McDonald’s ‘helps’ employees with ‘McResources’ hotline that tells them to sign up for SNAP and Medicaid

We’ve been talking for a while here now about how the crap minimum wage in this country affects both those living on it, and our economy as a whole. As much and as often as I can tell you that we, as a country, are essentially subsidizing the wages of these workers for companies that don’t feel like paying their employees enough to live on, perhaps that is not as effective as hearing it directly from the horse’s mouth.

In every McDonald’s, there are posters advertising a “McResources” hotline for employees having a hard time getting along financially. Guess what happens when an employee calls one of those “McResources” lines? Well, they get an operator, on the other end, explaining to them how to sign up for SNAP and Medicaid. Here is a a call from ten-year McDonald’s employee Nancy Salgado (who makes $8.25 an hour and has never received a raise), recorded by the folks at Low Pay is Not OK, in which she asks an operator about what to do about not being able to afford food or healthcare, and is instructed to sign up for social safety net programs.

And no eyelashes were batted that day.

Instead of paying its employees enough to eat, McDonald’s expects us to foot that bill. Instead of giving their employees healthcare, McDonald’s expects us to foot that bill as well. That is not our responsibility, that is their responsibility.

Many people in this country like to think of the poor as “takers.” They concoct elaborate fantasies of poor people scamming off the government, living high on the hog with big screen TVs and BMWs, eating king crab legs for dinner every night, shamelessly stealing from the taxpayers. I hope this video makes it as clear as humanly possible who the real shameless takers are in this country.

The workers organizing for better pay don’t want to have to live off of taxpayer money. All they want is the ability to work a job that allows them to take care of themselves, pay their rent, pay for food, pay their utilities bill, and go to see a doctor if they need to see a doctor. They are not asking for your money, McDonald’s is.

This is America. We are a rich country, and we have more than enough resources to support everyone here comfortably. There should be no such thing here as “the working poor.” Anyone who is putting their 40 hours in should be able to support themselves without government assistance.

Peter Drucker, a man who is known as the father of management consulting, stated in the 1970’s that in order for a company to be the best it can be, the ratio of the CEO’s pay to the average worker’s pay should be, at most 20 to 1. He said that is “the limit beyond which they cannot go if they don’t want resentment and falling morale to hit their companies.” This was actually about normal in the 70s, before CEO pay went through the roof.

The average CEO to median worker pay ratio is now 350 to 1. Can you imagine how amazing our economy would be if we stuck to the Drucker rule? Holy shit, it would be incredible. We’d have negligible unemployment, a killer middle-class, and, as a bonus, those at the top would have a little less to spend on buying politicians and screwing with our Democracy.

But alas, that’s probably never going to happen. The ratio of CEO-to-worker pay is up 20% since only 2009, and it looks like they just keep getting greedier. What can happen though is that we can stay on these companies, and demand that they pay their workers enough to live on. We can refuse to spend our money there. We can demand that our representatives fight for a minimum wage that will allow these workers to earn a living and better their lives, which is all they’re trying to do in the first place