General Question

Crazydawg's avatar

Should minimum wage be raised to $10.10 an hour?

Asked by Crazydawg (1253 points ) 2 months ago

Why or why not.

The President and supporters are suggesting we raise minimum wage up to $10.10 an hour. I have a teenage son who was let got from his $10.00/hr job and took a job at a bowling alley for $9.00/hr.

The free market apparently has determined that a 17 yr old kid should earn $9.00 per hour which is $1.75 more than the current Federal min wage. For the record he was out of work for a whole 3 days and never went on unemployment.

I would like to discuss a possible disconnect between what our President thinks is an answer towards helping people earn more when a 17 year old kid can go out on his own in a free market and earn much more than the minimum wage and about halfway to what is being promoted in Congress?

Is a Federally mandated boost in the minimum wage a one size fixes all cure to what some feel is a problem that some face? Does the Federal Government need to get involved or should the State’s individually decide for themselves what wages their constituents should earn per hour?

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75 Answers

LDRSHIP's avatar

Slightly off topic, but I want know how is it determined minimum wage?

Is there a specific process?

XOIIO's avatar

Well, where are you? Minimum wage for the states is all over, in Canada it varies a bit too, but it’s $10 an hour here.

Crazydawg's avatar

@XOIIO Federal minimum wage is $7.25 per hour and many states elect to have a higher minimum wage.

XOIIO's avatar

@Crazydawg What about states listed as having no minimum wage law? http://www.dol.gov/whd/minwage/america.htm

talljasperman's avatar

Yes and it should be indexed for inflation.

Crazydawg's avatar

@XOIIO Those states have elected to not oppose nor go above the Federal minimum wage statute.

filmfann's avatar

I have no idea how people work for so little and get by.

RealEyesRealizeRealLies's avatar

No.

The poor folk problem is not because society lacks a minimum wage.

The poor folk problem is because society lacks a maximum wage.

LDRSHIP's avatar

@RealEyesRealizeRealLies Interesting view point! I like it.

Crazydawg's avatar

@RealEyesRealizeRealLies Any country that implements a maximum wage would cause a mass exodus of corporate investment and personal wealth to a country that has their arms open wide for unlimited corporate and personal wealth .

ibstubro's avatar

I don’t know your location, @Crazydawg, but here in the rural Midwest, the minimum wage is still a living wage. Maybe not for a single breadwinner with a family of 4, but likely $10 isn’t going to be either.

I think the minimum wage is best left to the individual states. You cannot mandate a minimum wage that is going to be a fair living wage in both NYC and BFE, Kansas.

Perhaps they should have to provide a provision that raises Social Security 30%, as well, to offset the inevitable inflation in consumer goods. Yeah, and we might as well balance the budget as long as we have our magic wand out.

johnpowell's avatar

@talljasperman :: Here we do exactly that. It is tied to CPI-U, Portland. This actually works out nicely for those of us not in Portland since the inflation there is a bit more than it is here. Our minimum wage is 9.10 per hour and the state isn’t on fire (until July).

Wendy’s and Burger King employ the same number of people as the did when it was 5.25 a hour. It is amazing. It is almost like people don’t want to stand in long lines so businesses will sacrifice some profit to keep enough people on staff so we don’t buy elsewhere.

Adagio's avatar

I can’t believe the minimum wage in the US is so low, it is $14.25 in NZ and that is certainly not enough to live off comfortably, there is much discussion about a living wage, somewhere around $18 an hour, at least one local body Council has begun paying a living wage to its employees.

RealEyesRealizeRealLies's avatar

@Crazydawg “Any country that implements a maximum wage would cause a mass exodus of corporate investment and personal wealth to a country that has their arms open wide for unlimited corporate and personal wealth .”

Then vote for me as King of the Universe and I’ll implement a maximum wage law throughout the cosmos.

I think nations, and those who suppose to run them, are a thing of the past. It’s 2014 man. Let’s get those million man marches walking right across every border.

BTW… The King of the Cosmos works for free, without salary.

JLeslie's avatar

I don’t know about $10.10, but I definitey think there needs to be some sort of increase. They can start with $9 and I will feel satisfied.

