Means nothing, move along

Our last – and best ever – Mayor is busy on Facebook today and found this. Thanks, Ed!

And that has nothing at all to do with why so many working people in the US get food and health care assistance. Nothing at all.

9 responses to “Means nothing, move along

  1. Wait, wait! 😆

    I was actually puzzled at the Australian number. Checking in with a libertarian writer, I found his argument to be that Australia’s unemployment rate for ” . . . workers age 15 to 19″ was 16.5% in June. Well, that’s not particularly convincing to me. Those are children for heaven’s sake. This cogent answer from Yahoo answers makes more sense to me:

    Yes, our minimum wage is high compared to that of the USA and keep in mind that on top of that, workers also get 4 weeks paid vacation and 2 weeks sick pay AND their employer must pay 9% superannuation for them into their retirement fund (that’s on top of their wage – not taken out of it).

    All things considered, people on the minimum wage in Australia are much better off than minimum wage earners in the USA. They don’t live like royalty, but they have enough for a roof over their heads, decent food and clothing and some entertainment. Out of their $14.31, they take home $12.40 after tax (not $10.70 as stated in another answer) and if they have a family, they receive a number of other benefits from the government which can amount to quite a few thousand $$ in a year. The most important other difference between our two countries is that they don’t need to pay to get top class medical treatment – that’s available to everyone here.

    Some things are more expensive in Australia, but others are cheaper and working Australians even on minimum can enjoy a reasonable standard of living. Don’t be misled by the ‘high taxation’ argument in another answer (e.g. someone on $100,000 pays $27500 in tax and Medicare – not $48,000 as stated). When everything else (state tax etc) is taken into account, our taxation works out not far from that of the USA.


    • And Jim, let us add that when people make a living wage, there’s far less need for the State to directly subsidize food, rent etc. With a living wage, a working person has the buying power to handle those things.


  2. Pingback: The Minimun Wage…America…Other Places…Whatever Works | Politicaldog101.Com

  3. And that has nothing at all to do with why so many working people in the US get food and health care assistance.

    Of course it does. Because as the minimum wage is raised, it prices out the least productive members of our society – forcing them onto such programs as you describe.

    Further, though Mr. Wheeler feels this is insignificant, when employers are forced to pay higher wages, they hire fewer people. And because of that, they are able or are forced, to hire the best of the folks who apply.

    This leaves the young, undereducated and most vulnerable without a job. And at THAT point in their life, the money isn’t the most important aspect of a job. The most important aspect is OTJT – On The Job Training. Things like showing up on time, speaking to customers, completing tasks and interacting with bosses.


    • This leaves the young, undereducated and most vulnerable without a job.

      I am not insensitive to your point, Mr. pino. It is a conundrum.

      Yesterday, I had occasion to visit a car dealership, seeking information on a part I needed. The young man at the parts desk was stolidly grinding through his process at the computer as I patiently (on the surface) waited for my return. It was apparent that he took no urgency and no interest in his work. He was the opposite of animated. Plodding may be the right adjective. I wondered if he were going to fall asleep before he found my part.

      Granted, he has a dull job, but it does involve interacting with other human beings, just as you mentioned. OJT isn’t helping him. If I were his boss I’d try to light a fire under him, but you know the old saying, you can’t make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear.

      Society ought to establish a safety net, a floor that denies poverty but yet sparks incentive to do better. Beyond that I don’t know what to do when there’s no tinder to be ignited.


  4. You know what raises wages? More jobs. When businesses have to compete for labor, guess what, wages rise. All of the government policies in the last few years have not helped workers or the poor. They have made unemployment and underemployment more tolerable.

    As long as Americans accept the new normal of high unemployment, businesses will have the upper hand in wage negotiations.

    There is no job mobility in the higher wage levels. If it was musical chairs, everyone just stays seated.


  5. Unmentioned in this thread is the importance of human dignity. And nothing confers dignity like a job. When large swaths of a population are unemployed, that fosters unrest, and that is bad for all of us.


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