Raising Minimum Wage - or How to Keep the Poor, Poor.
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23-07-2015, 04:26 PM
RE: Raising Minimum Wage - or How to Keep the Poor, Poor.
I don't understand how raising minimum wage is supposed to help the middle class. (I only took microeconomics in college - and I was 16.)

From my perspective (in case it weren't obvious by my profession, I'm middle class) - I don't get a raise when the minimum wage is raised. When I worked for Huntsville I made just under $19/hr base. With a bachelor's degree. And they're pushing for a McDonald's worker to get paid $15/hr? Great. So inflation ensues and now my income is worth even less.

"If there's a single thing that life teaches us, it's that wishing doesn't make it so." - Lev Grossman
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23-07-2015, 04:29 PM
Raising Minimum Wage - or How to Keep the Poor, Poor.
Read the comments about how inflation does and doesn't work.

Also, keep in mind that there are more benefits to jobs that aren't fast food and retail that make them more valuable even if they are making equal wages. A regular schedule, benefits, paid vacation, etc.

Someone being paid more for the work they do, doesn't by default make your salary worth less.

Being nice is something stupid people do to hedge their bets
-Rick
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23-07-2015, 04:45 PM (This post was last modified: 23-07-2015 04:52 PM by GirlyMan.)
RE: Raising Minimum Wage - or How to Keep the Poor, Poor.
(23-07-2015 10:12 AM)onlinebiker Wrote:  It's pretty basic economics.

If you've got someone doing a job - that is worth "x" -- if you force the employer to pay x plus y, you have to offset y, by increasing the prices of your product.

You can't simply expect employers to absorb the price of y. If they do - they eventually become unprofitable. So all products and services go up in price by "y".

When the price of all the products go up by y - everyone's wage increase is negated because their buying power is now only the original x + y - y.

Your argument is not basic economics it is overly simplistic economics and fails to take into account the intangibles like worker satisfaction impact on performance and retention. Costco is the perfect counterexample. Their starting pay for cashiers is like $12.50/hr and the average employee makes $21/hr and 90% of them get health insurance. And yet their prices are as low as Walmart, the quality of their Kirkland Signature products is greater than most brand names, the shopping experience is pleasant and when I see a long line at Costco which would be a half-hour wait or longer at Walmart I'm out in 10 minutes because their cashiers are super efficient. They compete against each other for kudos. The minimum wage is irrelevant to Costco. And if all corporations were as enlightened as Costco the minimum wage would be irrelevant.

(23-07-2015 12:38 PM)onlinebiker Wrote:  Yeah -- I'm sure you both have doctorates in economics -- and thus feel obliged to tell me what I know nothing about.....

Not a PhD but I did minor in ECON at Uni along with PHIL.

(23-07-2015 02:51 PM)Popeyes Pappy Wrote:  
(23-07-2015 12:38 PM)onlinebiker Wrote:  Yeah -- I'm sure you both have doctorates in economics -- and thus feel obliged to tell me what I know nothing about.....

Try more insults -- those seem the best tactic for defending your "points"...

Paul Krugman does and he disagrees with the position you took in the OP.

Not to mention a Nobel Prize.

(23-07-2015 04:26 PM)Nurse Wrote:  I don't understand how raising minimum wage is supposed to help the middle class. (I only took microeconomics in college - and I was 16.)

From my perspective (in case it weren't obvious by my profession, I'm middle class) - I don't get a raise when the minimum wage is raised. When I worked for Huntsville I made just under $19/hr base. With a bachelor's degree. And they're pushing for a McDonald's worker to get paid $15/hr? Great. So inflation ensues and now my income is worth even less.

That's not what's gonna happen. Raising the minimum wage will create upward pressure on your own wages. "I'm a fucking RN and you want me to work for little more than I can make at McDonalds without all the stress and bullshit and bedpans? Not gonna happen fatboy." Raising the minimum wage doesn't decrease the value of your salary, it creates upward pressure to raise it.

There is only one really serious philosophical question, and that is suicide. -Camus
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23-07-2015, 05:12 PM
RE: Raising Minimum Wage - or How to Keep the Poor, Poor.
(23-07-2015 04:45 PM)GirlyMan Wrote:  
(23-07-2015 10:12 AM)onlinebiker Wrote:  It's pretty basic economics.