@ibstubro The minimum federal wage is not really intended to satisfy the needs of those living in NYC and in BFE, Kansas. Most states with very high costs of living have higher minimum wages than the federal law. Some cities have a higher wage.

@Adagio Many things in NZ are much more expensive than the US. Food, gas, and other basics.

ibstubro's avatar

That’s my point, @JLeslie. I don’t see why the Federal government is in the minimum wage business. The can’t make it meaningful, it’s just a way to pander for votes. Minimum wage should be set on a more regional level. Illinois is proposing a raise to $12 and hour, which is great cor Chicago, but will drive business away from the rest of the state which is already impoverished and overtaxed – to support Chicago.

JLeslie's avatar

@ibstubro It is done regionally now. Nothing stops a region from setting a higher rate then the federal minimum. If you feel BFE can live fine on the minimum federal rate we have now, then you would probably be against raising the rate. I think it is too low. If an adult working for minimum full time gets food stamps and EIC money, then I have a problem with the rate because I am tired of paying the taxes to support them. I don’t mean I don’t want them to have the money to have food and shelter, I mean I want the company they work for to pay a decent, wage, pay slightly lower salaries and bonuses to the upper tier, and make slightly less profit, but I am all for them making a profit. A fantasy I know, but if that happened what would be the negative? Everyone is making money and overall living better and cost of goods could stay the same.

There is the option of raising the wage only for adults, and having a lower rate for people below age 18 or even 21. That has positives and negatives of course.

ibstubro's avatar

Yeah, @JLeslie, I pretty much think a federal minimum wage is just posturing. It’s the same debate about food stamps not being sufficient for staples in a high cost big city and the same size family giving or selling the excess in the rural areas. I recently saw someone on the WIC program (of which I strongly approve!) give 5–6 boxes if cereal away because it was just more than they could use. That some family in the city might be on short rations. I think the broader area the legislation covers, the less effective it is.

LostInParadise's avatar

Increasing the minimum wage is a win/win situation. Poor people get something approaching a livable wage and their increased spending boosts the economy and helps everyone else.

JLeslie's avatar

@ibstubro So where you live if someone makes minimum they don’t receive any type of government aid? It is sufficient for food, shelter, and basic healthcare?

ibstubro's avatar

You’ll need to provide reference where I said or implied that, @JLeslie.

Are you proposing a minimun wage high enough that no one in the country any longer requires any kind of public assistance at any time? Of course not, and I’d not presume to put any words to that effect in your mouth.

JLeslie's avatar

@ibstubro What words in your mouth? I asked you a question.

Yetanotheruser's avatar

I agree that a higher minimum wage would provide more folks with enough money to survive, and that it would also put more money into the economy. Those affected by the minimum wage put more of their wages (by percentage) into the economy than those affected by a maximum wage law.

@Crazydawg , @RealEyesRealizeRealLies I think the best way to implement a “maximum” wage is more likely to be regulation rather than legislation. If there were a 90% tax on anything over, say, $1,000,000 a year with no loopholes or deductions. The first million would be taxed at the current rate of 35%, including any deductions that could be itemized, and anything after that would be taxed at a flat 90%. That would provide an incentive for corporations to invest more into their operations (such as research and development), and keep more capital in circulation.

ibstubro's avatar

@JLeslie “So where you live if someone makes $10.10 they won’t receive any type of government aid? It will be sufficient for food, shelter, and basic healthcare?”

It’s an impossibly general question. In both incarnations it implies a ‘yes no’ answer which is clearly impossible. The obvious answer is ‘no’ because I know people that would be on public aide is they made $50 an hour.

