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Tue Feb 12, 2013, 10:01 PM

Obama Calls For Raising Minimum Wage To $9 Per Hour In State Of The Union

Source: Think Progress

Obama Calls For Raising Minimum Wage To $9 Per Hour In State Of The Union
By Pat Garofalo on Feb 12, 2013 at 9:18 pm
In his State of the Union address tonight, President Obama calls for raising the minimum wage to $9 per hour, up from its current $7.25. He also called for raising the tipped minimum wage — made by tipped employees, such as waitresses — and for indexing the minimum wage to inflation so that it grows along with the economy:


We know our economy is stronger when we reward an honest day’s work with honest wages. But today, a full-time worker making the minimum wage earns $14,500 a year. Even with the tax relief we’ve put in place, a family with two kids that earns the minimum wage still lives below the poverty line. That’s wrong. That’s why, since the last time this Congress raised the minimum wage, nineteen states have chosen to bump theirs even higher.

Tonight, let’s declare that in the wealthiest nation on Earth, no one who works full-time should have to live in poverty, and raise the federal minimum wage to $9.00 an hour. This single step would raise the incomes of millions of working families. It could mean the difference between groceries or the food bank; rent or eviction; scraping by or finally getting ahead. For businesses across the country, it would mean customers with more money in their pockets.

In fact, working folks shouldn’t have to wait year after year for the minimum wage to go up while CEO pay has never been higher. So here’s an idea that Governor Romney and I actually agreed on last year: let’s tie the minimum wage to the cost of living, so that it finally becomes a wage you can live on.

Read more: http://thinkprogress.org/economy/2013/02/12/1583381/obama-raise-minimum-wage/



Full Transcript:
http://www.dailykos.com/story/2013/02/12/1186700/-Transcript-of-President-Obama-s-State-of-the-Union-address-as-prepared-for-delivery

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Reply Obama Calls For Raising Minimum Wage To $9 Per Hour In State Of The Union (Original post)
kpete Feb 2013 OP
RoccoR5955 Feb 2013 #1
Cha Feb 2013 #4
1983law Feb 2013 #21
fasttense Feb 2013 #33
napoleon_in_rags Feb 2013 #27
Cobalt Violet Feb 2013 #28
cstanleytech Feb 2013 #2
blueclown Feb 2013 #5
cstanleytech Feb 2013 #6
blueclown Feb 2013 #9
cstanleytech Feb 2013 #13
xtraxritical Feb 2013 #40
cstanleytech Feb 2013 #42
justice1 Feb 2013 #47
cstanleytech Feb 2013 #48
LongTomH Feb 2013 #12
cstanleytech Feb 2013 #14
Spitfire of ATJ Feb 2013 #18
cstanleytech Feb 2013 #19
Spitfire of ATJ Feb 2013 #22
1983law Feb 2013 #23
4lbs Feb 2013 #38
classykaren Feb 2013 #37
cstanleytech Feb 2013 #49
quaker bill Feb 2013 #29
cstanleytech Feb 2013 #43
quaker bill Feb 2013 #44
cstanleytech Feb 2013 #45
damnedifIknow Feb 2013 #3
Spitfire of ATJ Feb 2013 #24
Dawson Leery Feb 2013 #7
woo me with science Feb 2013 #8
blueclown Feb 2013 #10
Amonester Feb 2013 #11
cstanleytech Feb 2013 #17
quaker bill Feb 2013 #30
naaman fletcher Feb 2013 #15
CreekDog Feb 2013 #20
quaker bill Feb 2013 #31
Mr.Bill Feb 2013 #16
Left Coast2020 Feb 2013 #25
trublu992 Feb 2013 #26
davidpdx Feb 2013 #32
melm00se Feb 2013 #34
dotymed Feb 2013 #35
olddad56 Feb 2013 #39
Ash_F Feb 2013 #36
NewYorkTaxPayer Feb 2013 #41
Trajan Feb 2013 #46

Response to kpete (Original post)

Tue Feb 12, 2013, 10:30 PM

1. That's still not enough.

We need a LIVING wage as the minimum wage. I don't know where anyone can get by on nine bucks an hour.

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Response to RoccoR5955 (Reply #1)

Tue Feb 12, 2013, 11:05 PM

4. Still it's better than $7.50 an hour.

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Response to RoccoR5955 (Reply #1)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 02:07 AM

21. What are you paying per hour?

 

My kid needs a job.

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Response to 1983law (Reply #21)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 06:42 AM

33. We pay $12 an hour for part time farm labor

Of course it involves putting up fencing in all sorts of weather, birthing lambs in the field, wrestling sheep and all the usual mucking stalls, feeding, hoeing, weeding, planting. Once we get a person trained, we like to keep them around for awhile, so we give raises. Send your kid our way (East TN) if they are over 16.

