Starbucks going union


Or more accurately, the business is fighting it as always with an array of illegal (firing employees) and quasi-legal actions. 3 going union so far. Didn’t know they were evil on health care…

I remember Starbucks always paraded the fact that they gave health care to all their employees.

The Starbucks around Greenwich Village NYC all had their workers on strike yesterday.

Thankfully, I prefer the neighbourhood coffee places.

I guess I’m just a hopeless Luddite, brewing my own java at home and the office…

Anyone who thinks pouring coffee should be a career is a fucking idiot.

What the hell, like I wanna wait for coffee while some dick that’s four credits short of an Art History Degree consults his shop steward on whether he can be forced to violate his vegan beliefs to clean the frappucino off the counter.

Here’s a lesson for people looking to unionize. If your job takes less than ten minutes to learn, you shouldn’t expect to join the company stock options plan.

I don’t know that they’re trying to make a career out of it. They’re just trying to make a living. Working part-time with no set minimum hours is really rough.

Hey, if a coffee costs you $5 I’m sure the company selling it to you can spend half of that $4 profit on their employees. I despise unions personally, having worked under two, but I think the threat of their existence in an economic field is vital to keep the working public from taking it completely up the ass.

What kind of jobs are acceptable careers, oh lord and master?

I would like to take this opportunity to thank the UAW for resisting efforts to change the direction of American Auto manufacturing these past several years, insisting that continuing to crap out SUV’s was their right under Glasnost. If we had started a push towards hybrids years ago, I don’t know where we’d be now. Certainly we would not have had that recent Summer Sales Event, and our good friends at the oil concerns both at home and abroad would not be enjoying record profits this quarter if you had not so wisely lobbied against progress.

A shout out to Teacher’s Assistant Unions at major American universities that strike to get healthcare plans with better coverage and more cheaply than all other state employees during a budget crisis. You are great Americans who, despite the free education, despite recieving health benefits for grading papers part time, realize that you shouldn’t have to buy even one less triple mocha latte per month to get a $50 deductible. Damn the man for trying to cut you a break while he subsidizes your graduate study into the Lesbian Underculture of Outer South Peoria.

Mad ups to the people at Starbucks who think that their day is anything like that of a migratory worker during the days of the Great Depression. If you weren’t trying to tie health care to employment, someone might just realize that it is a basic human right.

Dear Union Members, some of you have legitimate concerns and your collective action enhances the American economy and political climate. Some of you are fatheads looking for a handout.

I hope Starbucks hires Pinkerton.

You think it was the unions that twisted Detroit’s arm into puking out popular, high-margin, gas-guzzling SUVs?


Building Cars, construction, drywalling, being an electrician, paper manufacturing and processing, most forms of painting, welding, plastering, plumbing, law enforcement. Migratory farm work, also.

Waiter, retail salesperson, exotic dancer, bartender, checkout clerk, stockboy, bellhop, valet, teaching assistant, janitor, globe trotting ninja assassin, pizza delivery, short order cook, et. al.

Actually, they helped, and they strongly resisted moving away from that cash cow until it was milked dry even though it was obvious they were killing old bessie.

I doubt their support or opposition for SUVs would’ve made the slightest difference to the Big Three’s executives.

I’m surprised to hear this stuff from you, Flowers. Whether somebody is an auto worker or a waiter or a globe-trotting ninja assassin, the core needs that their employment ought to fill are still the same: money for basic human necessities (food/shelter/clothing etc.) and a few luxuries (like the DVD of Dog Soldiers). I don’t think anybody grows up wanting to be a waiter, but surprise, many people wind up being waiters, and they’re stuck with it for longer than they’d like (i.e., any time at all). Are you going to tell me they don’t feel pain the way we do? When a stockboy gets hungry, it’s the same hunger that sometimes finds its way into the gut of an airline pilot, and when some poor fucker in retail breaks his arm, it needs the same goddamn treatment as the arm of a migrant worker or a blessed housepainter.

O. B. U., motherfucker.

I think the difference between a desirable ‘career’ and a short term ‘job’ is that in the former, there is either a degree of training required up front and/or accrued experience improves your productivity (and, under normal circumstances, your pay).

Working at a job where you can learn more or less everything that can be learned about the job in a single shift implies a job that anyone off the street can do, and a very low wage scale.

Jobs requiring training and/or rewarding experience almost always pay better than equivalent jobs in the other category.

There are many perfectly valid reasons to work an unskilled job - first job as a teenager, first job upon re-entering the work force after an absence, emergency job when you lose a different job, etc. But a person who plans to remain in the work force for ~40 years should, at some point fairly early in that stretch, decide on a ‘career’-type job and pursue it. They may not even like that first career, but in general, choosing from among the jobs that fit in the ‘career’ mold will be much more rewarding than choosing fast-food style jobs.

And yes, Starbucks is a glorified fast-food style job - people who choose that job should not expect to be compensated at levels commensurate with more skilled jobs, nor should they remain working at Starbucks for years on end (if they know what’s economically good for them)

And again, long-term employment doesn’t seem to be the core issue here. What’s the point of having a short-term job if you can’t even count on it to provide a certain amount of pay per week?

Who determines how much it should be?

How 'bout if I want to work at Starbucks and make $20/hour, or $50/hour?

It’s my understanding that Starbucks already treats their part-timers much better than most comparable places (higher hourly pay and benefits). If you think that’s not enough, and that you are worth more, then go find some other business that agrees that you’re worth more, and will pay you more. And if there are no other jobs out there in the entire city for your skillset that pay more, then perhaps the market has decided that Starbucks pay is enough for you - perhaps even more than the ‘going rate’ for relatively unskilled food service workers.

Starbucks is a big, profitable company. But unlike, say, GM, it doesn’t have the ability to absorb unionized employee costs that are 3X the market rate, because if they do, independent and/or small chain coffee shops that DO pay the market rate will run them out of business.

I used to be a waiter.

It isn’t about hunger, it’s about the fact that we cannot justify compensating unskilled clerks in what was always intended to be short term employment on a level comensurate with more taxing, difficult jobs. This is a society that functions on effort and reward, after all. Part time jobs are not for people who have to take care of all their expenses. Starbucks employees are mostly younger people going to school or toying with the idea of going back to school. If those people get their way, Starbucks will fire most of their workers and keep four per location on as full timers.

Not every job should be a career.

The healthcare thing is a problem that Unions and hippies have seized upon in error. A job should not guarantee you healthcare, being a human being should. Healthcare should have absoulutely nothing to do with your job. When an employer offers a package with insurance, that’s just a form of compensation that they provide to you because it is cheaper for them to buy it in bulk than to pay each employee the extra money it would take to insure everyone individually. Besides, having healthcare companies lean on employers to encourage them to fire bad health risks isn’t necessarily a good thing, and it does happen.

You’d be suprised. It would have meant those recent layoffs would have come a couple years ago, but in a smaller amount, and that would have been that. Now those companies laid off a ton of workers because SUV’s aren’t selling like they used to, and they still have to update production to create hybrids, something that they are years behind on.

Hey look kids, a real live limousine liberal!

Oh, bullshit. This society rewards you on how much the people with money demand what you produce, how hard it is to replace you, and how hard it is to start a competing company, not what’s taxing or difficult. If it was taxing & difficulty, I’d be a millionare for all those lawns I mowed as a kid. Since it’s how much someone demands the output of mathematical parlor tricks, I’m doing a lot better at programming.

I’m also really confused how US citizens decided they really liked SUVs is the fault of auto unions, but whatever.