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06:49 AM on 02/13/13 
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birdman
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Another politically demogouged issue. Less than 5% off hourly workers make minimum wage, most of whom are teenagers working part-time. I feel like minimum wage is talked about as though everyone is suffering from it. The fact is, very few people make minimum wage. Most of the people that do aren't in need of a "living wage" because they are only working 20-30 hours a week and living with their parents.
06:50 AM on 02/13/13 
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birdman
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I don't know if raising/not raising the minimum wage would be a good or bad thing, but I think that we need to reevaluate our welfare system and also think about a living wage.

Where I live (Dallas, TX) the minimum wage is $7.25/hr. This equates to $1160 a month BEFORE taxes. After taxes you're looking at somewhere around $900. A one bedroom apartment in a neighborhood where you're not likely to get shot, is going to be at least $500 or more... Leaving you with $100 a week to eat, pay bills, clothe yourself, etc... If you have a child, it's virtually impossible.

I'm not sure what should happen exactly, but I think we need to realistically look at the cost of living.

If you are over the age of 18 and you make minimum wage, you are doing something wrong.
07:05 AM on 02/13/13 
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birdman
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What do you say about areas where a store like Walmart comes in and monopolizes all the unskilled jobs and effectively lowering the average wage of the area?

I would ask how much to propose we pay an unskilled worker to work a cash register?
07:15 AM on 02/13/13 
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Its my job to ask the questions birdbro.

What if (not saying it is or isnt) a states minimum wage is not mathematically high enough to allow someone to afford to better their education and get a better job?

I would counter by saying that minimum wage is a starting point mostly enjoyed by by those working their first part-time jobs under the age of 18.

So if you have work experience and are over the age of 18 and you are still stuck at minimum wage, then in my experience, there is something you aren't doing right. I stopped making minimum wage when I was 15, I have never known a single person over the age of 18 who made minimum wage.

And to clarify, servers do not make minimum wage, they make a lot more than that with tips.
07:28 AM on 02/13/13 
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birdman
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"In my experience" isn't that strong an argument. I'm trying to take myself of a my middle-class northeastern bobble for perspective:

Lets say little kyleishk lives in Mississippi. In my small town I don't have a wealthy family who can pay for my education. In my town, a store like Walmart has moved in and put much of the smaller shops out of business. Now most all of the jobs that don't require a college education are monopolized by minimum-wage paying Walmart. I'd like to earn more money but that's very hard without higher education, which I can't afford since I'm stuck at a minimum wage job. What about this cycle?

I don't come from a wealthy family and I paid for my own education through loans. A small town would have a lower population, meaning less unskilled workers, and unless you live in the middle of nowhere, there is probably another town 15 minutes away that has positions.

And, honestly, I worked a Wal-Mart while I was in HS, it isn't as bad as people make it out to be. Then again I was 16.

Look, it's not always easy, but it isn't always hard either. Making a national discourse over an issue that essentially effects 1% of the working class just shows how easy it is for politicians to get people wrapped in emotion.
07:45 AM on 02/13/13 
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I also don't come from one and am paying for mine via loans. But not everyone can get loans depending on their background.





That's not how it works. Obviously I don't just mean single towns, but entire sprawled out regions who end up being dominated by large chains.




Not sure the degree of hoopla should matter for what's right and wrong.

Everyone can't do everything all the time. That's the problem I am having. Government trying to solve everyone's problems all the time by picking out a relatively minor issue and making it a national problem to tug at people's heart strings. I don't think the issue is that Walmart pays $7.25 an hour, I think the problem is you have people in their 30s and 40s with kids, working at Wal Mart for $7.25 an hour.

The reasons aren't always going to be something the government could or should fix.

And again, I don't really know what a company should be required to pay someone who is easily replaceable and has no skills. If you have ever been to a Wal Mart, it isn't like we are talking about the most engaged and polite employees here, I don't think I have ever gotten so much as a smile at a Wal Mart, even when I worked there as a kid.
08:11 AM on 02/13/13 
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birdman
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But birdman, SOME adults have to work at these places. Some people don't have the opportunity to go to college, get a degree, and get a cushier job. Just because you don't think men and women in their 30's should be working for minimum wage, doesn't mean that people shouldn't. These people have just as much a right to make a decent living and provide for their families as you do. Just because you seem to look down on them (as do millions of others in this country) doesn't make them any less important than you or your needs.

