Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Marshall Connolly, Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

11/19/2013 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Outrages include WalMart food drive for fellow employees and McDonald's workers on food stamps.

If you're reading this article, then your Catholic identity is probably pretty important to you. You appreciate Catholic values and you try to live them in your daily life. Unfortunately, there are a lot of things out there designed specifically to undermine your values, often without your knowledge. The holidays are a prime example.

Heavenly Father, we thank you for these gifts...

Heavenly Father, we thank you for these gifts...

Highlights

By Marshall Connolly, Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

11/19/2013 (1 year ago)

Published in Living Faith

Keywords: Benjamin Harrison, Black Friday, shopping, morality, greed, CEO, compensation, pay, wages, low, slavery, starves, McDonald's, Wal Mart, list, socialism


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The holidays are filled with shopping, among other things. It's a good time for we, who treat ourselves to egg-nog and peppermint-flavored treats, who enjoy shopping for bargains, and look forward to a couple of hearty holiday meals surrounded by the warmth of a fire as well as faith, family, and friends.

However, there's a growing chorus of voices that are out there to tell us that much of our collective holiday cheer is sung and danced upon the backs of a growing multitude of low-wage workers who are asked to sacrifice their holidays so we might enjoy ours. Worse, this isn't about people who choose to work, but rather people who are forced to work and paid so little they rely on the government dole to make ends meet.

And they can forget about a fancy turkey feast.

According to the Huffington Post, companies such as Kroger, Starbucks, Wal Mart, and McDonald's pay so little to their employees that these individuals can't afford much holiday cheer. Many work on Thanksgiving now, since the rest of America is addicted to shopping-just hours after telling God and each other how thankful they are, and few can afford a proper holiday dinner.

Case and point, McDonald's employees are actively told by the company to seek out social services, such as food stamps, to feed their families. That's right. Your value-menu item costs more than you think.

You may pay a dollar for a burger, but you also have to pay more in taxes to provide public assistance for every worker that makes your sandwich. Suddenly the value menu isn't such a value anymore.

McDonald

McDonald's employees have also been protesting. The protests are a sign that a much larger, socialist movement is developing. How we respond determines what happens next and if we'll like it.


So who's eating the profits?

Apparently the CEOs and executives are slurping at the trough while the workers toil to keep them fat and happy.

Have a look at these numbers from HuffPo. Employee pay figures are averages.

Starbucks
U.S. workforce: 120,000
CEO compensation: $28.9 million
Employee pay: Less than $9/hr
Revenue: $13.3 billion
Net income: $1.4 billion

TJX Companies (TJ Maxx)
U.S. workforce: 138,211 (est.)
CEO compensation: $21.8 million
Employee pay: Less than $8/hr
Revenue: $25.9 billion
Net income: $1.9 billion

Macy's
U.S. workforce: 175,700
CEO compensation: $13.8 million
Employee pay: Less than $9/hr
Revenue: $27.7 billion
Net income: $1.3 billion

Darden Restaurants
U.S. workforce: 203,389 (est.)
CEO compensation: $6.4 million
Employee pay: Minimum wage, usually less than $10/hr. Some staff earn tips, which are shared, but not all. Common in the food service industry.
Revenue: $8.6 billion
Net income: $412 million

Sears
U.S. workforce: 246,000
CEO compensation: $1.3 million (Louis D'Ambrosio, former CEO)
Employee pay: Less than $8/hr
Revenue: $39.9 billion
Net income: -$930 million
Note: Sears is failing as a company and sales are slipping.

Yum! Brands (Taco Bell, Pizza Hut, etc)
U.S. workforce: 694,712 (est.)
CEO compensation: $14.2 million
Employee pay: Less than $8/hr
Revenue: $13.6 billion
Net income: $1.6 billion

Kroger
U.S. workforce: 343,000
CEO compensation: $11.1 million
Employee pay: Less than $9/hr
Revenue: $96.8 billion
Net income: $1.5 billion

Target
U.S. workforce: 361,000
CEO compensation: $20.6 million
Employee pay: less than $9/hr
Revenue: $73.3 billion
Net income: $3.0 billion

McDonald's
U.S. workforce: 739,055 (est.)
CEO compensation: $13.8 million
Employee pay: minimum wage
Revenue: $27.6 billion
Net income: $5.5 billion

Walmart
U.S. workforce: 1.4 million
CEO compensation: $20.7 million
Employee pay: Less than $9/hr
Revenue: $469 billion
Net income: $17.0 billion

WalMart has a special place on this list. The company is starting its Black Friday sales on Thanksgiving day at 6 p.m. which will rob most of its associates of their family time. The company pays so little that at several locations, it's asking other employees to donate to food drives, for fellow employees.

