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Old 03-13-2013, 10:43 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by NFRs2000nyc View Post
Thats my point. If everyone pays $8 and costco pays $12, they will have more loyal and hardworking staff (saving them money.) If you raise EVERYONE to $12, Costco would then need to pay $16, and that may cause them to LOSE money (unless they raise the price of the merchandise which hurts the end user) so a government mandate would actually hurt businesses. I really struggle to understand how people can't see this. I am 100% for paying above minimum wage, but it should be up to the business owner, not some law which does the opposite of its intended purpose.
Or perhaps, rather than focusing on the lowest pay scale levels, ever squeezing the poor slob at the bottom just trying to get by, why not cap pay the highest levels that would cause them to LOSE money (unless they raise the price of the merchandise which hurts the end user). Perhaps just pay the CEO 38x what the average worker makes rather than 380x. I really struggle to understand how people can't see this, that bloated CEO pay destracts from the bottom line no less than a line workers minimum wage pay.

Perhaps people are focusing far too much on the wrong end of the pay scale in that its not the entry level pay that's far too high, but rather, the executive suite's pay that's exacting too much of a toll on corporate profitability and success.

As CostCo's example seems to suggest, perhaps a far better balanced pay scale is what's needed for long term, robust corporate success, not just lavishing money on the princes at the top and forever squeezing the paupers at the bottom.

I have great doubts as to whether the immense top executive pay packages truly do reflect what they're actually worth, but given the incestuous, myopic and self-serving nature of many/most boards of directors -- made up of like-minded top executives with a vested interest in maintaining bloated top-tier wages -- I expect little change in this dismally corrupted arrangement.

Last edited by Rhumb; 03-13-2013 at 10:44 AM.
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Old 03-13-2013, 11:03 AM   #22
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good for their employees, bad for investors. i own walmart stock, not costco.
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Old 03-13-2013, 11:13 AM   #23
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good for their employees, bad for investors. i own walmart stock, not costco.
not really
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Old 03-13-2013, 11:23 AM   #24
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Were we supposed to take your post figuratively?
I thought my post was pretty obviously aimed at raising minimum wage on a national level, and not the costco model specifically. In fact, their model is the best argument you can have AGAINST minimum wage.
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Old 03-13-2013, 11:25 AM   #25
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Or perhaps, rather than focusing on the lowest pay scale levels, ever squeezing the poor slob at the bottom just trying to get by, why not cap pay the highest levels that would cause them to LOSE money (unless they raise the price of the merchandise which hurts the end user). Perhaps just pay the CEO 38x what the average worker makes rather than 380x. I really struggle to understand how people can't see this, that bloated CEO pay destracts from the bottom line no less than a line workers minimum wage pay.

Perhaps people are focusing far too much on the wrong end of the pay scale in that its not the entry level pay that's far too high, but rather, the executive suite's pay that's exacting too much of a toll on corporate profitability and success.

As CostCo's example seems to suggest, perhaps a far better balanced pay scale is what's needed for long term, robust corporate success, not just lavishing money on the princes at the top and forever squeezing the paupers at the bottom.

I have great doubts as to whether the immense top executive pay packages truly do reflect what they're actually worth, but given the incestuous, myopic and self-serving nature of many/most boards of directors -- made up of like-minded top executives with a vested interest in maintaining bloated top-tier wages -- I expect little change in this dismally corrupted arrangement.
I think capping pay on either end is wrong. I think people should be allowed (private companies that is) to make as much as a company is willing to pay them to get the job done and companies should be allowed to pay people as little as possible to get the job done. If the pay is too low (on either side) they will not get quality workers nor will they have any form of loyalty. I have run a number of businesses over the years, and the model works from a Fortune 500 company to a corner deli. People will work for what they deem is fair. If they don't they will seek employment elsewhere.
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Old 03-13-2013, 11:26 AM   #26
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I thought my post was pretty obviously aimed at raising minimum wage on a national level, and not the costco model specifically. In fact, their model is the best argument you can have AGAINST minimum wage.


In what world?


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Explain this to me then...if he thinks paying his employees more money (for whatever reason) is such a good idea, why doesn't he do it on his own? Why does he need the government to force him to do it?