And hey - if Wal-Mart paid a decent wage to full-time employees, maybe you'd get a smile?

I am not looking down on anyone. And no, you don't have the right to make a decent living. You have the right to be paid the agreed upon wage for the services you provide the employer.

To the bolded, that's circular. Maybe if a Wal-Mart employee was a helpful and engaging representative of the company, they would get paid a decent wage.
08:16 AM on 02/13/13 
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birdman
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This is for you and everyone arguing with you...

This is why these arguments with Birdman are circular. Nobody is going to convince birdman that people have a right to a decent living and he sure as hell isn't going to convince me of the opposite. I've come to accept this and not bother arguing with birdman anymore.

09:52 AM on 02/13/13 
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birdman
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Birdman also told me that working is voluntary, so therefore a company shouldn't have to take care of its workers. Yay capitalism.

Both statements are based in fact, not emotion.
10:03 AM on 02/13/13 
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Yeah, it's fucking asinine.

What is your degree in?
06:03 AM on 02/15/13 
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The timing of this announcement is meant to coincide with the passage of some massive immigration bill that will probably be announced soon. The newly legal immigrants (a good chuck of people) will be making minimum wage and thus unable to support themselves. This (new minimum wages) needs to be in place in order for there not to be a massive rise in the number of American citizens living below the poverty line.

Regardless, Im not against giving a few million people a little more money in their pocket.

First, you are making a lot of assumptions based on a "some" bill, the specifics of which are unknown. Wouldn't a work placement program do better to raise the average income of a newly documented worker than simply raising the minimum wage?

And what makes you think these hypothetical newly documented workers are unskilled and only capable of getting minimum wage?
04:56 PM on 02/26/13 
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Sometimes I wish we had a system where top earners were forced to cut from their own salary in order to raise the minimum wages of their employees (you know, the ones doing the real work). They would still be able to earn more than enough to live a great lifestyle. Imagine if there was a cap on executive earnings.

I have a huge problem with this line of thinking

1. Who is "forcing" people to cut their salaries, are you suggesting a wage cap? There goes the motivation to grow your business if you know the financial reward will be the same?

2. How can you possibly fathom the pressure and stress that befalls a CEO or any C-level executive? The work of a cashier requires virtually no skill or responsibility, while the CEO has to make decisions that impact millions of dollars and thousands of jobs. You think this is easy?

3. Who are you to decide what constitutes a "great lifestyle"??

Oh...you are a teacher...that explains it.
05:21 AM on 02/27/13 
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birdman
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WAS a teacher.

EDIT: This was also at a time when being a teacher was a job instead of an instrument for politicians.
05:26 AM on 02/27/13 
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1. I don't know, we gave banks trillions of dollars and they didn't seem very motivated to lend. Either way, motivation does not seem to exist. Given that, we may as well simply take away their money.

2. I imagine the pressure isn't as great as it is for the individuals they laid off, who get no severance and were already living paycheck to paycheck.

3. A lifestyle free from want is pretty great. One would think in a humanist society, that would be the bedrock of any conception of rights.

1. But I feel like we are continuing to separate the executive from the worker. This is only true part of the time. Imagine the owner of, say, a $50 million dollar direct to consumer business, like selling iPhone cases or something. You better believe that guy is working his ass off. He isn't going around in private jets with butlers and shit. He makes a very decent, and well-deserved, living. Why should he not reap the benefits of his hard work?

2. As heartless as it sounds, it's the truth, the company you work for is not responsible for you. They are not responsible for your spending habits, your saving habits, or your lifestyle. Now, companies would be competitive in an employee market if they offered things like 401k matching and health care, but this certainly isn't an employee market.

3. A lifestyle free from want? Does that jive with human nature? Don't we always want more?
09:04 AM on 02/27/13 
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This can't mean what I immediately thought of. This is about politicians using education for political gain right? Not about propaganda in schools?

this.



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