benefit with far greater pay than those that serve much more. Nurses, teachers, mechanics, construction workers, plumbers, dock workers... vs agents, entertainers, fund managers, corporate lawyers, corporate management and middle management, day traders and venture capitalists, etc. Which group gets paid more? And which group, if they suddenly vanished into thin air, would leave society devastated? I understand that this is the way the economy works. I accept it, and can't change it. But when you start assuming that someone who makes more money is then more productive or valuable to society, you've been suckered. Bought into a lie.

                                        1. re: cowboyardee

                                          I think it comes down to supply and demand. Little or no skill is required to flip burgers and dump fry baskets. Not saying its easy or fun, but with the exception of possibly the severely handicapped, virtually anybody can do it with little or no education or serious training. A food service worker on the other hand who worked their way up the ladder (and a hard ladder it is) and went to school and becomes a top Chef is in a completely different supply / demand category and their salaries reflect that.

                                          Nurses & teachers generally require a pretty solid effort in K-12 and 4 years of College. Most skilled trades require trade school & lengthy apprenticeships and many such as 1st class machinists require a pretty high level of math and computer skills these days. Their compensation also reflects these factors.

                                        2. re: cwdonald

                                          It would for their children....25% of children in the US, the richest, "best" country on earth, live in poverty. If everyone improves themselves, gets educated, gains skills, how does that change the system that doesn't allow for all of our citizens to have a living wage? There are limited spaces for skilled workers, so if everyone is skilled, some of them are still flipping burgers. I don't get the antipathy towards sharing enough for everyone to have the basics.

                                      2. re: cwdonald

                                        Hey CW,

                                        That's a good point about most of the stores being franchises. Most often those franchises are extremely expensive, take years to pay off and most owners lived and breathed work and nothing but work for years (usually their best years that they can't get back) to become successful.

                                        Individual responsibility has largely been lost in this country. It has become far to easy to blame everybody and everything but oneself for ones position in life.

                                        Millions of people have furthered their education while working part time at low skill / low wage jobs and went on to do very well in life. Under a certain income level, GED'S, College & tech/trade school are pretty much free.

                                        1. re: Tom34

                                          "Millions of people have furthered their education while working part time at low skill / low wage jobs and went on to do very well in life. Under a certain income level, GED'S, College & tech/trade school are pretty much free"
                                          ________
                                          And regardless of individual responsibility, millions of people must serve food, mop floors, provide daycare, pick crops, collect tolls, and operate registers. Otherwise, those who have furthered their education could not continue to make a good living off their backs.

                                          You'd have a point if those menial, low paying jobs were something that only teenagers do while they don't have further responsibilities and people depending on them. But that's not the case. It's not about blame. It's about engineering a more just and humane economic policy, where people doing necessary work are compensated in the manner that is best for society.

                                          1. re: cowboyardee

                                            And who will engineer that policy, cowboy?
                                            Why do these threads always lead to the extreme sides. We all know there's a lot btwn the janitor of a mail room and the CEO of a major corp. Some companies/jobs offer true and financially rewarding steps up the ladder and some are as dead end as it gets. Some folks get a break and some don't. Some make their own breaks. And many companies are a dream to work for.

                                            So who if not ourselves is going to engineer that policy you dream about?

                                            1. re: HillJ

                                              Moving toward the more humane and equitable policies already adopted by just about every other first world nation doesn't require a single policy change, but rather a sweeping reform of our cultural values and misconceptions that would allow a series of policy changes. Only in America is it an 'extreme' position to suppose that a wealthy nation should reward a hard day's work with fair pay and access to healthcare.

                                              I admit it's unlikely to happen any time soon in America. Because many Americans are violently opposed to it. First step to changing that is to challenge notions such as that unskilled labor is less valuable to our society than skilled but self-serving labor. When you see a huge class (and a hardworking, productive, and essential one at that) in our society as lazy, worthless, and lacking individual responsibility, it's a lot easier to shit all over them and/or vote those who would do so into office.

                                              1. re: cowboyardee

                                                Except there are plenty of people shitting all over those who manage and govern over unskilled labor. It's a equal opportunity shit-show. Hardworking people exist at every level and today's workplace is all about what have you done for me lately. Lazy and worthless in the eyes of anyone who has someone over them-and we all do at some point in our working lives-occurs at every level.

                                                So you're really focusing on how much being shit on pays. The shit doesn't sting as much if you don't have to worry about your bills.

                                                You get no argument from me about that.

                                                1. re: HillJ

                                                  Well said, HillJ. People at all levels get shit upon. Ask any CEO of a public company that has "activist investors" aka king jerk hedge fund managers that hold their stock.

