Every decision in life has a consequence. Legislators who try to buy our votes
by telling us that actions have no consequences are cheating our nation. Low
pay directly equates to low skills. How many brain surgeons are out of work?
How many are being paid minimum wage? How many became brain surgeons by
dropping out of school? As long as liberals try to solve poverty by
making poverty attractive, we will always have poverty. Hungry people get tired
of being hungry, especially when they know that they caused their own hunger.
Looking into the eyes of my wife and eight children every morning was my
greatest motivator to do something significant with my time so that they would
not suffer. Foolish people allow government to "help" the
poor by taking away every incentive to rise above poverty. Government pays
"think tanks" to tell us that raising the minimum wage will not cost
jobs. Government also told us that if we liked our insurance policy we could
keep it. Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.
If someone is worth more than they currently are paid, another company will be
willing to pay them more. If no one will pay why someone wants,
perhaps they are not worth it. And lets be clear, it is NOT
McDonald's or Walmarts responsibility to pay workers enough to feed a
family of 4It's McDonald's responsibility to pay for the
work done. It's each persons responsibility to provide for
Raising the minimum wage is like a dog chasing its tail, it can never catch up.
As the mandated raise works its way up the ladder to all employees, an employer
is forced to raise prices. The resulting cost of living increase is always more
than the new min. wage covers and the poor get poorer. But, it sells well to
the uninformed to buy votes.
The very existence of minimum wage is an insult to freedom. Why does government
presume to tell two freely bargaining parties what the terms of their agreement
should be? The market knows what someone's skills are worth, not some
politician. If we want to help the poor, low-skilled and people just starting
out, it would be better to give them money directly instead of driving them out
of the labor market through counterproductive government mandates of a minimum
Here is the story, "market forces" disciples: Either you
help people survive with government assistance or the "market" is forced
to pay people a living wage. If we don't do either, then gangs of
'have nots' run around taking what they need/want from those that
'have'. What do we get for putting limits on how low a person can be
paid? We get public order, we get stability, and we get at least a sliver of
upward mobility. Invisible Hand maintains that we just give the
poor cash money because mandating minimum wages would destroy the labor market.
Well, we have raised the minimum wage time and time again and the world
hasn't ended. To the contrary, we have good data that it actually helps the
economy every time it has occurred. What we haven't done is release the
"free market" to do with America what it likes. You know who has the
most free market? Somalia. When 300 million people get together and agree not
to play by any rules, we have anarchy. When people struggle to make enough money
to survive, we get desperate people doing desperate things.
Many assume that a higher minimum wage would be bad for business. I argue the
opposite. Yes, there would be a short term impact. But don't forget two
key factors. First, business will make the adjustments needed because they want
to stay in business and continue to make money. It will all settle out with a
little time. History shows that to be the case. Second, and this is an issue
that the business community forgets and which also applies to taking
manufacturing overseas, but a well paid consumer base is a consumer base that
will consume, and that means more sales, which means more for everyone.
Opposition to a reasonable minimum wage is short-sighted.
High wages, mid wages and low wages is what capitalism produces. Being
realistic, not everyone can move to the top because market forces come into
play. If all these low skilled workers educate themselves to get into a high
paying field then supply naturally exceeds demand.In return there
are pressure on wages to come down because people get desperate and will work
for less.Im more in favor of taking away tax breaks for big
businesses like walmart, target, etc who have people on public assistance.
The fruits of trickle down economics bear little nutritional value after 30
years of failure.Yep, Mike and Chris are right, it's the
poor's fault they should pull themselves up by their boot straps, if they
could afford boots."And lets be clear, it is NOT McDonald's
or Walmarts responsibility to pay workers enough" to feed themselves forget
about a family, and if your business model is dependent upon the government
paying for your employees food, medicine and utilities to exist, who's the
real welfare recipient, the business that profits into the billions or the
person who isn't worth full time employment because another corporation is
gaming the system on the backs of the middle class.
