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Author Topic: It's time to raise the minimum wage  (Read 7879 times)

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Offline buginme2

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It's time to raise the minimum wage
« on: December 07, 2013, 04:17:13 PM »
I got into a pretty heated discussion with some friends yesterday about the prospect of raising the minimum wage.  I 100% support an increase in raising the minimum wage to something that is more "livable" that will raise people out of poverty.  Many people did not agree with me and it seems my peer group was split.

Recently, where I live there was a ballot measure in one of the suburbs to raise the minimum wage to $15 per hour.  It passed (it was very close).  Now people who work in seatac (which is where the airport is located) will be paid a minimum of $15.  There is now a very strong push to raise the minimum wage in Seattle to $15.

President Obama is proposing to raise the minimum wage to $10.10 per hour.  You can bet the next presidential election this will be a major topic with the democratic candidate supporting it and the republican opposing it. 

More and more our country is being split..red and blue. Look at the map of states that support things like gay marriage and you basically have the same map for those who support a higher minimum wage.

So the top 8 states with the highest minimum wage are:
1. Washington
2. Oregon
3. Vermont
4. Connecticut
5. Illinois
6. Nevada
7. California
8. Massachusetts

http://247wallst.com/special-report/2013/12/03/eight-states-with-the-highest-minimum-wages/

Here's the thing that gets me...it's no coincidence that these states pay the highest and I'm sure we can all guess which ones pay the lowest.  Yet when you ask people (even people in the states with the low wages) they will surely vote against it.

When did our country lose its compassion for others?

Offline phildinftlaudy

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #1 on: December 07, 2013, 05:40:27 PM »
I completely support raising the minimum wage; however, I would dispute the argument that it will get people out of poverty. Unfortunately, when minimum wage is raised, and if it was done so unilaterally, the standard for poverty is also raised.

Simple example: If everyone living in poverty was given $1 million right now, it would not eliminate poverty - prices on the market would adjust and the impact would be that the person with only the $1 million would be impoversished while those with significantly more would not be....

Poverty, in a sense, is relative. What is considered poverty here would not be considered so in third-world countries.

So, while I am in total agreement that minimum wage needs to be raised - it would also result in an increase in prices for products/services delivered where the predominance of employees are paid the minimum wage - this would create a ripple effect - which over the long (or even mid-term) would mitigate or erase any real impact that an increase in the minimum wage would have.

There are many other factors that contribute to poverty - outside of the minimum wage - and these are the area that need to be successfully addressed...

But (and call me pessimistic) - I don't think poverty as a defined term and state of being will ever be eliminated - not through raising the minimum wage or even addressing other factors that contribute to poverty.

September 13, 2008 - diagnosed +
Labs:
Date    CD4    %   VL     Date  CD4  %   VL
10/08  636    35  510   9/09 473  38 2900  12/4/09 Atripla
12/09  540    30    60   
12/10  740    41  <48   
8/11    667    36  <20  
03/12  1,041  42  <20
05/12  1,241  47  <20
08/12   780    37  <20
11/12   549    35  <20
02/12  1,102  42  <20
11/12   549    35  <20

Offline Jeff G

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #2 on: December 07, 2013, 06:45:24 PM »
I don't know Phil, A quarter more for a big Mac to get workers up to $10 is not much of a ripple effect for a company making billions in profit .

I just don't buy the logic behind not paying people who work 40 hours a week a decent wage when the corporations are reaping record profits and paying huge bonuses and trying to sell it by saying it will just ruin things for all of us .

The bottom line is the people who's labor makes those profits should get a fair wage before dividends and 300 million dollar bonuses are paid out .

Who stands to gain by trying to sell the lie that a decent wage will ruin the
economy ? ... its the people making billions that represent to 1 or 2 top percent .

If the corporations insist on passing on the responsibility to consumers to pay decent wages so as not to impact there own pockets then yes , its a valid argument .       

Offline bocker3

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #3 on: December 07, 2013, 07:04:06 PM »
where did Phil say that raising the minimum wage would ruin the economy??  He simply stated a truism, that as wages rise (whether by government decree or via employers own free will) inflation hits.  The cost of goods and services will rise too -- it's supply and demand.  Give people more money and demand rises -- demand rises and so does cost.  That is the nature of an economy that is not micro-managed by the government.
Now that is not, in itself, a reason to NOT raise the minimum wage -- but it IS a likely consequence.  I think the minimum should go up some -- but every time I hear "livable wage" I scratch my head.  What is that?  Who decides?  What happens when the cost of living, inevitably, goes up?  Why is $15 the "magic number"?  It costs more to live in Seattle than it does in rural Virginia -- so why should the minimum wage be the same?  I am paid less in Richmond, VA than someone doing the same job at my company in our Northern VA offices, because it costs much more to live there.
So, yes -- corporations could - and probably should - give some of their profits to their employees -- or they could reinvest some into creating more jobs (both would be good things).  however, they do have to provide "profit" to the shareholders, or they will cease to be going concerns and their minimum (and maximum) wage will then be $0.  Those profits are what is building up my retirement account so that I will be able to retire some day - and many millions of other people too.  I assume that I will get little, if anything from SS.

Mike
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Offline RapidRod

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #4 on: December 07, 2013, 07:07:15 PM »
Those jobs were meant for high school kids and college kids to get some spending cash. They weren't jobs that one would get to support a family.

Offline mecch

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #5 on: December 07, 2013, 07:15:54 PM »
I am sure it is a complex issue but there are some current basic realities that don't "feel" right.  Why are workers in these profitable companies having to get by with public assistance for food, and soon for health insurance.

A right feeling definition of a "living wage" in a rich country is that full time work lifts one just above the poverty line. And the poverty line in a rich country should be enough money for food, clothing, shelter, education, and health care. Basic level of each. Maybe even a bit hardscrabble, but not rough living of the working poor in the US today.

Also workers should not be put in a position where they want to work full time but the companies do not allow them to.  Although the HOURS of work are there, they schedule just below full time and hire more part time, in order to keep their labour costs so much lower. Many of these people -- non-willing "part-time" workers -- are not able to fit in another job, because the primary employer makes it so, with the inconsistency of scheduling.

This is mass abuse of human labour, in my opinion. These are all good people, working hard, and all labour is honourable and should receive a meaningful wage. By that, a wage that is "meaningful", humane, in a rich country. And isn't a scandalous fraction of the company's profits and the direction's compensation. A company that is scamming the government to keep its workers somewhat alive and productive.


 
« Last Edit: December 07, 2013, 07:18:19 PM by mecch »
“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline mecch

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #6 on: December 07, 2013, 07:21:40 PM »
Those jobs were meant for high school kids and college kids to get some spending cash. They weren't jobs that one would get to support a family.

But they are not any longer.  And says who? 
And women should be barefoot and pregnant in the kitchen. 
And gays should keep it on the downlow.

Hello. Its the end of 2013.  Let's deal with today's real problems and not refer to "supposed" to or outdated ways of categorising things.  And people.

Anyway, when I had those jobs in HS and made minimum wage, minimum wage was higher in relation to the prices then.  Minimum wage has NOT kept up with the price of living. Period.
“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline mecch

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #7 on: December 07, 2013, 07:23:32 PM »
I'll agree a minimum wage job at 8 bucks or 15 bucks an hour is not designed to support a family. 
But that is an apple and oranges point.
Those are the jobs these mothers and fathers in 2013 are finding. 
Fact.
Deal with it.
“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline mitch777

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #8 on: December 07, 2013, 07:30:34 PM »
I'll agree a minimum wage job at 8 bucks or 15 bucks an hour is not designed to support a family. 
But that is an apple and oranges point.
Those are the jobs these mothers and fathers in 2013 are finding. 
Fact.
Deal with it.

This^. Income disparity has created it and we are at or near the level we were in 1929. Some can pretend it doesn't exist or is not the root of the problem but...
31 years hiv+ (oct. 2013) with a curtsy.

Offline wolfter

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #9 on: December 07, 2013, 07:30:54 PM »
Raising the minimum wage is a simplistic fix to a complex problem.  If a worker at Walmart is suddenly making $15.00 per hour, how much will a person in a skilled position demand?  I'd guess it'd also almost double as the market will dictate what the position should pay.

And once the adjustment is accomplished, housing market costs, food costs, etc... will also rise since higher incomes dictate the higher prices.  That and factoring in the higher cost of producing goods because of higher wages.

Wolfie
Complacency is the enemy.  ;)  Challenge yourself daily for maximum  return on investment.

Offline mecch

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #10 on: December 07, 2013, 07:33:05 PM »
Also I don't think entire staffs of big store can possibly be mostly jobs valued at "minimum wage" or not so far above. There are real skills involved in doing such jobs and these skills do build up over time working at them. Cosco is making it work, paying  more and progressively increasing salaries.  It can be done.
“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline phildinftlaudy

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #11 on: December 07, 2013, 07:35:58 PM »
Good article in Business Week:

http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2013-08-02/this-is-what-would-happen-if-fast-food-workers-got-raises

oh and another one:
http://www.scpr.org/blogs/economy/2013/12/04/15323/can-ca-fast-food-restaurants-pay-15-per-hour/

The fact is that raising minimum wage for fast food workers (for instance) to $15 an hour would result in a significant increase in the cost of the product to consumers.

BTW, in Australia - where minimum wage for workers at McDonald's is around $15 per hour, the price of a Big Mac combo is $9 USD. This same combo runs about $6 in the U.S. (http://www.expatistan.com/price/big-mac/sydney)(http://www.expatistan.com/price/big-mac/phoenix)

So, for a family of four: in Australia $9 x 4 = $36...  in United States $6 x 4 = $24.... so the family will pay $12 more for that single meal for the family... I think that type of increase is going to prove more detrimental to the family even with a wage of $15....

In addition, it would result in adjustments needed in positions that are currently being paid $15 an hour outside of the fast food environment (See article for examples).

The result: Inflation
The result: Less retained earnings for companies means less expansion/growth
The result: Less dividends/returns for investors - means that investors go elsewhere to invest - so, once again - no expansion/growth, no investment in research and development for new products, etc.

There is definitely a balance that needs to be achieved. A living wage based on geographic cost of living makes sense..... Most of our fast food workers here in Miami make around $10 or more an hour - but cost of living is also much higher.

In my hometown in PA they are paid around $8 an hour (but cost of living is much lower)

Miami has an ordinance requiring workers be paid living wage - which is set around $10 an hour....

I think the California article makes a good point - as a business owner, if I have to further shrink profit margin (the one the actual franchisee makes  - not corporate) - I will seek ways to shrink my workforce - automation would be the way to go.... have self-order kiosks, etc... So, the worker who wants to make the $15 an hour will now be completely out of a job (unless he/she goes to school to learn how to program/repair the kiosk... that probably pays higher than $15 an hour).

I still maintain that poverty is relative and that raising wages will only change our definition of poverty --- increasing the lower wage that constitutes poverty to a higher level - but it will still be poverty.

This is not to say that there are not severe disparities in income - but that is an issue outside of the minimum wage issue - as raising the minimum wage is not going to have an noticeable impact on the current income disparity situation in the U.S..
« Last Edit: December 07, 2013, 07:54:26 PM by phildinftlaudy »
September 13, 2008 - diagnosed +
Labs:
Date    CD4    %   VL     Date  CD4  %   VL
10/08  636    35  510   9/09 473  38 2900  12/4/09 Atripla
12/09  540    30    60   
12/10  740    41  <48   
8/11    667    36  <20  
03/12  1,041  42  <20
05/12  1,241  47  <20
08/12   780    37  <20
11/12   549    35  <20
02/12  1,102  42  <20
11/12   549    35  <20

Offline RapidRod

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #12 on: December 07, 2013, 07:38:25 PM »
Raising the minimum wage is a simplistic fix to a complex problem.  If a worker at Walmart is suddenly making $15.00 per hour, how much will a person in a skilled position demand?  I'd guess it'd also almost double as the market will dictate what the position should pay.

And once the adjustment is accomplished, housing market costs, food costs, etc... will also rise since higher incomes dictate the higher prices.  That and factoring in the higher cost of producing goods because of higher wages.

Wolfie
Exactly..

Offline bocker3

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #13 on: December 07, 2013, 08:17:51 PM »

Hello. Its the end of 2013.  Let's deal with today's real problems

Yes, let's.  While I do agree that the minimum wage has lagged woefully behind -- it is illogical to think that any wage hike will lift all workers above the poverty line because it becomes a moving target (that was the main point, I believe, of Phil's post) - everyone talking "livable wage" ignores that reality.

And......  sometimes a company needs part-time workers for flexibility in scheduling, while maintaining efficiency in total staffing.  Yes, some companies are using part-time workers to avoid benefits, but not all and not in all cases.  I would never be onboard with the government mandating full vs. part-time employment "quotas".

I see someone else has already mentioned it -- income inequality is too large - we aren't going to impact that with a minimum wage hike.  We need to address it, but not this way.

Mike
Atripla - Started 12/05
Reyataz/Norvir - Added 6/06
Labs - Pre-Meds
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Offline mecch

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #14 on: December 07, 2013, 08:42:34 PM »
A lot of these objections to a hefty minimum wage hike may be "valid" but overall I get the same feeling of inertia and disempowerment for change that kept the US from doing something towards universal healthcare, for about 2 decades after the workable model of employer-funded health care began to seriously break down and be inadequate by the early 90s.  I am sure the wage issue, poverty, and income disparity will be issues in the next Presidential election and there is already talk that Obama might start the needed conversations during his second term.
« Last Edit: December 07, 2013, 08:46:11 PM by mecch »
“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline mecch

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #15 on: December 07, 2013, 08:47:53 PM »
Its not sustainable nor is it decent that the US's largest employer is holding food drives because its own staff can't afford a turkey for the national holiday... Am i right?
“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline phildinftlaudy

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #16 on: December 07, 2013, 09:06:27 PM »
Some excellent points made in this article - explaining why simply raising the minimum wage isn't going to work...and that many of the companies accused of only paying minimum wage actually have more employees making above minimum...

Some great suggestions are also in the article - some need more investigation - some should be implemented...

Or we could just give every Wal Mart employee a turkey at Thanksgiving and a ham at Christmas (I'm sure that will solve all the U.S. poverty issues).

http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2013-11-27/what-a-higher-minimum-wage-does-for-workers-and-the-economy#p1
September 13, 2008 - diagnosed +
Labs:
Date    CD4    %   VL     Date  CD4  %   VL
10/08  636    35  510   9/09 473  38 2900  12/4/09 Atripla
12/09  540    30    60   
12/10  740    41  <48   
8/11    667    36  <20  
03/12  1,041  42  <20
05/12  1,241  47  <20
08/12   780    37  <20
11/12   549    35  <20
02/12  1,102  42  <20
11/12   549    35  <20

Offline Joe K

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #17 on: December 07, 2013, 09:21:49 PM »
It may not be that the minimum wage is too low in many areas, it's that the next stepping stone jobs have vanished.  In the summer of 1973, I worked at the Chrysler Warren Truck Plant and made $9.80 per hour.  The minimum wage was $1.60 per hour.   A job at a auto plant was the stepping stone for millions to lift themselves into the middle class.  After a few years, the auto company would train you and you would move into jobs that paid more and virtually all of my friends came from a one parent income home.

We could afford to go to private schools, live in nice neighborhoods and afford a college education.  There was a path to move from the bottom tier, up the ladder and for many it provided a very good quality of life.

Sadly, millions of those jobs are gone forever.  Poor decisions by both the private the government sector, allowed the manufacturing base in America to be decimated.  The companies that used to supply those "steppingstone" jobs now use robots or part time workers to meet their human employment needs.  Also, the advent of the computer has also rendered millions of jobs obsolete.

Where I think a large part of the issue lies is with the mega-corporations like Walmart and McDonald's, who knowingly pay a low wage, and then encourage their workers to apply for Medicaid and Food Stamps.  They use taxpayer programs to supplement their own income and corporate profits have soared within the past 15 years.  CEO compensation ratio used to be about 50:1, meaning the top banana made 50 times the average worker.  CEO compensation ratio today is 500:1.

Too many corporations are driven purely for profit and even Henry Ford I, knew he had to pay his employees a decent wage, so they could buy the cars they built.  What should happen is all subsidies to corporations, including farm subsidies should be ended.  If your company is making record profits, you don't need any type of subsidy.

