Ratification Bonuses

Mondelez International has settled its dispute with its workers as the company and the union representing the workers, the Bakery, Confectionery, Tobacco Workers and Grain Millers International Union, signed a new four-year deal.

One importance of this, as far as I’m concerned, is that the supply of Oreo cookies is secured for that period. But what do I know; I’m a sucker for chocolate- and sugar-based junk food.

The deal, however, consists in large part, of

ratification bonuses, hourly wage increases, and a higher company match for 401(k) contributions….

The Value of a College Degree

According to Credible:

High school graduates make about $39,000 per year, while those with a Bachelor’s degree earn $73,000.

Average student loan debt on graduation, though, runs a bit over $37,000, with a typical annual payment on that debt is more than $4,700.

Here are the annual incomes from some of the skilled trades, according to my arithmetic and data from Indeed. Based on 50-week years (because some vacation matters, even if it’s not paid):

  • Journeyman Electrician (an entry level): $48,500
  • Journeyman Plumber: $45,040
  • Welder: $44,020
  • Carpenter: $42,720
  • Pipefitter: $51,270
  • Ironworker: $48,640

Color Me Surprised

…or not. It seems Ted Wheeler, the Progressive-Democratic Mayor of Portland, OR, who doubles as the Portland police commissioner, is having trouble finding folks idiot enough willing to work for him in what used to be a critical section of his police facility.

Leaders in Portland, OR, are looking to combat the city’s rising homicide rate by resurrecting a police unit focused on gun violence. But after a year of growing tension within the department, they can’t find enough officers to join.
Since 14 job openings were announced in May, only four police personnel have applied to work with the new version of Portland’s Gun Violence Reduction Team, which was shut down last year amid long-running protests….

Student Debt Problems

Students who borrowed (lots of) money to get degrees from “elite” schools—or from any school, come to that—now feel financially hobbled for life.

Recent film program graduates of Columbia University who took out federal student loans had a median debt of $181,000.
Yet two years after earning their master’s degrees, half of the borrowers were making less than $30,000 a year.

The universities share a measure of responsibility for these student debt problems. These schools should—and the reluctant should be required to—publish the mean and median salaries for each of the first five years of employment for each of the majors the schools offer. The schools also should be the ones making the loans to their students or underwriting private lenders’ loans to their students.

There are Jobs…

There are Jobs…

…and there are jobs.

AFL-CIO Secretary-Treasurer Liz Shuler had this to say about President Joe Biden’s (D) “jobs” plan:

[He’s] doing a “masterful job aligning his cabinet secretaries in this messaging” about creating union jobs with taxpayer-funded infrastructure projects.

Notice that. Our tax payments are going to provide union jobs under the Biden plan, and this is a good thing, the union mucky-muck says.

No non-union jobs. No jobs funded by private enterprise in a free market economy. No hand-up type support for private enterprise to expand and create non-union (or union, come to that) jobs. Only government-funded union jobs for government-favored entities.

The Wealth Gap Is…

…narrowing? How can that be? All those tax cuts and all those economic moves of the prior administration—which ended just 6 months ago—were playing to the favored rich. Weren’t they?


A fading pandemic and heating US economy appear to be paying off for lower-wage workers.
New jobs at restaurants, hotels, stores, salons, and similar in-person roles accounted for about half of all payroll gains in June, according to the Labor Department. And workers in those industries are seeing larger raises than other employees.

They’re also seeing actual jobs, with those raises being from zero to paychecks.

You Didn’t Build That

The Progressive-Democrats are continuing their attack on American citizens being successful. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D, CA) has populated her Select Committee on Economic Disparity and Fairness in Growth.

The past several decades have shown with devastating clarity the marked imbalance between the financial fortunes of CEOs and workers….

Never mind that the last four years before the present Progressive-Democrat-run administration and Congress has seen a marked decrease in the disparity in the financial fortunes of CEOs and workers, as workers got bigger pay raises, in per centage terms, than have the CEOs, significantly closing the gap. Never mind, either, that that decrease in the financial fortunes gap also has been markedly potentiated by the historic lows in minority and women unemployment as those especially on the bottom rungs of our economic—financial fortune—ladder saw marked increases in their wages: they got actual jobs, they became workers.

A Question

was asked.

What do you think is the most effective way for companies to support diversity initiatives?

…and answered, by yours truly.

Stop carrying out diversity initiatives. Those are just unserious virtue-signaling nonsense.

Instead, businesses (among other entities) support and/or carry out their own training programs, and they should support K-12 charter, voucher, private school education, so as to build over time a population of qualified adults that is reflective of the population at large.

From that diverse population of qualified individuals, then select and hire based on merit rather than on virtue signals.

An Illegal Offering?

The Biden administration intends to lease some Federal lands in the waters roughly between Long Island and New Jersey, ostensibly to build a wind farm there.

The problem with that intent is this:

The proposed “competitive lease sale”…the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) [an arm of the Interior Department] is seeking feedback on several mandates tied to the sale, including the requirement “to create good-paying union jobs and engage with all stakeholders and ocean users[.]”
The “announcement of new proposed lease stipulations puts a priority on creating and sustaining good-paying union jobs….”

Some Words on Timidity

RR Reno, editor of First Things, had an interesting op-ed about why he isn’t interested in hiring graduates of our Ivy League schools. His disdain wasn’t so much for the woke activists effectively running those schools as it was for the rest of the pupils (my term; his more generous one was “students”) there [emphasis added].

Student activists don’t represent the majority of students. But I find myself wondering about the silent acquiescence of most students. They allow themselves to be cowed by charges of racism and other sins. I sympathize. The atmosphere of intimidation in elite higher education is intense. But I don’t want to hire a person well-practiced in remaining silent when it costs something to speak up.