Tearing Away the Fabric of Courtesy

The loss of civility in the USA is real and concrete and will worsen unless Donald J. Trump and his administration seek to lower the temperature of the country. I do not see evidence of that happening so far.

Being civil to each other is the fundamental principle of courtesy which for years now has been a fabric that is stretched and threadbare, now to the point of tearing. The political election and most prominently pushed through the threadbare fabric of politeness we held dear. Under the theme of political correctness, the veil is torn and the ugliness it hid or held back is now coming forth.

Examples of this ugliness are everywhere and undeniable, to everyone except the new president-elect and his administration. They do not care that the people of this country are free now to express prejudice. That discourtesy towards others based on differences is now acceptable behavior.

A white man with a history if racial prejudice verbally attacks a woman working at Starbucks.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/post-nation/wp/2016/11/18/i-voted-for-trump-you-lost-white-starbucks-customer-accuses-barista-of-discrimination/?tid=hybrid_experimentrandom_1_na&utm_term=.edb5e5dee05e

A group of middle school students chant, “Build that wall.”

http://www.foxnews.com/us/2016/11/11/students-at-michigan-middle-school-chant-build-that-wall-following-trump-win.html

Any personally I was called “white boy” outside Safeway just yesterday but a triad of young black men. That hasn’t happened to me since I was in Richmond working as a educator.

The question is where does the lack of political correctness and civility lead us?

I was discriminated against as a white man in Richmond. When cuts were to be made in administration I was cut in favor of a black woman with less qualifications, except that she was black. This was not a figment of my imagination, it was real. I was told directly but the Assistant Superintendent and Director of Personnel that “White males are not in demand in the inner city.” One of these women was white and the other one was black. I was also told that my complaint about this treatment was “whiny”. So I took myself to an area where white males were in demand, a mostly white area of the state.

I am sure that black people would say, “Welcome to my life.”  A black person has a much narrower geographic option if in fact the statement that, “Black employees are not in demand here,” is a reality, if unspoken.

The anger about the discrimination I experience was real. I was angry that my skin color determined by employment status. But I remained polite. My anger didn’t go away quickly from that single incident but I did not take it out on other people. It is true that I looked a black people differently because I was surprised that having experienced so much discrimination that they would be to blatant about offering it up to me. I learned that discrimination is not a one way street.

But had learned that the way through discrimination was not to confront it with impolite language. It was to build relationships that were founded on politeness and courtesy. I knew from my years in Richmond that the way we speak to each other while we work through our anger, while we deal with our inner demons of bias, and while we suppress the impulses that do not represent who we want to be, is courtesy. It is politeness. It is political correctness.

I see politeness as a veneer that enables people to open conversation and conduct their lives in business, religion, and community. Courtesy is a form of patience that acknowledges that we may not always be the person we hope to be, the person we think we will become if we only suppress uglier feelings until they pass, or are replaced by new realities.

Has politeness become seen as an unnecessary custom that suppresses real feelings that people now feel the need and right to express? Perhaps courtesy is not to be replaced with coarse, direct expression of all prejudicial feelings and opinions. Perhaps we’ve lost patience with being nice to each other and somehow feel that the ugly side isn’t wrong and should be on full display.

I think we are in a dangerous time when disagreements often turn violent, and when violence often escalates beyond all reason in no small part due to the proliferation of guns.

I call on President-elect Trump to establish a norm of courtesy before it is lost, and the loss of self-control is out-of-control and leads to total disintegration of the fragile fabric of this society.

Electing a John Wayne Meme

I’m still trying to rationalize the election and why so many people, decent people, kind people, moral people, could cast a vote for Donald Trump who showed in so many ways that he is none of those things. All we know about him really is what came out of his mouth which at times was vulgar and all the rest (no need to rehash what didn’t ultimately matter).

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

I think this election is a hearkening back. I miss the 1960’s in terms of my personal life. I miss the time in my life before my parents divorce. That was a time when life was orderly. Things were OK and others were not and there were clear lines on the surface of things that for a kid made us all feel safe, that the world was understandable place with rules and norms and a way of doing things that was reassuring rather than jarring.

Enter the late sixities, well not that late in retrospect, before JFK’s assassination was the first seismic jolt to the normalcy of our little WASP world in the form of the Cuban Missile crisis, then the assassinations, civil rights, Vietnam.

