In his new book, “Ship of Fools,” Tucker Carlson makes the case for the elite being out of touch with the masses, saying that in the past, management felt some responsibility to those who worked beneath them and took it seriously. This was called “noblesse oblige.” Carlson posits that it is not practiced much anymore; elites no longer talk about unfairness because they don’t believe it exists. They’re successful because they deserve it, and the worker class deserves their lot because of poor life choices.
Locally, this concept is illustrated through the Tops Markets’ bankruptcy. I have been following the progress of the company’s reorganization and am astounded by the lack of empathy shown by Frank Curci and his band of four merry executives in their efforts to secure bonuses totaling $3.6 million plus stock. Is this supposed to be compensation for a job well done? Driving the company into bankruptcy is bad enough but combining this action with underfunding and then renegotiating reduced pensions for the workers at the warehouse and at the stores is unconscionable.
I have been a Tops shopper at the Rehm Road store for over 40 years, as was my mother. During that time, I have never once witnessed Curci or other executives delivering food to the store, or helping my mother find items on the shelves. The longevity of Tops is the result of the workers who come into daily contact with shoppers, resulting in satisfied customers. To the general public, the executive bonuses are a bad idea and will cause me to reconsider my shopping options. There are many.
This $3.6 million would be put to much better use if it were to be added to the pension funds for the employees. They, unlike management, have more than earned it.