Then take those extra billions and improve the social safety to help those who now work at these low wage jobs.  I don't know what changed, but companies used to make very good money, payed great wages and realized that their workforce was their most important asset.  There used to be a time, when Americans though helping fellow Americans was the duty of all Americans.  Some how those needy Americans have become the new punching bag for austerity programs.

I have no idea what the answer is, but raising the minimum wage, is much like, just sticking a few more fingers in the dam.

Joe

Offline phildinftlaudy

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #18 on: December 07, 2013, 09:26:54 PM »
Great post Joe.
September 13, 2008 - diagnosed +
Labs:
Date    CD4    %   VL     Date  CD4  %   VL
10/08  636    35  510   9/09 473  38 2900  12/4/09 Atripla
12/09  540    30    60   
12/10  740    41  <48   
8/11    667    36  <20  
03/12  1,041  42  <20
05/12  1,241  47  <20
08/12   780    37  <20
11/12   549    35  <20
02/12  1,102  42  <20
11/12   549    35  <20

Offline tednlou2

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #19 on: December 07, 2013, 10:25:47 PM »
I have family, who made $10-$16 an hour at factory jobs in 1980.  At those same companies, you would do well to start at those same wages.  30 years of everything else going up, but wages have been stagnant.  CEO's made 30 to 40 times the average worker.  Now, it is 300 to 400 times. 

Back then, many of their wives didn't work.  They had very comfortable lives on that one income.  I hear them talk about paying for back and other surgeries out of pocket.  That amazes me, because they couldn't do that today.  Fast food and other minimum wage jobs were for high school and college students back then, and for wives who wanted out of the house, but didn't have a career.  Today, the average age of a fast food worker is 29.  They are not able to get that job at Ford, like they did back then. 

When this is discussed on news Facebook posts, I don't see debates and what happens to the economy.  I see tons of posts how minimum wage workers are bums and just need to better themselves.  If they want to be middle to upper middle class, then they do need to pursue a career that makes more.  But that doesn't mean they don't deserve a fair wage.  I assume the $15 an hour is a tactic-- knowing they will only get something in the middle, if they get anything at all. 

Offline buginme2

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #20 on: December 07, 2013, 11:00:17 PM »

When this is discussed on news Facebook posts, I don't see debates and what happens to the economy.  I see tons of posts how minimum wage workers are bums and just need to better themselves.  If they want to be middle to upper middle class, then they do need to pursue a career that makes more.  But that doesn't mean they don't deserve a fair wage.  I assume the $15 an hour is a tactic-- knowing they will only get something in the middle, if they get anything at all.

THIS^^^^ is what pisses me off.  When did the American people loose their compassion?  Watch the news, or go on Facebook and there is a large consensus that people who are poor have no one to blame but themselves.  There is some personal flaw in people that causes them to be poor.  All they have to do is work harder or go to school.  Ignoring the fact that most people can't afford to go to school and are working two jobs or overtime over 40hours per week, it's just not enough.   AND, not to mention what Joe said that many of the jobs that used to support the middle class in this country have disappeared and have been replaced with low wage service sector jobs.

Walmart is the largest employer in the United States.  That's depressing.

As far as the whole argument about raising the minimum wage will increase prices and ruin the economy...I quote Joe Biden..."Malarky"

Prices can only be raised so much regardless of the reason (Economic rule of "the law of diminished returns").  You can only raise the price of a product so much before the increase becomes a negative.  Considering most people make over the minimum wage raising it is not some dire circumstance as "Business week" or the WSJ would lead you to believe.

Also, I really have no patience when some CEO making $50 million threatens that if the minimum wage is increased then prices will rise and the economy will crash.....really?

Explain this.....how come the economy didn't crash and prices become unaffordable when CEO salaries increased by 500% over the past twenty years?  Why isn't Business Week writing stories about that?  How come the price of Willy's Whopper didn't go up to $10? 



Offline bocker3

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #21 on: December 08, 2013, 12:28:01 AM »
Explain this.....how come the economy didn't crash and prices become unaffordable when CEO salaries increased by 500% over the past twenty years?  Why isn't Business Week writing stories about that?  How come the price of Willy's Whopper didn't go up to $10? 

Because a good chunk of many CEO's pay come from stock options.  There is no real cost to the company for this -- the cost is "paid" by the dilution of stock value amongst the stockholders.  If the company does well and stock price rises, then the options are worth more.  If the company does badly and the price tanks, well -- less compensation.  So, it doesn't have the same impact to the price of Willy's Whopper as raising the wages of tens of thousands of workers who get their salary solely from company revenue.  Well, plus, the increase in wages cause INFLATION due to supply / demand issues too (something everyone here seems to conveniently ignore).  Again -- not saying the min. wage shouldn't go up -- but it is not the panacea that some seem to be thinking.

Oh and PLEASE could we lay of the drama of "the crashing economy" -- no one has said that would happen that I have seen on here.  The economic impact that might be created is INFLATION, not a collapse.  ::)

Mike
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Offline buginme2

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #22 on: December 08, 2013, 12:46:48 AM »
Because a good chunk of many CEO's pay come from stock options.  There is no real cost to the company for this -- the cost is "paid" by the dilution of stock value amongst the stockholders.  If the company does well and stock price rises, then the options are worth more.  If the company does badly and the price tanks, well -- less compensation.  So, it doesn't have the same impact to the price of Willy's Whopper as raising the wages of tens of thousands of workers who get their salary solely from company revenue.  Well, plus, the increase in wages cause INFLATION due to supply / demand issues too (something everyone here seems to conveniently ignore).  Again -- not saying the min. wage shouldn't go up -- but it is not the panacea that some seem to be thinking.

Oh and PLEASE could we lay of the drama of "the crashing economy" -- no one has said that would happen that I have seen on here.  The economic impact that might be created is INFLATION, not a collapse.  ::)

Mike

Whether a company pays you with stock, stock options, or via a paycheck they are still paying you.  Just because a company would pay someone with stock doesn't mean that it's not costing them the same amount as if they were paying you via a paycheck.  The reason many CEOs are paid via stock is because it's taxed at a less rate then regular income..not because it's costing the company less.

To say that a CEO who's making $20million either through direct pay or via a stock purchase costs a company less than increasing the payroll of some minimum wage workers is wrong.

On a side note..not directed at anyone here:
It's very interesting how people will go to great lengths to defend the rich.  Put it on the news that raising the minimum wage will increase prices and all the sudden it's gospel.  Yet, we all know that the system is rigged and Economy is based on cheap labor.

The thing is...this isn't new.  Viva La France

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Offline tednlou2

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #23 on: December 08, 2013, 01:49:58 AM »
I subscribe to Bill Maher's view on this.  He says minimum wage is like a form of indentured servitude.  He talks about how Michelle Bauchman thinks there should be no minimum wage, because she says that will increase employment.

I especially agree when he says, "This is the question the right has to answer:  Do you want smaller government with less handouts?  Or, do you want a low minimum wage?  Because, you cannot have both.... I, for one, am getting a little tired of helping highly profitable companies pay their workers." 

I do see the problems with making a little more, but don't believe that's a reason to pay people less.  We have a family member, who got a job at Humana, making $12 an hour.  She lost her SNAP benefits and daycare assistance.  She is single with two kids.  It seems if you do a little better, the system is designed to basically keep you in poverty.  I couldn't believe she would lose all benefits at that income with two kids.  I look at her $12 an hour.  I was making that doing basically the same job at Anthem back in 1997.  It shows me how wages are so stagnant.  That was 17 years ago and she is making the same I was in the same kind of job.  And, Humana wants you to have at least some college to work customer service. 

http://youtu.be/4InCis9FH6c

Offline J.R.E.

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #24 on: December 08, 2013, 01:59:29 AM »

I agree with you Bug,  It's time to raise the minimum wage.  The last time the M-W was raised was in July of 2009.  In Florida, the minimum wage is currently set at  $7.79/ hour. We're a little above the federal.

I worked plenty of minimum wage jobs early on in my life, and that's when minimum wage was less than $2.00 an hour.And I busted my ass for that wage.  I didn't have the option of having rich parents paying to send me to college, after high school. We was po !

This was factory assembly line work. Oh yes, we used to have factories at one time, remember those ? Where did those factories all go to? Who's to blame for that.   Overseas, because the owners didn't want to pay a living wage.

I don't think it will go as high as $15.00 an hour, but it is a good starting point.


It's not only fast food /restaurant, that has the low wages ( and these people bust's their asses . Period!).   I work in a nursing/ assisted living home.  Most of the jobs in this place are minimum wage jobs,( unless you are a nurse or a CNA) and they will fire you in a minute, if you make the slightest screw-up. Even the CNA's don't make that much, and in order to make a comfortable living they have to work overtime.

These are hard working people, with families, trying to make a living on minimum wage.  So, I ask you,....how many of you would enjoy working in a nursing home, long hours, changing sheets full of shit, and urine all day long.  Would you do it? 

Would you expose yourself to Hepatitis, C DIFF, MRSA and all the other possible pathogens,  for $7.79 an hour. Being around patients,  with pneumonia, colds, flu..., Respiratory infections,   or yes there can even be scabies and bed bugs.

How about,  Working in the hot laundry, having to wear gloves most of the day as you handle these shitty sheets, full of urine, shit and sometimes blood, and who knows what.


How many of you would you like to mop the floors each day, because the residents shit, vomit, piss  because of no fault of their own? How many of you would like to scrub down and sanitize the wheelchairs daily, because of fecal matter and urine that is on them. Our staff does, all the above for $7.79 an hour.

Or working the minimum wage in the kitchen's of these facilities over a hot stove, preparing 3 meals a day, 7 days a week 365 days a year, for minimum wage. In the nursing home, industry, this is what it is like everyday. And on top of it, the bosses push you to the limits. and you better not complain or you are out the door.

Think about it. Unless we all die suddenly, chances are we are probably going to end up in one of these places, whether you like it or not.  I would want these people payed a living wage to take care of me and to take care of my surroundings, and to make sure that things are clean, and sanitary.

Now the jobs I have listed where I work, may get a higher wage in other states, but I know for a fact, what these jobs pay down here in Florida, and it's a disgrace !

Yes, raise the minimum wage, and start off at $15.00 an hour, and work from there.


Just my thoughts


Ray

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http://forums.poz.com/index.php?topic=40802.0

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Offline J.R.E.

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #25 on: December 08, 2013, 02:21:51 AM »

Oh, and I forgot to mention that the benefits are crappy.  Most of these minimum wage workers, reject the group healthcare insurance that the company offers, because it's too expensive.

So if you get really sick, you are shit out of luck.

Ray
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http://forums.poz.com/index.php?topic=40802.0

http://forums.poz.com/index.php?topic=45159.0

http://forums.poz.com/index.php?topic=39722.msg495621;topicseen#msg495621

http://forums.poz.com/index.php?topic=46806.0

http://forums.poz.com/index.php?topic=39414.msg491701#msg491701


 In October of 2003, My t-cell count was 16, Viral load was over 500,000, Percentage at that time was 5%. I started my first  HAART regimen  on October 24th,03.

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Offline phildinftlaudy

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #26 on: December 08, 2013, 10:21:43 AM »
Whether a company pays you with stock, stock options, or via a paycheck they are still paying you.  Just because a company would pay someone with stock doesn't mean that it's not costing them the same amount as if they were paying you via a paycheck.  The reason many CEOs are paid via stock is because it's taxed at a less rate then regular income..not because it's costing the company less.

This is inaccurate. Employee paychecks add to the amount of a company's COST OF GOODS SOLD (COGS), these become fixed costs that are EXPENSES. Stock options do NOT come out of COGS, they come from Equity, which is generated via Income arrived at after EBIT (Expenses Before Interest and Taxes).

The paying of stock options does not lower a company's taxes. The increase in payroll expenses does lower a company's tax liability; however it comes at the "expense" of increasing COGS, which ultimately effects profitability of a company, its ability to incur short and long-term debt needed for expansion/growth.

It's very interesting how people will go to great lengths to defend the rich. 

It is similarly very interesting how people who do not want poor people to be blamed for their poverty (which I agree is very wrong) will villainize those who are wealthy. Seems to be equivalent to the concept of reverse discrimination to me.

If a wealthy person, say someone with a worth of $1 billion, gives $100 million (10%)  to charitible causes - retaining $900 million of his/her wealth - that person is still villainized by many who are not in the same economic class....

But, there is no villainization of the person making $50,000 a year who may give $1,000 (2%) a year to charitable causes.

It's like some people think that there should be no "wealthy" people in the world (or U.S.). That wealthy people should be punished for having wealth and made to give that wealth away at percentages far above that which the "unwealthy" population is expected to do.....or that is acceptable for the unwealthy....

10% is 10% is 10% - whether it be 10% of a $1 or 10% of $1 billion..... it is still 10%...

Yet there is this villianization of the wealthy that comes from the same people who take issue with anyone who remotely suggests that some people in poverty could do better.

I don't subscribe to the belief of blaming the poor for their condition -
I also don't subscribe to the belief of villainizing the wealthy for their condition....

The minimum wage does need raised -
Not to eliminate poverty - as raising it will not do this
Not to punish the wealthy - as raising it will have no impact on income disparities

However, there will be consequences to it being raised - if it is raised too much too quickly....
And those consequences are much more likely to be felt by the 99%, than those in the 1% - as an increase of $1 on a Big Mac Combo or electric rates or other products and services is definitely going to be felt more by the 99% than it will be by the 1%.

It will similarly be felt more by the 99% when jobs are lost due to more jobs/services are shipped to lower cost areas (aka "overseas) or jobs done by humans that could be automated are in fact automated - to save cost (see note on how increases in payroll impact COGS.. whereas automation results in an increase in assets - with an increase in liabilities only if short- or long-term debt is inccured to attain the automation, however, this is also offset via depreciation on the automation over time and does not increase COGS - which is important to any company's business model).

I just don't subscribe to the school of thought that raising the minimum wage is going to be the magic bullet that fixes (eliminates) poverty or that raising it is will also cause economic ruin/collapse.

There needs to be a well thought out combination of "fixes" - however, these fixes do not need to come at the expense of eliminating capitalism.... unless, of course, that is the agenda of some of those pushing for these fixes.... in which case, once again raising the minimum wage is not going to have an impact if what is really wanted is to move to a socialist society with the "elimination" of classes (which has never been shown to have actually occurred in these societies).
« Last Edit: December 08, 2013, 10:25:49 AM by phildinftlaudy »
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Offline buginme2

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #27 on: December 08, 2013, 11:38:48 AM »
Phil, I didn't mean paying CEOs by way of stock options and stock benefits would reduce a companies tax expenditure.  It reduces the CEOs tax expenditure.

If a CEO receives their salary via a paycheck it is taxed as regular income.

If a CEO receives their salary via stock it is taxed as a capital gain (which is taxed at a less rate than regular income). 

This isn't done for some altruistic reason of keeping prices low, it's done because those at the top want to pay less in taxes.  If regular income was taxed less than capital gains company's would be switching compensation to pay in a heartbeat.

Also, let's not try to explain things away by accounting. 

This morning in the paper was another article about this issue (coincidence).  It covers both sides of the argument.

http://seattletimes.com/html/businesstechnology/2022420118_minimumwageeconomyxml.html


Offline buginme2

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #28 on: December 08, 2013, 11:40:37 AM »
Oh and yes I have no problem calling out the super rich for how they rigged the system.  Sometimes a spade is a spade.  I don't think it's the same as blaming the poor for being poor.

Offline phildinftlaudy

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #29 on: December 08, 2013, 11:58:20 AM »


Also, let's not try to explain things away by accounting. 


I'm sorry - but I just don't get the logic behind this statement...

I mean, really? Let's not try to explain things away by accounting?

Accounting is what keeps businesses going... So, what would we base the arguments of our debate upon if not including accounting - simple emotion? They have and I don't - and that pisses me off - so let's change the system, so I have??  I don't know - that doesn't seem like a sound basis for system transformation to me...

Simple fact is that increases in COGS reduce revenue available for expenses... expenses which include personnel, research and development, short/long-term debt, equity, and ultimately profitability.

Regardless of whether capital gains are taxed less than standard earned income - they are still taxed.

And, thank you for at least owning up to the fact that there is a adverse bias against the wealthy.

As I stated before, I am all for raising the minimum wage - but, it is not going to solve the problem with poverty, it is not going to resolve income disparity, it is not going to create a utopian world with everyone singing kumbai yah (sp?), and all people being economically equal.

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Offline Ann

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #30 on: December 08, 2013, 01:23:32 PM »
I have no problem demonising at least some of the wealthy - namely the ones who got there and stay there through paying their employees the lowest wage they think they can get away with while awarding themselves huge yearly and/or quarterly bonuses.