I can frame closed-ended questions as well as anyone, I just don’t see where that adds to the discussion.

stanleybmanly's avatar

The critics of the minimum wage are actually right, but not for the reasons given. Those being ground down by slave level wages are never going to escape poverty through incremental raises in the minimum wage. They’re always going to be chasing inflation, and the way things are wired politically, they are doomed to fall further behind. If any solution exists, the problem has to be attacked from the other end of the spectrum. I wouldn’t be a bit surprised if the combined assets of the 100 richest people in the country weren’t sufficient to raise the net worth of EVERYONE below the poverty line to a level that government assistance was no longer necessary. It is the fact that those on the bottom are REQUIRED to be there and their numbers MUST increase in order that the status quo be maintained….this is why the minimum wage and anything else that deflects money toward the bottom (or anywhere else) MUST be vigorously resisted. The abrupt and startling conclusion of @RealEyesRealizeRealLies above is exactly right!

JLeslie's avatar

@ibstubro You had written here in the rural Midwest, the minimum wage is still a living wage. Of course we can’t say it works for all people, because if they have children it changes the equation, as you had pointed out, and there are other factors. But, your point, if I understood it, is $7.25 is enough for someone to live on where you live and they don’t receive any aid. Or, you didn’t say they don’t receive any aid, I would guess even if aid is available not everyone takes it. But, if kit is available for that wage earner, then we as tax payers a subsidizing the employer. Aren’t we?

Yetanotheruser's avatar

@JLeslie We are subsidizing employers more than many of us realize. Many WalMart stores (and some others) have started and continue to operate on some sore of incentives from local and state governments, including tax breaks, free land, infrastructure assistance, low-cost financing and outright grants from state and local governments. These types of subsidies, plus the large inventory volume, gives them a huge advantage over a typical local or mom-and-pop store.

JLeslie's avatar

@Yetanotheruser I don’t understand why the anti-government people don’t hate what you describe. There is all sorts of seeming inconsistencies. I tend to be liberal, but I don’t like farm subsidies and I don’t like paying higher taxes to help support people who work a 40 hour work week. I also get annoyed with section 8 housing as much as I am in favor of providing housing. It’s so complex really.

RealEyesRealizeRealLies's avatar

Mind bender… try and look at the minimum wage issue from a completely different angle.

They ARE NOT setting a precedent for HOW MUCH low wage workers can be paid in order to survive.

That’s how it’s sold. But that’s exactly the opposite of what is really happening.

They ARE setting a precedent for HOW LITTLE low wage workers can be paid in order to survive.
__________

Dont think of this as a government trying to help it’s citizens. Think of it as a slave master trying to get the most output for the least cost. Nothing will change until we realize that we are slaves to the corporate masters. They don’t serve us, as they would have us believe. We serve them.
__________

Our masters would much rather have NO MINIMUM WAGE and NO MAXIMUM WAGE.

Slaves should insist upon a REASONABLE MINIMUM WAGE and REASONABLE MAXIMUM WAGE. We’d still be slaves. But at least we’d be able to afford a new toilet seat for the mud floor outhouse.

RocketGuy's avatar

@Yetanotheruser – WalMart gets another subsidy from the govt: some of their employees get WIC! Nice!

LDRSHIP's avatar

@RealEyesRealizeRealLies You’re making too much sense. I am going to have to ask you stop.

No one has time to listen to logic.

I felt the slave thing was a tad bit over the top. But still overall a great answer to me.

FireMadeFlesh's avatar

$10.10? It’s $16.37/h in Australia, and people still complain that it’s too low. Frankly $10.10 is abysmal.

jerv's avatar

@ibstubro Most of the people I know from the Midwest don’t believe it’s even possible for rents to be as high as they are anyplace I’ve ever lived. What will get a nice 3-bedroom apartment there won’t even pay half the rent on a one-bedroom here. What Midwesterners pay for starter homes isn’t even a 10% down payment here. Someone earning the federal minimum wage here might net enough for rent only, but wouldn’t have anything left for utilities, food, transportation, or anything else. Why do you think WA raised it’s minimum wage to almost $10/hr?

It’s telling that many who are against minimum wage at all are from places where it’s cheap to live.

