Ronald McDonald: Welfare Clown

Taking a tip from fellow EvilCorp Walmart, McDonald’s engages in the sin that cries out to heaven for vengeance that we don’t hear near as much about: defrauding workers of their wages. It’s easy really. You deny them a living wage and then refer them to the public nipple (i.e. your taxes) by instructing them, “No. We won’t pay you a living wage, but we will tell you to go on welfare to supplement what we refuse to pay you. Have a nice day!”

What’s amazing is how many people blame the utterly screwed and powerless worker and not the employer holding the screwdriver. McDonald’s CEO gets $8.75 million for thinking up these ways to defraud, not only workers, but you and me.

  • James Scott

    Sorry Mark but raising the minimum wage creates more poverty and unemployment.

    I worked for McDonald’s at age 16(I am 45 today) are really going to tell me I should have been given the wage needed to support a family?

    If that happened I would never have gotten a job in the first place.

    Also the dollar menu would be the six dollar menu while big mac would be ten bucks. The poor could no longer afford to eat there and they would either have to lay off workers or just fold shop and go out of business.

    But at least they would pay a living wage to maybe three people. But not for long.

    How is this just?

    • Marthe Lépine

      On the other hand, better paid workers would have more money to spend, thus increasing demand and creating more jobs. Nobody should have to require food stamps while holding a full time job. I fully agree with Mark that taxpayers should not have to supplement the wages of retail and fast food workers. I myself have a background in economics, and nowhere have I seen the argument that raising the minimum wage creates unemployment, other than in written material coming from your rich country.

      • http://crudeideas.blogspot.com/ Crude

        I myself have a background in economics, and nowhere have I seen the argument that raising the minimum wage creates unemployment, other than in written material coming from your rich country.

        What exactly is your background in economics here?

        In fact, let’s test your understanding of economics. Tell me what, if anything, is wrong with the following statement: “McDonalds could pay all of their workers 20 dollars an hour if they really wanted to, without having to fire anyone. All they’d have to do is raise the cost of their products accordingly to cover the new wages.”

        • Andy

          or perhaps lower the income of the top brass. why do the upper-managers/CEO and to make huge saleries – often 80-90-100 times tat of the workers? by the way I have little knowledge of economics, but I have some common sense, which most economists eschew.

          • http://crudeideas.blogspot.com/ Crude

            why do the upper-managers/CEO and to make huge saleries – often 80-90-100 times tat of the workers?

            Depends on the particulars and demands of their job.

            Possible executive task: Knowing how to investigate the supply chain for ingredient A to figure out a way to cut costs while at the same time procuring an ingredient used in literally millions of orders each day without sacrificing A) safety, B) efficiency, C) reliability, etc.

            Possible worker task: Do not splash the fry oil when it’s really hot, as it can burn someone.

            Also: ‘Lower the income of the top brass’. Are you suggesting this as a way to increase minimum wage?

            McDonalds has just under 400k employees in the US alone. Let’s say that we reduce all top-tier McDonalds executives pay to exactly 1 dollar each annually, including benefits. They are a monastic order of businessmen who work for a single symbolic dollar each year – they get second jobs on the side to support their efforts.

            How much do you think we can raise wages with the money gained by the executive pay cut? Remember: Just under 400k employees.

            • Marthe Lépine

              It used to be considered that the ideal ratio between a CEO’s salary and that of the lowest-paid worker was 20/1. In many corporations nowadays that got up to 350/1 and still going up.

              • http://crudeideas.blogspot.com/ Crude

                It used to be considered that the ideal ratio between a CEO’s salary and that of the lowest-paid worker was 20/1. In many corporations nowadays that got up to 350/1 and still going up.

                You mean one arbitrary pulled-from-thin-air number is different from another arbitrary pulled-from-thin-air number? Well holy heck. We better send soldiers to their homes and tell them to hand over their excess wealth to the state or else we’ll take it by force and/or imprison them.