Some memes stand out to me from those days and perhaps one of the central ones was the western. Memes for you oldsters out there my age and older is defined below.

Meme
(accessed on 11/13/2016 – http://www.urbandictionary.com)

1 : an idea, belief or belief system, or pattern of behavior that spreads throughout a culture either vertically by cultural inheritance (as by parents to children) or horizontally by cultural acquisition (as by peers, information media, and entertainment media)

2 : a pervasive thought or thought pattern that replicates itself via cultural means; a parasitic code, a virus of the mind especially contagious to children and the impressionable

Westerns were central to who men wanted to be back in the sixties. As a little boy we all had our cowboy boots, our hats, our die cast cap pistols and leather holsters that we used to shoot each other on the suburban sidewalks.

Media portrayed the western as a glorified time of American manhood. John Wayne, the Lone Ranger, Marshall Dillon of Gunsmoke, Ben Cartwright of Bonanza, Crocodile Dundee, Martin Riggs (Mel Gibson in Lethal Weapon) are a few of the patriarchal characters that we all believed our Dads to be, or wished they were.

Us little kids loved those men. They were strong, tough, fair, kind, tender, and they always won. (remember win, win, win until you’re tired of winning).

Ronald Reagan understood the meme before meme became a word. Donald Trump understands the meme today; hell, even Putin understands the meme riding shirtless on horses. Hillary couldn’t compete with John Wayne. She raised her voice in rallies and sounded like my Mom late at night when I broke curfew. John Wayne wouldn’t raise his voice, he’d lower it.

For all the young, tech-savvy people in the Clinton campaign, they should have hired an older guy like me to advise them. They needed to pop the meme bubble of Donald Trump. Clinton needed to have her moment denouncing the meme, “I knew John Wayne and you’re no John Wayne.”

Trump may or may not be John Wayne but the older white people who voted for him wanted a Clint Eastwood as president. In this era of fear of everything from radicals and the rise of foreign powers to the internal fight from “crumbling” religious establishments, white people missed their John Wayne meme. There is no John Wayne and the attempt to replace it in the media with the likes of Katniss Everdeen hasn’t taken hold yet, at least not with males and older white Americans. A teenage, female John Wayne isn’t convincing to those of us who watched our heroes punch out a bad guy. Girls are who our memes protected.

Bullying as a national topic of concern today is a reinforcing of the meme, it reinforced the need for a Trump who many people saw not as a bully but as an anti-bully. Remember the political correctness thing, he was not a bully but a courageous truth teller who stood up to media bullies and foreign bullies and cultural bullies. The western meme says you step up to the bully and punch them in the nose and that is what Trump did. It also says that a bully on the right side, is not a bully at all but a hero. (topic for a future post) Facing a down a bully you don’t run crying to mom, you sure as heck don’t run crying to dad. You step up and throw the first punch and take your licks.

I think Clinton’s Campaign Team missed some key points in this election.

  1. There were not enough millennials willing to vote to elect her.
  2. People feel bullied by the changes, the shootings, the bombings, the beheading. And Donald stepped up and said, “I’m your huckleberry”.
  3. Clinton is not a male archetype and she failed to convince old white guys she could go toe-to-toe with Trump/Putin/Jinping.

Given the fact that enough older white people and perhaps younger white people wanted a John Wayne meme for president means there was no way a grandma playing the woman card could win without all the votes of people who did not grow up with the John Wayne meme.

I tend to think millennials sunk her ship a lot more purposefully than Comey did but in the end I think election of a comforting, if flawed, patriarch in the face of all the horror we’ve seen in the world over the past eight years should not be a surprise and perhaps, unlike Mike Dukakis, Hillary needed to climb into a tank and fire off a few rounds.

Who the Hell Voted For Trump?

Trump won. I can’t believe that almost half the voters in America chose him. Even in liberal California, one in three voters cast their vote for Trump. I’ve been noodling this ever since the results came in, much like the majority of voters in the election.

Since the election, I find myself passing other middle-aged white people and looking them in the eye, and they look back at me, and I think I can read their mind, are you a Trump voter? We all want to know who voted for him, we want to understand. It would really help me if they’d just wear their red hats in public.