JLeslie's avatar

@jerv Well, that supports what I was saying that each state, or even municipality can make their own minimum. I never really thought of it in terms of people who are against a higher minimum wage are from states with lower costs, but that makes sense of course, I think of it as a right vs. left wing issue. An overall philosophy on what people believe is best for society. Many who are wealthy want low wages, because they don’t perceive themseves as similar to that wage earner. They are the owners often times whether it be the actual founder of a company or just a stock holder. They don’t think about the big picture regarding what it means to have poor people in our country. They turn a blind eye to it. Then there are the middle class on the right who now even tie it up with their religion and values and even the not so religious still perceive it as an issue of smaller v. bigger government. Those people think the left doesn’t see the big picture of how business will fall apart.

jerv's avatar

@JLeslie I’m surprised you never noticed. Look at an electoral map and you’ll see that the South and Midwest are generally Red. Now look at this map of median rents and compare the two. Now look at the rents in typically Blue states; the West coast and Northeast. Possibly a coincidence, but also correlates to poverty rates, educational levels, and other things. It may be a coincidence, but I sincerely doubt it.

They can think that all they want, but so long as the states they have the most power in are the poorest, least educated, and so on, they are pretty myopic themselves. All these policies they’re complaining about seem to be working for Wall Street, corporate profits, and all, so it’s sometimes hard to believe that they even have eyes.

Crazydawg's avatar

@jerv Just for the record your point about minimum wage being almost $10/hr in WA and then pointing out that how others are commenting from places that are cheaper to live is exactly why I am against the Feds getting involved in raising the min wage. It is not a one size fits all solution and each state is more that able and capable of deciding what min wage is best for it’s citizens. Plus you really need to factor in the support network available in said state. Minimum wage is truly a symbolic gesture and never ever intended to be a barometer of a true living wage. Those are two completely separate issues yet the politicians and do gooders are choosing to blend them together to make it a political football.

The reality is min wage is a foundation that any person gets as a starting point to making a life for oneself. The average time spent on min wage is one year, not a lifetime that some liberal advocates want to make it seem. During that one year there are many support vehicles that can add to that $15,000/yr a person can make full time. With state run programs like SNAP (food stamps), TANF (temp Assistance), EITC (tax credits), CCAP (Child care) probably all add up to at least another $5,000 for a family of 4 add in free health care now and the min wage total package value can exceed $25,000 a year and are now better off than anyone making $10.10 an hour. Again almost no one stays at min wage for ever and IMO the Fed needs to stay out of it and leave well enough alone.

ibstubro's avatar

In fact, @JLeslie, I was the one arguing that each state or region should make their own minimum, and you were taking the opposite tack.

Perhaps, @jerv, we in the Midwest feel as if we’re being asked to subsidize a way of life that we choose to live without. It’s a trade-off. One of the towns I live near doesn’t even have public transportation, yet I lived there 15+ years with no drivers license. There’s no theater, restaurant choices are few, and there are no large venues for outside entertainment. The flip side? When I threw a birthday party in February at our favorite Mexican restaurant, I paid the bill for 30 people (food and alcoholic drinks) and it was $225. I live in a 3 bedroom, 2 bath brick ranch house on 5 acres that was built in the 1960’s that we paid $130,000 cash for.

“They” say that the recession has caused a lot of people to relocate from the city to more rural, lower cost-of-living areas. Flight from the urban areas. I say ‘Let it continue!’ It’s win-win. Businesses are more likely to relocate to areas where labor is cheaper but transportation less than prime, those areas get in influx of creativity and culture, and the transplants have lower-stress lives and good places to raise their children.

No. I do not care to subsidize people living in crappy neighborhoods, living crappy lives in crappy apartments in the city. If Chicago wants to keep that crappy voter base intact, let them find a way to pay for it.

LostInParadise's avatar

Interesting to see how those who are usually critical of government programs use them to show that a minimum wage is unnecessary,. Why should I subsidize Walmart by having my taxes diverted to food stamps for those unable to support themselves on their measly salaries? The current minimum wage is not enough to live on. Walmart can well afford to pay higher salaries, and if it got to the point that they could not then they would not deserve to stay in business.

ibstubro's avatar

Yes, but what about the smaller businesses that are siphoning off Walmart’s best and brightest with an offer of $10 – $12 an hour presently? It could be argued that Walmart is currently part of the US welfare system, training new-to-market workers and subsidizing vast numbers of others that would otherwise be 100% on public assistance.