Based on economic theory, raising the minimum wage should be highly disruptive,
inflationary and have a depressing effect on the low end of the labor market,
overall a very poor idea. Unfortunately, the data simply does not
bear out this expected outcome, which is why there is nothing resembling a
consensus among labor economists on the issue, as there was in the late
1970s.Since the theory and data don't match, it's
reasonable to take a pragmatic approach. There are some really good reasons to
consider increasing the minimum wage.Aggregate demand remains
stubbornly sluggish as profits soar, and wages are stagnant. Employees spend a
much greater percentage of their income in stimulating aggregate demand than do
the wealthy, who look more for investment opportunities... as demand remains
stagnant.The data that confounds labor economists on why increasing
the minimum wage doesn't result in a domino effect of bad outcomes suggests
that if low end workers are paid more, they're less likely to "job
hop", which results in higher training costs for employers, and greater
productivity. In other words, "Win-Win".Sometimes the
orthodoxy is erroneous - in those cases we should adjust our thinking.
Somehow we have forgotten the fact that corporations are chartered by government
(the people), and for what purpose? To enrich a few executives and stockholders?
Sorry, wrong answer. There was a time in this country when government chartered
corporations rarely, temporarily, and to serve public purposes. They were kept
on a short leash and disbanded if they forgot their prime directive. But now the
tail is wagging the dog. Someone needs to remind corporations that, although
they must stay profitable in order to exist, their primary purpose is not to
make money. The only defensible excuse for their existence is for them to
produce products society needs (or perhaps wants) and to provide opportunities
for people to have meaningful work. It's amazing how much we have been
taught to forget over the past 150 years of increasing corporate domination.
Raising minimum wage doesn't cost jobs? Let's see. When you buy
gasoline, do you always buy the same brand, or do you stop at the station that
has the lowest price? Why? Don't you believe in paying a higher price for
the same product? If you are a business and you can pay workers $15 per hour
when their real value is $5 per hour, are you going to bankrupt your company and
pay an extra $20,000 per year for the same value?The garment trade
is gone because of demands for wages that were higher than the value given.Obama seized GM and Chrysler because union workers demanded higher wages
than the customer was willing to bear. He funded that takeover by destroying
the pension plans of policemen and teachers who had been foolish enough to trust
the government to pay bondholders before paying off unions.Look
around your home and office. How many items do you own that were made in
America? Why don't you support American wages and American workers? Now, tell me that raising the minimum wage won't destroy jobs.
The lower the income, the more Govt assistance is available, e.g., food stamps,
subsidized housing, earned income tax credit. For those on the lowest rung of
income, what private business does not pay them the taxpayer does.
Mr. Samuelson is wrong. Businesses DO consult studies about operational issues
like compensation. I have found for year that it pays, as a businessperson, to
be able to read "studies."
@Mike Richards. I get your point but how would having more low paying jobs
actually be better for this country? If the garment trade is gone because they
can not pay people 2.25 an hour how would repealing the minimum wage so that
trade can come back actually help the economy? Its trade policy and
monetary policy that need to change. We will never be able to compete with slave
labor in other countries.
As it is we had 3 people that 1 could of done because there are a lot of lazy
people, any one that has a brain wants to have perspective to get a job.
Every time talk about the minimum wage being hiked, there are grave warnings of
disaster. Every time it is hiked, nothing bad happens, more people make more
money that they then spend, helping the economy. And I am a small business
Raising the minimum will have repercussions. Some large corporations may see
lower profits. But it's still worth it. If we go the other way, to the
conservative panacea where there is no minimum wage, only illegal immigrants
will do the job. If you want to see it in action, take a drive around the
lettuce fields near Yuma.
In discussions like this the point that frequently gets left out is the issue of
Greed. It seems that in the name of "free market," and
"capitalism," anything goes as long as you are able to stay out of jail.
There is no way everyone currently being paid minimum wage is being paid all
that they truly deserve and have earned. There is not a balance in bargaining
power between employees and employers; employers typically have the upper hand
and most of them take advantage of it. In-N-Out Burger
single-handedly proves the assertion wrong that paying one's hirelings more
will result in unemployment or even higher retail prices. They pay their people
substantially more than do their competitors, yet they offer a superior value to
the customer and still make a profit. The answer is that unlike many
businessmen in Utah and in this country, the owners of In-N-Out take their
Christianity seriously and recognize that with "free market" and
capitalism" come moral responsibility.