Thought so.


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Old 03-13-2013, 11:28 AM   #27
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In what world?






I guess context is of no meaning to you, so like I said....if you are going to take things this literally, then there isn't much of a point in debating anything. By he, I meant business owners that agree with Obama, so I apologize for any confusion.
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Old 03-13-2013, 11:40 AM   #28
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I guess context is of no meaning to you.
You referred to the CEO six separate times in your post... if that's not context then I don't know what is
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Old 03-13-2013, 12:50 PM   #29
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http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/0...n_2859250.html

A job creator that actually gets it.
I don't like the term "job creator". Businesses are in the business of making money. And that means getting the most done with the least amount possible.

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the Costco CEO is a pretty straight up guy from what I hear, if more companies would be run like Costco the world would be a much better place.
A company is not run for the benefit of the employees. It's run for the benefit of its owners.

I'm in no position to question Costco's employee compensation policy, but at the same time, you can't just make the implicit case that if every company paid its employees more the world would be a better place. The most likely scenario is that there would just be less employees.

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Costco pays well already, so min wage probably does not affect them.

I am for it too.

The problem with this country is that gap between welfare and minimum wage is so small that their is no incentive for the unethical to work.
I'd rather eliminate welfare than raise the minimum wage.
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Last edited by rapier7; 03-13-2013 at 12:50 PM.
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Old 03-13-2013, 02:38 PM   #30
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The whole reason Minimum wage and welfare exist is because of business exploitation of labor.
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Old 03-13-2013, 03:19 PM   #31
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The whole reason Minimum wage and welfare exist is because of business exploitation of labor.
Because of not being motivated and responsible?
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Old 03-13-2013, 03:51 PM   #32
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I don't like the term "job creator". Businesses are in the business of making money. And that means getting the most done with the least amount possible.
Only one entity is in the business of making money, the U.S. Mint. Everyone else is making either products or services for which, if successful, they might receive money in exchange for their products. I think far too many business people get this exactly backwards and simply try to extract money out of business and the economy as their primary focus rather than developing quality products to exchange for money. I think this distortion/corruption underlies much of what ails American business.

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A company is not run for the benefit of the employees. It's run for the benefit of its owners.
To be successful, long-term, a company should first be run to benefit its customers, then its employees at all levels to best assure the quality and high-value services and products to those customers. Only then will the owners benefit, not as a goal in itself but as a consequence and result of the putting the other two beneficiaries ahead.

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I'm in no position to question Costco's employee compensation policy, but at the same time, you can't just make the implicit case that if every company paid its employees more the world would be a better place. The most likely scenario is that there would just be less employees.
While that is a simplistic assertion on the Right -- makes for simple and easy basic equations to demagogue on -- I highly doubt that's true in the complexities of the real world where employees are far more than abstract units of production or business assets to be treated with the same regard, respect and manner as a copier or milling machine.

Higher pay is not, in and of itself, the primary concern but rather, treating them with higher regard, respect and simple human dignity of which higher pay would be just a consequence. I think Costco's example indicates that this isn't the either/or dilemma it is often portrayed to be.


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I'd rather eliminate welfare than raise the minimum wage.
Perhaps you've got this a bit backwards, you could help eliminate welfare BY raising the minimum and average wages of workers at the lower end of the economic scales to make reliance on Welfare far less necessary, likely or common.

Last edited by Rhumb; 03-13-2013 at 03:54 PM.
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Old 03-13-2013, 04:38 PM   #33
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The whole reason Minimum wage and welfare exist is because of business exploitation of labor.
No, I'm pretty sure the minimum wage exists because white labor union workers in the early 20th century didn't want blacks taking their jobs.

As to the broader point about "exploitation", would you prefer to go back to the farm and work 70 hour weeks scrabbling at subsistence level work?

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Only one entity is in the business of making money, the U.S. Mint. Everyone else is making either products or services for which, if successful, they might receive money in exchange for their products. I think far too many business people get this exactly backwards and simply try to extract money out of business and the economy as their primary focus rather than developing quality products to exchange for money. I think this distortion/corruption underlies much of what ails American business.
Trying to counter an argument by twisting the semantics is weak and petty.

