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10.3.05

Loaded Mouth had an interesting proposal.

We've got a minimum wage, how about a maximum wage?
A maximum wage is an idea that some more extreme elements of the Green Party toyed around with. Even within those ranks, it was never finally embraced. The idea of telling somebody, "The highest amount your weekly paycheck can be is $XXX," intrinsically goes against the values of capitalistic dreams, thus "The American Dream", and could probably be rightly labeled as communist.

But when CEOs make upto 300 times more than the average worker, has the time come for a law which caps wages of the super rich? And if so, what kind of law could we enact that wouldn't put a hard cap in wages, but still force a corporation to distribute their wealth amongst the employees who are doing all the hard work to earn that money?

So here's my maximum wage law proposal: No CEO/company employee can make 30 times more than their lowest compensated employee. While this doesn't provide a hard cap for CEO wages, it would force them to distibute their wealth to those that earn it for them. And besides, they till get to pull down 30 times the wage of their lowest paid employee. So, for example, if the lowest wage a corporation pays out is $12 an hour, the CEO can make $360 an hour, $14,440 a week, and $750,880 a year. That's quite the hefty sum of money, therefore I see this salary cap arrangement as being extremely fair."

I'm just more curious to see where people stand. Personally, I see the importance of something like a maximum wage, but I also see the fact that I went to school and incurred enough school debt to choke me for the rest of my life. Why should the receptionist or the photocopy person, who did not have to go to school, and don't have six figure school loan payments to repay, be guarangeed at least a 30th of a parther who is bringing $5 million in business a year? And are you going to make my schooling cheapr? Forego my loans? And how do you determine the number? Loaded Mouth suggests 30. WHy 30 rather than 25? Or 35? Is it arbitrary? How do you make that determination. I'm just curious.

2 Comments:

  • At 8:17 PM, Blogger NYCbeauty said…

    I hear what you say...both about the max wage and the loan repayments. A reluctant lawyer myself, I empathize with it all. By the way, I just started blogging and came across yours. It's great. It seems like we have a lot in common.

     
  • At 10:15 PM, Blogger Alli said…

    In theory I like the idea of some kind of cap, and I support the maximum being much higher than the lowest paid worker. The receptionist at my plant routinely plays solitaire and talks on the phone to her friends - I daresay my contribution is more valuable. I am very pro-employee, and I support workers' rights, but the more I get into management, the more I understand where frustration with employees comes from.

    The risk/reward relationship is also important to consider. If my company needs a scapegoat, or if I fail to meet my goals in some arbitrary way, I will be looking for a new job. For an hourly associate to be fired from my manufacturing plant, they have to be late to work 8 times in one year (and for the first 7 times, they can earn and can use 4 hours of personal time each month). My chances of being out on the street with no warning are much, much higher.

    Loaded Mouth's statement about CEOs sharing their wages with those who earned it for them is false. It's everyone doing their individually assigned jobs that make a company work. CEOs point the direction, make risky decisions, bring in customers, keep stock values rising - less physical than the typical hourly workers, but just as valuable. Some individuals add more value than others, and that is true whether at the top or the bottom end of the pay scale.

    I divided my salary by the number of hours I work and it is approximately the same amount as our top-paid hourly associates.

     

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