Let's say we have a business. It has 10 employees, they work 30 hours a
week at 8 dollars an hour. They make 240 a week each.Let's say
the minimum wage goes to 10 dollars an hour. The employer decides they need to
cut hours because they can't afford to pay a single additional cent in
wages (I'm going to pick the most extreme scenario). Okay, what happens? 10
employees working 24 hours a week at 10 dollars an hour. They make 240 a week
each. Perhaps the company can handle a 1 dollar increase in worker
pay but not two dollars and thus pass half of it onto employees through cutting
hours. Okay, so 10 employees working 27 hours a week at 10 dollars an hour.
They're now making 270 a week each. @Mike Richards"The garment trade is gone because of demands for wages that were higher
than the value given."If we let a bunch of low wage 5
dollar an hour jobs be in place then that just means a lot of people will be
left needing to work multiple jobs in order to scrape by. Doesn't really
@SchneeI pretty much agree with what your saying, but garment workers
would kill(literally) to get 5 bucks an hour. The people making your clothes in
Bangladesh are lucky to make 10 bucks a week. Minimum wage for a Bangladeshi(per
the Huffington Post) is $38 a month. We won't ever get those jobs back, and
frankly for those wages do we even want them?@Anti-LiarAnother good
example of that is Costco. Their employees aren't getting wealth working
there, but they actually get paid enough money to rent an apartment, pay for a
car, and eat. Starting wage at the Costco is around 12 bucks an hour. I know
that the people that work their generally seem happier, and I know they are more
willing to help and know more about their jobs than say, someone who works a Wal
Let's get rid of all jobs that pay under $10. Let's teach our kids
not to work, because really all jobs should be to support a family. Businesses
are evil so they should pay for it. Let's get rid of the WalMart's
of the world that save us $100's every month. Maybe, if we are lucky, our
youth will not learn to work at low paying jobs before getting an education, but
they will just graduate from school and keep that $10/hr job until they retire.
We all know in reality the American dream is dead. We should have no hope,
except that we can get comfortable $10/hr jobs. Oprah, Bill Gates, Warren
Buffet, and all those other self-made millionaires just got lucky. Oh, and they
are greedy. We should destroy all of those greedy pensions that have invested in
stocks like WalMart. All of those teachers that rely on those pensions for
support are greedy too! We need to teach basic economics in k-12.
Lets get rid of all min wage.Lets pay our workers as little as
possible. Lets get rid of all child labor laws. Let kids begin immediately after
leaving the womb to work. Get rid of all regulations. Drill baby drill. If you
lose an arm or drink polluted water then it's your own fault. Move or find
another job. Lets teach our kids that we were made for corporations and that if
they ever want to amount to anything in life then they need to work. Let
corporations do anything they want. Let them blackmail us, use us, abuse us.
Heck, I have a better idea, lets get rid of all wages. That means that
corporations will make even more money. We could have corporate masters who
could provide us with meals and food. If we refuse to work, then can whip and
hit us. That'll teach everyone to work hard. I love the
corporate blackmail. Corporations are now wagging the dog. Unbelievable. How can anyone be a good Christian and support this mindless trickle
down theory? It's a complete failure and only enriches those most evil and
Every state or every sector of the nation is different. One size does not fit
all. Feds must keep out of state jurisdiction.
In any dispute between ideology and data, I take the side of data. The minimum
wage has been raised many times in this country, without negative consequences,
and with modest stimulative effect. Raising it again is an easy call.
When free market forces ignore the needs of the citizens, the citizens work as a
majority force and demand change. Basic stuff.When working-class
middle-income Americans find their lowest-wage families and friends and
neighbors can't make a livable wage and require public assistance to get
by, they demand change. Sensible enough.If corporations and big businesses
won't pay their lowest-wage employees a livable wage and they have no other
recourse, the majority of Americans will demand a change by voting for laws that
require employers to increase lowest wages. This uplifts us all.Minimum
wages should be raised. With respect to small businesses a jump from $7.25 to
$8.20 is a bit harsh. Wages should be raised slowly; in small increments over a
period of time.