I have to confess that there is some small part of me that feels perversely comforted by the thought of Trump in the White House, some part of the white male bias in me thinks Trump kind of gets what I get, that we’re on the same team, which is a totally unexpected and aberrant feeling and hits my stomach like a bout of food poisoning coming on.

As I walked this fine fall day through the falling leaves under blue skies and cool temperatures, I wondered who among my fellow walkers in the Farmer’s Market voted for Trump, and WHY.

Here is where my mind went.

  1. Bernie Voters Did Not Vote for Trump, They Pushed Their Parents into Voting for Him

I keep hearing pundits saying that Bernie’s people wanted change since Bernie was out, they voted for Trump instead. While there may be a few schizophrenic anarchists who could justify voting for a candidate that is the polar opposite of Sanders, I sincerely doubt that many of Bernie’s younger voters cast a vote for Trump. The pundits claim this is what happened but I doubt it. What makes more sense to me is that independent voters, white middle class voters, were pushed toward Trump because of Bernie’s positions and Bernie’s impact on Hillary’s positions. Bernie pushed a socialist agenda, some of which Hillary was forced to parrot in order to try to hang on to the Bernie voters. She was forced left, toward adopting some of Bernie’s positions.

I was turned off by Bernie and his gimme generation followers. I think a lot of older voters were turned off and disgusted by the freebie campaign of Bernie Sanders. Boomers have been on this earth too long to think that anyone deserves a free ride, to college, to health care, to anywhere. We went to college and we paid for it, or our parents paid for it, and it was supported by government but there was no expectation that it would be free, that it was a right. Boomers believe you have to work for what you want. The younger generation seems to want it all, now, and they think they deserve it at no cost. In the face of a Democratic party that seems to value the millennial vote more than sound economic policy, I think a lot of older people were pushed to hold their noses and vote Trump.

  1. Boomers Want Trump as Millenial Daddy

The reaction to Trump’s election is like a nation-wide millennial temper tantrum. Not too unlike their reaction to Bernie losing the nomination if you recall the convention tantrum. Millenials think they deserve to have everything their way, including the election, and NOW! Well our Democracy doesn’t work that way so they can march and make signs and make noise and vandalize, but they can’t have the election their way. They’ll have to work for it over the next four years, they have to get off their asses and vote when the next election happens, they have to donate time and money, volunteer, and know what they stand for and why it’s good for the country, not only for themselves.

  1. Boomers Want Monsignor Trump

On the other side of the fence, I see a generation that raised kids without church, and so millennials lack an internal moral code to live by and to guide their decisions and view of the world. The millennial moral code is me, me, me and to hell with everyone else. It is obvious in the way they tune in to their phones and tune out the world, their social ineptitude reflecting lack of empathy, their inability to carry on a conversation with adults. Their helicopter parents made them think that they deserve to be catered to in every moment of every day and it starts in the back seat with the video playing. Entertain me, please me, gimme, gimme, gimme.

  1. Boomers Want John Wayne Trump

The boomers were the me first generation and they raised their kids to as the gimme generation. Baby boomers wanted to get what they wanted when their time at the front of the line came to them, their children think standing in line is annoyingly anachronistic and disrespectful of their entitlement because they deserve to be first, they are owed the fast pass as Disneyland.

Now millennials are out of the house and out of control and boomer parents don’t like it. They need someone to discipline their kids.

It is possible that part of the boomer vote against Bernie’s millennials, the “Occupy crowd”, was a ceding of moral authority they never asserted with their kids. They want Trump to be the strong man, the Cesar, the Gladiator, the John Wayne. Trump will whip these little nose pickers into shape.

Trump will put millenials in the army that he’s going to grow by 70,000. Boomers want Daddy Trump to teach their kids what is important in America discipline, ambition, male dominance. Boomers want Trump to be their kid’s generalissimo, their priest and holy father, he will be their chaplain and father superior.

That is what I thought about as I eyed, and others eyed me, with suspicion the middle-aged people among the crowd. Who are the traitors among us I could hear them thinking? Or maybe I was projecting.

Are my thoughts right or wrong? Am I too harsh on millennials lumping them all into one deplorable socialist basket? Probably.