                • Marthe Lépine

                  It does not sound like you are up on your reading of business and management books; have you ever read a book by Peter Drucker, by the way? “Peter Drucker, a man who is known as the father of management
                  consulting, stated in the 1970′s that in order for a company to be the
                  best it can be, the ratio of the CEO’s pay to the average worker’s pay
                  should be, at most 20 to 1. He said that
                  is ”the limit beyond which they cannot go if they don’t want resentment
                  and falling morale to hit their companies.” This was actually about
                  normal in the 70s, before CEO pay went through the roof.”

                  • http://crudeideas.blogspot.com/ Crude

                    It does not sound like you are up on your reading of business and management books; have you ever read a book by Peter Drucker, by the way?

                    It looks like Peter Drucker’s thoughts turned out to be completely bogus, given the thereafter success of companies like Microsoft and many others, which ran roughshod over his arbitrary statistic and still managed to be tremendously successful.

                    An appeal to authority and an arbitrary quote is no excuse for actual arguments and knowledge.

                    • Heather

                      Certainly, a corporate executive’s training and experience merits higher pay than a burger flipper. But not literally hundreds of times more. Why is it outrageously controversial and “arbitrary” to point out that employees whose CEO makes in a day what it takes them an entire year or more to earn are going to feel like their upper management is not living in anything like the real world, and hence be demoralized and unengaged?
                      I’ve worked as a minimum wage slave in a city with one of the highest costs of living in Canada. It sucks. You could theoretically support yourself if you had full time hours but no one even gives full time hours. It’s all casual part time with on-call shifts that you need to be available for but aren’t actually guaranteed so you’re lucky if you actually get enough work to pay the rent. And you really do end up not caring a bit about corporate directives because they clearly don’t care a bit about you.
                      And yet companies who actually treat its workers as more than interchangeable automatons still manage to be successful: http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/time-to-lead/how-one-company-levels-the-pay-slope-of-executives-and-workers/article15472738/

                    • Marthe Lépine

                      Well… Why don’t you bring up your “actual arguments and knowledge”? Just denying mine in an arbitrary way is no excuse for actual arguments and knowledge. For example, where did you obtain your so-called “superior” knowledge of economics (just so we could actually compare notes)?

            • Andy

              Lets see – last quarter MickyD’s had a profit of 1.5 billion – third quarter. The yearly cost of MickyD’s employees’ public assistance is 1.2 billion per year. In 2012 MickyD’s had a net income of 5.46 billion. Guess MickyD’s could afford to increase salaries, just a bit. The fast food industry tries to hide behind the idea that there is training and opportunity for advancement, and that the majority of workers are using the fast food income to supplement not as the main source of income. WHile the first part of the statement is true, the latter is not. About 25% of fast food workers are trying to raise a child on this salary, 70% are adults between 25-70.
              To my first point – you assumed in your example that the “front-line” person could not do the job of the upper brass. Why assume that? Your statement generates the front-line worker and removes from that person the dignity s/he is entitled to. Second, I am speaking to income inequality in most business models. In 2012 the McDonalds CEO made 8.75 million – why? If it wasn’t for the front-line worker there would be no MickyDs. The average stockholder in MickyDs spent $14,286 per restaurant worker, on dividends and share repurchases.
              THere is a moral need to be met here – reducing income disparity is needed – I ave yet to meet a person who is worth 8.75 million a year, I have worked with many people worth far more than $14,286 and who are trying to live on that.

              • http://crudeideas.blogspot.com/ Crude

                Lets see – last quarter MickyD’s had a profit of 1.5 billion – third quarter. The yearly cost of MickyD’s employees’ public assistance is 1.2 billion per year. In 2012 MickyD’s had a net income of 5.46 billion. Guess MickyD’s could afford to increase salaries, just a bit.

                That’s a fascinating statistic! By the way – did you realize that my ‘almost 400k’ quote of McDonalds employees previously was for the US Only? Once you include worldwide stats, it jumps to 1.7 million according to wikipedia.

                Enjoy pulling a living wage out of that.

                About 25% of fast food workers are trying to raise a child on this salary, 70% are adults between 25-70.

                So? Why in the world should wages change based purely on the lifestyle situation and choices of the person employed? If every McDonalds employee was a single mother with 5 children each, should that change their wages a cent?

                To my first point – you assumed in your example that the “front-line” person could not do the job of the upper brass. Why assume that? Your statement generates the front-line worker and removes from that person the dignity s/he is entitled to.

