In 2020, CEOs made 320 times as much as an average worker. Yet employees who work day in and day out to help these businesses flourish, are awarded either the deeply-flawed subminimum tipped wage, the minimum wage of $7.25, or other wages that are less than $15 an hour despite the climbing cost of basic necessities. When businesses were questioned about skyrocketing CEO pay during the global pandemic, many said that it was simply “unfair” for them to make less just because of the pandemic. (Newsflash, the entire pandemic was unfair for the average workers. Workers didn’t cause the pandemic yet so many Americans lost their jobs, homes, savings, and quality of life).
The ultra-rich and big corporations became $1.3 trillion richer during the global pandemic while working families, women, and communities of color felt enormous financial fallout. There is no reason that CEOs should be paying a lower tax rate than nurses, utility workers, and teachers and allow the rest of America to subsidize the cost of their workforce.
When the ‘stay at home’ mandate was issued during the COVID-19 pandemic, food industry workers and other essential workers held our economy together when it felt like we were at a global standstill. They continued to work despite unsafe conditions due to the lack of workers’ protections, low wages, overtime, fear of being laid off, evictions, and many more drawbacks. If businesses need workers, they should raise their wages and they’ll find people who are willing to work. If they cannot afford to operate without paying their employees starvation wages then maybe they shouldn’t operate at all. Stop blaming workers and reevaluate your strategy. (The Patriotic Millionaires)
My comment : The world is never going to be “fair”, and no one will ever agree what “ fair” is anyway. But the current situation is obscene and, long- term, a threat to the United States and historically unsustainable. Epicurus believed in moderation, which is the strategy for long- term social peace. “Laisser faire” is unfair. It is also very shortsighted.