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7 Dollar minimum wage

  1. Oct 14, 2004 #1
    I'm just curious what you all seem to think of Kerry's 7 dollar minimum wage that he promised during the debate.

    I'm also curious about how he is going to make this economy "exactly like the nineties" where everything seemed to be going well until someone flushed the floater that was the dot com boom.

    If 7 dollars is great for minimum wage, why not 10, or 20, or 50 dollars? Hell, that means those poor mcDonalds workers will get 50dollars/hourx40hours/weekx50weeks/year = 100 grand a year!

    Isn't it painfully obvious that minimum wage just causes inflation? Isn't it also painfully obvious when states/cities decide to jack up the minimum wage that small companies immediately fire the workers that aren't worth it and cling to the few that are?
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 14, 2004 #2

    Its stupid.
  4. Oct 14, 2004 #3
    I don't believe there should be a minimum wage at all. The free market should decide "minimum wage." The minimum wage is $5.15/hr, but honestly who really gets paid this much? Hardly anyone. Even teenagers who work at McDonald's get paid higher than that because the labor markets have decided a wage that is higher than 5.15/hr. Raising minimum wages wouldn't cause inflation, however, unemployment may increase.
  5. Oct 14, 2004 #4
    According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2003, 2.1 million people were working for the federal minimum wage or less. Then there are the millions of people who would be working for State minimum wages of something like $5.35 or $5.80 etc.
  6. Oct 14, 2004 #5


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    The minimum wage is a way of protecting lower income individuals from the free market. If the free market had it's way, the workers at McDonalds would be making one cent an hour.
  7. Oct 14, 2004 #6
    They would?
  8. Oct 14, 2004 #7

    That's what, less than 1% of the population, or less than 2% of the working population.

    I wonder what percentage of those working minimum wage are teenagers.
  9. Oct 14, 2004 #8
    Show me a source for your second claim.
  10. Oct 14, 2004 #9

    I guess Kerry really is looking out for the little guy - Kerry/Edwards, fighting to make sure our products cost more to increase the standard of living for highschool students!!
  11. Oct 14, 2004 #10


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    I don't think it will make a difference one way or another. But, before I decide, how many employers really pay minimum wage? I worked minimum wage jobs when I was a student, but then I wasn't trying to support a family, just earn enough to help pay tuition (my parents didn't require me to pay for tuition, but I did my best to help as much as I could) and buy pizza when the dining hall food was inedible. I think it's sad if employers try to get away with paying full-time employees minimum wage, but then, when you have adults doing a job any 16-yr old could do, is that the employers' fault?

    Is that necessarily a bad thing? There are too many people who expect a paycheck for doing nothing all day. Why are they tolerating incompetent employees in the first place if the job can be done with fewer competent employees? This does happen, but it doesn't last long. Those few left will threaten to leave when they find themselves doing the job of two or three people for very little additional take-home pay, so the employers will have to hire back more workers. Of course, they may be more careful to hire more competent people the second time around, which will benefit productivity. And, sometimes, if you have enough incompetent people on the payroll, being forced to weed them out improves productivity by letting the competent ones work unhindered.

    Edit: the stats in the above posts were posted while I was still typing.
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2004
  12. Oct 14, 2004 #11
    I agree, but that wasn't really what I was going for.
    Some jobs simply aren't worth 7 dollars, and these are the jobs that are introductory or for younger people, and aren't really meant to be stayed in for 20-30 years.
  13. Oct 14, 2004 #12
    I didn't use a source, but it's common sense. Are you saying without a source, you won't believe that there are people working for state-wide minimum wages in states which have minimum wages higher than the Federal minimum wage?
  14. Oct 14, 2004 #13
    Exactly,you took words out off my mouth.
    Free market wants you and me to work for free.
  15. Oct 14, 2004 #14
    No, the employer wants you to work for free. The employee wants to be paid a million dollars for the job.

    The free market wants to arbitrate a solution based on supply and demand.
  16. Oct 14, 2004 #15
    You said millions. I want to not only see that number validated, but also the actual number itself.
    It's not common sense.
  17. Oct 14, 2004 #16
    With misconceptions like this, no wonder so many people think capitalism is eveil and wealth must be stolen :uhh:
  18. Oct 14, 2004 #17
    The labor market works like any other market. Pay is decided by demand (employers) and supply (employees). Competition stops employers from giving too low a pay. On the other hand, employers will not pay so much that they make a loss.

    What happens if there is a regulation that forces the lowest pay higher than in a free market? It means that there must be unemployment, employers will not voluntarily pay to make a loss. It also means that the unemployed must be supported by the rest of the population and that the unemployed will produce nothing, lowering the standard of living for the rest of the population.

    Regulation like this only creates unemployment and decreased standards of living.
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2004
  19. Oct 14, 2004 #18

    It's true. Without a minimum wage the supply and demand would eventually reach an equilibrium point where there would be little or no unemployment and everyone is getting paid fairly. Well, in theory, anyway.
  20. Oct 14, 2004 #19


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    I'm with you up to "fairly well'. The market never of itself guarantees a living wage. A dollar a day would be a competitve equilibrium with third world labor.
  21. Oct 14, 2004 #20
    There are of course people with limited ability who can only produce enough to get a very small pay. But it is better to help those people by, for example, no taxes on the first x dollars earned in a year. Or a more direct help.

    Those who don't have the ability to produce enough to make a living working must be helped by others.
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