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Letters: Minimum wage

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  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    July 27, 2013 2:30 p.m.

    By McDonld's own documents,
    their employees can not survive on their own pay.

    This is called the WORKING poor.
    Something you conservatives still come come to terms with.

    Not ALL poor people are lazy do nothings, laying around sucking and mooching off the Government.

    That should be left to the Corporate Welfare, highly lucrative Government Contractors, and WallStreet Bankers.

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    July 26, 2013 1:04 p.m.

    To "Lightbearer" did you miss Luke 12:15 "And he said unto them, Take heed, and beware of covetousness: for a man's life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth". That coveting can lead to greed because greed is not limited to wealthy people only. Just look at the looting that goes on during disasters, that is not wealthy people you see looting and stealing things that have no value for survival.

    If a man is working only for minimum wage, and has take on the reponsibility of having a family, who's fault is that? Why should a business owner pay a person with no skill and no special abilities more than the value of their contribution? This is greed, an excessive desire for money. They have no desire for improving their skills so that they are worth more money, they just want more money.

  • Lightbearer Brigham City, UT
    July 26, 2013 12:19 p.m.

    Re: "We must first provide for our own family."

    Those earning minimum wage are trying to provide for their families, but it is impossible to provide for parents, aunts, and uncles, not to mention oneself, one's spouse, and one's children, on a wage that is hardly enough for one person to get by on. Yes, they could try to find a better-paying job, but what if they can't, what if this job is the best they can do?

    Re: "... the problem isn't wealth, but greed."

    Jesus told a rich young man, "If thou wilt be perfect, go and sell that thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven." If wealth isn't the problem, why didn't he tell him to keep everything and just not be greedy?

    So who is greedy, a person near the bottom of the income pyramid, who wants at least a living wage for his labor, so that he can provide for his own, or a person who, though already near the top of the pyramid, with more than he and his own can ever spend, strives to amass more and more wealth?

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    July 26, 2013 12:06 p.m.

    To "airnaut" um....I don't think you understood that scripture. Since when is the State of Utah my family? You realize that much of the money that comes into Utah from the Federal government is due to the massive amounts of federal land that Utah could use if the Feds didn't control it. In other words, the Feds are compensating Utah for the use of land that belongs to Utah. Your ilk whined when Utah said that they want to take back the Utah lands from the Federal Government. Some money is coming into Utah again as payment to the Utah government for doing something that the Feds can't do, like maintain roads.

    It is a nice knee jerk reaction you had, but ultimately is still wrong.

    Here is another way that you are wrong. Just look at the Utah finances. The state not only stays within its budget year after year, but it also has an emergency fund when tax projections are wrong. How many states/cities operate like Utah?

  • airnaut Everett, 00
    July 26, 2013 11:08 a.m.

    @RedShirt
    USS Enterprise, UT

    We must first provide for our own family. If you are dependant on the state to provide, you are worse than an infidel.

    =========

    When Utah puts in more than it takes out,
    Then you might have a valid point.

    Utah's entire economy is more dependant on the influx of the Federal Government than it is providing for itself.

    Show me,
    Don't tell me.

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    July 26, 2013 10:29 a.m.

    To "Lightbearer" I have better that only proves that Communism and socialism is not a Christian doctrine. 1 Timothy 5:8 "But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel."

    Another great one that again shows that Communism and Socialism is not a Christian doctrine:

    Luke 12:13-15
    "13 And one of the company said unto him, Master, speak to my brother, that he divide the inheritance with me.

    14 And he said unto him, Man, who made me a judge or a divider over you?

    15 And he said unto them, Take heed, and beware of covetousness: for a man’s life consisteth not in the abundance of the things which he possesseth."

    As those point out. We must first provide for our own family. If you are dependant on the state to provide, you are worse than an infidel. Next, we see that any sharing of wealth is voluntary, not government forced.

    Wealth is something God wants to bless us with, the problem isn't wealth, but greed.

  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    July 25, 2013 11:21 p.m.

    "....how is it possible that "it will be hard for a rich person to enter the kingdom of heaven," or that "it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter into the kingdom of God"? Because we are afraid of these things in the Christian Gospel, yes I mean "afraid." When is the last time you heard in Church about Christian common wealth.

  • Lightbearer Brigham City, UT
    July 25, 2013 4:21 p.m.

    Re: "From Each according to their ability, to each according to their need"

    Acts 4: "And the multitude of them that believed were of one heart and of one soul: neither said any of them that ought of the things which he possessed was his own; but they had all things common....Neither was there any among them that lacked: for as many as were possessors of lands or houses sold them, and brought the prices of the things that were sold, And laid them down at the apostles' feet: and distribution was made unto every man according as he had need."

    If there is a right to life, there is a right to the necessities of life - food, clothing, shelter - otherwise that "right" is nothing but the right to be born and starve.