                What nonsense. No one is entitled to the dignity of people assuming that they can do jobs they have neither the training, education, track record or experience in.

                Do you demand any qualifications out of your doctor when you go to the hospital? Or do you just assume anyone on the street can do a heart surgeon’s job?

                Second, I am speaking to income inequality in most business models. In 2012 the McDonalds CEO made 8.75 million – why? If it wasn’t for the front-line worker there would be no MickyDs.

                If there wasn’t experienced executives and businessmen with the right training, drive, education and willingness to take risks, there wouldn’t be a job for the ‘frontline worker’ to fill.

                Yes, there’s income inequality. So what? Why shouldn’t there be some income inequality, especially when it’s often at least partially the result of heart work, education and dedication?

                THere is a moral need to be met here – reducing income disparity is needed – I ave yet to meet a person who is worth 8.75 million a year,

                You know what? I don’t think it’s a good idea for salaries to be decided by your gut feeling about whose job is worth more. Tell me when you’re willing to have open heart surgery done by a well-meaning man with a GED and no prior surgery experience. Why should we insult his dignity by assuming the guy who spent 10 years learning how to open up another human being without killing them has one over on a McDonalds cashier who’s giving it the best shot he can?

                • Andy

                  Lifestyle choices made by individuals – the ultimate mammon worshiping response – blame a person who has no other options for having no other options.

                  You know what? I don’t think it’s a good idea for salaries to be decided by your gut feeling about whose job is worth more.

                  I don’t think that salary should be based on how well you can keep the dignity of persons at a minimum. My statement was not a gut statement it was a question – please defend these foolishly high salaries based on actual tasks accomplished and not on an etherial belief about what management does.

                  I would refer you to the USCCB:

                  The dignity of the individual and the demands of justice require, particularly today, that economic choices do not cause disparities in wealth to increase in an excessive and morally unacceptable manner. Charity in Truth (Caritas in Veritate. . . ), #32

                  The basis for all that the Church believes about the moral dimensions of economic life is its vision of the transcendent worth — the sacredness — of human beings. The dignity of the human person, realized in community with others, is the criterion against which all aspects of economic life must be measured.

                  All human beings, therefore, are ends to be served by the institutions that make up the economy, not means to be exploited for more narrowly defined goals. Human personhood must be respected with a reverence that is religious. When we deal with each other, we
                  should do so with the sense of awe that arises in the presence of something holy and sacred. For that is what human beings are: we are created in the image of God

                  • Marthe Lépine

                    I would add that somewhere in Caritas & Veritate, it is also said (something clearly to the effect) that personal charity is not enough, justice demands that people be paid just wages.

        • Marthe Lépine

          How do 74 post-graduate credits in Business and Economics from the University of Montreal sound to you? As to your hypothetical question, in order to get a reasonable reply I would also need to know things such as the wage scale of the entire work force, including executives, as well as the actual cost of the products sold, the gross margin and the net profit, among other data… It is not common sense to make business decisions based only on one or two factors. And as a consumer, I consider the price of their products, in relation to the quality, to be very high, e.g. for a comparable price I can have a much more nutritious meal elsewhere.

          • http://crudeideas.blogspot.com/ Crude

            How do 74 post-graduate credits in Business and Economics from the University of Montreal sound to you?

            A stinging criticism of modern university education.

            As to your hypothetical question, in order to get a reasonable reply I would also need to know things such as the wage scale of the entire work force, including executives, as well as the actual cost of the products sold, the gross margin and the net profit, among other data.

            Really? That’s your response? Minimum wage is 7.25. We’re talking about an increase to 20 dollars an hour.

            Also – you’ve never seen an argument that raising the minimum wage creates unemployment, but when faced with this hypothetical question, suddenly you have no idea how to respond unless you get more information?

            Gosh – maybe you need more information in order to say what the effects of raising the minimum wage will be in this case then, eh?

            And as a consumer, I consider the price of their products, in relation to the quality, to be very high, e.g. for a comparable price I can have a much more nutritious meal elsewhere.

