McDonald’s Math: You Can’t Survive Working for Us

Liberty Blitzkrieg

This ridiculously condescending budget put out by McDonald’s in partnership with Visa has been making the rounds today. I’ll allow excerpts from the Gothamist article on it and their corresponding video do most of the explaining, but the key point I want to hammer into people is that food stamps are corporate welfare. They actually are not welfare for the workers themselves, who undoubtably don’t have wonderful lives. What ends up happening is that because the government comes in and supplements egregiously low wages with benefits like food stamps, the companies don’t have to pay living wages. So in effect, your tax money is being used to support corporate margins.Even better, many of these folks who get the food stamp benefits then turn around and spend them at the very companies which refuse to pay them decent wages. Who benefits? CEOs and shareholders. Who loses? Society.  

I previously covered these topics in two popular posts:

Where Food Stamps Go to Die
The Stock Market: Food Stamps for the 1%

Guess what would happen if these companies failed to pay high enough wages and food stamps didn’t exist? There would be massive employee organizing and ultimately the companies would have to change tact. This of course doesn’t happen when the taxpayer makes up the difference, and that is exactly what they want. From Gawker:

Just in case you weren’t already aware of how difficult it is to survive on minimum wage, allow McDonald’s to lay it all out for you. The fast food giant has partnered with Visa to release a just-shy-of-condescending “budget journal” to help their employees manage their finances. In a hilariously obtuse budget breakdown, the Big Mac purveyor’s first piece of advice to employees: get a second job.Yup, even McDonald’s knows that workers can’t survive on the pittance they make flipping patties and fighting off customers.


So tallying up all of these totally realistic expenses, a McDonald’s employee would need to net $2,060 per month to make this budget work. Broken down, that would mean working at least 40 hours per week and making at least $15 an hour pre-taxes to earn the necessary $12.86 an hour. Currently, McDonald’s workers earn an average of $8.25 per hour, barring any funny business.

For more on how ridiculous this is, watch this video.  By the way, where can I sign up for $20 healthcare?

12 thoughts on “McDonald’s Math: You Can’t Survive Working for Us

  1. I would be rich on that budget try 722.00 a month now that takes some really creative budgeting. I would love to sell my body but I am too old and used up.

    1. Yes Susan, corporate america loves to keep people working low paying jobs so that people have to work two or more jobe just to hope to break even at best. Yep, I know about living on that little bit that you do, it is doable but nothing better happen because when something happens bad it realy breaks the budget big time.

  2. Work there until you’re eligible for unemployment checks, and then just hang out and eat burgers until they fire you for all the money that disappeared from the cash drawer.

  3. Most jobs out there pay about minimum wage. Then the feds wonder why
    they have a legion of Americans on food stamps. How about you actually
    give your serfs enough to live on?

  4. Since when has McDonald’s ever been considered a company that would pay a “living wage” ? It has in my mind been always viewed as employment for High School and college students to earn extra money, buy their first car, learn the value of work and money or as an entry level introduction into the working world. ( I really use to buy their hamburgers for .15 cents! ) The real shame is that our economy has sunk to such lows that there are now workers totally dependent upon the money they earn there. The problem is not McDonald’s, they do what they have always done. The travesty is that our Congress has sold us out to wall street to totally destroy our current and future financial lives to the point as to where McDonald’s is considered a “real” job . Tariffs, usury laws, and fraud convictions must return and the Federal Reserve must go!! Don’t buy Milton’s and Rand’s crap. There is no such thing as “Free Trade” and never will be. We are living the results of that today!

  5. An unemployed person in Australia gets close to the McDonalds wage. An old age pensioner gets a lot more.

  6. since when does corporate america start a business and do it so they can provide jobs to the poor, that is a side benefit at best. Raise wages and benefits and the price of the food they serve will go up, and see how many people eat there then, it is a part time job at best and perfect for teenagers or soemone who needs a side job, not a career, not a primary job. The economy is a food chain, someone has to be making less, we cant all make high wages. I’ve never heard of anyone say, “I was forced against my will to labor for these people at minimum wage”.

Join the Conversation

Your email address will not be published.