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Response to RoccoR5955 (Reply #1)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 04:04 AM

27. Ah, but that was the second thing he said...

...he said really the key thing to do is to fix the minimum wage to the cost of living. That's RIGHT on, and it bullet proofs the poor against the ravages of this constant inflation.

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Response to RoccoR5955 (Reply #1)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 05:38 AM

28. true it's not enough.

Better than what it is now but still not what it use to be.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Tue Feb 12, 2013, 10:43 PM

2. I dont think this is the solution and

please hear me out and dont bite my head off.
As it is we have a problem in that if the minimum wage is raised employers will just hike their prices and no traction will gained, what we really need is a carrot and stick approach to get companies to raise the workers wages on their own and make it worth doing so my suggestion would instead be to remove ever tax loophole companies are currently using and only give companies tax breaks dependent on the worker to boss/owner pay scale gap.
The higher the gap the more taxes the company pays, the lower the gap then the less tax they pay.

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Response to cstanleytech (Reply #2)

Tue Feb 12, 2013, 11:15 PM

5. You are buying into the right-wing meme that companies will simply hike their prices

and that is why a minimum wage increase is a negative. I just don't think that's true, especially if these companies want to remain competitive.

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Response to blueclown (Reply #5)

Tue Feb 12, 2013, 11:24 PM

6. Its not a meme, its a fact.

Look at how they have been raising prices on goods and services these past 10 years while keeping wages for there people pretty stagnant.

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Response to cstanleytech (Reply #6)

Tue Feb 12, 2013, 11:37 PM

9. Do you understand the burden of proof needed in order to call something a "fact"?

In fact, you state in your own reply that companies have increased prices on goods and services even in the absence of a federal minimum wage increase.

By your own theory, companies will raise the prices of their goods and services for any number of reasons. And while companies are free to do what they wish, it is the job of government to make sure that workers' rights are protected. Companies ultimately operate in a competitive marketplace, and if prices are raised too high consumers will go elsewhere. Companies cannot simply raise prices with no consideration.

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Response to blueclown (Reply #9)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 12:15 AM

13. Actually they are raising prices just fine with no consideration given to raising

the pay of the majority of people they employee blue, if they were then the poverty level you would think would be far lower and its not imo because the minimum wage isnt higher.
As for my "facts" you are right, its an opinion so I apologize for that error but hey if you have something that shows raising the minimum wage will not cause prices to just spike up and will end up pulling people out of poverty I am willing to listen.

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Response to blueclown (Reply #9)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 01:28 PM

40. I've been shopping for decades and I know the "facts" about prices, always up, wages

 

are always down. Raising the minimum wage is long over due. It will help the economy in a big way too. Vote out RebupliCONs, they're liars if they're not just stupid.

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Response to xtraxritical (Reply #40)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 07:29 PM

42. Fine lets assume they raise it how do you go about making it then so

employers "don"t" just raise their prices then or do you really believe they wont do that?

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Response to cstanleytech (Reply #42)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 11:58 PM

47. Having lived on minimum wage, it does make a difference when it is raised.

I am so proud of Obama to take this on, it's been a long time coming to index the minimum wage.

To answer your question. No, they still have to compete, and it makes it a little more fair to companies that have tried to pay a higher wage to their employees.

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Response to justice1 (Reply #47)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 12:46 AM

48. Like I said I truly hope you are right and that my fears are mistaken

as I currently do live on a fixed income so if things spike higher its going to really suck for people like me.

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Response to cstanleytech (Reply #6)

Tue Feb 12, 2013, 11:55 PM

12. Companies have been raising prices for more than 10 years.....and how long has it been since.....

....the minimum wage was raised? Hmmmmm????

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Response to LongTomH (Reply #12)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 12:17 AM

14. See my post to blue? Feel free to answer the question I asked there.

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Response to cstanleytech (Reply #6)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 01:17 AM

18. "Its not a meme, its a fact."

Oh come on. They have been screaming that crap since the CONCEPT of a minimum wage was proposed.

Their target audience is a put upon middle class who they keep telling their suffering is the fault of the government sticking it's nose in the wonderful private sector. They claim EVERYBODY is suffering despite record profits. They claim the ONLY reason you can't have a raise is because your boss can't afford it. Meanwhile, your boss is going before the shareholders and bragging about not only his earnings but the fact that you are stupid enough to keep working your ass off for dirt pay. Then they claim those profits HAVE to be higher every year and the ONLY way to preserve that is to pay people dirt.

