Comments about ‘The great minimum wage debate: how Obama's proposal to increase the minimum wage will impact the economy’

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Published: Tuesday, Feb. 19 2013 11:05 p.m. MST

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Clifton Palmer McLendon
Gilmer, Texas

The Constitution does not give the Federal government the power to prescribe a minimum wage -- therefore, all attempts to do so are unconstitutional.


The elderly on fixed income, many on social security alone will be forced out of the role
of customer to the fast food franchises if they raise the minimum wage so dramatically.
Non producers such as those that infest our house and senate have no clue of what it takes
to run a business and make a profit. Obama is a prime example of someone who has never ran
a business, never held a real job and should be the last to influence what a small business
must pay for labor. There are many places who employ handicaped people who are able to
contribute to a point but will be eliminated from these jobs if they cannot produce enough
to cover the mandated higher wage. Government should have no say in this. The are ignorant
of the many obstacles a business owner faces.


I have a novel idea. How about if the federal government stops telling people what they can and can't do with their own property (which includes their businesses, of course).

Liberty. What a concept!

The Rock
Federal Way, WA

Employers must make money on their employees or they will go out of business. If we increased the minimum wage to $50 per hour very few employees could pay for themselves. More importantly the customers of most companies that paid high salaries would be unemployed and soon everyone would join their ranks.

A slight increase in the minimum wage still causes harm but it is not as noticeable.

The US economy will die a death of 10,000 cuts.

Apo, AE

In time, wouldn't all prices rise to wipe out any income gains experienced in the short term? This is just another tool to drive inflation.

A Wise Guy
Spokane, WA

To add to the complexity, when you increase the minimum wage to $9.00, you also have to increase the people who had made more than the minimum wage too. when you increase their wage, you have increase their supervisor's wage etc. It just keeps going on up. I can't see how that would not cause inflation. Inflation would mean that the minumum wage earner was back to where he started from.

Mark B
Eureka, CA

If there are so many businesses liable to disappear if the minimum wage goes up, then I guess that means the boss' pay will stay the same too, right? And no one will have to pay an extra dime for a can of string beans. Hooray!

Bored to the point of THIS!
Ogden, UT

We're a pathetic society. We complain about everything.

all hands on deck
Sandy, UT

If the minimum wage increases worked, no one would be in poverty because we have raised the minimum wage countless times in my lifetime. Each time the same promise is made. The only thing it does is forces wages everywhere to go higher and hence, it is an inflation trigger. It is only a short term benefit for a select few who are at the very bottom, getting minimum wage. Once the lowest get paid more, then others wages go up. Then more money is seeking goods,food,and services and then prices on commodities go up. Then, REPEAT THE CYCLE and no one on minimum wage benefits beyond 2 years.

The best way out of poverty is hard work and education. Government gifting to the wage earner a higher wage is communistic. It ignores market forces, and WILL create shortages. Those shortages are manifest with with either INFLATION or Job Loss.

Billions hitting the economy is a lie. The billions are eliminated by the value of the dollar shrinking with inflation and hence no appreciable benefit beyond a very short term bump.

Mcallen, TX

It all depends on how an employee benefits the employer. Just that simple.

Farmington, UT

Let's consider the viewpoint of the small business owner, keeping it very simple. Take a typical fast-food restaurant, for example. The cost of this minimum wage increase to the owner of that restaurant equates to being forced to hire two additional employees for every shift. How many small businesses can bear the cost of two additional employees and not run the risk of going into the red?

If you actually had two additional employees, and the nature of your business is that each employee means increased production, then that would be wonderful if the market bears it! But, in this case, you don't get the actual new employees, only the associated costs.
I consult with small businesses on a regular basis, and many of them are already struggling due to the increased costs that have come with this new year. Some have already closed their doors--their profit margins were just too thin to support all the additional costs that have resulted from the federal government. Now this? It will literally be the straw that breaks the camel's back!

Cedar City, UT

Raising the minum wage does nothing but raise prices. What America needs is more jobs that pay a living wage, and fewer over priced Exectives that get rich from companies that pay their workers minum wages.

Far East USA, SC

Some of you are overlooking a critical piece.

Corporate profits have steadily increased over the years.

Worker productivity has also steadily increased.

Average worker pay has changed very little.

CEO pay has skyrocketed.

Looks to me that CEOs and other high level employees have really benefited from the productivity increase of the workers.

I think it would be much easier to justify a couple dollar increase for the average worker than it would be to justify skyrocketing CEO pay.