            So, you advocate raising the minimum wage for workers in a field that you otherwise can’t estimate the effects of a major wage increase on because you lack the relevant knowledge, and also you think smart consumers shouldn’t be eating there to begin with – and thus they should actually be lowering their prices to make what they offer more valuable to consumers?

            Marthe – are you even thinking through your own advice on this topic?

            • peggy

              This is basic economics that raising the price floor reduces demand. Lowering a price ceiling reduces supply. We learned this in undergrad and refined with models and calculus in grad school.

              • Marthe Lépine

                Yes, of course. But… Is it computers acting on their own that manipulate the price, or people? If prices go up when demand goes up, it is because someone thinks they can get away with increasing the price.If such people actually “chose” not to increase prices, prices would not increase.

    • Sally Wilkins

      There is no real-world evidence of the blanket “common-sense” statement with which you opened this reply. In fact historically when wages have been raised, business has been stimulated and jobs created. If you are only 45 then you don’t even remember when the minimum wage was the equivalent of $13 in today’s money, and the economy was booming. When the rich get more money, they save it. When the poor get more money, they spend it. That stimulates the economy.

      • peggy

        Upper income folks invest and spend. There was a big story about yacht or luxury taxes going up in the 80s, I think. Yacht demand went down; its workforce was laid off. An industry and the working class were hurt by increased taxes on the rich.

        • http://www.likelierthings.com/ Jon W

          Really? We’re letting a whole economy go to hell in a handbasket because of what happened to one industry? I’ve been hearing about that yacht example forever.

          • Andy

            I also have no idea how large this impact was – also a skilled craftsman should be able to find work – so I uses the complaints about those who work at the minimum wage jobs making bad choices only applies to a certain group.

    • Mary B

      But 30 years ago, when you worked for McDonalds, there was a booming economy and salaried jobs available for (educated) adults with families. But what about my generation? When I graduated college in 2009 it was to a dead economy with no jobs. Both my husband and myself ended up having to take minimum wage jobs and when our daughter arrived, there was no other option but to go on food stamps for a year. You presume that its just teenagers looking to earn spending money who work these jobs. Sadly,there are more people than you might think trying to support families on McDonald’s wages.

      • http://janalynmarie.blogspot.com/ Beadgirl

        That’s what cracks me up when I hear people argue that it is the fault of the minimum wage employee for being foolish enough to try to support a family on that income — as if higher paying jobs were thick on the ground, just there for the taking.

        • chezami

          Yeah. The “blame the poor sod with the shitty job, not the people who pay him shit wages” thing is a particular weird twist of common conservative parlance.

          • ivan_the_mad

            Indeed. “Finally, remuneration for labor is to be such that man may be furnished the means to cultivate worthily his own material, social, cultural, and spiritual life and that of his dependents, in view of the function and productiveness of each one, the conditions of the factory or workshop, and the common good.” — Gaudium et Spes 67 § 2.

            Strangely enough, I’ve yet to find in any of the social doctrine exceptions for menial work; in fact, quite the opposite. The assertion is often made that these jobs aren’t supposed to be long-term, but should be stepping stones to more remunerative employment. Even granting this (which I’m not), it does not obviate the moral obligation to pay a just wage.

            • http://arkanabar.blogspot.com/ Arkanabar

              I’m with James Scott on this one: when you increase the price of something, that puts downward pressure on demand for it. People will seek to get by with less or to find alternatives. That includes workers. Why do you think McDonald’s has self-serve soda fountains, and nobody ever pumps your gas for you any more?

              When poor people can’t get hired, the blame should not belong to the poor guy who’s having trouble finding work, and it should not be on the businessman who can’t put him to work without losing money on the deal. It SHOULD be on the legislators and government bureaucrats who make certain that there’s no way for the poor man to be anything but a burden to anyone who wants to hire him. If you ensure a man can’t make anything to improve his life in any way, shape, or form, because what he can make is not enough to meet some arbitrary minimum, you are doing him no favors. In fact, you are oppressing him. I know my life would be better if I could get $4/hr for 20hrs/wk, if I could ride my bicycle to work. (edit: I would LEAP at the chance if it was work that uses my Associates degree education and certification.) But I cannot, unless I take up drug dealing or find work under the table.