At an Ohio WalMart, employees are being asked to donate food to other employees for the holidays.

At an Ohio WalMart, employees are being asked to donate food to other employees for the holidays.


That's right. The richest retail company in America is asking its lowest paid employees to share with their fellow employees instead of just paying a fair wage.

In addition to being denied a fair living wage, many employees are kept deliberately at part-time status, to prevent any requirement to provide benefits.

WalMart employees want $25k per year for their labor.

WalMart employees want $25k per year for their labor.


Most Americans look upon these jobs as "starter jobs" or stepping stones. Places where young people can work their way through college and mature folks can earn a few extra dollars. Yet, this isn't the reality and hasn't been for a long time.

College, for one, costs tens of thousands of dollars, even to attend cheaply. To cover the costs students must take out loans. College savings are no longer enough to pay for costs which outstripped savings years ago. Students are attending college and graduating under mountains of debt.

Then, they must find jobs in a very competitive workforce where degrees are losing their value. Even high-end, high-skilled occupations are losing their demand for talent as more complex processes become automated or require less skill and attention.

In addition to the college multitudes who can't find jobs to pay off their crushing student loan debt, there is a large number of people, many born into poverty, who never make it as far as college. They're sometimes lucky to finish high school. They, along with migrant workers, make up the backbone of America's cheap labor industry.

All this keeps prices low and profits high, for which CEOs are lavishly rewarded. Shareholders also appreciate the bump.

However, we are na´ve to think this ends here.

Our nation bears an awful burden because half of its citizens don't even earn enough money to pay taxes. At least that same half also relies on government services to make ends meet. This is the multitude that will flock to Obamacare for Medicaid, a cost the working few left among us will bear.

Ultimately, this pattern can't continue. The days of the value menu, and dollar store, and cheap big-box shopping are drawing to a close. The age of outrageous CEO compensation while employees are asked to share a turkey, is coming to an end.

No nation, which denies to half of its people the right to work and earn a reasonable living can long expect to stand.

When half the population is reliant on government, how do you think they will vote? What policies will they adopt? Yes, the corporations and the wealthy own Congress, but it's just a matter of time before a "man of the people" emerges, tapping into the anger of half-a-nation or more and turns that against our long-beloved Republic.

It's happened before, since the days of ancient Rome. It will happen again.

So change is inevitable. We must then decide how we will effect this change. We can ignore the numbers and persist in our habits until one day the revolution takes us by surprise sleeping in our McMansions, or we can control the chaos by averting it altogether.

Cleaning up our government, curtailing outright greedy business practices, mandating that corporations, particularly large ones, pay their employees so the taxpayers don't have to. Everybody who wants to work should be allowed at least 40 hours in some occupation. And nobody who works 40 hours should require government assistance.

Whatever policies we need to implement to arrive at this safe destination, we need to develop them now. Nobody wants to live in a socialist state. It's a cure that's worse than the disease. Yet it's just what's coming if we don't demand change from our politicians and our corporate leadership.

Of course, you can start by staying home this Thanksgiving and instead of busting doors, bust prayers and enjoy your family.

Live your Catholic values.

Don't abide the hype. Let workers have their holidays too-- they're not all volunteers, and they're not being paid generously enough to put up with the experience shoppers put them through on Black Friday.

At the very least, avoid the top 10 on the list above. Those are the worst offenders. They may stand as paragons of the free market, but I assure you they might as well be flying socialist banners from their corporate headquarters. By condemning their choice-less, thankless workers to lives of deepening poverty, that's precisely what they're doing to our beloved country.

I pity the man who wants a coat so cheap that the man or woman who produces the cloth or shapes it into a garment will starve in the process. -President Benjamin Harrison.


A birth foretold: click here to learn more!

