Sunday, November 28, 2004

The Aftermath of Club Med, Or My Paycheck This Week Was -$14.23!

I hope anybody who was at Club Med in Freddy Beach last night had an awesome time, and that Residence Admin didn't do anything to screw things up (like last year's debacle). As for me personally, I had a few drinks last night to get into the Club Med spirit (see yesterday's post for more on that), though regrettably, I could not be there again this year.

Today will be, for the most part, a typical Sunday. I will be watching The Apprentice on Prime this evening, as I was very busy Thursday evening and missed it for the first time ever. I find it funny how the youngest guy (Andy -- 23) looks exactly like one of my friends, Mark MacEachern. Weird stuff!

Finally, I've been meaning to mention this for a week now, and a letter to the editor in yesterday's Chronicle Hearld brought it back to the front burner in my mind. It was regarding a Peter Duffy column about a girl who was working at a gas station to help pay her way through college. Now, I had not known before that when people steal gas (i.e. drive away without paying), that it is common practice to dock the attendent's pay the exact amount of the gas purchase.

With the minimum wage salary that this job has to meagrely offer to its workers, I find this policy very Scrooge-like and cold-hearted. Some people have to pay their rent and feed their children with this pittance, only to have it largely snatched away from them. It is exceedingly hard to attend to customers in-store, while keeping an eye out for thieves looking to steal gas. Their only recourse against these people is that their employers offer them training to recognize people who are typically thieves. This may catch a few that fit the stereotype, but vast majority play it cool and get away scot-free, taking some poor person's livelihood with them!

To heap this on workers is morally untenable, as it amounts to little more than greed, not so much on the retailer's part, but on the part of Big Oil. In recent years, they have been forcing retailers down to profit margins that are razor-thin, or sometimes non-existent. These companies should invest in technology that positively ID's anybody who attempts to drive away without paying, instead of exploiting the working poor in order for them to cut their losses. It is the least they can do to help relieve the public's cynicism that is surrounding Big Business these days. Social responsibility must be an essential cornerstone of business, not a burden to be cast aside in the pursuit of the amighty dollar.


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