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To be successful, long-term, a company should first be run to benefit its customers, then its employees at all levels to best assure the quality and high-value services and products to those customers. Only then will the owners benefit, not as a goal in itself but as a consequence and result of the putting the other two beneficiaries ahead.
PC fluff. Business owners will do what is in their perceived best interest. Just like every other human being on the planet. Or are the 3 hours per day you spend browsing the internet on the company's dime meant to improve the bottom line?

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While that is a simplistic assertion on the Right -- makes for simple and easy basic equations to demagogue on -- I highly doubt that's true in the complexities of the real world where employees are far more than abstract units of production or business assets to be treated with the same regard, respect and manner as a copier or milling machine.

Higher pay is not, in and of itself, the primary concern but rather, treating them with higher regard, respect and simple human dignity of which higher pay would be just a consequence. I think Costco's example indicates that this isn't the either/or dilemma it is often portrayed to be.
What works for Costco just barely works for that company. They are operating on extremely thin margins (2.7%). Sam's Club is owned by Wal-Mart. The parent company employs a lot of people at or near minimum wage. Its operating margin? 5.9%. Over double.

Now, I'm not saying what Costco is wrong or misguided. It works for Costco. But you can't just take one aspect of Costco's policies (above average employee compensation), apply it to entire industries or market sectors, and expect everything to come up roses. Every company is the way they are through hard earned trial and error.


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Perhaps you've got this a bit backwards, you could help eliminate welfare BY raising the minimum and average wages of workers at the lower end of the economic scales to make reliance on Welfare far less necessary, likely or common.
Uh, no. Unless you're also going to use the apparatus of government to force employers to hire people, employers are simply going to pare back the amount of people on their payrolls.
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Old 03-13-2013, 05:01 PM   #34
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Trying to counter an argument by twisting the semantics is weak and petty.
I don't think my point is just a cute twist of semantics but rather, something I've observed and felt for a long time, that too many companies are run by MBAs who are great at manipulating org charts and spread sheets but may know, understand or care little about the actually products or services the companies they head produce.

GM was a prime example of this. For years, there was a strong product/engineering representation in their top tiers and they made innovative, quality and desirable products; reaping the benefits of this in terms of growth and profits shared broadly across the corporation. Then, starting in the later '60s, there was a growing infestation of MBA, marketers and beancounters taking control who's primary focus became not to make excellent cars but to make money. Well, look at just about any 1970's on GM product to see what happened there. All the fancy ad campaigns, rebates, and corporate shuffling and acquisitions could only forestall the inevitable rot and eventual collapse. Former GM top gun Bob Lutz has a good book out detailing just this.

So while it might seem like a clever semantical flourish, in reality, I deeply feel this has been a critical corrosion on our industrial/business world. More and more companies I think are starting to realize this and refocus back on to product/service excellence rather than financial and organizational chicanery.

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PC fluff. Business owners will do what is in their perceived best interest. Just like every other human being on the planet.
Presumably, but not necessarily, and even if so, with perhaps a too narrow perspective of self-interest -- self-perception are often the worst perceptions.


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Uh, no. Unless you're also going to use the apparatus of government to force employers to hire people, employers are simply going to pare back the amount of people on their payrolls.
So instead, we'll just settle for paying people impoverishing wages and forcing them of necessity (for survival) onto Welfare? Not sure that's the better option from either a human or even economic point of view.

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Old 03-13-2013, 05:53 PM   #35
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No, I'm pretty sure the minimum wage exists because white labor union workers in the early 20th century didn't want blacks taking their jobs.

As to the broader point about "exploitation", would you prefer to go back to the farm and work 70 hour weeks scrabbling at subsistence level work?
So all minimum wage laws in all countries were enacted because those countries were trying to protect unions? Go on.
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Old 03-13-2013, 08:18 PM   #36
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Hmm...maybe I should buy some stock in Costco. Been on my to do list. Overall they're a good company.
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Old 03-14-2013, 10:55 AM   #37
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Hmm...maybe I should buy some stock in Costco. Been on my to do list. Overall they're a good company.
only if you don't like making MONEY! buy walmart or walgreens if you want to see higher ROI. those extra wages going to employees could be going back to investors.
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Old 03-14-2013, 11:29 AM   #38
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So all minimum wage laws in all countries were enacted because those countries were trying to protect unions? Go on.

