Dunkin Donuts' CEO's Comment Regarding New York State Minimum Wage Proposal

CougTek

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I've just read on the news that Nigel Travis, Dunkin Donuts' CEO, said that a minimum wage of 15$/h would be outrageous. [sarcarsm]In my view, his comment carries a lot of weight, especially since he earns 10.2 millions per year.[/sarcarsm] I could understand if a small business owner, who has a hard time breaking even, would say something like that, but when you earn as much as that fucktard, please, PLEASE, have the decency to shut up regarding the minimum wage debate.

This moron just told the vast majority of his employees that to his eyes, they weren't worth 1/340th of what he's paid. To anyone with a hint of common sense, a 10.2 million dollar annual salary is A LOT more outrageous than a 15$ minimum wage salary. I dare him to live on a 15$/h salary. I did, more than a decade ago after the tech buble crush. Fortunately, I've recovered, but I clearly remember that it wasn't easy.
 

Stereodude

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If the US were to fix the immigration system so there wasn't an unlimited amount of unskilled labor in the US salaries would naturally rise. Of course in general the same people in favor of raising the minimum wage, favor an open borders, and decry the growing gap between the rich and poor. The second helps cause the latter. Instead of fixing the immigration system they propose to increase the minimum wage. Create a problem, then you treat the symptoms instead of fixing the cause.
 

CougTek

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Immigrants flooding is mostly a problem in the southern states. I very much doubt it is that much of a problem in a northern state like New York.

Also, the system doesn't "naturally" fix itself. The rich class generally tries to keep the money up and since they are the most influencial class by a lot, things almost always go their way. Jon Oliver (and many others too) makes a decent living just pointing out how screwed up the system is in the U.S. It simply doesn't auto-regulate itself. It needs external supervision. I thought the 2007-2008 banking system colapse should have been enough to close the debate regarding this. There is no natural balance in a cappitalist economy. None.
 

Chewy509

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Coug, the whole minimum wage debate has been going for years here in Australia as well, and fortunately past Australian governments have been quite good in keeping minimum wages increasing each year in line with CPI (consumer price index) increases each year. CPI has been roughly 2.5-3% per annual, and minimum wages have generally been 2-2.5% per annum... Admittedly minimum wage hasn't keep pace with CPI over the years, but is certainly not what's happened in the US.

Minimum wage in Australia for a full-time adult (18yr) employee is AU$17.29 per hour before tax. (casual employees get 25% more, as they don't get paid holidays, etc). And trust me, that's just barely enough to pay for essentials and some very minor luxuries... (current petrol prices are around AU$1.40 per litre, a ticket to the cinemas is AU$12 (cheap day), McDonalds Big Mac medium value meal is about AU$8.50, Chicken breast is about AU$10 pkg, a decent T-Bone steak about $20pkg, in my area, a rental house is about AU$380pw for a 3bedroom house, my personal average electricity bill is $500-600 per 3mths, just to give some price comparisons).

But back to the CEO vs minimum pay, I remember an article a few years ago about the rate of increase for the average CEO salary (fortune 500 companies) vs their lowest paid workers. During the late 40's-early 50's the CEOs salary was roughly 5-10x the lowest paid worker, but in the late 2000's was roughly 100-200x the lowest paid worker in most western countries. The few exceptions to the rule was Japan, Scandinavian countries and some of the other EU countries... But in general the people on top would vote for pay rises, and in some cases pay for their own pay-rises by sacking people! (Not directly, but indirectly... eg need to cut costs by 5% due to lower than expected income, layoff 5% of workforce, and at end of quarter they realise they actually made a profit to appease wall-street, and because they made a profit, they congratulate themselves with a payrise due the hard work they performed to demonstrate a profit in the last quarter, despite the fact the profit was generated by sacking people, and not increasing sales or market share...).

The big item in Australia with regards to CEO salaries, are the so-called golden-parachute clauses, in which in if they get fired for incompetence, they get a multi-million dollar payout! Mind you, for the person on minimum-wage in the warehouse stocking shelves, will be fired without any form of compensation! And if made redundant, will get 4 weeks pay + some further compensation if they've been with the company for than a few years...

I do agree, in a pure capitalist environment, there will never be a balance... But the Soviet systems failed as well. (I don't consider the system employed by the USSR to be a true communist system either).
 

jtr1962

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Immigrants flooding is mostly a problem in the southern states. I very much doubt it is that much of a problem in a northern state like New York.
There's a huge underground economy in NYC with cash wages below minimum wage. In particular, you have both Mexican and Chinese illegal immigrants working for in some cases $2 an hour.