              These same legislators and bureaucrats also prevent or hinder the Church from helping a poor man cover the difference between his wages and his living expenses. (It would also be helpful if the government did not do so much to prevent people from living cheaply.) Charity is not something that can be done with justice by a government. We should not render unto Caesar the work that is God’s. The only reason we have a tradition of government aid to the poor is because Henry VIII made the church an arm of government, and had to try to replace the Church’s safety net, which he had destroyed. Nota bene, neither he nor any of his successors in government ever did charity so well as the Church.

              • ivan_the_mad

                Again, this does not obviate the moral obligation to pay a just wage. Once we establish the moral principle to which we’re tending, we may then discuss the most prudential approach.

                • http://www.likelierthings.com/ Jon W

                  Seriously. What’s with this absolute economic determinism?

                • http://www.likelierthings.com/ Jon W

                  Once we establish the moral principle to which we’re tending, we may then discuss the most prudential approach.

                  THIS! THIS! Oh blessed saints, a thousand times THIS! I am so damned sick of conservatives I talk to going on and on about government this and freedom that, while steadily refusing to acknowledge the fundamental moral ground rules of society itself.

                • Dan F.

                  I made my reply a top level comment because i’m interested in the group’s answer.

    • MarylandBill

      I would like proof of the statement that raising the minimum wage leads to more poverty and unemployment.

      Ultimately though it comes down to this, if you business model requires you to pay a non-living wage to your employees, then perhaps you need a different business model in the first place.

      • AquinasMan

        The fast food business model has NEVER paid a “living wage”. The reason it worked at all is because it could pay low wages to high school kids who were getting their feet wet in the workforce and could learn about on-the-job responsibility and maybe some social skills dealing with the public. Changing that will lead to higher prices, fewer employees, less franchisees, and demands for higher wages at restaurants across the board. It’s not a political theory, it’s reality.

        • wineinthewater

          I can’t remember the last time I saw a high school student working at a fast food joint. If the work-force is no longer dominated by HS-ers, does it really make sense for us to ground our ideas in a time when it was?

          • http://www.likelierthings.com/ Jon W

            Not that I want to give “aid and comfort”, but around here (NH), lots of high school kids work at the fast food joints. (Lots of others as well, I might add.)

            • wineinthewater

              That’s good to hear. My experience isn’t quite as broad as it might have once been, but around here most of the workers are 20-somethings or late middle-age with others sprinkled in. A few years back it was mostly college and HS aged kids with a disturbing number of senior citizens.

  • http://remnantofremnant.blogspot.com/ priest’s wife

    actually,,,many of the Catholic school teachers qualify for at least food stamps….teachers with spouses and children are not professed religious with a vow of poverty

  • AquinasMan

    Using the $15/hr scale as called for by fast food groups, these outcomes are likely:

    1) Automation will ramp up big time. Place your order at the kiosk, pay, and wait for your order to arrive on the conveyor belt.

    2) Jacking up minimum wage will now increase your “willing” pool of employees. A college grad without work may not work for $8 an hour, but for $15/hour, walking around cash, and maybe some minor benefits while waiting to get a career going, there will be many more applicants with better skills and education.

    3) If minimum wage were to double, so would the cost of living, since some impressive inflation would certainly be visited upon the economy. At which point, $15 will no longer be a living wage, but (once again) poverty level.

    Upshot: If the McDonald’s business model will support 20 under-educated employees at $8.75 an hour, or go highly-automated with 8 well-educated employees at $15 hour, the groups looking for wage relief should probably lower their sites a bit — maybe $10/hr, but not $15.

    As it turns out, McDonald’s is a business, not a welfare program. McDonald’s employees can move up within, but they have to be motivated, and maybe even take some night classes if they haven’t received a GED or H.S diploma. But it can and has been done, frequently.

    • Eve Fisher

      Actually, Mr. Shea’s point is that McDonald’s IS a welfare program – it’s just that they use the United States government – i.e., us – to provide the welfare for their employees. And they are certainly up front about it. Their business model IS to pay minimum wage, let the government cover their food stamps and perhaps heating assistance, Medicaid, CHIPS, immunizations, etc., with federal tax dollars, while their CEO makes $8.75 million a year. We can’t change that business model. But I, for one, don’t have to eat there…

      • S. Murphy

        Or if you do, tip the person at the window or the register? Proportionally to their age?

