What Americans Should Do About Corporate Greed
We live in a complex country of many political views, ideals, and religious believes. The one thing that unites America is being an American. Despite being at each others throat prior to 9/11 for example, after the events of September 11th, 2001 this country came together in ways it hadn't in the last several decades. No matter your political or religious view , the far vast majority of Americans were up in arms together. Compromise was achieved in politics and things started to actually get done in a manner of which it had to. You can point to wars in Iraq to play Captain Hindsight to our mistakes , but on that day terrorist sent us a message and we sent them one right back. In the 70's and in 1994, Americans went on energy strikes that slightly effected Energy prices over one day. Again, united and fed up, many took part in these strikes. Energy was centralized mostly in other countries during these strikes, so the effect of prices was minimal over one day. Any sales lost that day could simply be stock piled and sold else where to make money back. Now if Americans had boycotted energy assets for several weeks , the stockpile effect would of naturally driven prices down to dirt cheap and OPEC would of taken notice by the first week.
In 2018 we still have huge issues with corporate greed and basically monopoly markets. Some political advocates on one side think the Government should regulate these companies, however some of these regulations have already been put in place and had no effect. Other political advocates from another side believe that Government is bad and such regulations should never existed in a capitalistic society. These people generally advocate for the "working class" and believe that corporations create jobs for Americans. Therefore, they believe corporations should be left to operate how they see fit. Now lets talk about one of these corporations. The first one I will discuss is Joe's Crab Shack. Joe's Crab Shack closed 41 locations in August, 2017 without giving a single employee prior notice.
Joe's Crab Shack Thanks It's Employees By Not Telling Them They Were Gong To Be Jobless
I Loved Joe's Crab Shack!
One of my best memories in life is as an adolescence happened at Joe's Crab Shack in 1997. I wasn't a great kid but I had a big sister who was pretty awesome. She let me do things my parents wouldn't and took me places my parents wouldn't. My father worked graveyards and was a veteran of the Vietnam and Korean wars. Don't get me wrong, I was very proud to be his son. However working for a chemical plant allowed him very little time to spend with the family. He started out as a no one who the company hired due to his military background and made himself into both a Civil and Chemical Engineer before he retired with a pension for 30+ years of employment. My mother was always sick with an illness known as Lupus, so she was never able to spend time or take me anywhere. I, however, lucked out with an amazing sister who loved me enough to include me in her mischief.
Joe's Crab Shack Saturdays
Often we would choose to go to Joe's Crab Shack on Saturdays for some of the best Seafood I had ever had in my life at that point. Of course as soon as I crossed the border from Texas to Louisiana I had realized I had no idea what real seafood could be. It saddened me to wake up and read the news. I actually didn't believe the story I had read so I investigated myself using relevant SEO queries and several different external search engines. The story is completely true and shocking. Having recently eaten at Joe's, I realized there service , food and atmosphere are nothing like they use to be. I know millennials, at least the younger ones, prefer a different type of eating environment and I expected some changes. I wasn't prepare for how much everything had changed in the restaurant and I did feel like perhaps these changes and lack of direction might be hurting the company. It was sadly , very true. The company planned sale the brand and used bankruptcy to clear prior debts. Now , I have a huge problem with companies making such profits and then some how filing bankruptcy with things don't look as good as they should. That fight is for another article , however. The thing that stuck out the most to me was the corporations lack of dignity in laying off employees at 41 locations with no prior warning. People literally got up and spent their time and money to go into a poorly ran business where they offer their blood, sweat, and tears for a company that paid them only what they valued them for. That company, in turn, didn't have the decency to inform these people that they had been fired. Then the realization of these employees that the bills they have coming due were going to be hard to pay. The thoughts of any single mother or hard working father or maybe even a millennial working his way through college, the trauma they must of been dealt to find out they lost their jobs this way. The company gave these people no time to prepare for unemployment using the "at will" clause to hide behind scum business practices.
Joey's Is Dead To Me
So as of August , 2017 , Joe's Crab Shack is dead to me. I am a devoted Independent who leans republican hard on many issues. That doesn't mean I support Donald Trump, It means I support the working class man. Not because I don't make six figures as of yet, but because the back bone of this country are people who work 50 hours a week to barely afford a place to live and are forced to use food stamps. These men and women ignore medical issues, until they die sometimes, in fear of the cost of such services. They work hard and their entire world is completely fragile. Something like showing up to work to find a 'Closed Forever" sign could easily destroy the lives of some of these Americans. That bothers me and should bother anyone no matter their political views but especially bother us Republicans. Yet, I find a lot of my brothers saying that business do as they want, it can only be that way. We can't force them to do anything. Things such as more government would change capitalism and be bad for American echo in my thoughts. They are right. I hear liberals screaming that it's unfair that such hardship and unfair practices will burden the lives of those who are most burden in our society. Liberals preach for more regulations and consequences for such corporations. Punishment to deter such practices. After all, Joey's knew this was in the cards long before hand. They are also right. While we argue over the petty issues we ignore the principle concepts that create larger issues in this country because we can't compromise on how to solve them. As neared the end of the article I thought to myself, no more. I don't need a bill to go through congress to tell me what Joe's did was wrong. I don't need a march or riots or statues or to reference the pigment of another human beings skin to know what occurred here is wrong. I do not need Fox News , CNN or memes on social media to tell me how to feel and what to do. I know what to do. I will no longer eat at Joe's Crab Shack. My location is open. Most stores closed were in the northern part of the country. I do not care. I don't need to care about who it effected, I just need to read the article to understand how it effected them. While America sits around arguing over if we needed Barry Obama or Donald Trump for "change" in America, I will make a change.