So much for "trickle down". That extra money was supposed to go into PAYROLL. Not the pockets of the investor class.

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Response to Spitfire of ATJ (Reply #18)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 01:26 AM

19. I agree with you it was supposed to go help everyone and clearly companies have yet again

failed this nation when it comes to rewarding their workers but the problem is whats the best way to go about encouraging them to do the right thing? Clearly leaving it as choice on their part has failed.

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Response to cstanleytech (Reply #19)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 02:09 AM

22. Payroll has remained stagnant for far too long in this country....

If lower wages go up we get increases across the board.

Think about it. People NOW making 9 bucks an hour feel happy that they aren't making minimum wage.

If minimum wage goes to 9 bucks an hour they will expect to see an increase.

The rich LIKE it for money to be rare and limited to the lower classes because it makes THEIR money worth more.

They can still pay a hooker the standard $40 for a blow job. They'll expect $100 if the minimum wage goes up.

(No offense to sex workers)

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Response to cstanleytech (Reply #6)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 02:10 AM

23. Thoughtful take.

 

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Response to cstanleytech (Reply #6)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 11:12 AM

38. What was the cost of a gallon of gas ten years ago versus today?

I think that has more to do with price increases of goods and services.

We do a lot of shipping of goods all over the world.

EDIT: When I say "we" I mean I work for a company that does this.

Everytime the cost of gas (fuel) increases, we get new shipping rate increases.

If the shipping increases get to be too much, we must increase prices to offset that.

EDIT:

Two examples.

Shipping a pair of shoes from California to the east coast took about $10.52 with UPS Ground or FedEx Ground at the beginning of the year. It is currently about $11.52. Approximately a 9% increase in just 5 weeks.

Shipping the same pair of shoes from the US internationally to say, France or Germany. It went from $38 to $42. Approximately an 11% increase.

Shipping a baseball hat (less than 1 lb) from the US to Brazil via US Postal Service, Express Mail. The cost increased dramatically on January 27. It went from $38.67 to $50.02. Approximatey a 28% increase.


Cost of a gallon of gas in 2001: About $1.52 per gallon.

Today it's around $4.10

Transporting food from the farm to the grocery store takes gas.

Transporting goods manufactured in China from the port to the store takes gas.

Transporting the few goods manufactured in the US to the store takes gas.

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Response to blueclown (Reply #5)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 09:20 AM

37. They cry about this in Florida

OMG you have never heard such wailing every time some one even mentions raising the minimum wage down here. It is proven every time unemployment actually goes down. That is the only way Walmart workers will get a raise

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Response to classykaren (Reply #37)

Thu Feb 14, 2013, 08:22 AM

49. Actually there are other ways that the government could arrange things to

encourage employers to increase workers pay.
For example, higher corporate taxes based on the % of employees earning below the poverty line vs say what the CEO earns in pay which includes stock bonuses earned and other "perks" the company gives them also do something to link the employee pay vs the stock price as well as any dividends paid out with there being a higher tax on dividends depending on how many employees earn at or below the poverty level.

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Response to cstanleytech (Reply #2)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 06:28 AM

29. The very best economy we have had since the 1950s

came as a result of raising the minimum wage. The stimulus effect was almost immediate, because people making minimum wage spend every nickle as soon as they have it. There were no measurable layoffs and inflation was unaffected.

In short, it has been tried and it worked without any of the RW predictions of doom coming to pass.

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Response to quaker bill (Reply #29)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 07:32 PM

43. I hope you are right and that prices dont rise much if at all, we shall see.

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Response to cstanleytech (Reply #43)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 10:19 PM

44. Here is the thing

if you read into it a bit, in most economic sectors, labor is a but a small and declining share of the consumer price of virtually anything. In the worst case scenario where the vast bulk of the labor force is at minmum wage, labor costs will increase a bit less than 20%. Now since labor costs is perhaps 10 to 15% of your Happy Meal, the increase in price will run between 2 and 3 percent. So a $4.00 Happy Meal (I don't do McD so only guessing) will now run somewhere between $4.08 to $4.12. In short, most will not notice the difference, however the person making $14,500, will now make $18,000, and probably be able to get off food stamps (which guess what, you pay for too).

The repugs predicted that prices would increase and employment decrease when Clinton did this. If there was any evidence that any of that came true, the RWNJs would be publishing it everywhere. You cannot find a peer reviewed article that seriously makes this claim from actual economic data, because the economic data shows precisely the opposite was true. Prices did not rise and employment increased, and better yet the middle class actually gained ground. It was the only time that working folks made actual wage gains since Reagan was elected in 1980. These are simply the facts.

