Monday, April 22, 2013 | 2:02 a.m.
The headline in USA Today recently read, “Market gains pump CEO pay, corporate chiefs pull in $50 million or more.” Listed were the stock option gains for the CEOs of Starbucks, Ford, Sherwin-Williams, Chipotle Mexican Grill and Apple, all over $50 million for 2012, which is in addition to their salaries and perks. Shareholders did not complain, as they too got very wealthy.
The question remains: What did the employees at these companies get for the fantastic profits that the companies celebrated? Did they get a bonus, comp time or a salary increase? I’ll bet no raises, no bonuses, no increased benefits — just the opportunity to serve a company that only rewards the executives.
Why don’t corporations consider rewarding employees? I think Ford has a profit-sharing agreement with the new UAW. What happened to sharing the wealth? It’s been replaced with hoarding the wealth.
The middle-class workers did not receive rewards even though it was their productivity that was the driving force in the rise of the stock price. We know workers’ productivity is way up, but their salaries are not in line with employers’ profit gains and increased expectations. The income and privilege gap is getting wider every year and the Republican Party is dedicated to keeping it that way. Watch out for the new business model of 29 hours or less a week with no benefits for workers. The new agreement between Ford and the UAW could be a model to save the middle-class workers and private-sector unions.