Why semi-challenge yourself for $11 an hour when you can part your brain at the door at Walmart for $10?

JLeslie's avatar

@ibstubro No, I am agreeing with you that states should be able to make their own rate above the minimum federal standard, and if the minimum federal standard right now it so low that the majority of the people earning it need assistance then I think it should be raised. It does not have to be either or, we can have both, and we do as a country now, and we have for a very very long time. I don’t trust some states if left to their own devices, so I want a federal minimum.

jerv's avatar

@Crazydawg While you are correct, you have to bear in mind that the feds pretty much have to go with a one-size solution for logistical reasons, though the best-case scenario would be if various localities willingly set their minimum wage to a decent living wage without having being told to. I have about as much (or rather, as little) faith in the competence of the federal government as you do, but it boggles my mind how the biggest critics of the feds are the most likely to force them to step in because they don’t want to fix a problem themselves.
As for almost nobody staying at minimum wage more than a year and all, that is Old Economy thinking. It used to work that way back when there weren’t so many unethical employers around… but back then, there was no need for government intervention in the first place, so they actually did stay out of it more than they do now.

@ibstubro ~Moving is free. And I suppose I could live without food or shelter. I mean, it’s not 35F and rainy is unsurvivable.

Seriously though, I have a challenge for you. Suppose that after paying your rent, you have $500/month. That $500 has to pay for everything else; utilities, food, student loans, health insurance, medical bills, transportation (to a job 5–15 miles away; far enough that walking isn’t an option), home repair…. basically you are living on $6,000/yr plus free rent. How long would it take you to save up enough to move out? I’m talking two months rent at your desired location just to get into a place (most places charge deposits), travel expenses, and enough to live on while you settle in and find a job (figure 2 months unless you’re the type to jump out of planes without a parachute). I suppose you could omit the last one if you are gutsy or forced, but unless you already have a job offer at your intended location, there is actually no guarantee that you will have employment at the other end, nor that you’ll be able to find one just for the asking. Not in this day and age anyways, this isn’t 1953. It might take a bit longer than a couple of weeks, eh?

While that could describe where I am in the suburbs of Seattle, it’s actually more descriptive of my years in NH. The only city within 40 miles was only 28,000 people; none of the other surrounding towns were >2,000, There weren’t enough jobs for the locals, and public transportation was virtually nil (one bus that went nowhere near anywhere I ever needed to go once an hour). so having at least one car per household was mandatory if you wanted anything like employment or groceries. I personally lived over a mile from pavement, and my daily commute was often halted by moose, bears, deer, or turkeys in the road. I drove right through a cattle farm (they had grazing fields on both sides of the road, so I’d occasionally stop for cattle crossing too). Yes, I lived in a decadent urban sprawl.

Yet my cost of living here in the suburbs of Seattle is actually lower than it was in that urban metropolis of NH. You go on about, “being asked to subsidize a way of life that we choose to live without.” without realizing that many others live the same lifestyle yet face the same problems you seem to think are restricted solely to urban areas. You really need to get out more and see what the really real world is like.

Also, when a minimum wage requires government assistance to survive on, isn’t it time to consider raising the wage in order to streamline the process by drastically lowering demand for assistance? I mean, I would think that anything that reduced the size and expense of government is something that those who claim to want a smaller government and lower taxes would be all over, as would the “business can do it better than gobmint!” crowd, so I can’t help but see a certain crowd being either stupid or hypocritical.

RealEyesRealizeRealLies's avatar

None of this matters now.

We’re all out of a job when Alibaba goes public in the US.

I hear they are larger than Amazon, Yahoo, and Google… combined.

Your local Sam’s Club Walmart will soon become group housing compounds for sheltering the unemployed.