If it weren't for their employees, they wouldn't have a business to run in the first place. They're no better than the employers/company owners back in Victorian times who cared little for their employees health and safety, so long as they made their obscene profits.

Back then it was "who cares if they die/get sick, there's plenty more where they came from". Today it's "who cares if the government has to subsidise their paychecks with foodstamps, who cares if they can't afford healthcare, who cares if they have to go to a foodbank before they go home from their poorly paid shift, I got mine and I got tons of it. And there's still plenty more where they came from and if they don't like it, I'll get the work done in a third world country."

I'm not against anyone making a buck, but when it comes at the expense of others in terms of having a sub-standard standard of living in the face of bosses having more money than they could reasonably spend in a lifetime, it's just obscene.

Short of reining in the greedy wealthy, I got no answers. Sorry. Wish I did!
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Offline bocker3

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #31 on: December 08, 2013, 01:57:43 PM »

This isn't done for some altruistic reason of keeping prices low, it's done because those at the top want to pay less in taxes.  If regular income was taxed less than capital gains company's would be switching compensation to pay in a heartbeat.


You're right -- it isn't done for altruism.  It is done, by the Boards of Directors responsible for setting CEO pay - to drive behavior.  If the company does well, the stock price rises and the CEO gets paid more -- if the company does poorly, the stock price falls and the CEO gets paid less.  Oops -- there is that darned accounting again.

Now -- yes, many CEOs have ridiculous compensation and the golden parachutes of even failing CEOs is beyond logic, but let's use logic and data in our debates, instead of emotion.  Emotional solutions to complex problems rarely fix what needs fixing.  CEO comp. should be addressed, it is out touch with the reality of their contributions in many cases. 

Also -- remember that the corporation has a legal, fiduciary responsibility not to consumers or employees -- but to shareholders.  That is the law - you might not like it, but unless it is changed, the shareholders of public companies are primary when it comes to money/profit.
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Offline Jeff G

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #32 on: December 08, 2013, 02:09:45 PM »
Looks like you guys have it all figured out except how to pay a living wage .

Offline buginme2

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #33 on: December 08, 2013, 02:29:38 PM »
You're right -- it isn't done for altruism.  It is done, by the Boards of Directors responsible for setting CEO pay - to drive behavior.  If the company does well, the stock price rises and the CEO gets paid more -- if the company does poorly, the stock price falls and the CEO gets paid less.  Oops -- there is that darned accounting again.

Now -- yes, many CEOs have ridiculous compensation and the golden parachutes of even failing CEOs is beyond logic, but let's use logic and data in our debates, instead of emotion.  Emotional solutions to complex problems rarely fix what needs fixing.  CEO comp. should be addressed, it is out touch with the reality of their contributions in many cases. 

Also -- remember that the corporation has a legal, fiduciary responsibility not to consumers or employees -- but to shareholders.  That is the law - you might not like it, but unless it is changed, the shareholders of public companies are primary when it comes to money/profit.

 Yes all that's true and I don't argue against that.   What I  argue against is this notion that if we raise the minimum wage ( which I think the article I  posted showed accounts for like 2  percent of total workers, could be wrong)   then prices will automatically rise.   Especially when salaries at the top have increased something of the magnitude of 500%  over the past  twenty years.   Saying that prices haven't risen because ceos  are paid via stock options and not through a paycheck is what I disagree with.

 My opinion<<<< is that 1.  our economy is based on cheap labor ( legal and illegal)   which has made a very small number of peoplevery rich.   2.  The propaganda that if we raise the ssalaries of people at the bottom will have a negative effect on prices ( andthe economy) iis just that,  propaganda.

 What I have a hard time with is when our economic system is rigged to benefit a very small group of people to make them very rich is defended by the very people who are being taken advantage of. 

 It screams of the French revolution.


Offline denb45

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #34 on: December 08, 2013, 02:57:45 PM »
And where dose it end? is 15, 18 or 20 an hour a realistic living wage?

the last job I had 15 yrs ago, I started out at about $16.08 an hour, and that was way back in 86, as a Teamster (local 439)

I got all the way up to $22.10 an hour, back in 99, is that a decent living wage? it's way better then 7 or 8 an hour

my point is this  what one makes, and what one can live off of is  very different,

for many, I started out 33 yrs. ago as middle class, and now, I'm still middle class disabled

I still live as good as I did back them, so where dose it end, I certainly have no real answers here,

should they rise the min wage to 15 an hour, well that is a good
place to start

I'm thinking somewhere maybe in the middle

HUGS

DEN
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Offline Jeff G

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #35 on: December 08, 2013, 03:21:57 PM »

should they rise the min wage to 15 an hour, well that is a good
place to start

I'm thinking somewhere maybe in the middle
 

You solved the problem Den, somewhere in the middle of $15 an hour is the current minimum wage   ;) .

Offline leatherman

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #36 on: December 08, 2013, 03:24:18 PM »
And where dose it end? is 15, 18 or 20 an hour a realistic living wage?
actually we do know what a realistic wage would be - $22 an hour
that is, if wages had kept up from productivity.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/03/18/elizabeth-warren-minimum-wage_n_2900984.html

this really isn't some kind of guessing game, slippy slope issue. Just like we know that legalizing same sex marriage won't lead to dogs and cats living together (name that 80s movie!), we know that upping the minimum wage isn't some slippery slope route to $100 an hour or something else as unrealistic. We really do have the math to prove what the end-game livable wage rate should be, with no guessing.

should they rise the min wage to 15 an hour, well that is a good
place to start

I'm thinking somewhere maybe in the middle
that's better at least (doubling the wages for many!!) and makes a good first step getting just a little over halfway there ;)
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Offline denb45

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #37 on: December 08, 2013, 03:30:26 PM »
Well here in ABQ-metro the min wage is 8.25 and hr. 65 miles to the north of me in Santa Fe, NM the current min wage is about 10.25 an hour,

so my point is this, it all depends on how well the local econo is doing, and what it will allow in any given area or part of the country,

 so to be fair, it's very different, on just where you live, Bocker (Mike) made a very good point of this early on in this thread....

HUGS

DEN
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Offline WillyWump

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #38 on: December 08, 2013, 05:24:34 PM »
Sheesh I go away for a day or two and yall start trying to solve the worlds problems without me. ::)

But it seems like yall ahve it all taken care of, but jsut curious..

I have no problem demonising at least some of the wealthy !

Oh and yes I have no problem calling out the super rich for how they rigged the system. 

Are there any Wealthy/Super Rich Business people you would not demonize? If so who, name them?

« Last Edit: December 08, 2013, 05:28:58 PM by WillyWump »
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Offline denb45

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #39 on: December 08, 2013, 06:30:46 PM »
Well I certainly don't  demonize?  Wealthy/Super Rich Business people

in-fact, I admire them, now you see, they all have something most of us don't

so, why despise or even  demonize them, I just don't see the point, however

I think it's important to at least have a open dialog here

I mean really, you all sound like the Havs & Havs nots

and with these types of threads, I feel like I wanna eat them

finger sandwiches with the crust cut off of them  ::)


HUGS

DEN
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Offline mitch777

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #40 on: December 08, 2013, 06:43:32 PM »


When did our country lose its compassion for others?

I wish this was the title of this thread.

The minimum wage certainly has been lagging but is only part of the problem. Compassion seemed to start fading away IMHO with the "trickle down" theory. Drip, drip. It didn't work then and it doesn't work now.

I am not a religious person but I've always believed that how we treat the poorest of the poor seems central to all faiths. Our society is failing miserably in this regard and has gotten so much worse.

Hypocrisy exists throughout our political spectrum but one party in particular seems to be wearing much denser blinders when it comes to compassion.

You all can get into the nitty gritty of accounting principles and economics if you want but it has been the policies and decisions over decades that have led us to where we are today.

This is worth a look:
 http://www.utrend.tv/v/9-out-of-10-americans-are-completely-wrong-about-this-mind-blowing-fact/

It is rather shocking to say the least.

« Last Edit: December 08, 2013, 06:45:53 PM by mitch777 »
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Offline denb45

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #41 on: December 08, 2013, 07:07:13 PM »
Well I'm right "In The Middle"

halfway between the middle 20%

and the  lower middle 20% in the (ideal part)

but, that is where I've always
been middle-class,

and if something happens
(like a huge windfall, lottery),

that is where I'll remain
until the day I die,

hey I'm comfortable with that

only because at me age (57 yrs. old)

I have to be, I think that is the best it will be

my otherhalf of almost 20 yrs agrees with me on this  ;)
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Offline buginme2

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #42 on: December 08, 2013, 08:58:20 PM »
Sheesh I go away for a day or two and yall start trying to solve the worlds problems without me. ::)

But it seems like yall ahve it all taken care of, but jsut curious..

Are there any Wealthy/Super Rich Business people you would not demonize? If so who, name them?

Yes Willy there are.  Bill Gates, someone who took his fortune and started the Gates a Foundation.  Did you know that if the gates foundation was a country it would be ranked #3 in the amount of money spent on global health!  For someone who created the operating system responsible for the blue screen of death he has taken his fortune and helped millions upon millions of people throughout the world, mostly from poor countries. 

Another CEO I like is the CEO of Starbucks.  Starbucks pays their employees above the minimum wage and provides health insurance to every employee (even the part time ones). 

Another CEO I like is the CEO of Costco.  Again they pay a living wage and provide great benefits.

These companies are able to do it and they are some of the most profitable and successful companies in America.  You don't have to pay crap wages to be successful.  That's propaganda (yes I picked 3 Seattle companies).

Offline RapidRod

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #43 on: December 08, 2013, 09:04:59 PM »
How about doing like most people. If you don't like the pay, you find a better paying job. If the pay you need requires more training go get the training you need to get the income you desire.

Offline buginme2

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #44 on: December 08, 2013, 09:25:03 PM »
How about doing like most people. If you don't like the pay, you find a better paying job. If the pay you need requires more training go get the training you need to get the income you desire.

I don't mean to sound snide, but that's the kind of speak that kind of bugs me.  It's as if moving out of poverty is just so simple.  "Get another job" or "go to school." 

It doesn't take into account an adult who's making minimum wage working 40plus hours a week (more if your supporting a family) is supposed to go to school how?  How are they going to pay for college?  Where do they get the time?

I went to college and grad school and it cost my parents upwards of $100,000.  You tell me.  How is someone who's parents make minimum wage, or themselves make minimum wage going to pay for college and support their family?

How is some kid graduating high school who's parents make minimum wage going to go to college?  Student loan? Right. 

I only bring this up and say this because there really needs to be a shift in how people think and speak. 

This is just my opinion, you don't need to agree.

Offline RapidRod

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #45 on: December 08, 2013, 09:48:11 PM »
The
I don't mean to sound snide, but that's the kind of speak that kind of bugs me.  It's as if moving out of poverty is just so simple.  "Get another job" or "go to school." 

Yes most people don't like facts and don't want to push themselves to get ahead. Everyone has the same opportunity to get ahead it takes work and determination. It all depends on the person.

Offline Jeff G

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #46 on: December 08, 2013, 10:03:52 PM »
The Yes most people don't like facts and don't want to push themselves to get ahead. Everyone has the same opportunity to get ahead it takes work and determination. It all depends on the person.

I know lots of people who feel this way and I always ask them about people who are fit and willing to work hard for a living but their aptitude or disposition is one that is best suited for unskilled labor ( a term I dislike ) should they be forced to live below the poverty level when the corporation's they labor for are getting wealthy from it ?

I think if you have a huge workforce that earns you billions in profits we need to redefine what is a skill and what is not , especially since some of these business are so successful they have practically eliminated all competition .


Offline tednlou2

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #47 on: December 08, 2013, 10:24:27 PM »
The Yes most people don't like facts and don't want to push themselves to get ahead. Everyone has the same opportunity to get ahead it takes work and determination. It all depends on the person.

I disagree with this, and I hear it so often.  So many get on Facebook and post how they are self made.  I will reply that I remember their parents helped with their tuition, they babysit their kids, they helped with gas, groceries, utilities, and helped when their car broke down.  So many don't have this kind of support.  If their lights are turned off, they are staying off until they can pay the bill.  They didn't have parents either paying for school outright or taking out parent plus loans.  They didn't have anyone to watch their kids, so they could go to night classes.  Most daycares close by 6pm and you are fined if you're a minute late.  If you have a drug conviction (even minor) you are banned from government student loans.  I think that's still the law. 

I worked fast food as a teen.  Besides working on a farm, it was the hardest job.  $7.25 is an insult for the work you do at those jobs.  It is demeaning.  And, the average fast food worker is now 29.  I also worked at Sam's Club.  I was on my feet all day.  Because I was male, I had to push carts in 100 degree heat and also 2 degree cold.  These aren't jobs for teens anymore.  If you want a fairly decent home with two cars, then you do need to pursue some career that pays more.  But, just because someone isn't "bettering themselves" doesn't mean they should be paid a wage that is not in line with the work done.  Minimum wage should at least be $10 an hour.

Offline bocker3

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #48 on: December 08, 2013, 10:46:42 PM »

I went to college and grad school and it cost my parents upwards of $100,000.  You tell me.  How is someone who's parents make minimum wage, or themselves make minimum wage going to pay for college and support their family?

How is some kid graduating high school who's parents make minimum wage going to go to college?  Student loan? Right. 

Well -- I don't agree that it is as simple as "getting another job" or "get a skill" -- not everyone is given the same tools to take advantage of help and opportunity, so RapidRod's post is, IMO, grossly oversimplifying the challenges.

However -- I have to answer your question.  My mother was making minimum wage or slightly above and getting some state assistance -- yet I managed to find a way to pay for 4 yrs of college.  Scholarships, grants and, yes, lots of student loans paid the first year.  Then an ROTC scholarship paid the last 3.  I worked while going and in the summers.  Two years I was a Resident Assistant to pay for room and board.  So -- even the poor can find a way if they have the support they need from family and school (which not everyone has).  I went to graduate school on my employer's dime -- took longer than I'd liked it to, but I did it.

Oh -- and even though I initially went into default -- I paid back every cent of my student loans too.  Worked a full-time and two part--time jobs in order to do so.

Saying the poor can't go to college is, to steal your quote, PROPAGANDA, not to mention a bit demeaning and classist.  I started poor, but I found a way out.

Mike
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Offline mecch

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #49 on: December 09, 2013, 02:04:18 AM »
The Yes most people don't like facts and don't want to push themselves to get ahead. Everyone has the same opportunity to get ahead it takes work and determination. It all depends on the person.

There is no level playing field, and no equal opportunity.

There is a playing field. There is opportunity.  However, its been proven that class mobility is more limited in the US in recent decades than many other advanced post-industrial countries.

“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #50 on: December 09, 2013, 04:15:09 AM »
Not everyone has the same chance, I don't buy the "pick yourself up by your bootstraps" idea.  I see it often, and I'm sure it repeats throughout the country.  Young kids with no father around, mother busy doing her own thing, whether that be addiction or prostitution, and the kids end up hanging out with their friends.  They notice their friends have all this "stuff" that they are getting picked on for not having, want to have, then go the way their friends go-crime.  Then they get arrested and end up a life long criminal because the criminal justice system is so broken. 

And no, if someone has a drug offense (s)he cannot get federal student aide, nor food stamps.  Which is ridiculous, don't they want people to change their lives?  Why can a child molester get food stamps and a pell grant, and not a drug offender?

Mentors are needed, terribly.  One of my clients is a single mother, probably about 22 or 23 years old, from the projects in Chicago (her mother is still in the projects there).  She doesn't have a high school diploma, and is on SSI due to emotional problems.  I'm attempting to help her get her GED, and take some basic home ec classes, for which she will get a reward.  Then we'll work on either her working, or pursuing a higher education.

People need to get involved if they want to see change, just like any other issue.
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Offline mecch

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #51 on: December 09, 2013, 04:38:21 AM »
This is a argument about world views and ideology, rather than statistics. Which is unfortunate.  Because the statistics bear out the view that, for a country that is very very wealthy, there isn't enough spread of the wealth, and there isn't enough opportunity for everyone to make a decent life through hard work.

http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/02/16/equal-opportunity-our-national-myth/

In 1980, CEO pay was 42 times average pay in the US. (Not minimum wage - but average pay).  Today it is about 350x.

I say fine, let the US produce millionaires and billionaires. I have worked for the super rich personally and have no grudge about the super rich as a group.

