Federal Minimum Wage

Discussion in 'The Red Room' started by GhostEcho, Jan 20, 2021.

  1. GhostEcho

    GhostEcho Yojimbo

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    For those of you who think that there should be a minimum wage at the Federal level, and especially those who believe in the "living wage" level minimum wage, what do you think the actual minimum wage should be?

    The most common number I hear is $15 per hour.

    Do you think the Biden administration is going to push for and achieve a Federal level "living wage"?

    Discuss.
  2. Tererun

    Tererun Troll princess and Magical Girl

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    I think a federal minimum wage ignores the huge difference in living costs around the nation. 15 dollars an hour in the middle of nowhere is nothing like 15 dollars an hour in NYC. Even in states a minimum wage might need to vary. I come from around NYC. People commute for hours a day just to be in an area where you can earn so much more, and then go back to an area you can own so much more for you income. If you go out on Long Island and make minimum wage you were on the street, or in a really bad area working multiple jobs living paycheck to paycheck. But if you crossed the hudson you could live on minimum wage.

    In a capitalist system these variations cause people to get trapped in areas of poverty.

    I do believe we need a minimum wage to keep corporations from underpaying workers. We see without the minimum wage businesses will always underpay workers because that is in their design and they need regulation to keep them from killing their workers and customers off, because that is what they always do when you do not regulate them.

    I guess a federal minimum wage would be good for something, but when you have fluctuations in living costs it is just going to fuck things up. For instance seattle went up to 15 dollars an hour and did not fall apart. There is a reason for that. If you made the whole country 15 dollars an hour then seattle would have to again raise it's minimum because costs would adjust for the higher demand to live in seattle. This is because all of a sudden more people could move to a city area from the cheap seats and that would drive up demand for high cost city areas where more people want to live.
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  3. Ancalagon

    Ancalagon outta my way Administrator Formerly Important

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  4. Bailey

    Bailey It's always Christmas Eve Super Moderator

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    I am a strong supporter of a minimum wage, but can't speak to a specific minimum value in USD.

    The Australian minimum wage is around a good level, however a straight currency comparison isn't super useful. For reference though the current minimum wage here is AUD $19.84 per hour, which as of 21/1/2021 works out to USD$15.38 an hour. That's for full-time and part-time workers though, who receive paid public holidays off, annual leave accrual (equivalent to 4 weeks a year for a full-time worker), and paid sick leave.

    For casual workers (no leave accrual, no paid sick leave, no paid public holidays and more irregular hours) there is an extra 25% loading applied on top of that to compensate.

    In addition, money paid into Superannuation is at least 9.5% on top of that. That isn't counted in the base pay the employee receives, but is an extra 9.5% that the employer pays into the employees retirement account.

    For some handy reference, the current price of a Big Mac in Australia is $6.40 which works out to around USD$4.95.
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  5. Kommander

    Kommander Prince of Poop

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    $15 is probably good for now. Maybe not. The amount of money needed to live the lifestyle that a minimum wage is intended to provide varies from person to person. People have different needs.

    Although, if all that is done is raising the the amount, we're going to be right back where we are in a few years. Raise it to 15, and adjust it annually tied to inflation. if it's $15 for 2021, and inflation is 1.5% over the course of the year, then the 2022 minimum wage should be $15.23, and then $15.46 for 2023.

    Another thing is that minimum wage should be treated like pieces of flair in Office Space. While employers don't have to pay more than that, they should be ridiculed for being cheap asses if they only pay minimum wage.
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  6. Ten Lubak

    Ten Lubak Salty Dog

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    Yeah I think it would be a great idea for the US to have a federal minimum wage of $15/hr

    If you have a problem with people making $30k a year, you’re basically a cunt

    That ain’t going to go all that far in some places though so don’t go moving to New York, for instance , and be expecting big things :shrug:
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  7. Jenee

    Jenee Ind. Jenee of Winterfell

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    Just a bit of personal info here, but only to give relevance to what I'm about to say.

    My income is ... a little over $70K. with that, I have a decent 2 bedroom apartment in a nice neighborhood. I do not need a roommate or partner to help make ends meet.
    I also have a 2018 pick up - I'm upside down on the loan due to my own stupidity - but, am still able to make the payment.
    My adult son has been staying with me temporarily as he gets his life in order (nothing to do with anything here except that it adds to my expenses)
    I have internet, cell phone, electricity, water, etc.
    Food.
    The occasional trip to Omaha.
    I'm not one of those people who need to buy a lot of clothes and while I did go through a period in which I bought a lot of shoes, I was still able to make ends meet.
    And, if I'm really careful, I can still put a bit of money in the bank. Yes, according to my financial advisor and my ex-husband, I should be able to put massive amounts of money in savings. But, .... :shrug: it's my money and I like to spend.

