This is a time of sacrifice. Going out less and wearing a mask when you do to protect yourself and others from the virus, for example. Not only is that selflessness being seen at the top of the American corporate hierarchy, as the bosses at major companies voluntarily reduce their pay to nothing, but we're seeing companies make sacrifices that you wouldn't have assumed would in a million years. Fox News execs took pay cuts to soften the blow of the economic slowdown. When Fox takes cuts, and your company doesn't, you should take a step back and ask yourself if you're one of the bad guys. (Answer: Yes)
Time and again, when faced with the easy choice of temporarily limiting or eliminated executive pay to maintain as many jobs as possible, tons companies chose the path of dickish greed. Somehow, Chuck E. Cheese is one of them. I've written about how the premier rat-based pizza entertainment center was trying to secretly sell it's pizza under a different name so they could have at least one part of their business still functioning. That stopgap plan didn't work out as well as executives had hoped. Now, their parent company is facing the grim reality that it may have to file for bankruptcy and permanently close all of its locations -- but, not before dishing out big-ass bonuses to its execs as a way to pat themselves on the back for managing a bankrupted business. Our only hope is the robot band pulling a Westworld and going after the board.
Shit, they already got terminated.
Tenet Healthcare Corp. runs hospitals and medical centers all over the U.S. When faced with a pandemic, they furloughed thousands of employees. Tenet's CEO felt terrible, so he gave up pay three-months' pay -- around $390,000 -- and put that money toward a fund to help struggling current and former employees. Aw, how sweet. If only he weren't still making millions, during all this, when you combine the rest of his salary and add in his $875,000 bonus and stock rewards. On top of that, Tenet's still paying the previous CEO's salary.
Sonic Automotive Inc. owns nearly 95 car dealerships. They fired or furloughed a third of their employees to stem the tide of the massive financial hit car dealerships have been taking. They probably could have saved some of those jobs, or at least prolonged their elimination, if only they hadn't reworked their executive pay packages so the top brass would get even more money during the pandemic.
These companies aren't alone. Reuters did some digging and found nearly 80 major corporations were dishing out tons of money to keep their executives onboard, fearing any reduction in pay would send them fleeing. Meanwhile, they have no problem letting go of everyone on the lower-rungs of the ladder. It's a bloodbath on the bottom and a billionaire's cocaine yacht orgy on top.
Luis can be found on Twitter and Facebook. Catch him on the "In Broad Daylight" podcast with Cracked alums Adam Tod Brown and Ian Fortey! Check out his regular contributions to Macaulay Culkin's BunnyEars.com and his "Meditation Minute" segments on the Bunny Ears podcast. Listen to the first episode on Youtube!