Thingish Things

Grande Shakedown

Written By: William F. B. O'Reilly - Jan• 17•11

No good deed goes unpunished.

Take Starbucks.

The socially conscious coffee giant was protested this Martin Luther King Day in New York City by its own employees for the seventh consecutive year.  The disgruntled are members of the so-called “Industrial Workers of the World Starbucks Workers Union.”

The name itself is enough to make you snort a skinny, no-foam Venti latte out your nose.

The radicalized baristas marched from Union Square – a hotbed of Leftist politics when the real IWW operated 100 years ago – to Astor Place, where they issued “demands” to an almost assuredly bemused Astor Place Starbucks store manager.

They included:

  • A $1 per hour raise;
  • “Fair” performance reviews;
  • The rehiring of two fired workers, one in New York and one in Omaha, Nebraska (You can’t make this stuff up), and
  • An extra shot of hazelnut syrup after six months of service (okay, that one’s mine.)

Starbucks’ crimes against the proletarians?

  • It pays starting employees at Astor Place between $9 and $10 per hour.  (The minimum wage in New York is $7.25);
  • It gives employees health and dental insurance – voluntarily.  (The Seattle bean behemoth spends more on health and dental each year than it does on coffee.);
  • It pays more for coffee beans overseas than it needs to provide foreign workers better wages;
  • It maintains a 401 k plan for employees;
  • It contributes to employee college tuitions;
  • It  offers financial assistance to employees who adopt children;
  • It offers employees stock options, and
  • It helps reimburse for employee commuting costs.

No wonder they are getting protested.  What a bunch of jerks.

I so pray Starbucks Astor Place shuts its doors and reopens as a Walmart.

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