The RW point of view on this is simple speculation and fear with no real evidence to support it.

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Response to quaker bill (Reply #44)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 10:26 PM

45. Oh I agree with most of what you are saying

but the question is will the people who run the companies decide to stop being greedy sobs and not raise prices or atleast not use the excuse to raise prices? I just do not know but it wouldnt surprise me if they did use it as an excuse much like they have used every excuse under the sun to raise the price of gas.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Tue Feb 12, 2013, 10:45 PM

3. Can't wait for the screams

Of we can't afford to pay someone 9 bucks an hour! It will happen.

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Response to damnedifIknow (Reply #3)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 02:10 AM

24. The same day they report record profits to Wall Street.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Tue Feb 12, 2013, 11:26 PM

7. k/r

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Tue Feb 12, 2013, 11:27 PM

8. This is what is going to save us?

...and reverse the impoverishment of millions of Americans at the expense of the one percent? This was the highlight of the speech?

A raise to nine measly bucks an hour, which will not support anyone, and this is what everyone is talking about? Is this really the highlight of what he had to say?

_______________________________________

Did he say anything about holding bankers accountable?

Or rejecting cuts in SS and Medicare?

Or getting corporate money out of our electoral system?

Or lobbyists out of the wallets of Congress?

Or reining in the drug wars?

Or rejecting the pipeline and drilling and sale of the Gulf of Mexico?

Or stopping the new massive free trade agreement?

Or stopping the warrantless surveillance of all Americans and the militarization of our police departments?

Or stopping the corporatization of our schools?

Or stopping indefinite detention and the "kill lists" and claiming the right to murder American citizens without due process?

Anything about these major policies? Anything about reversing the corporatization of our government and the flood of lobbyists in Washington? Anything about the fact that virtually the entire "recovery" has gone to the top one percent, and that CEO pay continues to outstrip employee pay by obscene measures unseen in any other developed country? Any mention of the poverty numbers in this country and that one out of five of our children and seniors now live in poverty, and over a million of our schoolchildren are now homeless?

Any SERIOUS plans to address what was done to us and return what was stolen to the American people? Any plans to change the things listed above, which will continue and escalate the same devastating trajectory?

No, we are supposed to cheer about a proposal for nine dollars per hour.

Welcome to the second term.

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Response to woo me with science (Reply #8)

Tue Feb 12, 2013, 11:39 PM

10. $9 an hour isn't much.

But I think you missed the part about indexing the minimum wage to inflation, which is significant in of itself. These are baby steps, and we'd all like to see the minimum wage much higher. But this will be a significant boom to the poor if it is passed.

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Response to blueclown (Reply #10)

Tue Feb 12, 2013, 11:48 PM

11. I doubt it will pass with these tearorists in the house.

Maybe in early 2015 when, hopefully, these tearorists will have been sent back down in the holes they came out of.

But by then, mw should be raised to $10/hr instead of nine.

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Response to blueclown (Reply #10)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 12:46 AM

17. I admit I found that to be an intriguing proposal.

Of course if they do it like they do Social Security it might suck but otherwise its an interesting idea and one that you would have thought would have been put into place long ago when the minimum wage was first introduced.

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Response to blueclown (Reply #10)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 06:35 AM

30. $1.75 an hour is a bunch

when you are working for $7.25 an hour. In short, $3,500 a year is huge when you are currently working for $14,500. I was there when this sort of thing was done many years ago, it made a huge difference. Sure, the minimum should likely be $10+, but the impact of this if it passes on the lives of folks stuck at or near the minimum will be a huge change in quality of life.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 12:37 AM

15. The main problem is that is covers a whole country with different prices

 

9 dollars an hour is a good wage for a teenager in Oklahoma. OK, maybe "good" is arguable, but I know couples who live in decent houses who each make 13 or 14.

However, on the coasts 9 dollars an hour isn't even worth working for practically.

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Response to naaman fletcher (Reply #15)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 01:33 AM

20. it makes the minimum wage more even than it is now

are you against this rise in the minimum wage?

after your posts against the right of the disabled to have service animals with them, as allowed by law, are you ready to pick yet another indefensible position?

