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Thursday, March 22, 2007

Raise the Minimum Wage!

"The US senate passed a bill to boost the federal minimum wage by $2.10 an hour over the next two years, bringing the federal minimum wage to $7.25 an hour by 2009. The bill contained amendments with controversial tax cuts for small businesses. The increase in the minimum wage is the first in a decade. It was approved by a 94-3 vote, finishing a nine day debate on the senate floor. The bill will now be reconciled with the House version that contained no tax provisions passed on January 10, 2007.
Senator Leahy voted yes on the bill, Senator Sanders Voted yes on the bill, and Representative Welch voted yes on the bill."

I think its very interesting to note that this site quotes a study that shows the last minimum wage increase had little to no impact on businesses. In fact it made measurable improvements in lower unemployment rates etc... So much for the Republican argument against raising the minimum wage. The Republicans would lead you to believe that by raising the minimum wage you will actually lose jobs. Businesses will have to eliminate positions at the low end of the pay scale (the expendibles) in order to maintain staff payrolls. What a bunch of crap! How about increase the price of your product by 1% and let the people who can afford it shoulder the burden.

I think the key thing to point out is that, while the minimum wage has stayed the same, government entitlements have seen steady increases. The payoff for working has too be greater than the payoff for being poor. People will work if it's wortwhile. Why bust your ass if you can get to the same nowhere in life by walking to the mailbox and getting a check? In either instance, you have to provide a liveable wage. Oh and by the way, we haven't even begun to discuss how the minimum wage stacks up against housing or healthcare costs. That is another lengthy discussion altogether. How did things end up this way? Why has the income gap grown into an impassible Great Divide? Mobil/Exxon and others are making record profits and the guy that pumps your gas can't afford housing without working a second job....Oh, wait. We already eliminated his job years ago with the greedy advent of self-service.....That's ok, I hear they're hiring like crazy in India and China. It's kind of a difficult commute though.

Alas, I'm left wondering what plausible argument one could make as to why the minimum wage is not tied to economic indicators or perhaps Congressional pay raises....
Read more about the facts here!
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