    So, in my opinion, especially if one has a spouse and children, I'm thinking 60K would be the minimum one could get by, 70K would be better to still save a bit, and not have to resort to social safety nets.

    If you think that's too high, just remember there are executives who make at least 4 times that amount and no one bats an eye. It's time to start redistributing economic power down to the lowest people on the economic ladder.
  8. We Are Borg vs. USS Crazy Horse

    We Are Borg vs. USS Crazy Horse Probably a Dual

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    Yes, Federal Farmer barely makes minimum wage giving blowies and handjobs at the Circle K.

    Whoops. I've clearly entered the wrong thread.
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  9. NAHTMMM

    NAHTMMM Conversant in dark parables

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    I'm not going to pretend to have a feel for precise numbers, but $7.65 or whatever the current minimum is is definitely too low

    Not clear on why $15 -- whether that's just a nice round number, or the most that people think they can argue for without looking too extreme, or whether the economic models actually land on that number as a sweet spot, or what

    We should definitely go over $10 to break the irrational reaction of "oh, we'd be going from single digits to double digits, that's a biiiig change!" once and for all

    Also, I'm not against a lower tipped wage, but it should be within a couple of dollars of the actual minimum wage. Getting a big tip should be beneficial, not "well, I'd be getting that from my employer anyway"

    Personally, I'd prefer to see $14.99/hour so when the retail or restaurant sectors complain, they can be told "Why are you upset? You're getting an hour of human labor for less than fifteen dollars! Can you believe these prices? What a bargain!"
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  10. Shirogayne

    Shirogayne 1/06 Was An Inside Job Formerly Important

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    To be clear, $15 was the number that's been argued since the last increast 12 years ago. Honestly, we'd need $20 to make it liveable today.
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  11. Diacanu

    Diacanu Comicmike. Writer

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    *Reality pauses like a tape*
    *I poke my head in*

    Omaha? Why that's..in NEBRASKA! ;)
    *Cough* Uncle Albert *cough*
    :?:

    Sitcom audience- WHOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!
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  12. Jenee

    Jenee Ind. Jenee of Winterfell

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    Thought that was a given.
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  13. Diacanu

    Diacanu Comicmike. Writer

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    Maybe there's noobs.
    Maybe people forgot.
    Maybe I just wanted to be goddamned adorable.
    :shrug:
    :diacanu:
  14. matthunter

    matthunter Ice Bear

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    Works this way round too.

    We didn't forget, ya big lunk!

    *glances around and narrows eyes at anyone who is shuffling nervously*

    Right?!
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  15. Spaceturkey

    Spaceturkey official beverage of antifa

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    one site's opinion on what it takes for a single human to live in Toronto

    Housing/Utilities: $2,394.88
    Phone: $90
    Transportation: $196.25
    Groceries/Household Items: $266.11
    Dining Out: $270.00
    Partying: $120.00
    Health and Fitness: $80
    Coffee: $40.00
    Extras: $125.00


    Now between extras and leisure you could maybe shave $300 off.
    I'd round "Dining Out" into $10-15 daily for hot lunches and include the coffee budget in there. for another 300.
    That's about the going rate for a 1 BR with kitchen/bath/and maybe a living area. Older places with baseboard electric can triple an electric bill in winter.

    I just count my blessings for having a 10+ year old lease and grandfathered rent control. I pay a third of that for what can be charitably called a jr bachelor.



    different unit, same size... currently leasing for $1500+ hydro


    [​IMG]


    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2021
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  16. Faceman

    Faceman Negative Creep

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    Partying? Is that a euphemism for something?
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  17. Ten Lubak

    Ten Lubak Salty Dog

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    I'd just forego the dining out and add it to the partying budget, because $120 is only a gram and a half of nose clams ;)
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  18. Spaceturkey

    Spaceturkey official beverage of antifa

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    about 12 tall cans at a bar here
  19. Spaceturkey