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


Copywriter 2015 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for March 2015
Universal:
Scientists: That those involved in scientific research may serve the well-being of the whole human person.
Evangelization: Contribution of women: That the unique contribution of women to the life of the Church may be recognized always.


Rosaries, Crosses, Prayer Cards and more... by Catholic Shopping .com


Comments


More Living Faith

'Peace be with You'

Image of

By Tony Magliano

"On the evening of that first day of the week," according to the Gospel of John, "when the doors were locked, where the disciples were... Jesus came and stood in their midst and said to them, 'Peace be with you.' " To his closest followers, who feared that they too ... continue reading


What really caused Apostle Paul's blindness? Scientists believe they've figured it out Watch

Image of

By Atarah Haely (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A comparison among modern celestial events may help find what caused Apostle Paul to lose his eyesight for three days. His temporary blindness is an important historical event for the Christians as it led to where religion and the world is today, making it a ... continue reading


Conference sets out to bring the Gospel to the streets

Image of

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

An amazing conference striving to bring the Gospel to the streets will be held in San Clemente, CA on May 2. Speakers will focus on inspiring followers of Christ to apply the Gospel to today's social issues. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Those attending will ... continue reading


Slaughter of Ethiopian Christians is 'a testimony which cries out to be heard,' Pope Francis says Watch

Image of Depicted in a 29-minute video, entitled

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

In speaking of the wholesale slaughter of at least 30 Ethiopian Christians by the Islamist State in Libya, Pope Francis declared that the blood of Christians "is a testimony which cries out to be heard by everyone who can still distinguish between good and ... continue reading


Catholic pastor warns parishioners faith is not enough for safety, encourages gun possession Watch

Image of

By Atarah Haely (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Issuing a pro-gun letter to the members of the church, Reverend Edward Fride encourages having guns and attending a concealed pistol license (CPL) classes. Through the letter, the pastor from the Christ the King Catholic Church in Ann Arbor, Michigan, warned there may ... continue reading


Apostle of California, Father Junipero Serra, to be canonized by Pope during U.S. visit Watch

Image of Professor Guzman Carriquiry, Secretary in charge of the Vice-Presidency of the Pontifical Commission for Latin America recently expressed his displeasure at the news of the California Senate's wish to replace the statue of Brother Junipero with that of a NASA astronaut.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Pope Francis is scheduled to personally preside over the canonization ceremony of Father Junipero Serra in Washington, D.C. on September 23 during his U.S. visit. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The ceremony will take place in the open space in front of the ... continue reading


'Faith must not be turned into power,' Pope Francis warns Watch

Image of

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Pope Francis, at mass in St. Martha's House, recalled that many people follow Jesus simply out of self-interest. This "spirit, which lies behind or beneath a varnish of Christianity leads people to live like pagans," he warned. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) ... continue reading


Oops! The Bible did not say that: 7 famous viral quotes people think came from the Bible Watch

Image of

By Talia Ramos (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Social media and the Internet has made it easier to share anything anywhere. Most of the time we spend in cyberspace, we see come across wonderful statements --- about life, love and other concerns. It assures us that we are not alone, we are going to beat every ... continue reading


The Experience of the Resurrected Christ: A Divine Dream Worth Dying For

Image of

By Deacon Frederick Bartels

The dream of God is a dream of unending, divine love. His only Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, sacrificed his human life for this Dream: the redemption of humankind and the gift of eternal life and perfect happiness. Heaven is the divine dream that is not but a dream, it ... continue reading


Pope Francis 'considering' visit to Cuba Watch

Image of A nun waves a Vatican flag while attending Mass with St John Paul II in Havana in 1998.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Pope Francis is said to be considering a trip to Cuba this coming September. The papal visit would tie into his visit to the United States. The gesture could lead to improving relations both between Cuba and the U.S. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Vatican ... continue reading


All Living Faith News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Acts 11:1-18
1 The apostles and the brothers in Judaea heard that ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 42:2-3; 43:3, 4
2 I thirst for God, the living God; when shall I go ... Read More

Gospel, John 10:1-10
1 'In all truth I tell you, anyone who does not enter ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for April 27th, 2015 Image

St. Zita
April 27: St. Zita was born into a poor but holy Christian family. Her ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter