The truth behind CEO pay

By Neal McNamara | March 22, 2014
Seattle Swearing-In

When talking about increasing the minimum wage, have you ever heard someone make the argument that it should happen because CEOs make so much more than their underlings do?

More commonly, you might’ve witnessed protests or seen pictures of rallies where $15 minimum wage supporters questioned the inequity between CEO pay and worker pay.

KTTH host Ben Shapiro put that theory to the test recently, comparing the wages of the McDonald’s CEO to that of his employees.

According to a 2013 report, McDonald’s CEO Don Thompson will earn nearly $14 million this year. Meanwhile, McDonald’s employs around 2 million workers.

So, if Thompson took his salary down to $0 per year, putting that entire CEO pay of $14 million toward raises for those 2 million people, how much of a raise would that equal?

A big, fat $7 per-person.

That’s not $7 per person per hour, that’s $7 total. So, if a McDonald’s employee earned $15,000 last year, this year they would earn $15,007.

“Let’s stop pretending these folks at the top are impoverishing the ones at the bottom,” Shapiro said. “The people who are keeping the impoverished folks at the bottom are the folks that are suggesting they stay at the bottom.

“America is a wonderful place. You can move up and you can move down.”

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