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I don't think my point is just a cute twist of semantics but rather, something I've observed and felt for a long time, that too many companies are run by MBAs who are great at manipulating org charts and spread sheets but may know, understand or care little about the actually products or services the companies they head produce.

GM was a prime example of this. For years, there was a strong product/engineering representation in their top tiers and they made innovative, quality and desirable products; reaping the benefits of this in terms of growth and profits shared broadly across the corporation. Then, starting in the later '60s, there was a growing infestation of MBA, marketers and beancounters taking control who's primary focus became not to make excellent cars but to make money. Well, look at just about any 1970's on GM product to see what happened there. All the fancy ad campaigns, rebates, and corporate shuffling and acquisitions could only forestall the inevitable rot and eventual collapse. Former GM top gun Bob Lutz has a good book out detailing just this.
Bob Lutz is a car guy and a damn good one. Nobody's denying that. But he has a myopic view of what drove GM bankrupt. Government regulation made it impossible for the Detroit 3 to make money on small and midsized sedans, ceding it to the Japanese because of the two fleets rule in CAFE. That forced GM's top leadership to rely on body-on-frame trucks and SUVs (which had extremely high margins) to make their money.

At the beginning of the year 2000, Detroit's strategy was vindicated as Ford and GM were two of the most profitable companies in America. Steadily increasing gas prices in the latter years of the aughts made this strategy untenable. At this point, both GM and Ford were buying out union contracts (at great expense) to improve their labor cost structure but when the financial crisis tanked the economy in 2008, they were caught at the exact moment where they couldn't afford to burn through cash.

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So while it might seem like a clever semantical flourish, in reality, I deeply feel this has been a critical corrosion on our industrial/business world. More and more companies I think are starting to realize this and refocus back on to product/service excellence rather than financial and organizational chicanery.
I'm glad you think so highly of your writing ability.

But more to the point, you gave one specific example (that isn't even correct, really) in one specific industry and suddenly we're supposed to take it as fact that this was the case in every sector of the economy? Companies do what they have to do to make a good return on investment. If that means relentless improving their cost structure (with the help of the fine management consultants at McKinsey, Bain, and BCG), delivering an outstanding product (Apple, grudgingly, Google, Samsung, Microsoft, Amazon), or capturing economic rent in Washington (the finance industry), that's what they'll do.

The argument that "companies aren't making the products that people want, only focusing on cost cutting to make profits" is ludicrously self satisfying and reflects a profound ignorance of how companies actually operate.

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Presumably, but not necessarily, and even if so, with perhaps a too narrow perspective of self-interest -- self-perception are often the worst perceptions.
The investor class is the only demographic in the US which has seen above average gains in real income growth for the past 30 years. I think their perception of self interest is much more accurate than everybody else.

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So instead, we'll just settle for paying people impoverishing wages and forcing them of necessity (for survival) onto Welfare? Not sure that's the better option from either a human or even economic point of view.
Strawman. I'd eliminate the minimum wage AND cut back on welfare.
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Old 03-14-2013, 12:30 PM   #39
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only if you don't like making MONEY! buy walmart or walgreens if you want to see higher ROI. those extra wages going to employees could be going back to investors.
lol, and Wal-mart's high turnover certainly helps ROI. Costco's turnover is significantly lower.

lol at the bold. Fvck the people that work there, it is all about ME ME ME ME.

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Old 03-14-2013, 01:14 PM   #40
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lol, and Wal-mart's high turnover certainly helps ROI. Costco's turnover is significantly lower.

lol at the bold. Fvck the people that work there, it is all about ME ME ME ME.
who cares about turnover when you pay your employees less than half of a competitor?

i don't give a fvck who works where. it's an investment. as long as it makes ME MONEY, IDGAF!!!
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