If you've got someone doing a job - that is worth "x" -- if you force the employer to pay x plus y, you have to offset y, by increasing the prices of your product.

You can't simply expect employers to absorb the price of y. If they do - they eventually become unprofitable. So all products and services go up in price by "y".

When the price of all the products go up by y - everyone's wage increase is negated because their buying power is now only the original x + y - y.

Your argument is not basic economics it is overly simplistic economics and fails to take into account the intangibles like worker satisfaction impact on performance and retention. Costco is the perfect counterexample. Their starting pay for cashiers is like $12.50/hr and the average employee makes $21/hr and 90% of them get health insurance. And yet their prices are as low as Walmart, the quality of their Kirkland Signature products is greater than most brand names, the shopping experience is pleasant and when I see a long line at Costco which would be a half-hour wait or longer at Walmart I'm out in 10 minutes because their cashiers are super efficient. They compete against each other for kudos. The minimum wage is irrelevant to Costco. And if all corporations were as enlightened as Costco the minimum wage would be irrelevant.

(23-07-2015 12:38 PM)onlinebiker Wrote:  Yeah -- I'm sure you both have doctorates in economics -- and thus feel obliged to tell me what I know nothing about.....

Not a PhD but I did minor in ECON at Uni along with PHIL.

(23-07-2015 02:51 PM)Popeyes Pappy Wrote:  Paul Krugman does and he disagrees with the position you took in the OP.

Not to mention a Nobel Prize.

(23-07-2015 04:26 PM)Nurse Wrote:  I don't understand how raising minimum wage is supposed to help the middle class. (I only took microeconomics in college - and I was 16.)

From my perspective (in case it weren't obvious by my profession, I'm middle class) - I don't get a raise when the minimum wage is raised. When I worked for Huntsville I made just under $19/hr base. With a bachelor's degree. And they're pushing for a McDonald's worker to get paid $15/hr? Great. So inflation ensues and now my income is worth even less.

That's not what's gonna happen. Raising the minimum wage will create upward pressure on your own wages. "I'm a fucking RN and you want me to work for little more than I can make at McDonalds without all the stress and bullshit and bedpans? Not gonna happen fatboy." Raising the minimum wage doesn't decrease the value of your salary, it creates upward pressure to raise it.

"A rising tide raises all ships"

(31-07-2014 04:37 PM)Luminon Wrote:  America is full of guns, but they're useless, because nobody has the courage to shoot an IRS agent in self-defense
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23-07-2015, 05:55 PM
RE: Raising Minimum Wage - or How to Keep the Poor, Poor.
(23-07-2015 02:04 PM)TheBeardedDude Wrote:  "The left are 100% wrong in thinking that raising the minimum wage is the be all end all to poverty..."

Straw man. No one has ever said that it would "end all poverty."

Providing a "living wage" would be above the poverty limit, and implies ending poverty for anyone with a job, which is what many libs want, including some in this thread. Therefore not a straw man.

"just an FYI: There are 2 kinds of people in the world -- those who divide everybody into 2 kinds of people & those who don't." Neil deGrasse Tyson
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23-07-2015, 06:04 PM
Raising Minimum Wage - or How to Keep the Poor, Poor.
(23-07-2015 05:55 PM)MustangManda Wrote:  
(23-07-2015 02:04 PM)TheBeardedDude Wrote:  "The left are 100% wrong in thinking that raising the minimum wage is the be all end all to poverty..."

Straw man. No one has ever said that it would "end all poverty."

Providing a "living wage" would be above the poverty limit, and implies ending poverty for anyone with a job, which is what many libs want, including some in this thread. Therefore not a straw man.

No, it doesn't and yes, it is still a straw man.

No one is under the delusion that raising the minimum wage solves all of any problem, including poverty.

You'll never escape part time work. Layoffs. Boom and bust products. Etc, etc. poverty isn't as simple a problem to solve as simply throwing money at it, but that's the straw man version that is being beaten on this thread.

Please don't reduce what I'm saying to asinine straw men

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23-07-2015, 06:06 PM
Raising Minimum Wage - or How to Keep the Poor, Poor.
A living wage makes it possible for those who can take advantage of it to have a path out of poverty for themselves or their children.