But if I wasn’t just on an apple fritter hallucination while I walked today, then perhaps Trump’s election makes a little more sense, even if I don’t find it any less unsettling.

 

Invitation to Lead by Lies

I watched the election since Donald Trump entered the race and I wondered at how Republicans could accept that he lies, constantly. I don’t appreciate or trust people who lie to me. But the Trump GOP supporters appear to eat it up.

I confronted one about a lie on Twitter and when I had him cornered and he couldn’t deny that Trump had lied his response was, “I don’t care that he lies.”

Last night on the news I watched Obama at a rally in North Carolina. A protester was ushered out carrying his Trump sign and jeered by the crowd. Obama stopped everyone. He told everyone to show respect for the man because he had served in the military, that he was expressing his right to free speech, that he was elderly and that they should all respect their elders.

Then I saw Trump speaking to a crowd about the incident at a rally somewhere. His description of Obama’s response to the protester was that Obama had yelled at the man. He told the crowd they won’t believe it when they see it. His GOP supporters cheered and jeered and he egged them on. All with a lie, a horrible, obvious, insidious lie. He said the President did something that he did not, in fact what Trump told them was exactly opposite of what Obama did.

Is there a lie that will cause Trump’s Republican supporters to stop in their tracks and say, “Holy shit he thinks I am stupid!” is there a lie that would force then to look in the mirror and ask, “If he tells such obvious lies to me now, why would he stop when he becomes president?” And if he’s willing to tell such easily disproved lies that try to tear down the character of people who oppose him, and if his staff and surrogates are so willing to support his lies to tear down other people, then what will the country become if Trump is president? How will he govern if his key strategy is to lie and destroy people who oppose his views? Isn’t that the strategy of a dictator? Isn’t that what leaders of the worst world governments do?

Is there a lie that breaks the camel’s back? It is after months and months and months of blatant lying, a question that haunts me and makes me fearful for our country. I was taught at University that people have the government they deserve. Perhaps a Trump government of lies is what we deserve and if it is, woe to us all.

Taking an Election Break

I don’t know about you, but the long slow burning acidity of the presidential election that has me so turned off It tempts me to vote third party. The last thread of faith in the system that Obama touched to get my vote, that last careworn string that survived JFK, RFK, MLK, Vietnam, Watergate, Reaganomics, Bill Clinton, The Crash, The bailouts, the other bailouts, the lies behind the Iraq war, the leaks showing the surveillance and lies behind everything, the thread snapped and I am  at long last falling down and out of enchantment with our political system.

This presidential election has brutalized everyone I know. Nobody likes it, nobody can believe it, nobody likes the candidates, nobody appreciates what they do to each other, nobody appreciates what’s being done to the country, the opposition, the voters, etc.

Nobody likes the lying sleazy surrogates on every channel who change candidates like dirty underwear, who say horrid things about the opposition and then move on to work for them when their guy got booted from the race, who sit there and lie, lie, lie through their teeth without compunction, and all of this lack of character, backbone, principles, morals, all the deception and lies for money. They are a disgusting, wretched group of sycophants. If, going forward, I can’t watch cable news without their lying dead eyes looking out at me nightly like I am some simpleton too stupid to know they’re saying the candidate didn’t say something when I heard their candidate say it with my very own ears, and I saw the rancid putridity emerge from their mouths with my very own eyes, then I won’t watch cable news, ever again. I won’t miss it either.

The political system is a friggin’ mess so I boycotted cable news about 3 weeks ago and started watching sitcoms. I am a lot happier. I boycotted Twitter about 4 weeks ago. I tuned out and turned off.

The only thing I’ll tune in for is the first debate between Donald J. Trump and Hillary R. Clinton but if it is more of the same, I won’t watch the last two. I know who I am not voting for and that’s all I need to know.

Democrats and Republicans are to blame for this mess. I blame the presidential mess more on Trump and the GOP. But it is the job of both parties to make the 2 party system work. It isn’t working. If they can’t make it work NOW because they’re too painted into their ideological corners, then “we the people” need to dump them all and start over. “We the people” get along just fine most of the time.

 

Observations from the Sidelines on Campaign 2016

I am fascinated with the presidential campaign. I wish I wasn’t.  I spend too many hours watching coverage, speeches, debates, town halls, reading news article and taking any other opportunity to see the candidates speak, debate and disparage each other.