Oh good!Another conservative opinion piece on Min Wage! It provides
zero credible studies or views from respected economists. But boy, does it lay
it on thick with the hyperbole.
The minimum wage should be the amount of wages needed to prove up on the promise
of Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness. The government should hire all
unemployed individuals, put them to work and pay them according to their needs
for the promise. There should be no unemployed. There should be no need for
workers unions, and no need for the voluntary slavery aspect of employment. If such were done, there would be a big bite out of Poverty. Even to
the point of doing away with Welfare, charity for the poor, food stamps, and a
host of other programs costing the taxpayer for their benefits and the cost of
providing those benefits. The cost of the program would be
covered by a tax on American business operations. Even now, business is paying
for all welfare, and money given to the unemployed no mater if it is public or
private welfare. If you eliminate the cost of welfare, maybe the tax would not
be needed. Individual Americans, even employees, should be free.
They should not be chained to their job by Health Insurance, Retirement
preparation, and especially not by the threat of the hardship of unemployment.
@NevadaCougar" Let's get rid of the WalMart's of the world
that save us $100's every month."Exploiting cheap labor at
home and abroad is not a particularly moral advocacy in my book.
It's incredible to me that the minimum wage in the 60's is equivalent
to about $10 today and somehow businesses in the 60's made do paying their
workers that wage. If the businesses in the 60's could afford to pay their
workers $10 in today's money, certainly we can pay that much as
well.....especially when you consider the large increases in productivity over
the past 50 years.
Hey Kent,"Someone needs to remind corporations that, although
they must stay profitable in order to exist, their primary purpose is not to
make money.?"As someone with an MBA and PhD in business, (15
years as an economics professor) the primary purpose of a corporation such as
McDonalds is to maximize the return on investment (ROI) for its shareholders
which means holding down operational expenses such as payroll expenses. Any
increase in operational expenses are usually or eventually passed on to the
consumer in any number of ways such as increasing the cost of goods and
services. In the end it will depend on how much consumers will be
willing to pay for a double cheeseburger at McDonalds.
If low productivity produced prosperity, then there would be no poverty! Minimum
wage jobs at any pay rate will never produce prosperity! Minimum wage jobs are
the lest productive jobs and are paid accordingly, regardless of any
"laws" the government may enact. Productivity produces prosperity! If
you want to become prosperous, become more productive: produce something in
demand! Be creative, innovative and prosperity will follow! No one became
prosperous by being trapped in minimum wage jobs! The reason N. Korea, Cuba and
any other 3rd world country is not prosperous is because they produce little or
nothing! Production=prosperity and there is no short cut, no exception and no
minimum wage law that will change that!
"When you buy gasoline, do you always buy the same brand, or do you stop at
the station that has the lowest price? Why?"I NEVER look at the
price of gasoline. (I need it so I buy it plus I drive an economical vehicle) I
buy the same brand of gas almost always. What's your point? "If you are a business and you can pay workers $15 per hour when their
real value is $5 per hour, are you going to bankrupt your company and pay an
extra $20,000 per year for the same value?"Uh. . . Yes if the
government tells me this is the miniumum I can pay a worker I will pay them no
lower them that. Besides, employees are not hired based on cost they are hired
based on need. If I need four employees for a job I WILL hire four employees. If
I need three I WILL hire three. If I need a hundred I WILL hire a hundred.
Hiring is driven by DEMAND nothing else. The cost of wages is the cost of doing
business. It is NOT a factor in why businesses hire employees.
Mike Richards,The garment industry is gone because of the lack of
value and ethics in our business community. Paying children in third world
countries a few pennies an hour in unsafe shops is what has caused the
disappearance of the garment industry in America. We can defend big business
all we want, but if we continue to create an economy where a growing number of
people feel no hope and desperation we will reap the fruits of what sow in
increased gang violence, crime, etc. When people have no hope, they also have
no choices. We as a society will eventually pay for the lack of concern of the
American worker, especially the those in poverty and on the verge of poverty.