    Spaceturkey official beverage of antifa

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    heh-I wouldn't have known even when I was doing the stuff still.
    Being the manager of an after hours has perks. Everyone's got a key for the guy pouring the Jame-O
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  20. Lanzman

    Lanzman Vast, Cool and Unsympathetic Formerly Important

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    Well, I make low six figures (with everything added in) and I live in a 1900 square foot SFH in a Virginia suburb of Washington DC. I cover all my expenses with enough extra to also partially support my girlfriend and her mom. BUT, as a single man with no kids I get boned on taxes. Around here a $15 minimum wage most likely means you're renting a small apartment with a couple roommates OR you're renting a room in someone's house OR you're living with your parents. As was mentioned upthread, local economies are going to have a huge impact on how far your $15/hour actually goes. As a gubbermint employee I have a "locality pay" added on to my base salary because the gubbermint long ago recognized it's expensive as fuck to live in this area and if they want to be able to entice anyone to work in government, they need to offer locality pay. Because apparently bringing the GS scale out of the 1960s is too hard. So a federal minimum wage should probably also incorporate locality pay.
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  21. Jenee

    Jenee Ind. Jenee of Winterfell

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    It's my understanding that that is exactly what a federal minimum wage is. No matter where you live, "this" is the country's absolute minimum. States and cities should adjust their minimum wage accordingly.
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  22. Lanzman

    Lanzman Vast, Cool and Unsympathetic Formerly Important

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    No, if it's a federal minimum wage, then states and cities have fuck-all to say about it. They can legislate their own minimums, but that wouldn't be a federal minimum wage, now would it?
  23. Jenee

    Jenee Ind. Jenee of Winterfell

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    I misspoke.

    Locally, a state or city may add to a federal law, but they cannot take away. So, if the Federal minimum wage is X, then a city or state can say their minimum wage is X+Y.
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  24. Mrs. Albert

    Mrs. Albert demented estrogen monster

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    $15/hour would be a great minimum wage for Omaha. A nice-ish one bedroom apartment is about $800-850. A livable studio is probably more like $600-650.
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  25. Useful Idiot

    Useful Idiot Fresh Meat

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    The only issue with a 15 dollar minimum wage is that other wages close to that number aren't being raised. So you can make 17 dollars an hour as, say, a medical assistant while a kid is making 15 dollars an hour at Burger King. That's not fair either. I support raising the minimum wage, but maybe us poor-but-not-minimum-wage-poor can get a bump too.
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  26. Order2Chaos

    Order2Chaos Ultimate... Immortal Administrator

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    It might be constitutionally problematic for the federal government to mandate a formula for states to use to set their minimum wages, though I think that's method that would produce the most optimal outcomes.
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  27. Jenee

    Jenee Ind. Jenee of Winterfell

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    raising the minimum wage will increase everyone’s wages. It may take time. But it will be more equitable in th end.
  28. Kommander

    Kommander Prince of Poop

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    Yes, those making slightly more than $15/hr should get an increase as well.

    The idea is that everyone who works full-time should be able to live at least a modest lifestyle, even if the job is something that doesn't require a lot of skill and most people could do it. If a job requires specialized training, experience, or education, involves significant risk of injury, or anything else beyond a simple job that pretty much anyone can do, then yes, compensation should be significantly higher than minimum wage. If a full-time unskilled worker deserves a one-bedroom apartment and a decent used car (which they do), then someone who had to go to college to get their job deserves a two-bedroom house in the suburbs and a new car.
  29. Bailey

    Bailey It's always Christmas Eve Super Moderator

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    The way we handle it is the Fair Work Commission acts as an independent government body that every year determines changes to the minimum wage. It isn't decided based on a specific legislated formula, but instead must balance various considerations. Here's a snipped from the legislation:

    If you're curious in more details, the legislation is here: Fair Work Act 2009 (legislation.gov.au)

    Doesn't seem like the US Federal government would easily be able to enforce something like this calculated on a state by state level? However it could probably encourage many states to adopt similar local legislation that goes above the federal standards (and might solve a lot of the issues considering the fact that the more expensive places in the US are also generally the ones that would be more likely to support things like minimum wage?)
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  30. Lanzman

    Lanzman Vast, Cool and Unsympathetic Formerly Important

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    I don't think even state by state would be fine-grained enough. New York City, for example, is in general a fairly expensive place to live. But go a few miles upstate and hey presto! Much more affordable. Maybe individual counties would be close enough to be worth calculating.
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