        • Eve Fisher

          It’s a thought.

  • Dan F.

    I agree with the need to pay a just wage but how do you see that actually playing out? Let’s stipulate that the moral thing for McDonald’s to do is to pay their workers a living wage. Now how do you legislate for that?

    A “living wage” is going to be different for me (accounting for all expenses, I need to bring home, after taxes, a minimum $5000 a month in order to keep my (growing, Thanks be to God) family fed, housed, clothed, pre-schooled, debt payments made, mortgage, etc. I’m not complaining but if I was working a 50 hour week at $15 an hour my family would be living with my in-laws inside of 2 months. So that wouldn’t be a living wage for me.

    But see a recent college graduate, living at home with his parents, working to save up some rent money, walking around money, contribute to his parents bills, fill his tank every couple of weeks, insurance, etc. Maybe what, $2000 of expenses (maybe less) so same 50 hour week, works out to about $8.75-$9/hr depending on how you do the math.

    So which is the living wage or should we force an employer to pay me (a married father of 3 and third) $22-$25/hr for the exact same work as the college grad needing $8.75/hr.? How would that be fair? Wouldn’t it make better sense to have a bare minimum, based on a reasonable bare minimum of living wage need (for example, the college grad or perhaps the high school student) and then let an employee/employer negotiate up from there?

    • ivan_the_mad

      I don’t have an answer for you in the sense of a categorical, as an advocate of some particular school of economics might; however, since I am an obnoxious troll of this blog and I know that you approach discussion in good faith, I’ll gladly share my thoughts with you. The social encyclicals speak of trade associations, which are a natural right for the worker. Unions are a valid but imperfect realization of these associations, and one of their chief aims is to secure the livelihood of their members. To borrow modern parlance, the popes envisioned associations integrated both horizontally and vertically, i.e. making no distinction as to class. Now, you have mentioned that circumstance dictates that a wage that might be good for one worker might not be for another. This is true, which is why I avoid the discussions concerning a minimum wage (well, it’s a reason – being a conservative, I to a large degree say with Kirk that “the decisions most directly affecting the lives of citizens are made locally and voluntarily”). This Pope has loudly repeated the necessity of personal relationships, and this is especially necessary in matters economic. A just wage would likely require that the owner know the needs of his workers individually, and pay them accordingly. I do not think that the single nineteen-year-old at McDonalds would warrant the same wage as the thirty-year-old father of three, although both are due a just wage. This hearkens back to the classless trade orders of the encyclicals and a view to securing the common good. What the role of the state might be in furthering this I cannot yet say, but I think given the modern circumstances it undoubtedly would need to play some role.

      As with any real change for the better, it will come one heart at a time.

      • Dan F.

        I’m involved (peripherally) with the upstart “American Solidarity Party” (see: https://www.facebook.com/AmericanSolidarityParty) so the practicalities of the question are quite important to me. I haven’t heard any practical ways to move from “McDonald’s = EVILCORP” to here’s how to implement a just wage program in our current society, taking into consideration various wage equality measures already on the books (in terms of anti-discrimination), the need for businesses to be profitable in order to remain in business and human nature. Just upping the minimum wage to $15/hour without any consideration of likely consequences seems foolish at best.

        • ivan_the_mad

          Ah, the ASP. I like them. I don’t disagree with you. I wonder how feasible it would be, rather than a government mandated minimum wage that applies to all, to have some sort of civil ombudsman to facilitate the establishment of a just wage between employees and employers.

    • Hezekiah Garrett

      Yet, to ground us in reality, we live in a country where educated medical professionals who actively risk life and limb to rescue the most vulnerable (and you don’t get much vulnerabler than stroking out at midnight) have to pull extra overtime, in a schedule with built in overtime, just to see that 2k/mo.

      It isn’t just McDonalds, it’s Rural-Metro and AMR et al. as well.

  • James Scott

    Well Mark may be theologically orthodox in terms of doctrine and moral theology.

    But he and many of his readers here(sans certain vocal exceptions, thanks Crude & others) are clearly old guard Big Government Keynesian Liberals in the area of economics.

