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Minimum Wage Thread


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#921 Traveler

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Posted 12 June 2019 - 03:43 PM

Andy, I found the argument quite compelling that most all of the non employer-dependent benefit programs represent competition for wages, and thus raise them. This is why I sought an explanation of why that is wrong. I suppose we could take it to extremes, and recognize that we cannot let folks founder with no support at all, and thus lower competition for wages even more. So we put in the benefit programs to make sure folks didn't starve to death. And in so doing, we set the wage floor.

How could employers somehow band together to suppress wages (not talking about non competes)? The issue with inflating their own wages has a LOT to do with how we treat unearned income. It biases folks to promote shareholder gains, often very short-sightedly. A LOT of these problems can be attributed to POG tax policy. That is where folks should focus.
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#922 D. C. Sessions

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Posted 12 June 2019 - 03:54 PM

View PostTraveler, on 12 June 2019 - 01:12 PM, said:

Calling it bull does not advance the discussion. I was looking for a coherent argument why that article is wrong.

It's the classic right-wing argument I heard yesterday while getting my car's AC fixed.

Thesis: if it weren't for welfare (etc.) people would be lining up to take his sub-minimum wage agricultural work because it's that or starve. Since they have alternatives to starvation (even if it means hot-bunking eight to a room and eating at soup kitchens) they're just slacking for that sweet, sweet free money.

If you're a junior enlisted member of the US armed forces, there's a very good chance your family is getting by with the help of food stamps and some other not-on-the-DOD-budget support. Absent that support, you would have little choice but to take some other work. That support really should be billed to the DoD. The same goes for WalMart: they can get someone to take their crap jobs because they can do so and not starve immediately and might even get halfway decent healthcare.

Because the competition is not "no work and layabout watching TV," it's "work for Costco" or "work for Trader Joe's" or any of a score of companies that actually pay a living wage, provide good health benefits, etc. WalMart is not anyone's first choice, but the government support for the low wages lets them be in the competition compared to employers that are farther away with poor public transit, or that require relocation, or that insist on continuing training, or ...
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