The swiss just voted down a cap on compensation levels, but it was really draconian: 1-12.  That was never going to work! Ridiculous.  But 1-350?  And that, again, is AVERAGE to top. Not minimum to top.

If the movers and shakers making these zillions in compensation are so brilliant, they can figure out a way for their compensation to remain QUITE generous but without keeping vast swaths of workers among the "working poor." 

Again, 6 Walmart Heirs have more wealth than the combined wealth of 42% of Americans. 

Its the largest employer and the employees get bupkis.  They can't afford a Thanksgiving dinner.  They need food stamps to feed themselves and their families.

Like national health care, its a paradigm shift that must be affected.  The myth of equal  opportunity and "everyone is middle-class" is dead dead dead dead dead.

Obama was great and now we need ANOTHER leader who will tackle low wages in the US.
Again, these people are doing hard work, honest work, and if you think its easy to hold it all together as a poor person and do your job, supposedly "unskilled", and do it well, then its just incredibly insulting to consider these jobs and this labour as not valuable.

In so many instances, it is all that is available and it is real work for crissakes. 
“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline denb45

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #52 on: December 09, 2013, 09:40:36 AM »
How about doing like most people. If you don't like the pay, you find a better paying job. If the pay you need requires more training go get the training you need to get the income you desire.

" EXACTLY "  go back to school, set some goals

  advance or update your skill level  :D

HUGS

DEN
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Offline WillyWump

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #53 on: December 09, 2013, 09:52:50 AM »
Yes Willy there are.  Bill Gates,

Another CEO I like is the CEO of Starbucks.  ). 

Another CEO I like is the CEO of Costco. 

Good examples. But I wonder what Gates paid the dishwashers and cooks at the Microsoft cafeterias.


However -- I have to answer your question.  My mother was making minimum wage or slightly above and getting some state assistance -- yet I managed to find a way to pay for 4 yrs of college.  Scholarships, grants and, yes, lots of student loans paid the first year.  Then an ROTC scholarship paid the last 3.  I worked while going and in the summers.  Two years I was a Resident Assistant to pay for room and board.  So -- even the poor can find a way if they have the support they need from family and school (which not everyone has).  I went to graduate school on my employer's dime -- took longer than I'd liked it to, but I did it.

Oh -- and even though I initially went into default -- I paid back every cent of my student loans too.  Worked a full-time and two part--time jobs in order to do so.

Saying the poor can't go to college is, to steal your quote, PROPAGANDA, not to mention a bit demeaning and classist.  I started poor, but I found a way out.

Mike

This sounds almost spot on to my life, no one paid for my college and it took me 8 years to get just a bachelors, and I worked the entire time, although my grandma helped me the last year (probably because she was embarrassed it was taking me so long)


And no, if someone has a drug offense (s)he cannot get federal student aide, nor food stamps.  Which is ridiculous, don't they want people to change their lives?  Why can a child molester get food stamps and a pell grant, and not a drug offender?


Yes, I agree with this wholeheartedly, someone makes a mistake pays for it and is punished repeatedly afterwards. This needs to be changed
« Last Edit: December 09, 2013, 09:59:59 AM by WillyWump »
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Offline Jeff G

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #54 on: December 09, 2013, 10:01:37 AM »
So whats the verdict folks . Yes or no to a living wage ?

Offline mecch

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #55 on: December 09, 2013, 10:06:53 AM »
I think its tangential to talk about ones own personal Horatio Alger story. Also I think its not constructive to divide the population between those who went to college (however bootstrapping and commendable) and those who didn't, as if all those who didn't now deserve poverty wages. 
The thing to do is to look at the working population and the jobs available, and the wealth produced (the GNP) and do a resort so that nobody is scraping by in extreme hardship despite going to work 40 hours a week and doing well on the job.  Labour is labour is labour.
Not everyone has the same intellect.
Not everyone has the same shrewdness.
And many many people never got skills because their schools and families failed them.

You, know, I don't care how dumb or uneducated someone is. I don't care how many mistakes someone makes in their life and is reentering the job market with little skills. 

Seems to me, you show up for work on time, regularly, rain sleet or snow, you become a valued member of the team, and people trust you, and you provide a good service or turn out good product or whatever your task is, this deserves that holy grail:  "the living wage".




« Last Edit: December 09, 2013, 10:09:57 AM by mecch »
“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline leatherman

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #56 on: December 09, 2013, 10:17:48 AM »
The Yes most people don't like facts and don't want to push themselves to get ahead. Everyone has the same opportunity to get ahead it takes work and determination. It all depends on the person.
it's incorrect opinions (not "facts". the facts clearly show a large and growing income disparity in our country that has nothing to do with productivity) like this which makes this situation so difficult to resolve. As long as people believe the false notion that the "have nots" are simply lazy - and not trapped in social/financial quagmires - the 47% will never be treated properly. Instead the greedy robber barons will continue to be able to basically enslave the serfs while they destroy any sembelance of "middle class" in our country.
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Offline denb45

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #57 on: December 09, 2013, 10:24:10 AM »
So whats the verdict folks . Yes or no to a living wage ?
 

YES on a living wage  8)

depends on the geographical area and what the local economy will allow

as i stated before, $8.25, $10.25 somewhere about there is a good place to start, other area's and amounts my vary widely

HUGS

DEN
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Offline Jeff G

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #58 on: December 09, 2013, 10:44:56 AM »
 

YES on a living wage  8)

depends on the geographical area and what the local economy will allow

as i stated before, $8.25, $10.25 somewhere about there is a good place to start, other area's and amounts my vary widely

HUGS

DEN

But that is not a living wage .

Offline denb45

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #59 on: December 09, 2013, 10:57:30 AM »
Well that 10.25 per hour is only in Santa Fe, NM, however some job titles here in ABQ do pay that 10.25 per hour or more,

but that depends on the skill level, like a security guard, armored car service personnel, all of these jobs require a State license and a clean criminal record, and also a good credit rating, before they will even hire you  ;)
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Offline phildinftlaudy

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #60 on: December 09, 2013, 11:54:29 AM »

And no, if someone has a drug offense (s)he cannot get federal student aide, or pursuing a higher education.



Just for clarification --- a drug offense only prevents a person from getting student aid if the offense occurs while the person was receiving student aid. Also, even if it occurs while receiving student aid, the person can have his/her eligiblity restored:

http://studentaid.ed.gov/eligibility/criminal-convictions

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12/09  540    30    60   
12/10  740    41  <48   
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Offline buginme2

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #61 on: December 09, 2013, 12:10:09 PM »
Regarding the previous mention that you can work and put yourselves through school.  I understand many did here but one thing to consider is,  when was this?   How long ago and what was tuition costs back then?

 The cost of tuition at most state schools has increased so much it's  unaffordable  for many.  I just checked my state school,  the University of Washington.   The cost for one year of school for 2013 is $27,034

 That's    total of $108,000.    Could you still   put yourself through school today?

 
« Last Edit: December 09, 2013, 12:16:32 PM by buginme2 »

Offline phildinftlaudy

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #62 on: December 09, 2013, 12:21:26 PM »
Miami Dade College

http://www.mdc.edu/main/academics/tuition.aspx

Associate Degree Cost per term: $1,370 (in-state, resident)
Bachelors Degree Cost per term: $1,510 (in-state, resident)

Both above are for 12-credit term

Oh, Career and Vocational Education:
$1,092 - 12-credit term

Adult Basic Education:
$31.50 total cost

Most students qualify for financial aid for the credit (degree) programs....(Pell, work study, American Dream, Brighter Futures, student loans). The American Dream Scholarship is really amazing: http://www.mdc.edu/main/americandream/

And, if a student completes an associates degree at MDC, he/she is guaranteed admission into a Florida University: http://www.mdc.edu/getin/

Seems "do-able" to me...

And Florida International University (FIU):

http://admissions.fiu.edu/costs-and-aid/index.html

Fall and Spring Term total matriculation: $6,506.18 (covers 30 credits)
Assuming 4 years =$26,024
Florida resident, in-state rate
(Per credit is $203 and change)

Financial aid available (Pell, Florida Brighter Futures, work study, student loans)

Federal Pell Grant maximum amount is: The maximum Pell grant for the 2011-12 award year (July 1, 2011, to June 30, 2012) is $5,550. This would more than cover MDC tuition.... It would almost completely cover FIU tuition (except for less than $1,000).
« Last Edit: December 09, 2013, 12:32:03 PM by phildinftlaudy »
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03/12  1,041  42  <20
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Online BT65

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #63 on: December 09, 2013, 06:43:43 PM »
I put myself through school.  It is expensive, but my parents sure couldn't afford it. 
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Offline tednlou2

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #64 on: December 09, 2013, 06:47:44 PM »
Just for clarification --- a drug offense only prevents a person from getting student aid if the offense occurs while the person was receiving student aid. Also, even if it occurs while receiving student aid, the person can have his/her eligiblity restored:

http://studentaid.ed.gov/eligibility/criminal-convictions

Then, they've changed the law.  Thats some good news, if they have relaxed those rules.  I know the FAFSA use to ask whether you have ever been convicted of a drug related crime-- not just while in school, but before that.

Offline WillyWump

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #65 on: December 09, 2013, 06:53:22 PM »
    Could you still   put yourself through school today?

Yes.

My cousins 19yo son is doing it now. He works at Outback Steak house AND Olive garden and took 9 hours this semester at UTSA. No, it's not fulltime at school but you do what you gotta do.
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Offline mecch

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #66 on: December 09, 2013, 07:21:19 PM »
I still think this talk of college education is tangential to the discussion.  Of course lots of people show tenacity and grit and get themselves college degrees but we can't expect this to be the only route out of the working poor.  Nor, in my opinion, should it be, in a rich country. (Furthermore, leaving off the the many mine fields of abusive for profit "higher" ed schools, student loans nightmares for worthless degrees, and a tight job market for average folks graduating with average degrees, anyway.)

Why is it someone can work over 5 years at a place like Walmart and be a good employee and earn 10 bucks an hour?  Oh, their own damn fault, cause they didn't go to college?

http://www.msnbc.com/the-ed-show/leaked-document-shows-what-walmart-really-pay
The document [PDF], first obtained by the Huffington Post, shows that Walmart workers can earn a base pay as low as $8.00, and earn wage increases in increments as low as 20 or 40 cents.  ”As a result, a ‘solid performer’ who starts at Walmart as a cart pusher making $8 an hour and receives one promotion, about the average rate, can expect to make $10.60 after working at the company for 6 years,” according to Huffington Post reporters Alice Hines and Christina Wilkie.

Have a look at this easy to read comparison table:

http://money.cnn.com/2013/08/06/news/economy/costco-fast-food-strikes/

Worker wages: Wendy's vs. Wal-Mart vs. Costco
“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline wolfter

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #67 on: December 09, 2013, 07:29:37 PM »
At first I thought the education debate was going off topic.  Since I've done nothing productive today, I took time to consider different views.  Education is the antithesis of raising the minimum wage.

I worked as a remediation specialist for the county when the welfare system was overhauled.  It required that all recipients whose children were all school aged either work hours for their benefits or actively participate in furthering their education.  I was a glorified tutor that prepared adults to obtain their GED's or simply brush up the basics.

I worked with many clients who also made the claims that college was too expensive and they didn't have the resources needed to attend.  I asked everyone of them the same questions; "which schools have you checked into and what did the financial aid advisor suggest"?  None of them had done the necessary research to even think about attending college.

I didn't have the means to attend my first choice and choose nursing school so that I could work a decent job while returning.  Again, I settled with a community college to obtain an Associate's degree.  I  was finally financially able to obtain my Bachelor's from the preferred Christian University of my choosing.

My own beloved nephew (who will be with us one day in San Diego :) had to make some difficult decisions.  Because of his musical talents, he was offered a full scholarship to Ohio University.  He applied at several schools.  He was also accepted into his first school of choice; Berkley School of Music.  It would have cost upwards of a quarter of million dollars to complete their program. 

He was extremely disappointed that none of us would cosign for that large of amount.  I had many in depth discussions with him about the entire issue.  I assured him that if he accepted the full ride scholarship and wanted to continue at Berkley, that I would assist him. 

Where there is adequate motivation, there is usually a way.  OH, and I completed both degrees while working and suffering AIDS.   :o
Complacency is the enemy.  ;)  Challenge yourself daily for maximum  return on investment.

Offline wolfter

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #68 on: December 09, 2013, 07:34:23 PM »
I still think this talk of college education is tangential to the discussion.  Of course lots of people show tenacity and grit and get themselves college degrees but we can't expect this to be the only route out of the working poor.  Nor, in my opinion, should it be, in a rich country.

We're not in a rich country!  Would I be considered rich if I maxed out my credit cards to live a fabulous lifestyle?  You can't amass wealth by charging it. ;)
Complacency is the enemy.  ;)  Challenge yourself daily for maximum  return on investment.

Offline buginme2

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #69 on: December 09, 2013, 07:47:47 PM »
I  agree  education is it's own topic really.   Not only have traditional university's gotten prohibitively expensive but now we have online universities and places like the University of Phoenix that are degree mills that leave students in debt with a worthless degree.  I  saw a sixty minutes program about people who got their masters from the university of Phoenix in education expecting to become teachers.   They graduated and no one would hire them because no one recognised their degrees.   They were left with loads of debt with a worthless degree.   The fact that we have for profit universities now is just so American.


Offline mecch

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #70 on: December 09, 2013, 07:48:26 PM »
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_GDP_(PPP)_per_capita
1    Luxembourg   91,388   2012
—    Macau   87,765   2012
2    Qatar   83,460   2012
3    Norway   65,640   2012
4    Singapore   61,803   2012
5     Switzerland   53,367   2012
6    Brunei   53,348   2012
—    Hong Kong   51,946   2012
7    United States   49,965   2012
8    Kuwait   45,455   2011
9    Australia   44,598   2012
10    Austria   44,208   2012

Looks to me the only "real" countries ahead of the US in wealth are Switzerland and Norway.  The other ones are tiny city states, mineral/oil rich, or tax havens.
“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline bocker3

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #71 on: December 09, 2013, 07:54:57 PM »
I still think this talk of college education is tangential to the discussion.  Of course lots of people show tenacity and grit and get themselves college degrees but we can't expect this to be the only route out of the working poor.  Nor, in my opinion, should it be, in a rich country. (Furthermore, leaving off the the many mine fields of abusive for profit "higher" ed schools, student loans nightmares for worthless degrees, and a tight job market for average folks graduating with average degrees, anyway.)

I brought up my school story because Bug said poor people can not afford to go to college.  I was showing him that was false.  In fact, most of the people I know who went to college did not have parents who shelled out $100K.  Back in the early 80's UVM was ~$15k for an out of stater like me.  I think it was ~&18K when I graduated.

Jeff - tell me what a "Living wage" equates to and I will answer your question.  A single dollar amount won't do the trick though, as cost of living differs by location.  It also differs by family size - should someone with kids make more than a single person?  This is the problem with this nebulous term - it is too subjective.  I get the concept, but I do not know how to address it on a national scale.  Raise the Federal min. Wage?  Absolutely - long overdue - but it won't erase poverty everywhere.

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Offline Hellraiser

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #72 on: December 09, 2013, 07:58:47 PM »
Raising the minimum wage to $15 would be a terrible idea.  I do think the current minimum wage is too low but to almost double it?  No.  The economy would realign itself to create a disparity between unskilled labor, skilled labor, and college educated labor.  All you would end up doing is changing the margins for a limited time.  Then the economic forces at play would begin to reorient the playing field.  $15 = entry level unskilled worker in an unskilled job, so your skilled workers would go to 25-30ish an hour and college educated workers would be the next step up, etc etc etc.  You would end up just inflating the value of a dollar.

Offline mecch

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #73 on: December 09, 2013, 07:59:40 PM »
My take is that the US is a land of incredibly hard-working and very productive people. Exceptionally so in comparison to countries around the world. But a huge lump of the wealth is going to too few people.  Lots of people are doing their bit and being underpaid for their labor and going without "leading nation level" health care, education, and housing.

We've begun fixing upgrading the health care access. Now how about being a full time worker and having the cash to buy a turkey for the national holiday. 
 
The paradigm shift will happen, but I think we need another democratic presidency for 8 years to really budge the mind set Im seeing on display in this thread.


