Not to mention clauses like non competes should be extremely expensive since their tying your hands for a significant amount of time.
I sincerely doubt their paying enough extra for all the classes you see in a regular American contract.
You could argue amazon might be but what about all the other companies that present you basically the same standard contract?
Are they really paying for them or are they just taking advantage of the fact that the work force in America will most likely accept any ridiculous clause in their contract to get a job?
If each one actually had a well determined price tag you would see most of the unnecessary ones disappear really quickly in an attempt by the companies to save money.
So contracts should have to be itemized? "$150/month for attending meetings, $300/month for writing code, $50/month for reading your email"?
You have a set of obligations on one side, and a number of compensations (salary, perks, etc) on the other. The latter is the payment for the former.
Not to mention clauses like non competes should be extremely expensive since their tying your hands for a significant amount of time. I sincerely doubt their paying enough extra for all the classes you see in a regular American contract.
Isn't that for the candidate to decide?
Or maybe they'd just lower the regular salary to end up with the same value.
People assume once you finish working for a specific company you're done and you have no more obligation to them so if they want these perks they need to specify how much extra they are paying for them.
The real problem with contracts today is they can trow whatever they want in and make it as complicated as possible in the hope that you don't read it when signing it.
If they were required to give you a summary of the important bits this exploitation would be harder to pull off.
Then lets make it an obvious cost by making unpaid non-competes illegal.
That way if it is just a part of compensation the company can offer less up front salary and handle non-compete clauses by continuing to pay your salary.
If someone is an existing employee and you want them to sign a new employee agreement, you need some additional consideration besides "we let you keep your job," such as an increase in pay.
IANAL but 'icebraining is accurately describing US law. We nerds in the US need to fully internalize what the law is before we can fight it.
Contracts require consideration. If we agree you will give me $400 tomorrow, that is not a contact. If we agree that I will give you $200 today and you will give me $400 tomorrow, that is a contract.
 There are other components that make contracts legal; technically I'm only describing the consideration aspect.
One of the most common principles across a wide range of jurisdictions is for the default assumption to be that the salary compensates for the tasks and duties carried out in the contract period only.
Further, there's a public policy concern, in that non-competes in extreme cases can make a person unemployable during the period, and force this person onto welfare programs, and society as a whole thus have an interest in ensuring that consideration for potentially making you unemployable is made explicit and coming due if/when you're actually prevented from taking up a job.
This is very important, and something that very often gets lost in discussions of employment contracts, minimum wage etc etc.
The prospective employee needs to make rent. The prospective employee needs to eat. These are very basic and powerful motivations and we (as a society) should not let business take advantage of these to low-ball on pay or impose onerous contract terms.