    News for you people. Raising the Minimum wage has never done anything other than create more poverty & more unemployment.

    Liberalism has failed wherever it is tried. Look at Detroit! 50 years of Democrat rule raising salaries by government fiat & the city is a post-apocolypic warzone.

    I live in fear knowing New York is next.

    This has nothing to do with religion. Politics and economics are a matter of one’s own prudent judgement. Even the Pope didn’t make any economic policy part of the Dogma of the Church. He merely attacked latent plaegian views that policies alone will solve social problems without grace and conversion.

    Hayek rules!

    • chezami

      I have no idea what an old guard Big Government Keynesian liberal is. You mistake me for somebody who hold some economic theory. I’m too ignorant of economics to hold any theory. Try to believe it when I say that my only “agenda” is to point out what the Church teaches on a few elementary points and to say “The pope isn’t saying anything new” (duh). All the rest of your hallucination about my alleged True Beliefs is the coinage of your own ideologically driven brain.

      • James Scott

        >You mistake me for somebody who hold some economic theory. I’m too ignorant of economics to hold any theory.

        And in one felt swoop you just invalided the value content of your whole post against McDonald’s here Mark.

        Works for me.

        But common sense should dictate if you artificially raise wages it’s doesn’t actually help the poor.

        So blaming McDonald’s here is just wrong headed.

        • chezami

          Not really. Saying you should pay your workers a living wage and not make the taxpayer cover what you are too cheap to pay is not an economic theory. It’s obvious justice and the proper redress for a sin that cries out to heaven for vengeance. You don’t have to be an economist to know this. Next you’ll be telling me that only trained gynecologists have the right to talk about abortion.

          • James Scott

            >Saying you should pay your workers a living wage and not make the taxpayer cover what you are too cheap to pay is not an economic theory.

            Yes it is it is a liberal democratic economic theory & it is one that hurts the poor & creates poverty and unemployment and thus more welfare & higher taxes. Not to mention higher retail prices.

            > It’s obvious justice and the proper redress for a sin that cries out to heaven for vengeance.

            No it is not. At best this is merely your private prudent judgment based on your private political and economic belief. It is obvious to me this is an imprudent course of action that mandates we treat unskilled labor the same way as skilled or professional labor. This is unreasonable and against natural law.

            Causing people to loose their jobs because employers can’t afford to pay an artificially inflated base pay for unskilled labor cries just as loudly to the workers who can’t get a job because it costs too much to do business.

            >You don’t have to be an economist to know this. Next you’ll be telling me that only trained gynecologists have the right to talk about abortion.

            Rather I don’t think a 30 year old gynecologist with two children is entitled to less pay than a MacDonald’s weekend matenance man(my McDee’s job at 16) with 6.

            Pay should be based on value of work. The job a medical school graduate does is of more monitary value then one a 16 unskilled laboror can do.

    • ivan_the_mad

      No. We’re repeating centuries (emphasizing especially the last 130 years) of Catholic social doctrine. You keep talking about the minimum wage, but we’re talking about the just wage. Have a look starting at 2419 of the Catechism for a broad overview of social doctrine. The question of the just wage and just price goes back for centuries. Keynesian, Austrian, distributist, and any other theory you can name are, for the Catholic, subordinate to these moral principles. At best, you can argue that a school of thought constitutes a not immoral way of realizing a principle of the doctrine. Do not commit the error of compartmentalization, that way lies the cafeteria.

      • James Scott

        There is no Catholic Social doctrine that says we must at this time increase the minimum wage too a so called “living wage”.

        See Crude’s posts.

        • ivan_the_mad

          What are you talking about? Are you sure that you’re replying to the intended comment?

  • Ezza

    A cousin of ours that is an assistant manager at a McDonald branch in Sydney, who was recently sacked and had to undergo psychiatric help from the consistent bullying she received from her manager, tells me some horror stories that occur at her McDonald here in Sydney, and that she believes is rampant throughout alot of McDonald “restaurants”.