Also, the system doesn't "naturally" fix itself. The rich class generally tries to keep the money up and since they are the most influencial class by a lot, things almost always go their way. Jon Oliver (and many others too) makes a decent living just pointing out how screwed up the system is in the U.S. It simply doesn't auto-regulate itself. It needs external supervision. I thought the 2007-2008 banking system colapse should have been enough to close the debate regarding this. There is no natural balance in a cappitalist economy. None.
Amen to all that. The only sure thing in a capitalist economy is the rich get richer at the expense of everyone else by gaming the system in their favor. That includes "buying" legislators to help do this.

I dare him to live on a 15$/h salary. I did, more than a decade ago after the tech buble crush. Fortunately, I've recovered, but I clearly remember that it wasn't easy.

I was making under $10K for a long time so I know how it feels trying to make it on low wages. Without my parents to live with I dare say I would have joined the ranks of the homeless. 2014 was decent, and I'll probably make 6 figures this year, but I'm not going to quickly forget what a struggle it is to make it on very little no matter how wealthy I may become in the future.

This asswipe CEO has no basis to complain. In fact, people like him are the reason things are the way the are. CEOs are often paid a lot more if a company is more profitable but nobody bothers to look at how those profits are increased. It's one thing if a CEO comes up with great ideas, and he, the company, and the employees all benefit from these ideas. Then I say large salaries might make sense. It's quite another thing when profits are increased by laying off people and otherwise gutting the company. You know the profits will only be temporary until the company folds, but by then the CEO is on to their next victim. Stuff like this shouldn't even be allowed. If you're going to tie CEO pay to profits, then tie it partially to profits long after they leave. If the company has big losses after the CEO leaves, then maybe the CEO should have to give back some of their compensation.
 

jtr1962

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Minimum wage in Australia for a full-time adult (18yr) employee is AU$17.29 per hour before tax. (casual employees get 25% more, as they don't get paid holidays, etc). And trust me, that's just barely enough to pay for essentials and some very minor luxuries... (current petrol prices are around AU$1.40 per litre, a ticket to the cinemas is AU$12 (cheap day), McDonalds Big Mac medium value meal is about AU$8.50, Chicken breast is about AU$10 pkg, a decent T-Bone steak about $20pkg, in my area, a rental house is about AU$380pw for a 3bedroom house, my personal average electricity bill is $500-600 per 3mths, just to give some price comparisons).
It's worth noting a family making $200K US in a place like NYC is strictly middle class. Sure, lots of people get by here even on $30K, but they're living on Ramen soup.
But in general the people on top would vote for pay rises, and in some cases pay for their own pay-rises by sacking people! (Not directly, but indirectly... eg need to cut costs by 5% due to lower than expected income, layoff 5% of workforce, and at end of quarter they realise they actually made a profit to appease wall-street, and because they made a profit, they congratulate themselves with a payrise due the hard work they performed to demonstrate a profit in the last quarter, despite the fact the profit was generated by sacking people, and not increasing sales or market share...).
It's exactly crap like this which should be illegal. Even from Wall Street's perspective this is bad business. Gut a company enough by firing people to temporarily raise profits and customer satisfaction goes down. Eventually many companies even fold. That's not a good long term business strategy. Eventually these corporate raiders will run out of companies to gut.

The big item in Australia with regards to CEO salaries, are the so-called golden-parachute clauses, in which in if they get fired for incompetence, they get a multi-million dollar payout! Mind you, for the person on minimum-wage in the warehouse stocking shelves, will be fired without any form of compensation! And if made redundant, will get 4 weeks pay + some further compensation if they've been with the company for than a few years...
Honestly, I think a CEO fired for incompetence should have to give back every dime they were paid. If you're going to base pay on profits, then the downside should be no profits, no pay for the CEO.

I do agree, in a pure capitalist environment, there will never be a balance... But the Soviet systems failed as well. (I don't consider the system employed by the USSR to be a true communist system either).
There can never be balance because people have different abilities but things should be a lot more equitable than they are. Sure, I feel people with greater abilities should earn more, but within limits. Nobody is worth more than maybe a few hundred thousand per year, perhaps one million tops. In the end a company only makes lavish profits because of the labor of all its workers. A CEO may have great ideas, but without the workers to make those ideas into reality nothing will come of it. It's high time pay scales were more equitable. A CEO earning 5 to 10 times the lowest paid worker sounds about right. With a $15/hour minimum wage that would be $150K to $300K annually. Maybe without the filthy rich the cost of living in places like NYC would drop drastically so a person can live well on $30K and great on $150K.
 

Buck

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Immigrants flooding is mostly a problem in the southern states. I very much doubt it is that much of a problem in a northern state like New York.
Actually, New England has a serious problem with immigration. The southern states, especially the south west just receive more publicity because the immigrants are on the other side of the border. New England typically gets immigrants from places besides Mexico. The whole U.S. immigration population is quite diversified as you look at different regions of the country.
 
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