MunoRN 28,807 Views
Joined Nov 18, '10.
Posts: 7,401 (68% Liked)
I think you're overstating the likelihood of a $15 federal minimum wage, but you're fears are based on some very bad math, which seems to be common to most anti-minimum wage increase hysteria.
First, cost of living and inflation would not increase by the same amount the federal minimum wage increases, which is where I assume you got your "cost of living budget increase by 1/3 or more" figure from. Even at businesses most heavily affected by an increase in the MW (fast food and other predominately near MW paying restaurants), an increase to $15 would raise prices only 4.3%, which is a far cry from the 33% or more that you quoted. And that 4.3% increase assumes a sudden increase to $15, when actually a phased increase to $12 is more likely. And for you to experience all of that 4.3% increase your entire budget would have to be spent at MW paying businesses.
Keep in mind that we're not talking about an unprecedented minimum wage value, the relative buying power of the MW has been steadily declining, the proposals that are out there only catch us back up to where we once were, and when the MW was at those levels the economy thrived. We can also look at smaller minimum wage increase experiments, Washington state has had a minimum wage tied to inflation and despite having the highest minimum wage in the nation they also have one of the most vigorous economies including in terms of job growth in the country.
The biggest problem with allowing the MW to continue to fall is that it moves more towards a federally subsidized business economy, not all that much different from communism. Currently, the majority of those on public assistance programs work. We've been allowing businesses to transition from having to cover their costs to simply paying employees a token amount and then having the government pay for the rest of their basic expenses (ie communism).
I'm a small business owner, and as a result I fully support returning the MW to it's historical peak, here's why: With a MW far lower than a livable wage, as a responsible owner of a successful business I get punished and end up having to support less responsible and poorly run businesses. While I may pay my employees a livable wage, the restaurant next door is free to underpay their employees and make up for it with public assistance programs that I then also have to pay into. So my "reward" for running a good business is that I also get the bill to make up for the failings of other businesses.
In general, I don't agree that businesses should be immune to the competitive market forces that keep an economy healthy by replacing an adequate minimum wage.
So the new federal proposal for FREE higher education across the nation is a close reality. ....
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