    These have occurred to her and fellow colleagues of her:

    - firing employees without 2 weeks mandatory notice or reason, even though by Australian laws the employee has to give 2 weeks if they quit

    - bullying of employees in the form of targeted criticism from managers that is not consistent to all employees, but rather the employees that managers don’t like

    - managers clocking employees on and off without knowledge or consent of employees, even though the employees are working past the times that appear on their time sheets

    - not inviting certain individuals to functions, by with holding invitations that are meant for those employees and lying to employees about the reasons for not inviting them (a form if bullying)

    - forcing employees to work days and hours even though they have officially requested leave on those days

    And this is what this cousin told me whilst working at her company owned McDonald’s branch…

    A corporation as big as McDonald’s needs to be held accountable and not let cowboy managers treat employees in a way that breaks the law. Their wages are bare minimum. And if managers are not held accountable then one begins to wander if this treatment is being ordered in officially from the high management of McDonald themselves.

    Scumbags!

    • James Scott

      By this logic we could validly conclude the following: Chaphas was a Jew. He persecuted Jesus, therefore all Jews at all times must be like him.

      Sorry but this makes no sense to me.

      • Ezza

        What’s Chaphas being a Jew have anything to do with McDonalds treatment of employees?

        It is the companies problem, the fat cat Ceo’s problem, if it happens in even one store.

        You James make no sense to me.

        With a company that spends so much money on marketing, analysing its products and sales figures as closely as McDonald’s does, never loosing money and rarely shutting a store, always in the green as far as profits- then why the hell would they overlook working conditions, treatment of employees, bullying, manipulating time sheets of employees? When its happening in multiple stores?

        If you were CEO James, I wander of you would “pass the buck”..?

        • James Scott

          >What’s Chaphas being a Jew have anything to do with McDonalds treatment of employees?

          One bad Jews doesn’t equal all Jews are bad.

          One bad situation in Australia does not equal all McDonalds everywhere are bad.

          It’s that simple.

          • Ezza

            I didn’t say it happens globally, nor am I saying it doesn’t. But if it happens in even one store, it is fair to place blame on the corporation. The employees work for the corporation. Don’t put words in my mouth.

            And of course you don’t care what happens thousands and thousands of miles away from your home- and you wander why Americans have gotten a name for themselves as being ignorant of anything outside of their country and absorbed in their own affairs, only of course if it doesn’t involve raping the resources of another country- then they call it tourism. Or expanding their money-making clown products into other countries, oh for example, McDonalds!

            Yes the majority of intelligent Americans have to thank a good handful of your leaders, and citizens like you for the mud that’s stuck.

      • Ezza

        By the way, my husband manages 20 people in his business unit. When one of his employees has a problem they go to him, whether it be job related or to do with working conditions etc.. It is his responsibility to make sure employees are happy and productive, as well as treated fairly.

        If an employee is being taken advantage of and mistreated then it is a reflection on the company, with the CEO being the “captain of the ship” the end person who needs to address the issues and delegate to the appropriate departments to fix. This is why a company is made up of a structure. The bigger the company, the bigger the profit, the more socially accountable they need to be.

        A company like McDonald’s don’t only set their conditions, they influence the conditions for similar companies. I think you are pretty naive to think that little old McDonald wield no influence in the employment market and influencing employment regulations. They are one of Fortune Top 100 Companies in the world. The tax they contribute to the economy speaks volumes, as does the revenue they create for their stakeholders, on the backs of their army of employees.

        • James Scott

          I am not defending whatever stupidity happened in some McDonald’s thousands and thousands of miles from my home.

          I am saying it is irrational for you to take that one example locally and generalize it globally because that is self-evidently an irrational way of thinking.

  • http://arkanabar.blogspot.com/ Arkanabar

    Ya know what? Never mind. The reason I can’t get a job is because compliance with law imposes absurd amounts of obligation and risk on anyone who would hire me. Most employers are too afraid of those obligations and risks to hire not just me, but darned near anyone. The exceptions are mostly companies like McDonald’s, which have lots of employee turnover, and they can only bear the risks if they minimize the obligations — for example, by paying so little that many employees are also eligible for government aid. The right thing to do is not scream at the only employers sufficiently squeezed by turnover to actually hire anyone, but to demand that the government not burden businesses that want to hire people, or fire those who don’t want to work.


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