“I am not an expert in health care, or Obamacare, or the Affordable Care Act, or however you choose to describe it, but I do know this: I have benefited from that kind of universal health care in my 55 years of public life,” Powell said, according to the Puget Sound Business Journal, last week at an annual “survivors celebration breakfast” in Seattle for those who, like Powell, have battled prostate cancer.  “And I don’t see why we can’t do what Europe is doing, what Canada is doing, what Korea is doing, what all these other places are doing.”

“We are a wealthy enough country with the capacity to make sure that every one of our fellow citizens has access to quality health care,” Powell.  “(Let’s show) the rest of the world what our democratic system is all about and how we take care of all of our citizens.”

 “Whether it’s Obamacare, or son of Obamacare, I don’t care. As long as we get it done.”

Noted socialist/communist/Marxist Colin Powell

http://gawker.com/colin-powell-is-a-communist-1479817944

“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline mecch

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #74 on: December 09, 2013, 08:05:54 PM »
Raising the minimum wage to $15 would be a terrible idea.  I do think the current minimum wage is too low but to almost double it?  No.  The economy would realign itself to create a disparity between unskilled labor, skilled labor, and college educated labor.  All you would end up doing is changing the margins for a limited time.  Then the economic forces at play would begin to reorient the playing field.  $15 = entry level unskilled worker in an unskilled job, so your skilled workers would go to 25-30ish an hour and college educated workers would be the next step up, etc etc etc.  You would end up just inflating the value of a dollar.

The big challenge to your math, and as evidenced in the labour market as well, is that there is a big chunk of workers who DO NOT move up significantly from minimum wage.  Because like it or not, the supply of well-paying jobs for so called unskilled labour, who learn skills on the job, isn't that great. And the US produces huge amounts of unskilled, unsavvy people who still need jobs...    So as I pointed out above, someone can go work in the service industry and there isn't much upward mobility for salary.  Some, but not much. 

Whats the alternative? A vast welfare state, and arresting enough of these unskilled workers and keeping them in prison. Or somehow permanently out of the labor market. Thus somehow either in underground economies, or somehow on the dole.
“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline wolfter

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #75 on: December 09, 2013, 08:07:43 PM »
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_GDP_(PPP)_per_capita
1    Luxembourg   91,388   2012
—    Macau   87,765   2012
2    Qatar   83,460   2012
3    Norway   65,640   2012
4    Singapore   61,803   2012
5     Switzerland   53,367   2012
6    Brunei   53,348   2012
—    Hong Kong   51,946   2012
7    United States   49,965   2012
8    Kuwait   45,455   2011
9    Australia   44,598   2012
10    Austria   44,208   2012

Looks to me the only "real" countries ahead of the US in wealth are Switzerland and Norway.  The other ones are tiny city states, mineral/oil rich, or tax havens.

In other words;

 Government debt as a percent of GDP is used by investors to measure a country ability to make future payments on its debt, thus affecting the country borrowing costs and government bond yields. This list is followed by the country specific analysis on the prevailing situation. Below is the list of 30 countries having highest debt to GDP.

1 Japan
229.8(%)
 
2 Greece
163.3
 
3 Jamaica
139
 
4 Lebanon
136.2
 
5 Eritrea
133.8
 
6 Italy
120.1
 
7 Barbados
117.3
 
8 Portugal
106.8
 
9 Ireland
105
 
10 United States
102.9
 
11 Singapore
100.8
 
12 Iceland
99.2
 
Complacency is the enemy.  ;)  Challenge yourself daily for maximum  return on investment.

Offline Hellraiser

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #76 on: December 09, 2013, 08:13:13 PM »
The big challenge to your math, and as evidenced in the labour market as well, is that there is a big chunk of workers who DO NOT move up significantly from minimum wage.  Because like it or not, the supply of well-paying jobs for so called unskilled labour, who learn skills on the job, isn't that great. And the US produces huge amounts of unskilled, unsavvy people who still need jobs...    So as I pointed out above, someone can go work in the service industry and there isn't much upward mobility for salary.  Some, but not much. 

Whats the alternative? A vast welfare state, and arresting enough of these unskilled workers and keeping them in prison. Or somehow permanently out of the labor market. Thus somehow either in underground economies, or somehow on the dole.

So your answer to their being no stepping stone is to pull anyone who has gotten above minimum wage back down to it?

Offline mecch

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #77 on: December 09, 2013, 08:18:00 PM »
Why is it a LOSE for people making ok money if the poor make morally correct money?

Why does some person making 20 bucks "automatically" deserve 40, just because the government mandates the living wage, at, say 15... or 12. Or whatever.

The minimum wage is legislated.  Beyond the minimum wage, the market figures it out.
“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline phildinftlaudy

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #78 on: December 09, 2013, 08:19:15 PM »
Tangential - 1.almost irrelevant: with only slight relevance to the current subject

Okay - now that I've got that out of the way....

I guess it is tangential when discussing whether or not the minimum wage should be raised... I think most have been in agreement that it should be raised (there might be some disagreement on how much).

I think education is germane to the discussion as it pertains to poverty and what has been shown to be effective in reducing poverty.

Oops...
germane - 1.relevant: suitably related to something, especially something being discussed

Education not only paves the way out of poverty but is also the best approach for attacking the issue long-term on a societal level. You see, poverty is much more than just an economic condition where your finances are below a certain point. There is an underlying thought process to the problem in many cases.
 
Until a person replaces how they think with new information, it is very difficult for their circumstances to change. That is why with all the money that’s been thrown at this problem, it still persists. We’ve been attacking the symptoms of poverty and not the root causes in that regard.
 
The emotional and psychological aspects of poverty can be very difficult to break, especially when it’s been a cycle for several generations. Even when a child in poverty has access to educational resources, it is still an internal battle on his or her part to pursue learning and break the cycle. This is not something that can be forced, only encouraged. They have to believe things can change for the better if they’re willing to put in the effort.
 
Education can also take several forms. Formal schooling and college are a major part of it, but there is also self-taught learning from books and guidance from mentors.
  http://www.educationspace360.com/index.php/education-the-solution-to-poverty-19827/

President Obama has stated that education matters today more than ever if America is to win the future.      http://www.educationnews.org/ed_reports/155609.html

As for me:

Both of my parents were high school dropouts... both struggled to raise 4 children... I was the first in my immediate family to graduate college. I am the first in my immediate family to go to graduate school.

Has it been easy? No...
But, I knew that the alternative - at least for me - was struggling to make ends meet - much like my parents. In my current position, I realize that the only way to advance and open more doors is to further my education.

I knew that a college education (or, for others, vocational training/education) - at least gave me more of a chance - opportunity - to get a position where I would not struggle as much. I wanted to open doors.

Same in terms of location...where I come from (an industrial town) - the jobs are gone... Wal Mart and other minimum wage service companies are the norm and largest employers... I knew I had to step out on faith.. I packed my car (an old Pontiac I had in 1998) and moved to Florida... Failure was not an option. I struggled - but I made it (after losing 3 of 4 hubcaps on the drive down)... I ate Ramon noodles for months (literally) - but, eventually I made it professionally in my career. Thankfully, I had the encouragement of my family and friends - who believed that I could and would achieve.

In the past 10 years, I have encouraged several friends of mine to go to college. These are friends who came from backgrounds where education was not pushed... Friends that had beliefs that they could not make it in college. Some who had been to prison multiple times, been homeless, penniless, had mental health issues, etc.

Two of these friends have successfully completed their bachelors degrees. One is currently 1/2 way through getting his associates degree. Another is pursuing his masters degree. All have jobs that they never imagined they would have; making an income that was much higher than they ever thought they would make.

But, I think that it is not the income that lifted them out of poverty as much as it was (is) the fact that they accomplished something that they did not think was a possibility.

They take the credit - not me...
Although, I am grateful for believing in the capability of people - I am grateful that I show my compassion by believing that people can achieve things that they may not have ever thought they could achieve.

As for the minimum wage debate....Raise it - Although, I maintain that raising it will do nothing to solve poverty - other than raise the standard income of what is considered poverty. Keep in mind, that while some companies have raised wages above minimum, if a unilateral raise is done - it will accomplish what I have just said - merely raise the standard income of what constitutes economic poverty without addressing the other factors that contribute to it.
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Offline mecch

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #79 on: December 09, 2013, 08:24:54 PM »
Mind you, many many service corporations will play very dirty if there were a rise to 15 as  minimum.  They will cut staff and overwork the poor souls.  I will hear the cries of anti-business communist pinko government control way over here, at the top of Matterhorn.
But you have to break eggs to make a omelette.  As Colin Powell's sentiments express, above.  Just get it done.
The US can NOT have so many people living in poverty if there is a better solution... 
So many children hungry.  HOMELESS! 
As I said, its a rich country.
So, welfare state?  Or commit to the integrity of work, the value of work, and pay a minimum wage that allows someone to live without government assistance?  Not all that complicated...  Either the tax payers subsided the Wal-marts bottom line, via the food stamps, etc, or Wal-mart and Fast-food genius reconfigure their business model to pay real wages, while still making enough money to keep CEOS and investors interested. 

Hey, if the McDo CEO won't make his 20 or 40 million anymore, well, its a free market. He went to college. He (she) can compete for the CEO jobs that pay 100 million.
“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline Hellraiser

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #80 on: December 09, 2013, 08:26:14 PM »
Why is it a LOSE for people making ok money if the poor make morally correct money?

Why does some person making 20 bucks "automatically" deserve 40, just because the government mandates the living wage, at, say 15... or 12. Or whatever.

The minimum wage is legislated.  Beyond the minimum wage, the market figures it out.

I'm not sure how to break this down more readily for you.

Let's say I make 40,000 a year and someone making minimum wage is making 20,000 a year.  When you increase EVERYONE who is making less than 40k a year then suddenly the markets are going to begin to pivot.  The cost of ALL things will rise and so will non entry level wages.  So I as a skilled professional am now making the same amount of money as an unskilled professional who doesn't have the training or ability to do my job.  I could find a job with less responsibility and make the same money, or my employer realizing this will raise my wages in order to keep me employed and to offset this will raise the cost of our products and services to keep our profit margins the same.

Were you to instead raise minimum wage by a smaller amount then most likely the shift would be smaller and ripple less.

Offline mecch

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #81 on: December 09, 2013, 08:29:27 PM »
Last I checked, skilled "professionals" make more than 40K.

Someone doing a 40K job is not going to want to go flip burgers, anyway, for 25K, lets say.  Also, the one at 40K is expecting to keep building over the "career".

As a leftist, I believe too much of the profit is going to shareholders and executive compensation.  McDo raises minimum wage does not mean the price of the MEAL must double.  It means the revenue generated in the company is redistributed. Or it fails. Because it can't sell 20 dollar meals.
“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline mecch

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #82 on: December 09, 2013, 08:37:36 PM »
Switzerland has more or less a living wage in practice. And its not mandated. What this means is that the service workers make a decent salary. But every skill grade going up does not have to increase exponentially.  This means the middle class has to be comfortable with the idea that the cashier at the supermarket has an apartment, health insurance, food on the table, a stable life, a decent life, in a very rich country. Whats so scandalous about that?
A lot of you seem really uncomfortable that someone doing 40 hours a work with a smile on their face, dependable, versatile, a "solid" employee, makes a decent living...
But then some people have the gall to rather keep the minimum wage below the "living wage", AND yet begrudge the government assistance therefore required, and which makes, at least childhood, decent, in a rich country.  WTF?
Not everyone is going to college my friends... But all labour is honourable and deserve fair share of the country's wealth. 
 
“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline Hellraiser

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #83 on: December 09, 2013, 08:41:22 PM »
Last I checked, skilled "professionals" make more than 40K.

Someone doing a 40K job is not going to want to go flip burgers, anyway, for 25K, lets say.  Also, the one at 40K is expecting to keep building over the "career".

As a leftist, I believe too much of the profit is going to shareholders and executive compensation.  McDo raises minimum wage does not mean the price of the MEAL must double.  It means the revenue generated in the company is redistributed. Or it fails. Because it can't sell 20 dollar meals.

Seriously Mecch, did you read that post?  You made so many false assumptions and illogical leaps I'm not sure exactly how to respond.  CEOs are overpaid yes, but even stripping them of all of their excess cash and redistributing it over every McDonalds worker you would get something like $4-5 dollars extra per year for the individuals who work there.  If McDonald's reworked their pay rates and their menu they could potentially pay people 15/hr and be profitable but they wouldn't be fast food anymore as their prices would have to be much much higher to compensate.

Offline wolfter

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #84 on: December 09, 2013, 08:41:29 PM »
CEO pay has very little to do with employee pay.  Even if every single CEO transferred every dime he made, it wouldn't make a noticeable difference in their wages. 

Since Walmart is being used, I'll point this out.

Their CEO makes $35 million per year and oversees 2.1 million employees.  That's under $17 per year per employee.  That equates to $1.42 per month, per employee.  Less than a penny an hour.

Complacency is the enemy.  ;)  Challenge yourself daily for maximum  return on investment.

Offline Hellraiser

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #85 on: December 09, 2013, 08:43:25 PM »
CEO pay has very little to do with employee pay.  Even if every single CEO transferred every dime he made, it wouldn't make a noticeable difference in their wages. 

Since Walmart is being used, I'll point this out.

Their CEO makes $35 million per year and oversees 2.1 million employees.  That's under $17 per year per employee.  That equates to $1.42 per month, per employee.  Less than a penny an hour.

We just wrote basically the same thing. lol

Offline Jeff G

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #86 on: December 09, 2013, 08:45:02 PM »
This is an interesting piece from the current issue of the Smithsonian magazine about how to get poor kids to apply to great colleges . Among the eyeopening things they discovered when they did a study as to why some lower income people didn't apply they found that simply because of the $75 dollar application fee it was out of reach for many of the students to consider , one reason among many . 

Caroline Hoxby identified economic barriers and eliminated them and has seen a great success at helping people out of poverty through eduction . Its a shining example of what can be done when you face the economic barriers as they exist and stop making excuses for never trying to improve peoples lives .   

http://www.smithsonianmag.com/ideas-innovations/How-Do-You-Get-Poor-Kids-to-Apply-to-Great-Colleges-231152311.html#Hoxby-ingenuity-portrait-2-473.jpg

Offline mecch

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #87 on: December 09, 2013, 09:00:03 PM »
I will agree that my bringing executive pay into it is weak sauce. Just a pet peeve.

Anyway, I'm for the living wage, but will be happy for any increase to the minimum wage.
I thought this way about health care, too. Just mandate the idea of universal coverage and figure it out.
Probably have to do the same with wages. Since the high paying jobs for the "worker classes" are gone, from the advanced post-industrial countries. And not everyone can be in the knowledge economy.
Otherwise, more welfare please. 
And while we're at it, how about we nationalise all the universities that don't have endowments big enough to function independently? (And get rid of those god awful for-profit ones!)  Tax all the citizens appropriately, so poor but clever people have real access, again.  Bring that degree cost down again.  As student loan debt is the next mortgage crisis.  Oh. right. More socialist pipe dreams. Can't do that. (Yet plenty of countries manage to. Along with socialised health care...)
“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline Joe K

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #88 on: December 09, 2013, 09:03:37 PM »
The main problem I see with looking at "only" the minimum wage, is that wages do not exist in a vacuum.  If our government could get it's act together there could be some major changes made, across the board that would help to raise the income of millions of Americans.  You could start with these:

Infrastructure spending, say to the tune of 2-3 trillion over ten years.  Instantly employs millions of Americans to repair our crumbling infrastructure.

Limit the amount of income that can be claimed for capital gains taxes, say ten million per year.  Anything after that is subjected to earned income tax rates.

End all subsidies for any corporation that is posting record profits.  If you are making record profits, you don't need to be feeding at the public trough.

End all tax deductions that are unnecessary.  If you can afford a private jet, good for you, but you need to pay the full freight.  Same with second homes, yachts, sky boxes, etc.

End non-profit status for entities, like the NFL, who are a money making enterprise.

End the use of public funds to build any sports arena.  If you can pay your players a couple of hundred million per year, you do not need any tax dollars to build your venues.

Start aggressive prosecution of any financial institution that contributed to our recent recession and demand settlements that actually help average Americans.

Reform corporate tax to insure that any company, based in America, is not off-shoring it's "profit" to avoid American taxes.  If you control the business from America, say Apple and GE, you pay tax on all your profits.

End the use of off-shore tax havens for all corporations and individuals.

Recreate something like the "G.I. Bill", for average Americans to get an education and hold schools accountable for producing graduates that are educated to get a job.

Quit throwing away 30% of every dollar, spent on health care, to feed the profits of insurance companies.