    And if, as some believe, the rich are industrious and virtuous, and the poor are lazy and immoral, how is it possible that "it will be hard for a rich person to enter the kingdom of heaven," or that "it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter into the kingdom of God"?

  • RedShirtMIT Cambridge, MA
    July 25, 2013 4:06 p.m.

    To "LDS Liberal" I think the logic train is stuck at the station for you.

    If minimum wage is proportional to college tuition, a college graduate with a less desirable degree will still make as much as "his undereducated minimum wage warning peers". He is no more likely or unlikely to default on student loans because, thanks to Congress and Obama, student loan payback is limited to a set percent of a person's income, then the loan is forgiven after 20 years.

    Why continue to coddle them more by forcing government to pay them for doing nothing.

    FYI, they won't be buying a house, which doesn't add to the tax base, but keeps taxes out of the hands of government through tax incentives on mortgages. Keeping them single and in their parents' basement is best because as a single adult they pay higher tax rates, have fewer deductions, and tend to waste more money than married people.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    July 25, 2013 3:28 p.m.

    I believe minimum wage increases should be held directly proportional to increases in college tuititon.

    That way a college graduate can always expect to earn more than his undereducated minimum wage warning peers, and less likely to default on ten's of thousands of student loans while STILL only making minimum wage.

    They can then move out of Mom and dad's basement, buy a house, and contubute to the tax base and help build the economy.

    But Republicans don't like increasing wages, taxes, OR education.

  • RedShirtMIT Cambridge, MA
    July 25, 2013 3:21 p.m.

    To "marxist" workers do have representation. There is nothing stopping an worker from representing themselves and getting the best contract possible. Most unions do little more than extort money from the business owners to fill the union officials wallets.

  • marxist Salt Lake City, UT
    July 25, 2013 1:57 p.m.

    We would not need minimum wags laws if workers were unionized, or in other words had representation. Absent such employers will pay labor as little as possible, sometimes to the degree that survival of an individual or family is threatened. The market under capitalism has demonstrated that it cannot be trusted all of the time to give human beings what they need. If you need proof, just look at the last 5 years. The minimum wage was established during the Great Depression when an adequate wage was a matter of life and death. This is only a little less so now.

  • RedShirtMIT Cambridge, MA
    July 25, 2013 1:56 p.m.

    To "Lightbearer" let me summarize what you are saying about the wages that you feel should be paid to people with little to no skill.

    "From Each according to their ability, to each according to their need"

    Why is it that somebody with no unique skills should be paid more than value that their skills contribute to profitability of the store?

  • Lightbearer Brigham City, UT
    July 25, 2013 1:20 p.m.

    Re: "You should quote your Adam Smith book to BO ..."

    I'm confident that the President already believes that "they who feed, cloath and lodge the whole body of the people" - that is, that those who actually cook the burgers, clean the tables, and take the money at the cash register; those who sit at the sewing machines and serve customers in the department stores; and those who clean the bathrooms, change the beds, and carry the luggage in a hotel "should have such a share of the produce of their own labour as to be themselves tolerably well fed, cloathed, and lodged."

    Somehow, those at the top deserve every supersized salary, every astronomical bonus, and every platinum-plated golden parachute they can grab - in fact, they should be congratulated on it - while the lowly employees at the bottom, who do all the dirty work, without which there would be no product and no profit, don't even deserve enough to live on, and if they do somehow manage to negotiate a decent wage and benefits, they are castigated for ruining the economy.

  • RedShirtMIT Cambridge, MA
    July 25, 2013 12:32 p.m.

    TO "Larry Tippetts" that is a nice idea, but all it accomplishes is getting businesses to fire older workers in favor of teenage kids.

    To "Blue" what do you mean there is no evidence supporting the claim that raising minimum wage makes things more expensive? Why do you think businesses look overseas for labor? Your ilk constantly says that businesses go overseas because of cheaper labor. Why would a company want cheaper labor if labor doesn't change the cost of things? So, either your liberals are wrong about why businesses are going over seas or you are wrong about raising labor rates making things cost more.

  • The Hammer lehi, utah
    July 25, 2013 12:10 p.m.

    @Irony GUy

    Costco is a large company that has a competitive advantage in the market. Labor costs for them are not hard to meet when there is a low margin expectation.

    Local grocery stores dont have the economies of scale luxury that costco does to offer those types of wages.

    But you do make a good point that companies which do offer good wages usually keep better employees which usually helps their bottom line. The problem is minimum wage severly harm small business and start up businesses. There is no economy of scale there that they are able to draw from.

    The minimum wage maybe a good idea for large corporations who try to abuse the economies of scale but would be bad for small business.

  • Eric Samuelsen Provo, UT
    July 25, 2013 11:17 a.m.

    This idea is certainly worth discussion. First step, though, is simply to raise the minimum wage.

  • lost in DC West Jordan, UT
    July 25, 2013 10:57 a.m.

