If you have been paying attention recently, you know that Obama was reelected and several states have petitioned to secede (most notably Texas) all because people have been told that Obama wants to destroy America… or something equally as stupid. Real quick, if Texas wants to secede then let them… problem is they are $287 BILLION in debt and rely on the “evil” federal government handouts to pay its debt. So while Texas does technically by all means, have the ability to self sustain, they do not have the credit rating nor the economy to afford such ginormous debt. Not to mention all that Mexican cheap labor that Texas businessmen would jump at, thus disparaging their white population who are the ones I am guessing, that want to secede.
Now that we have that little snippet out of the way, two big business owners, both of which reside in the food service industry, have become more outspoken about how Obamacare is going to ruin their business, their employees and America. Papa John’s CEO and C+ pizza manufacturer John Schnatter has said he will have to cut labor and possibly raise prices. To follow this, Applebee’s CEO Zane Tankel went on Fox Business to basically bitch and complain about having to ensure that employees are insured and healthy. That is what kills me here, two of the biggest fighters against the Affordable Healthcare Act are both CEO’s of the food service industry, where you NEED TO BE HEALTHY in order to not get your customer base sick. So to both of these CEO’s I say simply… quit your complaining and shut the hell up.
Let me say that I champion businessmen. Without them we don’t have jobs or really an economy to a degree. They offer us products we enjoy, food we love, groceries we need and entertainment we desire, but this does not give them the right to disregard humanity and health. As a former server I can tell you that the average it costs to get health insurance is nearly impossible to attain while making $3.50/hr plus tips. After taxes you really only make about $2.10/hr and don’t forget all those bills you have to pay! That these six-figure a year ideologues have the wherewithal to complain about something a VAST majority of their employees not only want, but need is disturbing and shows the private job sector for what it is.
While I was in college at Ohio State, I lived in an apartment with my then girlfriend and my friend, our rent was $450 and our utilities was around $130 roughly. When they both were let go of their jobs, I had to pay our bills and I literally could not afford food… I had to go days without really eating at all and I had to ration gas in order to drive to class. My point is that the wage I was making was not sustainable without government assistance which these CEO’s along with the right-wingers absolutely hate. They would have called me a entitled mooch, but I held a job, I didn’t want assistance from the feds, but with no legit work and the most minimal pay offered, what choice did I have? What choice does my generation have? Live on the streets or in poverty, but with a roof over your head?
Schnatter and Tankel do not know what their employees go through… and they don’t care. If they sent a small questionnaire to all of their stores for all of their employees (servers, bartenders, drivers, managers, cooks) to ask if they need healthcare, if their employer should offer it and if it is affordable now, I am guessing their answers would be yes, yes and no. If Schnatter and Tankel think the ONLY way to cover the cost increases of healthcare is to fire employees then they are being selfish small-minded bigots. Why can these millionaire’s not just lower their personal take home pay? Will it really cause them that much discomfort? Should they not do it cause they “earned it” even though it is earned on the backs of their majorly lower waged employees. Yes these men have built strong empires, but without employees to do the work how would they rake in their money?
The funniest thing to me is it is not like these companies will be at any disadvantage to their competitors. Everyone must follow this new rule. What are you going to do?… fire everyone or force everyone under 30 hours a week? You cannot have both. If you continue to fire employees to “cover costs” and then make sure your employees are not getting 30 hours a week in order to keep them from getting healthcare, that is just the pinnacle of selfish business. What happens when you under-employ yourself so much that you run into the problem of it causing you to lose business? How do you come to terms with that?
Tankel complaining like a child is just one of the lowest of lows. Tankel is the CEO for a restaurant establishment which has some of the lowest costs due to employing servers which rely on tips, not on a paycheck. Applebee’s has a solid customer base, affordable food, affordable drinks and a relatively good atmosphere. Tankel being forced to hand out “entitlements” has to be so difficult for a man who pays a majority of his workforce half of what minimum wage is. A server should not just be given the option of healthcare, it should be free because the server gives the service of your food, and without them your brand doesn’t exist. If they are sick or appear sick I will not return, because I don’t want to get sick, I don’t want to expose my family or myself to a company that doesn’t care about its sick employees.
Where does the selfishness end? As my friend said, “greed is good” which I agree with to a degree… but greed’s biggest problem is greed. It brings the thought of if I can make $1 Million why not $2 Million? I’m all for that for a business… but you have a responsibility to your employees and the citizens. Your employees make your money, they make your brand, they represent YOU. Why demonize them? If Schnatter and Tankel feel their employees don’t need to have healthcare (it is not affordable for their average employee) then that should be directly on their applications and they themselves should explain why they do not offer it. Explaining why healthcare is pointless for them. These are the same type of men who 100 years ago argued how a 12 year old laborer was fine, 16 hour shifts had no ill effects on health and $10 a week was plenty. These same fat cats are the big corporate smokers who said that smoking had no signs of causing any health repercussions… which is obviously bulls–t now. As former President Grover Cleveland said that business should be,
“carefully restrained creatures of law and the servants of the people.”
My how things have changed…