I am not a Trump fan. But I do find him to be interesting in the way I find all bombastic salesmen interesting. Their ability to choose their values within the moment, without hesitation or shame, always interests me. I am intellectually fascinated by the way they use willful dishonesty in making the sale but are simultaneously sincere in their belief that making the sale is the core of their goodness and at the very root of their self-esteem. They don’t care to hear what is wanted or needed outside of where that connects with the features of the product they’re selling.

I believe that is why Donald Trump seemed to all but ignore the fact that there was an Olympics going on. It did not promote his product of a broken America. Lots of great athletes doing great things wearing red, white, and blue. People achieving, winning and draped in American flags. It reminded me of a story I heard about an old pro golfer who when asked by a television reporter about an outstanding shot by an opponent said, “Why should I care, it didn’t help my score.”

Trump knows he’s preaching prosperity religion to poor, uneducated whites. He knows their fears, the ones borne of their lack of education, their lack of exposure to the world outside their impoverished communities, the shrinking white worlds many of us grew up in but which have become relics of a bygone era, a comfortable white era no doubt.

Trump has seized on the Angry White Man complex. It is best characterized by a man who lived in my apartment complex no long ago who had been laid off by a Campbell’s soup company. The soup company was moving its operations out-of-state to lower costs, it moved its operations to North Carolina, Ohio, and Texas where business taxes are more favorable, cost of living is lower, and where at least Texas is a right to work state where as such, unions are compromised.

The man worked as a janitor for over 20 years, a union janitor. He made over $20 an hour in that job. He was well paid enough to drive a decent truck, have an apartment and so on. He suddenly found himself given a pink slip and an early retirement. He began looking for work and found that his job skills in the rest of the working world paid a lot less than he was accustomed to earning. He was disillusioned, angry and not afraid to tell everyone about it. He moved after a long, fruitless search for another $20+ an hour job, and I am pretty certain that if he were here still he would tell me that he is supporting Trump.

That man is about my age. Born in the late 50’s and growing up in the 60’s and 70’s we are a unique breed of American. We grew up in the Autumn of white comfort, that brief period between the end of the Second World War and the end of innocence that I see as an aggregation of events. The assassinations of JFK, MLK, and Bobby; the Vietnam War, Watergate, the oil embargo and gasoline shortages, the 70’s recession.

My early childhood was a Hollywood movie, it was a weaving of Ozzie and Harriet, Mary Poppins, Father Knows Best. Our neighborhood was safe, doors weren’t locked, keys were left in the car, Christmas lights were on every house, most stores were closed on Sunday and everyone went to Church. School started the day after Labor Day and ended around June 1 and we were free to run the safe world unsupervised all summer. It was a good world. Dad worked and we got a two week vacation in the station wagon every year.

The problem with many uneducated whites today is that they hold on to that Disney-esque reality of their childhood as if it were Valhalla instead of what it actually was, a world built around a narrow set of norms and values that did not represent the real world, it was a façade of the real world we actually lived in, all wallpapered over in bright green and gold paisley prints. Behind the wallpaper and the closed doors and across the neighbor’s fence were all of the societal features, problems and challenges we now talk about openly.

In the 60’s if you didn’t talk about it, it did not exist. Homosexuality was a fringe bunch of perverts who run around in dark places doing awful things. When in fact our neighbor, married to a nice woman, was closeted and trying his best to live as a straight man to fit in to the plastic world the white society created. Alcoholism, drug abuse, domestic abuse, racism, bigotry all existed and were part of the fabric of our lives, but since we were all white, we all just accepted it as the norm, because it was the norm. Is it any wonder that someone like Clint Eastwood says things like “Get over it, it used to be no big deal.” He’s right that it wasn’t a big deal when we chose sides in a game by eeny meeny minie moe, catch a n……er by the toe, if he hollers let him go… Yes, that was the norm, no big deal to a group of white kids who’d never met a black child, did not go to school with a black child, whose parents knew no black people, whose church included no black people. We lived in a white bubble.