Crazydawg's avatar

@jerv your replies are intelligent and well presented but I don’t know how to respond to your relentless reliance on the assumption that both State and Federal governments are deaf, dumb and blind to the plight of it’s low wage citizens?? We have local and state representatives and Senators who I am sure are bombarded on an hourly basis from both constituents, businesses and unions who are all vocalizing their opinions on this matter and they would not be in office if they did not listen, weigh the value and impact of all the moving parts in this debate and then act according to the best desires of all involved. Yes on the surface it may seem unfair and unjust but there is a much bigger picture with moving parts that affect both the wealthy and the poor in both good and bad ways. IMO, it all is well attended to by the people we elect in office and time to stop pointing fingers and attempt to affix blame for the mess many seem to think exits and time to make wiser more educated decisions when voting. That is IF you even vote and sadly many of the people bitching don’t even bother to vote.

ibstubro's avatar

No, @jerv, I don’t need to get out and see what the really world is like. I live in the real world. I live in a world that is below my means, as I have my entire life. Back in the 80’s I was on unemployment when it was, what $175 a week, and after meeting expenses I was still able to put $25 a week away in savings. Yeah, I’ve seen times were I I froze milk in ice cube trays so I would have milk to make boxed macaroni and cheese (which I don’t like).

You make a great case for NH raising the state’s minimum wage. I fail to see what that has to do with the minimum wage in Missouri or Washington. Oregon already has a minimum wage of $9.10.

jerv's avatar

@ibstubro There’s no “one-size” solution, but many areas do need to raise minimum wage to account for cost of living while others, like where you live, are fine as-is. But I feel I should state the obvious by saying that $175 in a cheap area ~30 years ago isn’t really comparable to higher cost areas these days. Gas wasn’t $4/gallon, nor was milk.

Still, your second paragraph basically states that you get my point, so I am content.

ibstubro's avatar

Well, that’s the heart of our discussion, @jerv:

“Should minimum wage be raised to $10.10 an hour?”

$10.10 is a federally mandated ‘one-size’ solution that’s probably not necessary where I am, and insufficient where you are. That was my bone of contention: “Why is the federal government even in the minimum wage game?” In my opinion it’s just pandering combined with subsuming the rights of the states. I wouldn’t be surprised if NY state needed a minimum of $15–18 an hour. If their assets to business can bear that weight, so-be-it.

I know you live frugally, from discussing it with you here. However, there are people out there that think 300 TV channels and a smart phone with internet and unlimited everything are Gourd given rights.

jerv's avatar

@ibstubro Like government regulation of business, it’s basically the feds doing what others should be doing but aren’t. Get those who should be fixing the problem to fix it, and Uncle Sam will butt out.

FYI, about the same time you were getting $175/wk unemployment, rents where I lived ran around $400–500, with electricity adding about another $50. Just a little perspective.

Crazydawg's avatar

@jerv We really don’t need Government to fix problems at this time and place in life. There are far too many nosy people with a lap top and a blog who will sound the alarm sooner and louder that big old fat Uncle Sam and start a grass roots movement that will shame the offenders to the point of reaction. Greenpeace has done more for the “Stop Fucking Polluting Our Planet” movement than the lobbied till my asshole hurts Congress ever could do so IMO take away any effort made to way Congress to act on an issue and just take it to the streets. A few hundred hand wavers with MSNBC giving them a breaking news report will do more to sway public opinion than the ½ drunk nimwits we have in Congress.

ibstubro's avatar

@jerv you miss my forest for the trees. My point was that if you budget it out and you can afford $400 a month in rent, then you refuse to look at anything over $360. Live below your means and you will always have a cushion.

“Uncle Sam will butt out.” LOL, ROTFLMAO even. That’s rich. Naive. Perspective,, indeed!

jerv's avatar

@Crazydawg If that were true then we would not be having any of these problems. Beyond that…. well, I cannot currently think of the words for my thoughts, so another time for that.

@ibstubro What if you can afford $400 in rent and no place goes for less than $650? Try living below your means then.

I get what you are saying, and my taste in cars and appreciation for Indian food (check out the price of lentils and rice!) proves that I already do that, but I think you are really still stuck in 1980s Midwestern small-town mode so firmly that you think that’s absolutely possible now for all but the non-lazy everywhere because you managed to do so long ago in a favorable climate.