Do any of these and things will get better in America.

The question should not be: "Should we raise the minimum wage?"  The question should be, "How can we get America working again and how much do each of us need to contribute, to make that happen?"

Joe

Offline Jeff G

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #89 on: December 09, 2013, 09:08:45 PM »
govment cheese is wut we need .

Offline wolfter

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #90 on: December 09, 2013, 09:27:50 PM »
govment cheese is wut we need .

It was my hard working parents who subsidized the cheese and we didn't even receive any.  :(

The government cheese van always handed it out at the Catholic Church and it was the only time some of those people had seen the light of day in ages.   :o  If I remember correctly my mom once bought a box off of someone for $5.00 and it was delicious but she felt guilty and would never do it again.  Do they still have that program?
Complacency is the enemy.  ;)  Challenge yourself daily for maximum  return on investment.

Offline mecch

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #91 on: December 09, 2013, 09:31:12 PM »
Thanks Joe, at last another leftist pipes in.

Listen all you horatio alger bootstrapers, I think it helps you to hear from the true left, sometimes?  I listen to your world view. I am compelled by horatio alger stories as I lived one myself. But we can't expect this myth to solve such widespread downward mobility and other huge groups trapped forever in poverty. Significant upward mobility is the exception to the rule.

I see a vast redistribution of the wealth of the country since the 80s.

Follow a leftist program along any of the lines as Joe above details, and we get at a correction.  Because, as noted Marxist Colin Powell says, its a wealthy county and needs to do right by its citizens.
« Last Edit: December 09, 2013, 09:33:53 PM by mecch »
“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline Jeff G

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #92 on: December 09, 2013, 09:32:53 PM »
Im not sure if the cheese program is still going or not . It may be WIC or SNAP now .


It was my hard working parents who subsidized the cheese and we didn't even receive any.  :(

The government cheese van always handed it out at the Catholic Church and it was the only time some of those people had seen the light of day in ages.   :o  If I remember correctly my mom once bought a box off of someone for $5.00 and it was delicious but she felt guilty and would never do it again.  Do they still have that program?

Offline buginme2

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #93 on: December 09, 2013, 09:54:06 PM »
I just watched on the news that congress will not be renewing the Unemployment insurance Program and will end all benefits for those unemployed for longer than 24 weeks.

They showed an interview with Rand Paul, the senator from Kentucky who (I'm summarizing) said that congress was doing the unemployed a favor by cutting off their unemployment benefits because they really don't want to be receiving assistance for too long.  Because people should after all "just get a job" or "just go to college"

That asshole got me so worked up.  I'm going to smoke some pot now and play xbox. I need a break.

Yes I just hijacked my own thread, I'm sorry

Offline mecch

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #94 on: December 09, 2013, 09:56:54 PM »
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/08/15/income-inequality-wall-street_n_3762422.html
The U.S. Has The Worst Income Inequality In The Developed World, Thanks To Wall Street: Study

how did America get so darn great at ratcheting open the chasm between the haves and have-nots? Thank the dynamic duo of Wall Street and Washington, which have been working so well together for the past few decades to make laws that favor banks. Turns out this Axis Of Making It Rain has also been making laws that favor the exorbitantly wealthy. Win-win. Unless you are poor, in which case: Sorry, be born to richer parents next time, maybe?

One thing you'll notice in this chart is that, typically, the bigger the tax cuts given to the 1 percent (the horizontal scale on the chart), the bigger the income inequality. This is consistent with other studies that have shown the tax code has a big effect on income distribution. That's one way Washington has boosted inequality: By slashing taxes on the rich, for freedom and growth and trickling down on the poor. Unfortunately, the paper points out, contrary to what you will hear from conservatives, lower tax rates on the wealthy offer no obvious benefits to growth, or to the poor.

One other thing you'll notice from the chart is that the United Kingdom has slashed taxes on the top 1 percent almost as aggressively the U.S. has, and yet the share of income going to the top 1 percent is not nearly as big. So there's something else going on here besides just tax breaks.

That something is Wall Street, more or less, as Matthew O'Brien of The Atlantic points out. The same politicians that have busily been slashing taxes on the wealthy have also been loosening fetters on banking, allowing the financial sector to swell to bloated size and mop up ever-more income while contributing ever-less back to the economy. Again, this is consistent with other studies that have attributed much of the rise in inequality to the pay being sucked up by bankers and overpaid CEOs.
“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline mecch

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #95 on: December 09, 2013, 09:59:37 PM »
I just watched on the news that congress will not be renewing the Unemployment insurance Program and will end all benefits for those unemployed for longer than 24 weeks.

They showed an interview with Rand Paul, the senator from Kentucky who (I'm summarizing) said that congress was doing the unemployed a favor by cutting off their unemployment benefits because they really don't want to be receiving assistance for too long.  Because people should after all "just get a job" or "just go to college"

That asshole got me so worked up.  I'm going to smoke some pot now and play xbox. I need a break.

Yes I just hijacked my own thread, I'm sorry

Why is that a hijack.  It has been the counter argument to raising he minimum wage, in this thread, and in politics for years now.
“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline bocker3

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #96 on: December 09, 2013, 10:45:37 PM »
Listen all you horatio alger bootstrapers, I think it helps you to hear from the true left, sometimes?  I listen to your world view. I am compelled by horatio alger stories as I lived one myself. But we can't expect this myth to solve such widespread downward mobility and other huge groups trapped forever in poverty. Significant upward mobility is the exception to the rule.

Ah yes -- time to start the belittling of the opposition to your leftist plan.  Take an example and call it a myth, yet I have not heard anyone answer how this mythical "living wage" makes poverty go away.  Such a simple concept, yet humankind has lived with poverty for millennia. 
No one answers what a living wage is, despite numerous asks by me -- how does a single wage work for households of one vs. households of 4, 5, 6, 7, etc......

Most have agreed that the minimum wage should rise -- the debate is by how much, what it actually solves and what are the unintended consequences.  The responses all amount to "propaganda", "myths", "anecdotes" "tangents", etc.......

If these problems were so simple to solve, they would have been solved.  There is poverty in the socialist countries, in case you've missed out (now you'll roll out that the big, bad US is much worse, but will not address these countries inability to end poverty).

So -- for a final time -- I THINK WE SHOULD RAISE THE MINIMUM WAGE.  Not sure about doubling it in one fell swoop -- but it will not allow all honorable laborers to rise out of poverty and likely will cause new woes for some of the poor or newly poor. 

Joe did have the best ideas in this entire thread -- I'd love to see these happen.  I'm not sure he's quite as "leftist" as Mecch makes him out (though, I'll let Joe make that call) -- what he has done was take pragmatic, logic steps to help lift people up vs. emotional, symbolic ones.

Mike
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Online BT65

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #97 on: December 10, 2013, 04:34:18 AM »
Just for clarification --- a drug offense only prevents a person from getting student aid if the offense occurs while the person was receiving student aid. Also, even if it occurs while receiving student aid, the person can have his/her eligiblity restored:

http://studentaid.ed.gov/eligibility/criminal-convictions

I typed a reply to this last night and not sure what happened to it.

I read through the info, Phil, and the requirement is either completing a drug rehab program (who is going to pay for that), or getting unannounced pee tests through a rehab center (again, who is going to pay).  You may say, oh, no one pays when someone does a pee test, but that is not true.  I have clients who are still on probation because they owe for pee tests. 

Also, colleges do not advertise this fact, that someone with a drug charge can get federal aid.  It's a very hush-hush secret, so how anyone without your technological abilities would know this is a question.
I've never killed anyone, but I frequently get satisfaction reading the obituary notices.-Clarence Darrow

Offline ds4146

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #98 on: December 10, 2013, 06:13:23 AM »
People need to get involved if they want to see change, just like any other issue.
Betty has one of the best points. How many of us get involved whether through mentoring or just providing moral support and encouragement as Phil mentions above?
For those who keep discussing corporate greed such as with McDonalds and Wal-Mart, how many of you still shop or pig out there? Get involved, stop supporting them.
And Joe, you have my vote for president based on your post, however based on our current leaders and representatives, none of this would get further than a post or state of the union speech.
« Last Edit: December 10, 2013, 06:18:12 AM by ds4146 »

Offline Theyer

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #99 on: December 10, 2013, 02:38:03 PM »
Its a pity that so many swallow the wonderful PR job off all that is if we do not pay a certain group off individuals obscene amounts off money we will all suffer because profits will be hit , ditto if the taxes are too high they will leave the country.

The debate prior to establishing a low min wage in the UK from those who opposed it stopped a breath short off Armageddon.

Profits/responsibilities are out off Kilter , the gap between rich and poor is growing at a alarming rate. The debate needs a what is a maximun wage. Some enlighten company,s have a pay ratio scale , so if the highest payed award themselves a pay rise all in the company get one to keep the ratio between lowest and highest  correct . I see no reason why a country could not adopt such a ruling.

The levels off entitlement to ones societies riches needs debating.
"If we can find the money to kill people, we can find the money to help people ."  Tony Benn

Offline klassykitty

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #100 on: December 10, 2013, 02:40:59 PM »
Federal minimum is wage is $7.25, at 40 hours that is not quite $14,000 a year (before uncle sam takes his share.)  I make minimum wage at the grocery store I work at and only work around 25 hours. Also since they only schedule us for around 25 hours they don't have to offer insurance to us.

I definitely agree that minumim wage should be raised but if the owners of where I work at had to raise paychecks they would raise prices to cover the lost profits they themselves get.  Yes I also agree that $15 or so is to high, I would settle for $9 or $10 an hour and I won't even be picky about insurance either.  I made more money on unemployment back in 2001 than I am making at my job now.


That senator from Kentucky thinks people should "just go to college".
Next semester I will only be taking 2 classes so I can find a second job, and in the summer I will not take any classes so I can work (hopefully) 40 hours or more a week whether it is from 1,2, or 3 jobs. Perhaps he would like to help me out a little so I could find my own apartment and not have to live at my dads house. (I'm sure daddy and his wife would like a "kid free" home.) or help me pay for my WAY OVER PRICED SCHOOL BOOKS. 

Michelle 8)
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Offline phildinftlaudy

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #101 on: December 10, 2013, 06:44:51 PM »
I read through the info, Phil, and the requirement is either completing a drug rehab program (who is going to pay for that), or getting unannounced pee tests through a rehab center (again, who is going to pay).  You may say, oh, no one pays when someone does a pee test, but that is not true.  I have clients who are still on probation because they owe for pee tests. 

Also, colleges do not advertise this fact, that someone with a drug charge can get federal aid.  It's a very hush-hush secret, so how anyone without your technological abilities would know this is a question.

A key point regarding the completion of a drug rehab program is that it is only required to complete a program if the drug offense occurred while receiving previous student aid (which makes sense to me as I would not want to know that someone with active, ongoing drug use is receiving financial aid - not only is there a chance that the financial aid would be used to purchase drugs, but the active drug use is also going to severely impact on the individual's ability to successfully complete school).

In regards to cost of drug test: average cost for a drug test at most drug treatment centers down here is $35-$50.

While colleges may not advertise the information regarding eligibility for financial aid with a previous drug offense and ways to regain eligibility if the offense occurred while receiving aid, the question on the FAFSA (which I fill out each year as part of my grad school) asks (to paraphrase) "if one has ever had a drug offense while receiving federal financial aid" - not "has one ever had a drug offense."

I do agree though that many schools do not do a good enough job of informing students of financial aid options or ensuring that they apply for all of the aid that they may be eligible for.

In regards to Joe's post -
Joe has some excellent suggestions - none of which I believe are extremely leftist. In fact, his suggestions are a mix of moderateism, democratic, and republican approaches - I also think that his suggestions show that any solution to the income gap and poverty is going to require a multifaceted approach.

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Online BT65

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #102 on: December 11, 2013, 03:56:21 AM »

I do agree though that many schools do not do a good enough job of informing students of financial aid options or ensuring that they apply for all of the aid that they may be eligible for.

At the university I take classes at, everyone gets an e-mail from the financial aid lady, saying that if someone receives a drug offense they will have to repay all the financial aid and will not be eligible for any future aid.  So there is no mention of this, and I can't imagine if the university I attend does not inform people, that many other universities are informing either.
I've never killed anyone, but I frequently get satisfaction reading the obituary notices.-Clarence Darrow

Offline RapidRod

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #103 on: December 11, 2013, 04:44:26 AM »
There is no level playing field, and no equal opportunity.

There is a playing field. There is opportunity.  However, its been proven that class mobility is more limited in the US in recent decades than many other advanced post-industrial countries.
Everyone had the same chance, some get to their goals a little easier than other. It takes work and determination. .

Offline Theyer

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #104 on: December 11, 2013, 06:42:28 AM »
Everyone had the same chance, some get to their goals a little easier than other. It takes work and determination. .

Ron everybody does not have the same chance , everyone may have a shot at the opportunity but that is very differant from all starting out at the same point.
"If we can find the money to kill people, we can find the money to help people ."  Tony Benn

Offline flyman

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #105 on: December 11, 2013, 07:42:07 AM »
LOL, No one can have 50 billion people start off at the same point. How do you accomplish that when one comes from a stable environment and the other from a chaotic environment with zero opportunities. Please don't say a corrupt GOV. can do that. Maybe self discipline by the human species would be a start.

Offline bocker3

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #106 on: December 11, 2013, 08:00:24 AM »
At the university I take classes at, everyone gets an e-mail from the financial aid lady, saying that if someone receives a drug offense they will have to repay all the financial aid and will not be eligible for any future aid.  So there is no mention of this, and I can't imagine if the university I attend does not inform people, that many other universities are informing either.

so -- why should a university pro-actively inform all students (or potential students) of all possible aid or things that could kill that aid?  If one is thinking of going to college, one SHOULD be able to do research (Google is an amazing tool).  If you can't even research how to pay for college, perhaps it's not something to be pursuing at all?
Now -- I agree that a university probably should have a resource center (physical and/or virtual) for students to understand the nuances of what's available at THAT university, but even then, someone should make the effort vs. being spoon fed information.

M
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Offline mecch

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #107 on: December 11, 2013, 03:51:44 PM »
Telling Fast Food Workers To 'Get A Better Job' Is Nonsense, In 1 Chart
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/12/11/low-wage-jobs_n_4421095.html?utm_hp_ref=business

Critics tell fast-food workers to stop complaining about their extremely low pay because that's just the reality of an entry-level job. Get a better job, the critics say, and you'll make more. The trouble is, there aren't any better jobs available.

Since the recession, low-wage work has made up an increasingly large share of new jobs in the U.S. economy, according to a new study from the Alliance for a Just Society. That’s due to a troubling recession and recovery trend of middle-wage jobs disappearing and low-wage jobs filling in the gap


Yes, since the Alliance for a Just Society is a "a national coalition of eight state-based grassroots community organisations", one could say its information may be biased...
« Last Edit: December 11, 2013, 04:00:31 PM by mecch »
“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline mecch

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #108 on: December 11, 2013, 04:04:51 PM »
Americans Say Dream Fading as Income Gap Hurts Chance
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-12-11/americans-say-dream-fading-as-income-gap-hurts-chances.html

The widening gap between rich and poor is eroding faith in the American dream.

By almost two to one -- 64 percent to 33 percent -- Americans say the U.S. no longer offers everyone an equal chance to get ahead, according to a Bloomberg National Poll. And some say the government isn’t doing much to help.

“There’s a lot of policies that make it easier for the rich to get richer and the poor to go nowhere,” says Ryan Sekac, 26, a mechanical engineer in Westerly, Rhode Island.

......

Still, respondents are almost evenly split on the need for government action to narrow the income gap: 45 percent say new policies are needed, while 46 percent say it would be better to allow the market to operate freely even if the gap gets wider.

....

In recent weeks, public attention to the rich-poor gap has mounted. Obama gave a speech last week saying economic trends have “jeopardized middle-class America’s basic bargain, that if you work hard, you have a chance to get ahead.”

That address followed the pope’s Nov. 26 criticism of inequality. “Such an economy kills,” the pontiff said.


So there is no consensus.  But at least many people see the need for discussion, information, and reevaluation of equal opportunity, the american dream, and wealth distribution.
« Last Edit: December 11, 2013, 04:07:28 PM by mecch »
“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline phildinftlaudy

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #109 on: December 11, 2013, 04:07:09 PM »
High-skill jobs that don't require a degree:

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/high-skill-jobs-that-don%E2%80%99t-need-a-college-degree-174413543.html

Also:
Forgotten Middle-Skill Jobs: State by State Snapshots

Middle-skill jobs, which require more than high-school, but not a four-year degree, make up the largest part of America's labor market. All too often, key industries in our country are unable to find enough sufficiently trained workers to fill these jobs. As a result, job creation and economic growth are stifled. We can't afford that- particularly now-in our country.

