I have been at my current job 5 years total. The four consecutive years there had been one raise given company wide.
Where the hell do you work? That's not typical at all. I have *never* worked for an employer who didn't provide some sort of raise (or at least raise opportunity) to every employee every year. What kind of business is this? Is it a corporation, or a smaller privately owned company? Is there something else that offsets this and prevents people from just leaving? Cause what you're describing sounds a lot more like a government or union workplace, and not a corporation operating in a free labor market.
I was gone a year and when returned my boss fought for me to be rehired at a slightly higher wage.
Higher than starting pay? Higher than you were making when you left? Not really making a point here, but just curious.
Speaking with one employee that has been here 22 year, as time progressed he earned less. Bonuses disappeared, no raises were given for many years and work was taken from us.
Work was taken from us? I'm not even sure what that means. Is it that this guy actually earns less than he did 22 years ago, or he just doesn't earn as much as he'd like and claims that? I know lots of people who say things that are straight up false just because they like to complain. And if that's actually true, why the hell did he stay there that long? Assuming he's at least as competent at his job as he was 22 years ago (and I'd assume moreso) he should be able to make more money somewhere else.
I am not complaining in the least about my job or what I earn.
Which kinda calls into question the point that I was responding to. If you're happy with your pay, then it really doesn't matter how that pay comes about. Maybe your company was grossly overpaying people 20 years ago, and even without raises they're still paying a competitive wage today. I have no clue. Sometimes we get so caught up in the details (and often outlier details) that we miss the larger point: Wages are related to the value of the output of your labor. The more people are willing to pay for the goods and services you produce, the more you can demand from your employer in the form of wages. How that comes about is somewhat irrelevant.
Thinking, however, that this does not happen is ignorant. My bonus last year was a 50 dollar gift card and I was one of those that recieved a little more for my years here.
So what? If things are so bad at your work, go work somewhere else. If they're not, then they're not. I'm primarily addressing this silly idea that we should justify higher taxes on rich people and big business because they're meanies who don't pay their employees enough money. But that idea just doesn't stand up to even the most basic rational examination. Strangely, a huge number of people continue to repeat it. I can guess as to the reasons why, but perhaps some of you who do repeat these sorts of assertions should examine yourselves for your motives.
And I'll point out that just because something happens at your place of work does not mean that's the norm. I received $9,000 in bonus (plus some number of RSUs) plus a 2.2% raise this year. Last year, I received $16,400 in bonus (plus some other number of RSUs) plus a 6.5% raise (must have been a good year). Is that typical? At my work, yes. Across all corporations? Some, but not all. But guess what? The pay method and structure at my place of employment is far more typical of what the stereotypical "big corporation" does in terms of labor than what you are describing. The problem is that people talk about big business, but they look almost exclusively at corporations which own retail chains (like WalMart). So basically a big business that owns and operates a bunch of small businesses. Then they complain about the lack of great pay and advancement in those stores, ignoring the fact that this is not indicative of being a large corporation so much as it's indicative of being in the retail business. Pay at WalMart is comparable to pay at any small retail store (like those small stores you see in malls), but with better
benefits. Same deal with a company like Starbucks. Instead of trying to insist that those companies are typical of large corporations, realize that they are typical of stores selling the types of products they sell. Go work for a small single owner coffee shop sometime and tell us how the pay and benefits compare to Starbucks. Probably about the same or a little bit less.
It's not the size of the corporation that determines pay, but the business its involved in. But some people want to treat them all the same and punish those who pay very well because some of them don't pay well. That's unfair and it's arbitrary. If you are stocking store shelves, you aren't going to make as much money as someone who's designing microchips. That has nothing to do with the size of the company, but the actual value of the labor itself. I think we do the entire issue a disservice by trying to treat all corporations the same, or argue about CEO pay and cherry pick the ones that fit the narrative we want to use. Funny that no one uses Microsoft or Intel as examples of how corporations unfairly compensate their employees. Think about why, and you'll realize how fabricated this whole issue is.