How Do We Change It
The change I make today is to no longer bring my business to this company until the day it changes. I didn't need a lawyer or politicians to come to that conclusion. I didn't need a public vote on how to do it. I know how to do it. We , as Americans, keep looking for this person to save us all. We keep looking to Religion, Government, politics, Presidents, or any other array of things to fix our issues. The problem boils down to not being able to agree on how to fix the issues. The solution is that Americans stop looking here and there to solve issues. We stop asking for rights to be taken away, we stop asking to people who believe like us, we stop waiting on this solution and we become the solution. All it takes is Americans to stand up and do what is right. Do what you know is right. We don't need guidelines on how to do it, we just need to do it. If Joe's Crab Shack lost half it's business I can promise things would change. It would revamp the way it treated it's employees and respect its customers. After all , if the customer comes first than employees should come second, not profit margins. Does this mean a business should give everything to it's employees? No , of course not. It means they should value their workers as much as they value their money. We live in a country where poor performance is used to fire employees but poor business ethics are 'just the way it is". We don't need to agree on why something is wrong, we just need to realize it's wrong and take personal responsibility in fixing it. This is the only message we need to send to fix issues like this. No company would dare do this if the consequences of such actions where actually losing so much money that they ended up going bankrupt like a normal person does.
You Want To Move To Mexico And Sell To America?
Here's another point to drive home. In my realization of what Joe's did I finally came back to a thought I have had for a long time. Why are we trying to create laws, change taxes, and stop companies from skipping out of the United States in search of cheap labor? It makes no sense. We are the American consumer. The customer is always right, right? If a car company thinks it can make more money with cheap labor in Mexico, the solution shouldn't be a President kissing ass to make them stay. No , we all know it's wrong. We know it's crap. We know they avoid taxes, paying a livable wage, or contributing to American society. We know theses companies make large profits and do not need to move, they want to move to increase profit. We are not blessed to have IPhones in this country. Apple is blessed to have American consumers who choose to buy its product. We are not blessed to own a Chevy. Chevy is blessed to have Americans stand behind an American product. It isn't an American product if you make it in Mexico. I say to hell with the companies. Let them move. Will we lose jobs? Sure. Put your money into American companies. Do not buy a car that was produced in Mexico. The car company that moved to Mexico can sell it's cars to Mexican in their economy. This whole double dipping concept is bullshit, and we all know it. We can't keep letting companies take American products and make them foreign. I am not saying to boycott foreign goods, I am saying if Chevy, for example, moves to Mexico , we as Americans send a message to Chevy. We let them know they are no longer an American company and we already have our choice of foreign companies. We don't buy from them. In a few months that car company will be back in America. No laws needed, no tariffs, and no specialized taxation.
It's Time Companies Appreciate Their Customers
We are the consumers of America. It's time to make these corporations appreciate us. If a car company in America wants to build a car off of Mexican labor, it can sell that car in Mexico. Why does that matter? Because that company would make more money selling that car in the US for our current labor prices then if they had to sell it in Mexico using Mexican Labor. That's the bottom line and it boils down to simple economics. These companies want to use foreign economies to avoid regulations and take advantage of people in third world countries. Then they want to call themselves American while selling us cars at the same cost they would if it were built in America. Think of it like this. You go to a candy shop every day and you buy a candy bar. Not just any candy bar, you buy a Hershey's Chocolate bar. Well the Candy shop owner decides he can get a chocolate bar from Walmart for .40 cents less. The next day the Hershey Bars are gone and the new Walmart Bars exist and it cost as much as the Hershey's bar use to. Well, I don't know about you people but I don't want a Walmart bar, I want a fracking Hershey's bar that's made in America the way it always was. We don't need a president or political party to save us. We have the power to tell companies we don't want a Walmart bar!
If We Stand We Shall Not Fall
The bottom line is that companies need us, the consumers. A corporation can make a million phones for the cost of a stick of bubble gum, but if they can't sell those phones to favorable markets then they can't turn a profit. There are many issues that exist in this country that could be corrected with this concept. You may not agree with others why the issues exist but compromise exist not to prove one side right or another wrong. Compromise exist to get results with complex questions. For example, there are a lot of people who believe a women has a right to an abortion. There is another group of people who believe that abortion is murder. However the group of people that think a woman should be able to abort a baby the day before she should give birth is very slim. The group who think taking a morning after pill or birth control is murder is also very slim. The compromise is found in between, the objective. The objective is to determine when a fetus is a life and set standards to protect that life. We can never do that because our believes and politics are always in the way. Then we vote for people to speak for us when we don't even know if they believe what we do. The result is a tiring circle of hypocrisy and courts that almost never renders a real solution. Before you speak out and say 'abortion is always criminal" think about it. You wouldn't lock up someone for having a miscarriage would you? You would however lock someone up if they just let their 3 year old starve to death and called it 'God's will". Would most liberals be okay with a woman aborting a baby who could feel pain, be extract and breathe on its own, or cry out when first light hit their eyes? Our country lacks this moderation. We lack the understanding of peoples right to their believes and doing what is right, not what we believe is right when done a certain way because a party or preacher says so.
Be The Change
I know this article will not change the minds of millions of people. I write it more in frustration of American lack of progress. Next time you are around someone with different views , try something. Instead of rushing to urge them into your belief, find a common ground. Purpose a way to reach that common ground using suggestions of your own and theirs as well. Try to think , does it really matter if you take a right to reach a road or three lefts? The objective is the road. Americans can determine so much if we could take the power out of the hands of those who say they will help us and started helping ourselves.