In reading all the discussions about CM's and how much they get paid (or don't get paid, as the case may be), I wonder if we're not missing the forest for the trees. Yes, CM's used to get paid much better than they do now, w/ better benefits and yes, it used to be possible to earn your way to a living wage as a CM, but there's another branch to the tree: It also used to be true of many other jobs.
Back in the day, people were able to make careers of entry level jobs. For example, a popular waitress could stay on at her restaurant doing the same job as a girl just off the bus and make a living of it. Her boss would recognize that this woman brought something special to her work, making her a valuable asset to his business, and eventually she would become part of the fabric of the place. This still happens today, but it's the exception rather than the rule.
Somewhere along the line things changed, and certain classes of work were defined as strictly entry level. Along w/ this came the rise of the "professional manager," who has a fancy degree which qualifies him to, well, manage stuff. And manage he does, even in an industry he knows nothing about. It's no longer possible to find your niche and make a living if that niche is considered entry level work. You go so far and, if you want to go farther, you have to go into a different line of work. (I think they call this "up or out.")
Where am I going w/ all of this? CM's don't get taken care of like they used to, but neither do workers in other fields. When corporate America changed the way it managed its workers, Disney followed suit. Should they be faulted for this?