Nothern Cougar
Perry, UT

To: JoeBlow
Far East USA, SC

I would bet that your wages have gone up more than 7.25% since 1978. CEO's wages are growing faster that the workers but do not be like the current administration and use false statistics to prove a point that does not exist.

KC Mormon
Edgerton, KS

You can thank the Unions for the "skyrocketing" executive pay.Lets think this through using the auto industry. The average union auto worker makes $70.00 an hour when you combine wage and benefits. That working 40 hours adds up to $2,800 a week and $145,600 a year. the old standard was the executive received 30 times the worker and that works out to $4,368,000 a year. Now that is for a unionized company, however supply and demand tells us that the best are going to where the pay is the best so to compete the other companies must offer compensation equivalent to attract the best executives. So the unions in fact drive up the executive pay they just will not claim it. Also involved are the high stakes judgments of the executives compared to the workers. If an executive makes the wrong call it effects thousands if say a cook flipping a burger does how many people does that effect.
Now yes we need to STOP bailing out companies and say if you executive make overly risky calls you fail. But that does not remove the value of their HSJ.

Pocatello, ID

This is a really hard thing to understand for me.
I am a single parent - who started college but was unable to finish because of some traumatic things that came up in my family so I had to stay home and take care of my one son. I got a job for minimum wage and was barely able to keep food on the table so I had to go on welfare. I hated being on welfare, it was painful to me emotional and demeaned me in so many ways but it was to only way we could exist.
So many people want to work honorably but cannot because they cannot exist on the wage that is offered. So many people work 2 to 3 jobs and spend ALL their time working to supply money that they have no time left to spend with their spouse and children. Maybe if this wage went through it could more people back to work and taking care of their families and give less jobs to the illegal aliens. I know that it would be harder on businesses. I know though that we need to get people working in jobs that support families.

KC Mormon
Edgerton, KS

The problem is that the result in the long run is not getting people out of poverty but moving the poverty line up. Here is why, If say a burger joint paying minimum wage must raise it wage they still must also make a profit. To that and pay the higher wage they must raise their prices. This is basically called inflation. Now that $9.00 job has the same buying power that the $7.25 job had so you are still in the same situation you were in. You still make minimum wage and you still cannot afford most items because they are priced out of your price range because the higher wage has moved the price higher. The only solution is to add value to yourself for an employer. That is how you move from minimum wage to a higher wage. This can be done in many ways the best is education. If you are LDS try looking into BYU-Idaho Pathways program. It can help financially and get that education to raise your value to employers.

Pendleton, OR

I think those who think that food service industry increases in employment with a raise in minimum wage is the normal, do not think about why the food service industry needed more employees. It is because the employers needed to move more employees into an employee class that did not have other benefits like health insurance or retirement. Now that health insurance is universally available without employers participation(or soon will be), an increase in federal minimum wage will not see the same increase in employment as seen in the last round.

I wonder how those in NYC feel about a minimum wage job being adequate. I will bet it is a lot different than those in Memphis, Tennessee or in Macon, Georgia or in Missoula, Montana.

I already know how some of my family members feel about increases in minimum wage. They think it stinks that people hired after the increase make the same amount per hour on day one, as they do who have worked in the job for several years with annual merit increases.

Ogden, UT

"Alfred lives in a fantasy world, like most conservatives."

Alfred is trying to live within his means as most conservatives do and stay off the government dole.

"Working full time at the current minimum wage, $7.25, will earn, gross, $15,080 a year. Taking out payroll taxes of 6.3% leaves $14,130 or $1,170 a month."

Did you forget all the other tax perks such as EIC (Earned Income Credit), child care expenses credit, child tax credit, etc., which adds perhaps another $5,000 to $10,000 thousand in income?

"Just over a thousand a month and Alfred thinks these people are buying Hummers, SUVs, late model cars eating out three times a week and all the other bells and whistles."

It's not a myth... I've seen it.

"Alfred, nobody is getting a loan for a 60,000 dollar hummer (guessing on the price, I imagine they are more) making a grand a month. I doubt you could afford the insurance on a hummer making minimum."

You've never heard of buy now and pay later even if you can't afford it... the Democratic concept that got us into the housing debacle?

Salt Lake City, UT

And the inept leaders of the large moderate breeding program here in Utah cringe at the loss of income, yet they standby stupidly when other very "sensitive" social issues are broached. The moderate supposed mock conservatives are candy clad wimps when it comes to putting up a fight - just look at the illegal alien debate and where that lack of leadership went. Cowards.

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