Remember when I said you need to get out more? That is because I think you don’t truly grasp the situation because you’ve never really seen it. I really get the impression that you have only seen such a narrow range of circumstances compared to what I have actually lived that it’s inevitable that we will disagree quite a bit.

Lastly, the government as a collective whole really is quite susceptible to public pressure. See, they like re-election. And there are some in office that are genuinely concerned about their constituency. Whether through altruism or merely the desire to keep a cushy position of power, if the people have a problem, the government will react to the will of the people. But if the people don’t care, the government is inclined to concern itself with other things. Sure, they occasionally do random stuff, but for the most part, they aren’t interested in things that the populace has no interest in unless it’s egregiously harmful. While behaving well is no guarantee to keep them away, misbehaving is a guarantee that they will come.

ibstubro's avatar

Yes, @jerv, you are a poor but worldly sage, and I’m nothing but an old fart. (Re-read your comments from my perspective.)

Yes, I lived in the city, couldn’t make ends meet and moved back to rural. Preferable to whining about the government not giving me enough handout. :D

RocketGuy's avatar

The Republicans have succeeded in convincing you that govt provides handouts to all poor city folk.

jerv's avatar

@ibstubro Was the return trip free? I doubt it. And if you couldn’t make ends meet, you probably couldn’t save unless you blew off creditors. Did you have any help? Probably, though it may have been from a social network that others lack rather than from the government.
It boggles my mind, then, how you can’t seem to see something that you yourself lived through… unless you honestly feel that anyone not like you is wrong. Since I doubt that you’re that type of guy, that leaves me stuck with wondering how you can think the way you do.

Crazydawg's avatar

@jerv That is a total cop out and you know it. IMO government is the enemy to our freedoms and the bigger they get, the less freedoms we have and if you are oblivious to this reality than I pity you and will merely glance over my shoulder as I move forward in my charge to regain these freedoms our founders fought so hard to secure for our future.

ibstubro's avatar

Thanks, @Crazydawg, I’m worn out with the endless banter. I agree with the cop out and I’m tired of arguing with the devil, through advocate or not.

I’d be pleased if the Federal government would concentrate on maintaining the infrastructure it’s already built, for the moment, and let the rest of the pork barrel ferment.

jerv's avatar

@Crazydawg When society learns to behave, government becomes less necessary. The irony here is those who complain the loudest about the government are the ones that increase our need for it.

jerv's avatar

@ibstubro Now look at it from my perspective. I managed to make it here in the city. Sure, it was a rough start that I’m just now recovering from, and I did need the social safety net you seem to hate, but I made it work. I didn’t go running for the fields, and I now have a better life than was possible out in the boonies.

And along comes a guy saying is was wrong, my rough start was my fault, my struggles are due to decadence, and otherwise belittling me and those like me… and pretty much everyone unlike themselves too. Think about what sort of reaction that might get.

Crazydawg's avatar

@jerv I totally disagree. I am one of the loudest critics and am intimately familiar with sound and legitimate reasons (many of them) as to why I do not need this mammoth version of the Federal Government we have controlling us and limiting our freedoms we once enjoyed unencumbered. It’s the people who can’t provide the American dream they think should be handed to them on a silver platter are the ones voting for and approving the current version of this nanny Amerka we are living in.

jerv's avatar

@Crazydawg Including the freedom to exploit others without repercussions, or to have anyone end our lives for any reason or none at all. While I will be agree that our government is far from perfect, I see it as still better than the Conservative Utopia of feudalism, unfair compensation such that a few benefit from the efforts of the many, and might (or rather, wealth) makes right.

The difference between you and I is that you have faith in the inherent goodness of Man while I harbor no such delusions. Sure, most people are decent (or at least benign), but it doesn’t take many to fuck things up. If you don’t believe me, then how can you hate government? Think; 1 President, 9 Justices, and 535 Legislators. Correct me if I’m wrong, but compared to the population of the US, 545 is a pretty small number. Therefore, either your hatred of government is unfounded, or I am justified in my fear of the alternative world you seek. All it takes is a few people…

Put another way, if reality always followed theory, the world would be a better place. And we’ve already seen the endgame of your route, compared to which even our current situation is preferable, as bad as it is. You and I agree that changes need to be made, but I disagree when you support something that, historically, has been proven untenable at best.