Countries that pay better living wages, still have poverty. The "libs" recognize this despite what you seem to be assuming.

Being nice is something stupid people do to hedge their bets
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23-07-2015, 06:12 PM
RE: Raising Minimum Wage - or How to Keep the Poor, Poor.
(23-07-2015 04:29 PM)TheBeardedDude Wrote:  Read the comments about how inflation does and doesn't work.

Also, keep in mind that there are more benefits to jobs that aren't fast food and retail that make them more valuable even if they are making equal wages. A regular schedule, benefits, paid vacation, etc.

Someone being paid more for the work they do, doesn't by default make your salary worth less.

It does make you salary worth less if you paid to go to school to get that salary increase. Say you put 20K into your education to become a nurse in order to make about double MW, then MW get raised to 75% of your new salary, it now takes you twice as long to see an ROI on your education. Education is an investment. Raising minimum wage instantly by that much would set off a cascade of effects, some positive but most of them negative. Some of these could be tempered, but I don't trust the politicians currently in charge to be able to adequately prepare for the consequences of their actions of doubling MW overnight, which is what some of them are advocating. I'm all for raising minimum wage, more money in the hands of people who will spend it is a great thing, and will eventually lead to higher salaries for the middle class, I just hope they do it gradually, and not to a "living wage". Although tying it to the poverty level indirectly and allowing it to increase automatically on a yearly basis with inflation could be great.

"just an FYI: There are 2 kinds of people in the world -- those who divide everybody into 2 kinds of people & those who don't." Neil deGrasse Tyson
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23-07-2015, 06:15 PM
Raising Minimum Wage - or How to Keep the Poor, Poor.
(23-07-2015 06:12 PM)MustangManda Wrote:  
(23-07-2015 04:29 PM)TheBeardedDude Wrote:  Read the comments about how inflation does and doesn't work.

Also, keep in mind that there are more benefits to jobs that aren't fast food and retail that make them more valuable even if they are making equal wages. A regular schedule, benefits, paid vacation, etc.

Someone being paid more for the work they do, doesn't by default make your salary worth less.

It does make you salary worth less if you paid to go to school to get that salary increase. Say you put 20K into your education to become a nurse in order to make about double MW, then MW get raised to 75% of your new salary, it now takes you twice as long to see an ROI on your education. Education is an investment. Raising minimum wage instantly by that much would set off a cascade of effects, some positive but most of them negative. Some of these could be tempered, but I don't trust the politicians currently in charge to be able to adequately prepare for the consequences of their actions of doubling MW overnight, which is what some of them are advocating. I'm all for raising minimum wage, more money in the hands of people who will spend it is a great thing, and will eventually lead to higher salaries for the middle class, I just hope they do it gradually, and not to a "living wage". Although tying it to the poverty level indirectly and allowing it to increase automatically on a yearly basis with inflation could be great.

No, your job that pays X means your job is still worth X. Unless you're already not being paid what you deserve. And keep in mind, as I've said, that even if two jobs pay the same base salary, that isn't the only benefit from it. If you could make the same wage at a job with no or little benefits, no paid time off, and no paid vacation or vacation at all, I'd think you'd pick the job with benefits and paid vacation. There's more to a job than just the salary.

As has been said by others, raising the minimum wage will also have an upward effect for other careers that pay their employees less than they're worth. Like nurses that make less than they should be paid.

Being nice is something stupid people do to hedge their bets
-Rick
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23-07-2015, 11:48 PM
RE: Raising Minimum Wage - or How to Keep the Poor, Poor.
(23-07-2015 08:16 AM)BnW Wrote:  Here's the problem - we are subsidizing corporations at both ends. Take the fast food industry as an example. Many of them benefit from agricultural subsidies that keep their costs down. Then, they benefit from public safety nets like food stamps. If employees at McDonald's didn't qualify for assistance, then they could not afford to work at McDonald's. So, the tax payers are picking up the delta.

It's a significant problem, but I'm not convinced simply raising the minimum wage is going to resolve it. It will mitigate the issue but it doesn't get to the root cause issues. But, it's easy to implement and understand so that's why it gets all the attention.

There you have it.

By the by, why is it okay to subsidize companies but not individuals?
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