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Author Topic: It's time to raise the minimum wage  (Read 8505 times)

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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)
How to handle stress like a dog:
If you can't eat it or play with it.....
then pee on it and walk away

Diagnosed 01-20-2011
01-23  CD4 32    VL 125,400
02-18        76     VL 189
03-14  no cd4 test done   VL-52
04-14   69  VL-UNDECTABLE  YEA!!
05-26   50  whoopsy  
06-27   71        %-7
08-15   64 WTF %-9 
10-16  80         %7  
2012  CD4  %Thing   VL-UD
01-18  87    7
04-18  93    8  
07-16  151  8         
10-18  83    9    VL-70
2013   CD4   %thing       VL-UD
01-28  121     9
04-24  148    11   
07-25  157    11   
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2014   CD-4  %thing   VL-UD
02-07 201 YEA!!!!!!  12
06-03  205      12

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.

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 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
Atripla - Started 12/05
Reyataz/Norvir - Added 6/06
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Sep05 T=350/25% VL98,559
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Current Labs
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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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  • sweet Ann what you think babe...
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
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 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
Atripla - Started 12/05
Reyataz/Norvir - Added 6/06
Labs - Pre-Meds
Sep05 T=350/25% VL98,559
Nov05 288/18%  47,564
Current Labs
May2013 691/31% <20

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. 
   
I despise the song Love is in the Air, you should too.

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

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. 

Online 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

Some things never change
"The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt."

 Bertrand Russell

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. 
 
A post of empathy. Thanks Skeebo! I missed you. :)
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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 »
“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 #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.

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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.
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