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Minimum Wage, Executive Pay and Jim Cramer

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This morning on my way to work, I saw some workers are on strike again at the Hilton’s construction site across street. I guess they are unionized workers fighting for the wage or benifits. Strike is nothing new to me, I remember during the UPS strike shortly after I came to the States in Fall 1997, the customers firmed long lines at Post Office. Couple years ago there was a big strike among Grocery Store workers, and I tried not to cross the picket line at the Shop N Save near my apartment: I bought grocery at Sams Club or the Chinese grocery store. 

Today is a good day for many workers actually, because the  pro-labor Democratic Party took the control of Congress, and there will a raise of miminum wage from $5.15  to $7.15 in 2 years. President Bush promised he will sign it. On the other hand, yesterday there was some news on Home Depot, the No. 2 retailer in the US. CEO Bob Nardelli was fired, or put it more politely, he resigned with $210 million severance pay. Obviously the Home Depot shareholders cried foul on his pay because the stock did not do well under Bob’s tenure. But what can they do? The pay was predetermined before he got hired.

Jim Cramer, the crazy guy on the CNBC’s “Mad Money”, surprised me tonight with his humble past: at one time he was homeless, and had to live in his car for 9 months. But he moved forward mostly through hard work, first went to Harvard, then Wall Street, the rest was history. Pretty inspiring, huh? 

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