                                                  I just hope you will never shit on me. :-)

                                                    1. re: HillJ

                                                      I wish I had a shit free zone for the 16 effen ducks that won't go away.

                                                      1. re: Veggo

                                                        Wild geese in Jersey...you learn to deal :)

                                                            1. re: Veggo

                                                              Just remember to, ahem, duck.

                                                          1. re: Veggo

                                                            Look for an opportunity...those 16 could potentially be quite a bit of duck confit for cassoulet!!

                                                    2. re: cowboyardee

                                                      Thank you, this is exactly how I feel, and the facts seem to support this. scandanavian countries have the best standard of living by a country mile, and are the most socialist.....have the best safety net

                                                      1. re: karenfinan

                                                        They also have far fewer in need of a safety net.

                                                        1. re: karenfinan

                                                          Does that include moving you and your family out of the US to receive a better standard of living?

                                                          I ask because for many this has been their answer to ending the frustration and concerns they have for their children's future.

                                                          1. re: HillJ

                                                            No, I want to make it better for others here, and actually have made that my profession and vocation.

                                                            1. re: karenfinan

                                                              Then talk about the work of philanthropists, corporate foundations, charitable trusts, millions provided to fund programs.

                                                              http://philanthropy.com/stats/topdono...

                                    2. The criticism of low wages for McDonald workers may be valid, but the criticism of the corporate jet is certainly dumb or unfair. Any large corporate with multiple sites have corporate jets. This is nothing new.

                                      Corporate jets are not for fun, just like Air Force One is not for enjoyment. Would anyone demand "Obama should sell Air Force One because of problem XYZ?" Would Obama selling Air Force One help improves anything?

                                      Large corporates usually have ten or more sites across the countries. Executives need to travel to different sites for monthly or even weekly meetings. It is not a fun thing to do. Most executives rather do teleconference if they can. However, certain things cannot simply be resolved by a phone call. In addition, executives traveling is to give employee (from different sites) a sense of importance. If executives only stay at headquarters all the time, then it gives the impression that they don't care for other sites. Therefore, they are required to travel.

                                      The "Sign this petition if you agree that McDonald’s should stop buying luxury jets until it pays its workers a living wage" is good for publicity, but bad for policy. How will getting rid of corporate jet help anything? It will actually make the company worse off. No, I don't mean the executives worse off. Most of them rather not have to travel.

                                      Would people also say "Sign this petition if you agree that McDonald's should take away the laptops, computers and cell phones from the executives"?

                                      28 Replies
                                      1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                                        "executes" ? Maybe some of 'em ought to be. Just kidding. I suspect word prediction got the best of you.

                                        1. re: LotusRapper

                                          :) Thanks. I will go back to see if I correct them

                                        2. re: Chemicalkinetics

                                          Corporate limos are not technically for fun either. Yes they serve a useful purpose in transport, but there are more cost effective methods of travel. Similarly having private luxury jets is by definition a matter of luxury rather than utility. There is a perfectly capable method of traveling without buying luxury jets.

                                          Bill Gates, Warren Buffet are CEOs that are perfectly at ease with traveling on commercial planes. Or leasing a private flight, or buying a non-luxury airplane.

                                          The argument that having luxury jets is a justified necessity reminds me of the argument I have heard many a time "Mommy I need an iphone", "Mommy I need a dog", "Mommy I need to see Twilight 2..." Clearly there are people in this world who were never taught to separate need from want. Or even what makes most sense in a given situation. It's scary when such people grow up to be in positions of power and influence, placing their individual comforts and desires above the real needs of many.

                                          1. re: Pookipichu

                                            The problem is Pook that the executive salaries, a plane, limos and all the rest of the perks amount to a very, very small % of the overall operating budget of a large multinational corporation that employees hundreds of thousands of people. Many times GREEDY, sometimes lavish but in reality not really significant.

                                            1. re: Tom34

                                              The cost of doing business skyrockets when you have to rely on commercial plane schedules, amtrak and the like. Even with smartphones and lap tops there is a lot of unproductive time. If your CEO makes that much money you want to maximize their "billable hours"

                                              1. re: foodieX2

                                                Hey Foodie,

                                                Unfortunately corporate planes are easy targets because the very real points you & Chem make get overshadowed by emotion. I wish folks would hold the Hollywood crowd or the pro sports players to the same standards.

                                                1. re: Tom34

                                                  You wish folks would hold Hollywood stars and sports players to the same standard as what? Who's holding executives to any standard in this country, obviously not people like you since apparently their grossly lavish pay seems to be of no significance.

