‘wE cAn’T giVe a PaYRise duE to iNflAtIOn’

… Is the message that we hear a lot of lately. What I see and hear is an excuse, and a smokescreen from the CEOs who pay themselves outrageous bonuses. Take this example from Twitter:

The video is astonishing. Ms Owen is receiving a bonus worth more than what many of her employees combined could hope to earn in their lifetimes, but has the audacity to complain that her employees aren’t more focused on how the company is doing. She rattles off a list of excuses, but those reasons didn’t affect the whopping great bonus she received, and this is but one of many such stories.

Inflation may not be directly mentioned in the video, but it’s behind the scenes in every decision around wages. Corporations are reporting record profits as prices rise, but workers are seeing what amounts to real-term decreases in wages, as price hikes grossly exceed income.

One of the best explanations for why corporate answers to a lack of pay rises are a load of bunk can be found here, and I’ll quote from Robert Reich’s article:

(in reference to the USA’s central bank) They assume that the underlying economic problem is a tight labor market, causing wages to rise – and prices to rise in response. And they believe interest rate increases are necessary to slow this wage-price inflation.

This is dead wrong.

Wage increases have not even kept up with inflation. Most workers’ paychecks are shrinking in terms of real purchasing power. Rather than causing inflation, wages are actually reducing inflationary pressures.


I have lamented before, more than once, that the money is there to provide a reasonable, living wage, and the excuses given are flimsy and weak. They look especially weak, considering CEOs can grant themselves millions of dollars in bonuses.

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