These state fact sheets show the percentage of current and future middle-skill jobs in the states, examples of high-demand middle-skill jobs, and the state's middle-skills gap. They also estimate the federal investment gap in middle-skill training.

http://www.nationalskillscoalition.org/resources/fact-sheets/state-fact-sheets/

and finally...

ACT Report Exposes Hidden Skills Gaps Affecting In-Demand Jobs
Significant foundational skills gaps exist for many current and potential U.S. workers, according to a new report issued today by ACT, the leader in measuring workplace competency. The report investigates the assumption that individuals with a given level of education have the requisite skills for occupations requiring that level of education.

Based on data collected from approximately 4 million ACT WorkKeys® examinees over a five-year period, the report, “The Condition of Work Readiness in the United States,” finds that skills gaps are most evident for individuals considering jobs on either end of the preparation spectrum—jobs requiring low or high levels of education. In contrast, there is no significant skills gap for individuals preparing for jobs that require middle-level education.

http://www.act.org/newsroom/releases/view.php?lang=english&p=2937
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Online BT65

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #110 on: December 12, 2013, 04:19:13 AM »
so -- why should a university pro-actively inform all students (or potential students) of all possible aid or things that could kill that aid?  If one is thinking of going to college, one SHOULD be able to do research (Google is an amazing tool).  If you can't even research how to pay for college, perhaps it's not something to be pursuing at all?
Now -- I agree that a university probably should have a resource center (physical and/or virtual) for students to understand the nuances of what's available at THAT university, but even then, someone should make the effort vs. being spoon fed information.

M

To attract and retain students who may want to improve their lives, some without the knowledge of "google," (yes, there are such people, some of them are my clients). 

I personally have never had to deal with this issue, thank goodness, but am aware of some people who do not pursue a college degree based on their belief they are not eligible for financial aid.  Now, I could very well have been in that same situation had my last relapse led to any relative charges, and I don't forget that and try not to put myself above anyone else.

Betty
I've never killed anyone, but I frequently get satisfaction reading the obituary notices.-Clarence Darrow

Offline Jeff G

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #111 on: December 12, 2013, 06:41:34 AM »
I posted this once already but this is a wonderful story about getting financial aid to low income students that do not know they are eligible .

http://www.smithsonianmag.com/ideas-innovations/How-Do-You-Get-Poor-Kids-to-Apply-to-Great-Colleges-231152311.html#Hoxby-ingenuity-portrait-2-473.jpg

Offline bocker3

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #112 on: December 12, 2013, 08:01:18 AM »
To attract and retain students who may want to improve their lives, some without the knowledge of "google," (yes, there are such people, some of them are my clients). 

I personally have never had to deal with this issue, thank goodness, but am aware of some people who do not pursue a college degree based on their belief they are not eligible for financial aid.  Now, I could very well have been in that same situation had my last relapse led to any relative charges, and I don't forget that and try not to put myself above anyone else.

Betty

Hogwash--
It is ridiculous to think that a university should conceive of every piece of information that a current or potential student "might" need to know and then hand it to them.  That smacks of a victim mindset to me -- "they didn't tell me, so I didn't know -- therefore, it's there fault".
If you think that is me "putting myself above someone else" so be it -- I don't, but hey, we all have opinions.  What it does is say that I believe in and expect more from people.  If everyone else does the thinking for you, you'll never be able to do it yourself (to be clear "you" is not you, Betty -- I actually find you to be an extremely intelligent lady).

M
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Offline skeebo1969

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #113 on: December 12, 2013, 10:09:04 AM »

  Anyone remember those kids we use to see in elementary school who use to always show up late dressed in dirty clothes?  I don't know, maybe this just occurred at the school I went to.  These kids were not only poor, they had parents who barely cared if they showed up for class.   I still see it today at my daughter's school.  If everyone started from a level playing field, then I would agree it's up to people to make the right choices in life so that they can adequately provide for themselves.  As we all know though, this is simply not the case.

  I've witnessed poverty suffered by those scraping by on minimum wage.  And let me tell you, it's heartbreaking watching a man raise hell because his wife portioned out to much pasta out of the box and he's worried they won't have enough to make it to Friday.

  I am for an increase in minimum wage.  This is not going to fix the shortage of jobs that made the middle class thrive in the past.  Those times are gone.

 
Hogwash--
It is ridiculous to think that a university should conceive of every piece of information that a current or potential student "might" need to know and then hand it to them.  That smacks of a victim mindset to me -- "they didn't tell me, so I didn't know -- therefore, it's there fault".
If you think that is me "putting myself above someone else" so be it -- I don't, but hey, we all have opinions.  What it does is say that I believe in and expect more from people.  If everyone else does the thinking for you, you'll never be able to do it yourself (to be clear "you" is not you, Betty -- I actually find you to be an extremely intelligent lady).

M

  Mike, I've read that you've pulled yourself from an impoverished childhood to become the successful man you are today.  I have to ask though, being that you were in the military, why didn't you take advantage of the GI bill?


  and I don't forget that and try not to put myself above anyone else.

Betty

 If more people practiced what you do Betty the world would be a better place.  Cut their foodstamps and tell them to pull themselves up by the bootstraps to get out of that lowly paying job.  At an average age of 29 there's probably a couple of kids at their disposal they can lock in the closet while they attend night classes. 
   
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Online BT65

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #114 on: December 12, 2013, 03:46:27 PM »
Thanks for the compliment, Mike, and I wasn't saying "you" put yourself above others.  But, I had no idea someone could still get aid with a drug charge, and I know most people with drug charges do not know it.  There's still the belief that all felons cannot vote.  And who believes that?  Felons, because no one has told them different, and it's not advertised. 

When I receive the auto-generated e-mail from the financial aid director regarding people with drug charges having to pay back federal student aid, it says nothing about those with charges being able to continue to get aid if they complete rehab.  So, ergo, people have no idea about this.  And if colleges do not inform people, who will?

Thomas, I've been dirt poor before, and don't forget what kind of life that is.  I was very fortunate, in that my family didn't abandon me-something not everyone can say.  And I have a hell of a best friend, there's none like her.  And not everyone can say that.  And I don't forget that.  Giving back is part of life, and if we don't give something when we are able, whatever it is, shame on us.  I need to get rid of a comforter that has two small holes in it.  So, I'm going to give it to a local animal shelter.  Giving doesn't mean having to give money. 

I'm for raising the wage.  I'm happy for people who have pulled themselves out of poverty.  But those that have should never forget the grace they were given along the way and remember not everyone is as fortunate.
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Offline tednlou2

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #115 on: December 12, 2013, 04:15:44 PM »
I would have to find copies of my old FAFSA apps, but I am certain the question use to be, "Have you ever been convicted of a drug related crime?"  I am certain it wasn't while you were receiving aid.  I haven't filled one out since about 2002.  Many would lie and I'm sure it may not be checked.  But, many would be rightfully worried about lying on a government application. 

Ok, I found this article, which backs up my memory.  In wasn't until 2006 that the rules were relaxed to say conviction while receiving aid.  So, this happened 7 years ago.  How many current 29 year old minimum wage workers tried to go to school at 18, but fell under this old rule?  Probably countless.  Once you get older and have kids, it gets harder to get back into school.  And, many have let their career dreams go.  And, many would just assume that law was still in place. 

http://www.stateuniversity.com/blog/permalink/Drug-Convictions-How-They-Affect-Your-Financial-Aid.html

Offline buginme2

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #116 on: December 12, 2013, 04:20:30 PM »
All this talk about financial aid for students got me thinking about an article I read sometime back that stated one reason low income kids who may qualify for financial aid don't go to college is because they can't afford the application fee to even apply. 

What's the average application fee for college? $50-$75?  If someone can't afford the application fee what kind of message does that send to them about their chances of actually making through four years?  Just a thought

Offline tednlou2

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #117 on: December 12, 2013, 04:29:16 PM »
All this talk about financial aid for students got me thinking about an article I read sometime back that stated one reason low income kids who may qualify for financial aid don't go to college is because they can't afford the application fee to even apply. 

What's the average application fee for college? $50-$75?  If someone can't afford the application fee what kind of message does that send to them about their chances of actually making through four years?  Just a thought

Good point.  And, the main debate is really should people work that hard for just $7.25 an hour?  Whatever the reason someone "didn't better themselves" shouldn't mean you aren't paid fairly for the work you do.  These workers aren't wanting a $200k home, 2 cars, and vacations every winter in Florida.  They just want to be paid a wage that is fair for the job they do have.  Nothing more and nothing less.  I don't think the groups pushing for $15 really think that's what they'll get.  It is a negotiation tactic to at least get something in between. 

Offline bmancanfly

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #118 on: December 12, 2013, 04:37:39 PM »
I have a simple solution that may solve several problems all at once.

We know that poor people are hungry and need food stamps to eat.  They also are prodigious at producing babies.  Why don't they just eat their children.  Or sell them for money to the rich?  This would generate income for the poor thereby eliminating the need raising the minimum wage,  provide sustenance to the poor there by relieving the need for food stamps,  and school lunches.   The children purchased by the rich would provide a cheap labor force for the "job creators"  thereby  increasing profits and enabling them to purchase more children.  A virtuous cycle if you will.

It really is a Modest Proposal
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A_Modest_Proposal

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Offline Jeff G

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #119 on: December 12, 2013, 04:38:29 PM »
All this talk about financial aid for students got me thinking about an article I read sometime back that stated one reason low income kids who may qualify for financial aid don't go to college is because they can't afford the application fee to even apply. 

What's the average application fee for college? $50-$75?  If someone can't afford the application fee what kind of message does that send to them about their chances of actually making through four years?  Just a thought

My link addresses this aspect in detail and you are correct, any amount of money can be insurmountable to a pretty good size demographic . Once the study was done to see exactly what was keeping good students from applying for college it was a simple matter to produce a information packet tailored to address the common reasons that were preventing students from applying . The study and the algorithm that came from it is groundbreaking and very successful .     

Offline mecch

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #120 on: December 12, 2013, 05:28:37 PM »
Maybe this might surprise some of you, but consider this: some poor parents do not want their kids to get ahead. 

I will speak from personal experience but in my generation the 70s and 80s, I saw it with a few friends and also on campus.

When I was really young must have been around 1970 or so i was with the "indian guides" going to a football game at West Point. All the fathers were asking if their sons wanted to go to West Point (the whole point of the vaguely counter culture indian guides completely lost on them) and/or Notre Dame, etc, and football football football ok maybe baseball.

Well I was a little tutti fruity of course and said I wanted to go to Columbia and study anthropology, (because I was reading a lot of Margaret Mead at the time..)  Everyone laughed.
 
When I was in my teens I decided I wanted to go to art school and I easily had the talent and it had been recognised up down and sideways at home, school, the community, for years, but there was absolutely no encouragement to pursue this as a career.  Because I think nobody understood how it could even be possible.

I was bored out of my mind in HS and talked two schools into letting me attempt young admittance - but they were private colleges (I found NO state colleges that did this...) and not anything my family could understand nor afford.

I went to one of them for the summer and my parents wouldn't sign the permission (as I was underage). I told them I would forge their signatures and pay for it, and I did, and did, and went, and was accepted to begin that fall. I would skip senior year.

My dad refused to fill out any paper work for financial aid and refused to give his tax returns.  I wised up a bit about the stupidity of going to an expensive school with no support to study art no less. So I decided I would go to the Ivy League and be a banker and make money and then be an artist. It wasn't that wild an idea, its been done, but I was pretty clever imagining it would be possible since I didn't know it had been done.

My father said elite schools were for "rich kids" and I couldn't go there and ended the conversation.

I took my savings and went to a state school for one year and got a 4.0. I felt guilty leaving because the profs were top notch and the classes were small and the price was right. But as I had my cockamamie plan, I applied to transfer to 3 ivy leagues and Williams Smarthmore U Chicago and got into them and again my dad refused to do any financial papers.

And as I was still considered by those schools a dependent it was essential. I deferred and worked for a year (which wasn't enough to be independent, anyway) and I told him to take me around to see some of those places and he stated warming up to the idea a little bit but he was deeply suspicious of the whole endeavour and said very very discouraging things about the whole plan especially when we were on an Ivy campus.

They were middle middle class, one generation removed from dirt poor, and they were asked two times, (two cycles I tried to start, when I wasn't independent), to contribute money they did not have.  And I did not resent them not having it. The schools were being jerks. The middle middle class gets squeezed very very hard. The families that lived year to year, and were lousy money managers anyway.  (Which is why I was logically supposed to stay at the state college.)  And since my parents were deeply suspicious and bewildered why anyone would be interested in such an endeavour, they wouldn't cosign loans either, if I thought I could make up their "expected contribution" with additional loans of my own. Which made sense to me. I didn't throw any hissy fits about this.  But some good will would have been nice.
 
Well long story short I did manage to graduate from the Ivy league but with some years off working in NY.  Poor and dangerously housed, but when you are young, as they say, its all very possible and romantic. Plus I was savvy.

The thing I discovered that nobody in my social class knew, are things like need blind admissions, and that the richest schools pay the tuition if you can't. NOBODY told us this in HS thats for sure. There were athletic scholarships, thats all I knew. Or huge loans and angry parents.  Anyway, need blind admissions were very new, having started only in the 80's I think. Eventually I got a full tuition scholarship for 3 years and with that I earned honours. 

Anyway, long story short, I did meet other people on campus with similar experience as mine, and also kids from the ghetto who had been on scholarships to the prep schools like Andover Choate etc, and then the ivies.  And really, it was a common experience.

For some kids, they were living their families' dreams and it was rosy and a lot of support. Although for some there was unbearable pressure to succeed and do something lucrative, of course. 

For others, it was selfish act of an alien, a betrayal of class, and ties to the family were strained or non-existent. A kid with dreams like this can be smacked down and not encouraged in the family, laughed at, ridiculed, feared, resented, and just considered a sort of alien, a freak.   

Only when I was near graduation did the tables turn because I guess it took that long for my family to come to terms with "difference."

On that count, it wasn't all that different to coming out as gay.  Being a brain, or intellectual, or ambitious or interested in things that other people consider pretentious, impossible or frivolous.

(And yes I got a job in a bank, until I couldn't stand it before one year, and switched to a fancy job that suited me and that I loved, but paid peanuts.  And for a few years later on, sorta was an artist for awhile but really not any good at it. )

Every kid and young person does not have an equal chance, equal support.  I boggles my mind that people believe this.
« Last Edit: December 12, 2013, 05:38:32 PM by mecch »
“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline bocker3

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #121 on: December 12, 2013, 05:29:30 PM »
   
  Mike, I've read that you've pulled yourself from an impoverished childhood to become the successful man you are today.  I have to ask though, being that you were in the military, why didn't you take advantage of the GI bill?

I actually did it the other way around -- I got an ROTC scholarship that paid for college (well, the last 3 yrs) - then I served for 8 yrs to "pay it back".

I'm for raising the wage.  I'm happy for people who have pulled themselves out of poverty.  But those that have should never forget the grace they were given along the way and remember not everyone is as fortunate.

I agree 100% and I do my best to "pay it forward" -- sometimes with $$, sometimes with my time.  Certainly, with my extended family I offer encouragement, advice and support where I can.

My link addresses this aspect in detail and you are correct, any amount of money can be insurmountable to a pretty good size demographic . Once the study was done to see exactly what was keeping good students from applying for college it was a simple matter to produce a information packet tailored to address the common reasons that were preventing students from applying . The study and the algorithm that came from it is groundbreaking and very successful .     

I meant to comment on this earlier -- that is a tough one.  I've not heard of anyone addressing how to get past this -- how does one "waive" an app. fee without providing financial aid type info along with an application.  I understand why they charge those fees, but if they are an insurmountable hurdle something needs to be done.  I'm at a loss for options here......

Mike
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Offline mitch777

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #122 on: December 12, 2013, 07:33:01 PM »
  Anyone remember those kids we use to see in elementary school who use to always show up late dressed in dirty clothes?  I don't know, maybe this just occurred at the school I went to.  These kids were not only poor, they had parents who barely cared if they showed up for class.   I still see it today at my daughter's school.  If everyone started from a level playing field, then I would agree it's up to people to make the right choices in life so that they can adequately provide for themselves.  As we all know though, this is simply not the case.