                                                  They are easy targets because they are overpaid, and this is not about emotion, this is about solid numbers and evidence of gaping income inequality in this country.

                                                  Secondly, movie stars and many sports stars (basketball, football, baseball etc., not gymnastics, track, luge, etc.) are grossly overpaid, that wasn't what this thread is about. But I'm sure you'll find plenty of folks who agree they are overpaid. Then again there are many pro-athletes that barely eke a living and simply are doing what they love...

                                                  1. re: Pookipichu

                                                    Sorry Pook, whether the average executive salary is merited is a subject of much debate as are corporate jets, however, as I pointed out above several times, mathematically it is really insignificant. All 7 executive salaries & the plane come to less than a one time check of $150.00 per rank and file employee.

                                                    Your argument may be on the moral high ground but it is mathematically insignificant.

                                                    1. re: Tom34

                                                      67 million dollars is not mathematically insignificant. It's simple to calculate how much money would be distributed to the rank and file if executive pay is reduced, but what are the hidden costs of income inequality? It's not just about putting a $100 dollars in the hands of 700,000 people (which in itself is not insignificant), purchasing power is relative. When you have a concentration of wealth in the hands of the few, there is a corrosive effect on democracy, on social mobility, on the entire fabric of society. Vast income inequality leads to social division, is disruptive and has been expounded since Aristotle.

                                                      1. re: Pookipichu

                                                        No system is perfect and capitalism has its faults but so far it has done pretty well for the masses compared to other systems. One thing it has "historically" not rewarded is the culture of "Living for the day".

                                                        1. re: Tom34

                                                          Actually the focus on quarterly profits and greed is precisely rewarding the culture of "living for the day"... make as much money, as quickly as you can without regard to ethics, societal effects, environmental concerns or consequences. I've seen this first-hand, working in a bastion of corporate wealth.

                                                          I've heard similar tone and arguments before. Distaste for "welfare mothers" or other perceived leeches on society prevails, while ignoring that the top earners can be as much of a leech on society, if not more. Our philosophy differs, I'm more concerned with the perversion at the top, those who should know and act with more wisdom, intelligence and compassion

                                                          Once you have the government bailing out the banking industry, auto industry, intervening in equity markets, there is hardly a pretense of a capitalist system. We are no more a capitalistic society than we are a democracy. Quantitative easing exists in a reality without counterfactual rebuttal. Instituted to inflate equity markets for the benefit of a wealthy elite while placating those who fall lower on the spectrum, yet above the hoi polloi. There is no capitalistic pretension. It is welfare for the wealthy.

                                                          1. re: Pookipichu

                                                            Folks, it's probably about time to let the executive salary and corporate jets sub-thread go. It's getting pretty unfriendly and really, really far from anything to do with food.

                                            2. re: Pookipichu

                                              < There is a perfectly capable method of traveling without buying luxury jets.>

                                              First, it depends on the definition of luxury jets, but a corporate jet is a must for many companies, and it is not for ONE person. It is just a group of people. Commercial plane schedule do not save money. It may look better to some people. Having your high-paying executives sitting in airport for 3-6 hours and have them delayed to meetings is unacceptable for many cases. It wastes their time, it waste people who are waiting for them. It wastes everyone's time and money. Everyone's meeting and work schedules would be out of wrack.

                                              For many companies, a corporate jet is not just for the the high level executives (CEO, CFO). It is for mid-level managers (like directors-level). Sometime 20 or so mid level managers all fly in to a site together for meetings and for visiting their respective groups in the morning and fly back by evening.

                                              Having a bunch of them delayed in airports and missing meeting here and there is not exactly a cheap option. You may say, "Why not get them there one day earlier to avoid the risk of flight delay?" Because that would be wasting an extra day. Is having your high-paying executives wasting time really is a good investment? Is having hundreds or thousands of his employee waiting for them for hours a wise move? If you ever have a high level person visit being cancelled, then you know how wasteful it is.

                                              Corporate jet looks expensive, but it is a good investment, and it isn't a private jet. It is a not a gift to high-paying CEOs.

                                              <The argument that having luxury jets is a justified necessity reminds me of the argument I have heard many a time "Mommy I need an iphone", "Mommy I need a dog", "Mommy I need to see Twilight 2...>

                                              I don't think you understand. Corporate jet is for the company. It is not remotely close to being an iPhone, which is for one person, and it is a toy. Corporate jet is not a toy.

                                            3. re: Chemicalkinetics

                                              Trust me, corporate jets are most definitely for fun.