    Lightbearer,
    there is a difference between what you need and what you deserve.

    You should quote your Adam Smith book to BO and his cabal. BO's trickle-up poverty is not good for anyone.

  • Irony Guy Bountiful, Utah
    July 25, 2013 9:29 a.m.

    Companies that pay a fair wage, like Costco, are prospering mightily. There's a lesson in that.

  • Lightbearer Brigham City, UT
    July 25, 2013 9:25 a.m.

    People deserve a living wage whether they're "better educated" or not. Perhaps they're already doing the best that they can. Just because a person is poorly educated doesn't mean that his hunger or his need for clothing or shelter is any less than that of somebody with a better education. And it may not even be an issue of education. We don't know everybody's circumstances. There are many different kinds of people in many different situations working minimum wage jobs.

    "No society can surely be flourishing and happy, of which the greater part of the members are poor and miserable. It is but equity, besides, that they who feed, cloath and lodge the whole body of the people, should have such a share of the produce of their own labour as to be themselves tolerably well fed, cloathed, and lodged" - Adam Smith, "The Wealth of Nations," Book I, Chapter VIII.

  • atl134 Salt Lake City, UT
    July 25, 2013 9:22 a.m.

    @PeanutGallery
    You talk about people hiring fewer workers or giving less hours. Well even if a company chooses to go that route, they would generally keep the same payroll anyway (24 hours at 9/hr vs 27 hours at 8/hr results in the same amount being given to workers). Letting companies pay below minimum wage by getting rid of it just means a lot more people will need 2nd jobs. That doesn't help anything.

  • atl134 Salt Lake City, UT
    July 25, 2013 9:15 a.m.

    Giving a cost incentive to not choose those older workers won't help.

  • The Hammer lehi, utah
    July 25, 2013 9:00 a.m.

    The largest contributer to the income gap is the federal reserve policy of keeping interest rates artificially low. These rates help large corporations get rich and then sit on the cash because they know that those rates will inevitably go back up and cause some deflation to take place as the market readjusts to the correct equilibrium.

    Low rates make it hard for low and middle income families that depend on regular wages to pay the bills as the prices of all goods especially those at the grocery store go up.

    Changing the minimum wage will only help inflation but kill the buying power as people compete for goods. Its time to level the playing field for all people and stop the policy of helping banks and the uber rich with the interest rate.

  • PeanutGallery Salt Lake City, UT
    July 25, 2013 8:46 a.m.

    Re: Blue: Often the arguments against increasing the minimum wage come from average, regular people like me, who recognize the destructive effects and false promises of this misguided policy. I’m in favor of a strong economy and more opportunities for more people. Therefore I’m opposed to a minimum wage increase.

  • Sal Provo, UT
    July 25, 2013 8:20 a.m.

    If we have a two-tiered system that pays adults more than teenagers it's not hard to figure out who will get hired and who won't.

    Help adults get an education so they can get better paying jobs.

  • Blue Salt Lake City, UT
    July 25, 2013 7:16 a.m.

    Peanut,

    Your argument that increasing the minimum wage will inevitably raise prices is not supported by any real evidence.

    To the contrary, research both within the US and abroad shows that you can indeed have both a livable minimum wage _and_ a strong job market.

    Moreover, adjusted for inflation the minimum wage from 1980 would be above $10/hour today.

    Let's also recognize the significant public costs associated with keeping wages low - it forces many people who already work full time to seek public assistance with food, housing and healthcare costs because their minimum wage jobs simply don't pay enough to cover these normal, everyday expenses.

    If you want fewer people on welfare and food stamps, then stop endorsing wages that drive workers into those programs.

    Finally, look at where the arguments against a minimum wage increase are coming from. In the case of yesterday's article, it was a from a "think tank" that was in reality merely a PR firm representing the hotels and restaurant industry.

  • Edgar Samaria, ID
    July 25, 2013 6:58 a.m.

    Excellent idea. Certainly worth discussing.

  • PeanutGallery Salt Lake City, UT
    July 25, 2013 1:47 a.m.

    When government messes with economic matters, they usually make things worse. Such is the case with minimum wage laws. They sound good, but end up putting many people out of work, because businesses have to raise prices, hire fewer workers, or close the business.

    Unskilled jobs are meant to be entry-level, not long-term. And entry-level jobs are a springboard to higher-paying jobs. But minimum wage laws interfere and DESTROY that springboard for many younger workers.

    Yes, I understand that some adults keep unskilled jobs for the long-term. But another silent effect of artificially raising wages by mandate is that it also raises PRICES all around. So the resulting inflation means that the promised “greater purchasing power” is a cruel illusion for those adults.

    Promoting minimum wage hikes makes people feel good and compassionate, especially if they ignore the principles of economics. But in reality these mandated wage hikes do a lot of damage to a lot of people, and to the economy in general, while making no true long-term positive difference.