  I've witnessed poverty suffered by those scraping by on minimum wage.  And let me tell you, it's heartbreaking watching a man raise hell because his wife portioned out to much pasta out of the box and he's worried they won't have enough to make it to Friday.

  I am for an increase in minimum wage.  This is not going to fix the shortage of jobs that made the middle class thrive in the past.  Those times are gone.

 
  Mike, I've read that you've pulled yourself from an impoverished childhood to become the successful man you are today.  I have to ask though, being that you were in the military, why didn't you take advantage of the GI bill?


 If more people practiced what you do Betty the world would be a better place.  Cut their foodstamps and tell them to pull themselves up by the bootstraps to get out of that lowly paying job.  At an average age of 29 there's probably a couple of kids at their disposal they can lock in the closet while they attend night classes. 
 
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Offline phildinftlaudy

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #123 on: December 12, 2013, 07:37:59 PM »
Some great discussion and points being made in this thread....

Some things to note:
1) Betty - you were spot on.... not everyone is able to pull him/herself out of poverty. I just don't know if the responsibility for doing so rest solely with the government. I think that you and others (and at times even me) are examples of how those around people in poverty can help; corporations (yes, corporations) can help; faith-based organizations/non-profit organizations can help; religious organizations can help.... Not to be cliche, but they say it takes a village to raise a child - while sometimes it takes other humans and organizations to help someone out of poverty....It should not fall to the government to do so (as history has shown, the government isn't always the best at doing this)

2) Compassion - One of the first things I learned when going for my undergrad degree in Social Work... There are people who look at poor people with sympathy and actually "look down upon them."  They feel that the poor people must be supported by others, taken care of by others ---- why? because there are some people who believe (in a condescending way) that poor people are not capable; they are inferior.... And yet, many times, it is the people who feel this way that accuse those who do not share their beliefs of lacking compassion.....

Personally, I think that a person who believes that a person in poverty is capable, that the person can achieve, is an equal human being, deserves respect, and to be empowered actually possesses and shows much more compassion than those who would completely take care of a poor person to a degree that runs the risk of atrophying the person's ability to ever be independent and achieve his/her potential. We saw examples of this during the old welfare system here in the U.S. when there was literally a cycle of poverty that had multiple generations of families not working, not going to school, living in government housing, collecting government checks, etc. - with no motivation or desire or need to think that anything better was possible.

When Bone, Thugs and Harmony wrote/sung their rap song 1st of the Month in 1996, the title was a reference to when welfare checks were paid out.  What was interesting about the lyrics in the song -

if one listens to it... Is it says among other things
 
"Wake up, wake up, wake up, it's the 1st of tha month
 To get up, get up, get up, so cash your checks and get up"

A reference to people receiving these checks to wake up and realize that they were actually being held back.... Wake up, to get up....

Another line.....

"Fin to creep to the pad cuz mom's got grub on the grill If we got the food, you know it's the 1st of tha month"

Doesn't sound like being empowered to me... Sounds like someone is controlling when someone is able to actually eat....

And even more revealing...

"Wake up and I see that my sister is already dressed
 She said, "I'm gonna run and go get my stamps
 Watch and make sure no one snatches my check"

Listen close when you get to this part.... as the sister that is going to get her stamps hops on the bus:

"Hop on the 10 to the click"   (if you listen to the song on the link below you will hear right after this line is said...

"Freedom"

See, it's the first of the month and one of the only days when his sister feels like she has "freedom" to leave the neighborhood - as she goes and gets her stamps...

It's a false sense of freedom though - A freedom controlled by someone else (the government) and limited to one time a month....

And more limitations...

From the 1st to the 15th.....

Link to the song: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bpBP9dALcWw

Also (added after edit) - Many colleges (such as ours) offer child care programs onsite or vouchers through a program paid for by U.S. Department of Education called CCAMPIS (Child Care Access Means Parents In School) - This program is specifically for parents who want to return to school, but need free or reduced child care in order to attend classes.

Back to my original thought/feeling: So, I don't think that not wanting the government to provide everything (food, shelter, jobs, etc., etc.) to someone who is living in poverty is a lack of compassion - quite the opposite - I think it shows compassion and a belief in people (and that people should assist others who are not as fortunate - not put "so-called" supports in place that actually end up being a form of government control)

Now, before the above paragraph is taken the wrong way, let me say that this does not mean that the government should not provide benefits to some people.... particularly social security disability, other assistance to people on disability, unemployment benefits (for a limited time), training/education benefits (also time limited), assistance w/ paying for college/voc school application fees, and time limited benefits to others who may be experiencing difficulties - but it should be more of the responsibility of other institutions and individuals within society to assist than it should be the governments responsibility.

Finally, in regards to college application fees, there are some programs/non-profits that will pay these fees (though they can be difficult to find) and have various eligiblity requirements. Of course, most people (even me) are going to have a hard time justifying paying for a person's one-time college application fee of $60-$100 if that person is spending $60-$100 a month or more on cigarettes, alcohol, drugs, lottery tickets or other things (non-necessities) that could be sacrificed for a limited time to allow the person to save/acquire the money needed for the application fee.

One last thing in this very long post...I used to do a group for guys in the county jail.... Many of these guys did not think they could go to college. They could not see themselves going through even the first semester of college. However, at the end of my group - which met twice a week for 16 weeks and had homework assignments (cell assignments - in this case) - I pointed out to the guys in the group that they had basically just went through what was close to the equivalent of a college semester... They used to look at me amazed. And, many of them started to believe that they could in fact go to college (having more of a realistic idea of how quick a college semester actually goes and how "do-able" it is).

Anyway..
TL:DR    ;)
And that is okay.... just needed to put it out there that one of the strongest factors that has assisted people out of poverty is having one or more people who believe that the person can do it - and who are willing to assist.
 
« Last Edit: December 12, 2013, 08:06:55 PM by phildinftlaudy »
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Offline mecch

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #124 on: December 12, 2013, 08:33:24 PM »
Thats all fine and dandy, phildinflaudy, but the thread is about the correct amount for the minimum wage for work. And tangentially if such a thing as a "living wage" is possible and what that might be or how that might be done. Its not about government programs for the unemployed, charity for the unemployed. We are talking about people who are working but don't make enough to get a leg up on the "american dream". Working but can't buy a turkey for thanksgiving. Etc.
Then tangentially we spoke about the whole dilemma/solution (false solution, according to some) that minimum wage jobs aren't supposed to support people, or the "just go to college" and improve yourself, otherwise its your own fault.
Welfare to work had its merits but if the work is just another trap of no future, as it can easily be these last years, um, its "solving" the problem of the "unfit-to-work" poor, but its not finding a solution for a decent standard of living in a rich country.
Affordablecare is part of the solution. But do we also need to figure out a way that working pays a secure life. (food, housing, education, a future.)  Again, not a thread about "handouts" to non workers.  Its about work. The value attached to all work. 
« Last Edit: December 12, 2013, 08:50:19 PM by mecch »
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Offline phildinftlaudy

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #125 on: December 12, 2013, 08:36:53 PM »
Maybe this might surprise some of you, but consider this: some poor parents do not want their kids to get ahead. 

I will speak from personal experience but in my generation the 70s and 80s, I saw it with a few friends and also on campus.

When I was really young must have been around 1970 or so i was with the "indian guides" going to a football game at West Point. All the fathers were asking if their sons wanted to go to West Point (the whole point of the vaguely counter culture indian guides completely lost on them) and/or Notre Dame, etc, and football football football ok maybe baseball.

Well I was a little tutti fruity of course and said I wanted to go to Columbia and study anthropology, (because I was reading a lot of Margaret Mead at the time..)  Everyone laughed.
 
When I was in my teens I decided I wanted to go to art school and I easily had the talent and it had been recognised up down and sideways at home, school, the community, for years, but there was absolutely no encouragement to pursue this as a career.  Because I think nobody understood how it could even be possible.

I was bored out of my mind in HS and talked two schools into letting me attempt young admittance - but they were private colleges (I found NO state colleges that did this...) and not anything my family could understand nor afford.

I went to one of them for the summer and my parents wouldn't sign the permission (as I was underage). I told them I would forge their signatures and pay for it, and I did, and did, and went, and was accepted to begin that fall. I would skip senior year.

My dad refused to fill out any paper work for financial aid and refused to give his tax returns.  I wised up a bit about the stupidity of going to an expensive school with no support to study art no less. So I decided I would go to the Ivy League and be a banker and make money and then be an artist. It wasn't that wild an idea, its been done, but I was pretty clever imagining it would be possible since I didn't know it had been done.

My father said elite schools were for "rich kids" and I couldn't go there and ended the conversation.

I took my savings and went to a state school for one year and got a 4.0. I felt guilty leaving because the profs were top notch and the classes were small and the price was right. But as I had my cockamamie plan, I applied to transfer to 3 ivy leagues and Williams Smarthmore U Chicago and got into them and again my dad refused to do any financial papers.

And as I was still considered by those schools a dependent it was essential. I deferred and worked for a year (which wasn't enough to be independent, anyway) and I told him to take me around to see some of those places and he stated warming up to the idea a little bit but he was deeply suspicious of the whole endeavour and said very very discouraging things about the whole plan especially when we were on an Ivy campus.

They were middle middle class, one generation removed from dirt poor, and they were asked two times, (two cycles I tried to start, when I wasn't independent), to contribute money they did not have.  And I did not resent them not having it. The schools were being jerks. The middle middle class gets squeezed very very hard. The families that lived year to year, and were lousy money managers anyway.  (Which is why I was logically supposed to stay at the state college.)  And since my parents were deeply suspicious and bewildered why anyone would be interested in such an endeavour, they wouldn't cosign loans either, if I thought I could make up their "expected contribution" with additional loans of my own. Which made sense to me. I didn't throw any hissy fits about this.  But some good will would have been nice.
 
Well long story short I did manage to graduate from the Ivy league but with some years off working in NY.  Poor and dangerously housed, but when you are young, as they say, its all very possible and romantic. Plus I was savvy.

The thing I discovered that nobody in my social class knew, are things like need blind admissions, and that the richest schools pay the tuition if you can't. NOBODY told us this in HS thats for sure. There were athletic scholarships, thats all I knew. Or huge loans and angry parents.  Anyway, need blind admissions were very new, having started only in the 80's I think. Eventually I got a full tuition scholarship for 3 years and with that I earned honours. 

Anyway, long story short, I did meet other people on campus with similar experience as mine, and also kids from the ghetto who had been on scholarships to the prep schools like Andover Choate etc, and then the ivies.  And really, it was a common experience.

For some kids, they were living their families' dreams and it was rosy and a lot of support. Although for some there was unbearable pressure to succeed and do something lucrative, of course. 

For others, it was selfish act of an alien, a betrayal of class, and ties to the family were strained or non-existent. A kid with dreams like this can be smacked down and not encouraged in the family, laughed at, ridiculed, feared, resented, and just considered a sort of alien, a freak.   

Only when I was near graduation did the tables turn because I guess it took that long for my family to come to terms with "difference."

On that count, it wasn't all that different to coming out as gay.  Being a brain, or intellectual, or ambitious or interested in things that other people consider pretentious, impossible or frivolous.

(And yes I got a job in a bank, until I couldn't stand it before one year, and switched to a fancy job that suited me and that I loved, but paid peanuts.  And for a few years later on, sorta was an artist for awhile but really not any good at it. )

Every kid and young person does not have an equal chance, equal support.  I boggles my mind that people believe this.

Mecch:
Great real life account... I agree with you that many times people don't have support from the people that you think should be the most supportive.

What I got from what you related was: your determination, your perseverance, your belief in your ability to achieve, your ability to set goals/objectives and work toward attaining them, and your ability to identify options and opportunities.

It is great that you had (have) all these attributes.

Most of my posts in this thread have been an acknowledgement that some people may not currently have these attributes, they may not have the support from those who should be supportive.... that is why it is so important to be the person to at least one other person who can help a person identify these attributes in him/herself or to believe in the person until he/she can believe in him/herself and to be a source of support, particularly for the person who may not have other supports.

September 13, 2008 - diagnosed +
Labs:
Date    CD4    %   VL     Date  CD4  %   VL
10/08  636    35  510   9/09 473  38 2900  12/4/09 Atripla
12/09  540    30    60   
12/10  740    41  <48   
8/11    667    36  <20  
03/12  1,041  42  <20
05/12  1,241  47  <20
08/12   780    37  <20
11/12   549    35  <20
02/12  1,102  42  <20
11/12   549    35  <20

Offline mecch

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #126 on: December 12, 2013, 08:41:06 PM »
Most of my posts in this thread have been an acknowledgement that some people may not currently have these attributes, they may not have the support from those who should be supportive.... that is why it is so important to be the person to at least one other person who can help a person identify these attributes in him/herself or to believe in the person until he/she can believe in him/herself and to be a source of support, particularly for the person who may not have other supports.

Total agreement.  This is what schools and teachers do for the young. But they can only do so much.  I suppose social workers have this task as well but I imagine it overwhelming sometimes.  And again. Its fine to tell someone they can achieve, or at least can work, but then they go into the job market and get bupkis....
“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline GSOgymrat

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #127 on: December 12, 2013, 08:45:49 PM »
I think raising the minimum wage to at least keep up with inflation, which should be around $10.74 per hour, is an increase that most Americans would agree is acceptable and which shouldn't have a negative economic impact. We have evidence of what happens when the minimum wage is raised, since it has been done before, and the results have been positive. I think most people who oppose a minimum wage increase are coming from a philosophical or political position rather than from analyzing historical evidence. If there is serious opposition to raising the minimum wage the increase could be enacted for a set term with scheduled evaluation for extension, similar to the way some tax cuts expire or are extended. An increase in the minimum wage is a small correction which would improve the quality of many people's lives, however it doesn't even begin to address the much more serious problem of the growing inequity between the very wealthy and everyone else. Poverty is a complex problem-- one can go into all kinds of discussions about individual responsibility, compassion, free-riders, access to education, etc.-- but I think raising the minimum wage is a relatively simple, low risk intervention.

Offline mecch

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #128 on: December 12, 2013, 08:47:39 PM »
I was just relating my story of being middle-class and wanting to be fancy.
Skeebo told good details about kids raised so poor, working parents making no money, hunger, and wanting to be living a decent life.  Which one would expect should be possible in a rich country.  But times are a changing. Its not the 1950s, 60s.  The jobs available pay too little. And as that guy who ran for mayor? president? said, "the rent is too damned high"  >:( 
 
« Last Edit: December 12, 2013, 08:51:11 PM by mecch »
“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline phildinftlaudy

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Re: It's time to raise the minimum wage
« Reply #129 on: December 12, 2013, 09:02:22 PM »
I think raising the minimum wage to at least keep up with inflation, which should be around $10.74 per hour, is an increase that most Americans would agree is acceptable and which shouldn't have a negative economic impact. We have evidence of what happens when the minimum wage is raised, since it has been done before, and the results have been positive. I think most people who oppose a minimum wage increase are coming from a philosophical or political position rather than from analyzing historical evidence. If there is serious opposition to raising the minimum wage the increase could be enacted for a set term with scheduled evaluation for extension, similar to the way some tax cuts expire or are extended. An increase in the minimum wage is a small correction which would improve the quality of many people's lives, however it doesn't even begin to address the much more serious problem of the growing inequity between the very wealthy and everyone else. Poverty is a complex problem-- one can go into all kinds of discussions about individual responsibility, compassion, free-riders, access to education, etc.-- but I think raising the minimum wage is a relatively simple, low risk intervention.

I definitely think an increase is needed - as the overall minimum wage has not kept up with inflation and other wages.... I also agree that a moderate increase isn't going to topple the economy. I don't think it is going to resolve the issue of poverty or even make a significant dent on the "working poor." It also will not address the large income disparities that are present here.

Each of those issues, outside of the minimum wage, are much more complex and require a multitude of approaches to address --- and even than those approaches may or may not be successful.
September 13, 2008 - diagnosed +
Labs:
Date    CD4    %   VL     Date  CD4  %   VL
10/08  636    35  510   9/09 473  38 2900  12/4/09 Atripla
12/09  540    30    60   
12/10  740    41  <48   
8/11    667    36  <20  
03/12  1,041  42  <20
05/12  1,241  47  <20
08/12   780    37  <20
11/12   549    35  <20
02/12  1,102  42  <20
11/12   549    35  <20

 


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