                                                1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                                                  Do you own a corporate jet?

                                                  How many times have you traveled on a corporate jet? (Or even just a private jet, on a per travel basis like NetJets?)

                                                  While I don't own a private jet, I've traveled on them quite a few times, and I've actually litigated the issue -- i.e. use of corporate jets w/r/t tax issues -- and *know* from first-hand evidence that corporate jets are used for non-business (or in other words: fun and leisure) activities. And it's used more often than corporations or executives will care to publicly admit, or advertise to their shareholders.

                                                  (With regards to AF1. Having dated someone who was an embedded reporter on AF1, trust me (there's that word again), there's lots of frivolity that goes on.)

                                                    1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                                                      I just know that every time I'm on a corporate jet, or a private one, I'm having fun. Lots of it.

                                                      There really is no better way to travel.

                                                  1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                                                    Then trust me, Chem. My husband is a pilot. 40 years. He's worked the biz from every corner.

                                                      1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                                                        http://www.cnbc.com/id/101102788

                                                        source: chartering business...a fun marketing idea..listen, this cottage industry has been around forever; had its share of highs and lows, hit by gasoline prices hard and even labor shortages/down swings but right now it's a men and their toys game for the top tier...and my husband's livelihood rests on it.

                                                          1. re: ipsedixit

                                                            Goog & the Fed now that's a relationship akin to spy games.
                                                            Such complex bedfellows.

                                                          2. re: HillJ

                                                            I am not going to read your link because I trust you. ;)

                                                            Seriously, I don't want to get in this debate anymore because of multiple reasons (not you of course).

                                                        1. re: HillJ

                                                          Wow, I'm jealous.
                                                          The stories he must be able (or not able) to tell.

                                                          1. re: ipsedixit

                                                            Let's just say he's the most popular man I know.

                                                      2. re: ipsedixit

                                                        Can confirm.
                                                        My employer had like 7 of them and they ended up selling them because they never got used.
                                                        This in a company that has plants in 22 countries and company owned operations in 170 countries.

                                                    1. A 12-seat jet for a company as large as McDonalds does not seem extravagant to me.

                                                      5 Replies
                                                        1. re: HillJ

                                                          What's your point? That it seats 13 instead of 12?

                                                          1. re: GH1618

                                                            Of course.

                                                            If it seats 13 it's a total corporate boondoggle.

                                                            But 12? That's totally legit.

                                                              1. re: GH1618

                                                                LOL. It's one of many in their corporate pool, chartered.

                                                          2. I don't have a dog in this fight, but I would point out that if those companies purchase corporate jets manufactured in the United States, those 30+ million dollar jets have provided thousands of pretty decent jobs in the aerospace industry.

                                                            1. You can't go after one company in isolation for wage issues. They have a fiduciary duty to maximize profit for shareholders. If you want to tackle wage inequality you have to do it through policy, so companies operate on a level playing field.

                                                              5 Replies
                                                              1. re: calumin

                                                                trouble is the companies buy their politicians and therefore, control policies.
                                                                In 2012, McD gave $1 million through its PAC
                                                                http://www.opensecrets.org/pacs/looku...

                                                                And, spent $2.1 million on lobbying
                                                                http://www.opensecrets.org/lobby/clie...

                                                                The Food & Bev sector spent $25 million in total in just 2012.
                                                                http://www.opensecrets.org/industries...

                                                                1. re: meatnveg

                                                                  Wouldn't it be great to have a food and public policy thread?

                                                              2. The work place of North America continues to change. At one time a high school graduate could get a decent job in the mills or mines. Get married, buy a house, and raise a family. I knew plenty of former classmates that quite college in the early 70s to work in the steel mills or mines. The money was a lot better than what they expected to earn after 4 years of paying for college.

                                                                Just like the change over from labor intensive to machine intensive processing in factories during the late thirties, many in our society cannot make the transition. And they will be marginalized. As usual. Compensation has never been equitable. I quit tilting at that windmill and many other iniquities while still in High School. I learned early to pick my battles and make them count, and wages and benefits are not that important compared to tolerance, one of my passions. Right after the search for the perfect escargot.

                                                                1 Reply
                                                                1. re: INDIANRIVERFL

                                                                  Yes the fabulous 50's.....only industrial power left standing after WWII.....we rebuilt the world and our standard of living was elevated to levels unimaginable....playing field started to level out in the 1970's and our standard of living will most certainly go down.....question is how fast and how low.

                                                                2. It seems like everything there is to be said on this subject has already been said, and now the discussion is just going in circles, and growing increasingly unfriendly. We're going to lock it now.