In response to http://considerreconsider.com/2009/wal-mart-ceo-salary-a-perspective-by-the-numbers/
CEO salaries are not the only income they receive, you are neglecting to include company stock, performance bonuses, goal bonuses and other perks which very few if any of the minimum wage employees receive yet, they contribute towards.
Hierarchy and casts are societal needs. Some people want to be rich and work hard to get there, but that does not entitle them to everything beyond their hard earned gains. There is no benefit to the rest of society and to the person who, in some cases, earns more than one thousand times the wages of any of their employees.
Why should any person or family be deprived of basic health care, a living wage, the ability to save some of their money just because a few of us have this delusion that financial and material poverty is a choice.
Costco is a good example of a company treating their employees fairly and, it makes a profit. Their profits may not be greater than some of their competitors but they are a financially healthy company and as a result are getting very positive press.
It is obvious to me that the more people that can make a living wage, the greater the potential for financial gain at the top. People spend and buy things when they have enough money to do so, it is counter to capitalism when that is not the case.
Risk taking is a "virtue" the financially successful, but it is clear that some are not willing to risk giving their employees a living wage and access to some of the basic services and benefits that they receive.
For these so called "visionaries" this is a very myopic view of society. It is not a sentimental prejudice, this is rational proportionality.