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Response to naaman fletcher (Reply #15)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 06:37 AM

31. But people are doing so

No matter where you are, working for $9.00 an hour will always be better than working for $7.25.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 12:44 AM

16. This terrorizes states like Texas who rely on minimum wages for there backwards economy to work.

Without minimum wage and uneducated workers, their states would fail. It's the 21st century version of slavery.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 03:04 AM

25. I'm with the poster who a week or so ago proposed a general strike.

That is the only way you are going to get the attention of any company since they know Congress is on their side. You need to hit the company where it hurts: their cash register. Its the only language they know.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 03:50 AM

26. I always thought $10.00 should be minimum but this is close and more than earlier dem wage proposals

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Response to trublu992 (Reply #26)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 06:38 AM

32. That sounds like a good round number to me

Although $9 would be a hell of a lot better than most states. Oregon is the second highest at $8.95 (Washington's is 24 cents higher).

I'm sure the Republicans are screaming "communist, communist"

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 07:48 AM

34. Points of fact

Total number of at or below minimum wage workers: 3,829,000

percentage of at or below minimum wage workers by age group:
16-24 years old 49.5%
25+ 50.5%

the "south" comprises of 48% of at or below minimum wage workers

Florida, Texas and NY have the largest percentage of at or below minimum wage workers

Service Occupations comprise 60% of at or below minimum wage workers with Food Prep and Serving related occupations comprising 423% of at or below minimum wage workers

Source (there is a lot more raw data here).

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 07:49 AM

35. When I was 15, I earned $12 an hour.

That was in the late'70's. I was a house framer (otjt) and this was not considered excessive pay. I eventually (many years later) joined the Union and earned a living wage for my family, benefits too.
In between those times, Reagan became President and eventually ( experienced by now) I could only find jobs paying $8 hrly. Despite all of the company Meetings, preaching the evils of Unionization, I joined the carpenters Union and became an industrial/commercial carpenter. The work was harder but I was able to earn a living wage...$9 an hour is nothing compared to what the owners "earn."

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Response to dotymed (Reply #35)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 11:49 AM

39. when I was 15, I earned the minimum wage $1.25 an hour.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 08:38 AM

36. THAT's our Democratic President.

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 01:46 PM

41. Unions, Unions, Unions

 

The only way to increase the portion of the American Pie the working class receives is Unions. You raise the minimum wage, the company will cut benefits, hours, or raise prices, not because they have to, because they can. It will be a convenient excuse. Until labor understands that the only way to increase wages is to commoditize themselves, we will see no gains from any of this. A quote from the article on techcrunch "10 reasons why 2013 will be the year you quit your job"

2) You’ve been replaced. Technology, outsourcing, a growing temp staffing industry, productivity efficiencies, have all replaced the middle class. The working class. Most jobs that existed 20 years ago aren’t needed now. Maybe they never were needed. The entire first decade of this century was spent with CEOs in their Park Avenue clubs crying through their cigars, “how are we going to fire all this dead weight?” 2008 finally gave them the chance. “It was the economy!” they said. The country has been out of a recession since 2009. Four years now. But the jobs have not come back. I asked many of these CEOs: did you just use that as an excuse to fire people, and they would wink and say, “let’s just leave it at that.”

http://techcrunch.com/2013/01/12/10-reasons-why-2013-will-be-the-year-you-quit-your-job/

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Response to kpete (Original post)

Wed Feb 13, 2013, 11:34 PM

46. There is more to this than minimum wages ...

Wages have drooped over the last 3 decades for all workers and their families: Upper wages ... middle wages ... lower wages .... ALL of them ...

Many families have been at the breaking point, and lost homes, cars, educations .... EVERYTHING that a good wage pays for ...

Employers, as stewards of the economy, have allowed incomes to fall so far in comparison to prices that it has reduced sales volume across the board .... How many local restaurants have went belly up these last few years ? .... Little shops on Main Street closing their doors due to lack of sales ? ...

Yet, IF employers supported wage INCREASES across the board (NOT just minimum wages), there would be greater sales volumes, greater demand, more required production to meet that increased demand, requiring MORE employees as the impact of that increased demand picks up steam ....

Sure, they will complain that they will have to 'fire some employees', and that may actually occur, but, by seeding the field with greater incomes .... by priming the pump of family wealth; there would be a steady increase in economic activity, and an ever improving employment picture ...

Sure, prices will go up on popular items ... But, what of those industries already experiencing poor sales ? ... Can they boost prices if nobody has been buying their goods ? .... Where do business owners expect to get buyers if the marketplace is bereft of family income ? ....

Trickle down is bullshit - It is degenerate ... It KILLS vibrant economies ...

Trickle UP is what provides wealth to everybody .... Trickle UP is what brought great wealth to the rich ....

And, the economic righties in DU ? .... they can piss up a rope .... We are tired of your 'financial acumen' poisoning our Liberal well ...

You're just as wrong as economic righties anywhere else ....

Wages are the life blood of the economy ... not capital ....

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