In a “story” that minimum wage critics couldn’t wait to latch on to, Speedway, a wholly-owned subsidiary of oil giant Marathon Petroleum, announced it would discontinue its Dunkin’ Donuts franchisee operations at about 100 locations. Although the Fortune story mentions nothing about minimum wage being an issue, a Google search using [Speedway “minimum wage” “dunkin’ donuts”] produces over 26,000 hits, the first of which is, of course, at foxnews.com.
While not Fox’s piece, fact-free, fear-mongering content like this is peppered among the hits:
Okay, that’s probably the hackiest of pieces I could find, as it’s virtually fact-free (“countless jobs”), but I’m trying to drive home a point.
Let’s be clear here: It is Speedway, the franchisee, that made this decision, not Dunkin’ Donuts. DD’s CEO, Nigel Travis (2014 compensation: $10.2 million), is a staunch opponent of the minimum wage. That said, as mentioned, this was not his decision.
I do, however, have correspondence from Speedway, which is responsible for the closures, and responded to my inquiry on the matter, saying:
Thanks for reaching out – yes, the rumors are true we are removing the Dunkin’ Donut self-serve coffee stations and replacing them with our name brand coffee. The self-serve kiosks removal, to my knowledge, has not caused any changes in employment as it is being replaced with another coffee that still needs to be made.
So, to recap: Speedway is replacing Dunkin’ with its own name brand coffee, no jobs appear to be in jeopardy (someone’s gotta make the coffee), and the minimum wage doesn’t seem to figure in at all.
The funny thing here is that anyone could do the minimal amount of investigative work I did to have figured this out. But they don’t. Because the truth doesn’t matter to them. Only the narrative and the ideology do.