Besides, if you were correct, Europe and Australia would’ve self-destructed decades ago. China would have zero poverty and be a shining example of human rights. Sorry, but so long as humans are what we are, I can’t get behind that. I may be cynical, but I still have enough altruism in me to actively oppose needless suffering.

jerv's avatar

BTW, Australia seemed to weather the global recession pretty well. What’s their minimum wage again?

LostInParadise's avatar

Raising the minimum wage would benefit everyone, rich and poor.. Injecting more money into the economy increases demand and raises sales. The reason that this recession has been lasting so long is that both the U.S. and Europe are wrongly clinging to the idea of austerity. Keynesian economics works. It has proved itself over and over again. . The 50’s were prosperous because Eisenhower (that miserable commie, haha) raised the maximum tax rate What ultimately got us out of the Great Depression was wartime spending. Imagine how much better we could do by spending on things that are economically productive instead of weapons.

Crazydawg's avatar

@jerv Since you asked, the Australian min wage is a robust $16.37/hr buuuuuut “Different rates apply to the young, apprentices/trainees, and the disabled. Depending on these factors, including geographical cost of living calculations, actual “minimum wage” can be as much as 50% lower than shown.” which from my viewpoint would cover most of our minimum wage jobs here in the US. Half of $16.37 would be $8.18/hr. Add in fun facts like:
“The percentage of Australians who were either unemployed or underemployed was estimated to be 17.5%”
“Data released in mid-November 2013 showed that the number of welfare recipients had grown by 55%”

jerv's avatar

Yet, somehow, they survive as a nation and a society while still being Capitalist enough for some to prosper greatly. Imagine that!

LostInParadise's avatar

I just heard on the radio today that among those endorsing an increase in the minimum wage are Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum. Who’d have thought?

Crazydawg's avatar

@LostInParadise Don’t be surprised, there is an election in a few months and they are trying to buy votes.

jerv's avatar

@LostInParadise I heard that too. And say what you will about Romney, he knows a bit about money. Odds are that he did a cost/benefit analysis and realized it made sense.

@Crazydawg Doubtful. If that were the case, Romney would’ve converted faith in order to become more electable.

ibstubro's avatar

“The irony here is those who complain the loudest about the government are the ones that increase our need for it.” @jerv

I call bullshit on that one.

One of the loudest voices against the government is the Tea Party, and they are perhaps the most law abiding people on the planet. My personal sympathies aren’t with them, but I feel they need defense.

Yetanotheruser's avatar

@ibstubro I would agree with you if the Tea Party wasn’t “a grassroots citizens’ movement brought to you by a bunch of oil billionaires”. source

Crazydawg's avatar

@jerv If more states didn’t charge personal and corporate income tax like Washington, higher minimum wage rates would become more palatable to businesses across the country. No state income tax would lighten the load in a big way and I am sure if Washington levied a state income tax on top of their generous min wage there would be a much different story being written. Plus Washington is a prime example of how low to no tax rates contribute to business growth. Wake up Feds!

jerv's avatar

@Crazydawg That kind of implies that there is more to it than minimum wage, eh?

Note that NH has no state income tax, no sales tax, and no state minimum wage. Property taxes are killer though, so anybody who either owns property or rents from someone who does is screwed. They don’t seem to be doing quite as well. Meanwhile, King and Snohomish counties (where almost half of WA residents live) has a 9.5% sales tax, even on groceries.

RocketGuy's avatar

@jerv – I cannot determine the logic to why that article is true, but facts speak for themselves.

One consideration that hasn’t been discussed is that if people have more money, they will be able to buy more stuff. All of these manufacturers and retailers need people to BUY their products. So they should be in favor of increased wages.

Crazydawg's avatar

@jerv I did read where sales tax for Washington residents is deductible on their Federal income tax return. So if it were me living there I would not care how much sales tax they charge as it would be a wash.

jerv's avatar

@Crazydawg Looks like I’ll have to start saving every receipt!

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