We had and have advantages as white people that gave us jobs as janitors that earned $20+ dollars an hour. We earned enough to be comfortable. A living wage kept us happy. The wealthy and the politicians that work for them are now scrambling to find a way to bring that living wage back into being now that the unions have collapsed and the wealth has concentrated, and the wealthy do not want to spread it (trickle it) downward. Politicians recognize that without a living wage that gives people like the man I knew from Campbell’s a decent standard of living as we in this country understand it, people get unhappy, dissatisfied, possibly even revolutionary.

Some white people want that white bubble back. That’s what Donald Trump implicitly promises. He is making the sale with millions of angry middle-aged white people.The problem I see is that he can sell it, but he just can’t deliver it. He cannot take this country back to the 60’s like he says he can because economically you have to be inclusive, minority people are no longer the minority in many areas and are no longer ignorant to the willful, systemic racism that kept them in poverty and most whites just above it.

Ours was a comfortable white world, but it was in some ways, certainly not in all, a false one that benefited from the subjugation of others for our comfort and advantage, and too many of us know it now, and we reject those parts of it that caused harm to others. But we white people who grew up in the cradle of the post-war boom continue to yearn for the safety, the lack of crime, opportunity, the peace of a world where positive expectations were the norm and the American dream was a real thing that motivated students and workers alike.

I reject Donald Trump’s sales pitch because it is only that; and the product he’s selling – a great, safe, white man’s privileged bubble of American prosperity – is false now and it was fundamentally false in the 60’s. Donald Trump sees the opportunity to make a sale. But what  is wanted by his angry white followers is certainly not what is needed by the country, and he cannot deliver it because it does not exist today, and it cannot be recreated.

 

Open Letter to Congress and the President

Ladies and Gentlemen,

I am a tax payer. I demand legislation to eliminate the tax free status of all churches in America.

It is wrong for my government to force me to financially support a group of people who advocate for the death of me and my fellow Americans as the Verity Baptist church is doing in Sacramento. Terrorist threats are a violation of law. I should not forced by my government to support these vile terrorists with my tax money.

 

Most Sincerely Cranky

The Latest Crap About $15 Minimum Wage

So I got this tweet, which is a kind of typical, doltish tweet from someone with an opinion and no critical thinking skills.

SpiRals‏@ToroidalSpirals

@Grant_Writer They said the same when they raised it to $7.25 an hour…

It’s full of general language, unsupported, that appeals to weak-minded people  too lazy to fact check.

He/she says, “They said” “the same” thing when “they” raised it (minimum wage) to $7.25 in 2009. The inference of course is that we’re comparing apples (raising the minimum wage from $6.55 an hour to $7.25) with apples (raising the minimum wage from $7.25 to $15.00 an hour).

It is obvious to even the most limited intellect that we are not comparing apples to apples, or even apples to pineapples.

Of course he/she uses “The same” to say that people complained about the increase in 2009 and therefore if people complain today the basis for the complaint is the same, it is meaningless. The trouble is that the argument this time is not the same and it is not meaningless. Increasing the minimum wage from $6.55 to $7.25 is the not same thing so reducing the arguments to irrelevant complaints is just plain lazy.

Here are the facts about the minimum wage from 1977 to today.

The minimum wage in 1977 was $2.30 an hour.

The average annual increase in the minimum wage per year from 1977 to 2009 = $0,15 per hour.

The proposed minimum wage in 2016 is $15.00 per hour.

If this is accomplished, the average annual increase from 2009 to 2015 (from $7.25 to $15) will be $1.11.

The difference in the amount of the increases in these two spans in (1977-2009 and 2009-2016) is 152%.

The increase to from $7.25 to $15/hour  is a 70% increase, not even close to the increase from $6.55 to $7.25, an increase of 10%.

To say the increase $15 is”the same” is a lie at worst, and ignorant and stupid at best, no matter what “they” say.

 

Socialist Arguments for a $15 Minimum Wage

All right, so I’m getting a lot of crap online from bleeding hearts about this $15 an hour minimum wage crap.

Here is how I see the arguments I am given.

What I think What I am told (the crap) What I think about what I am told
Minimum wage should be an entry level wage that enables you to gain a job, allows employers to hire a bunch of people, and is the first step on the ladder upward as skills, education, and experience are gained. Minimum wage was put into place to ensure that people weren’t left in poverty by unscrupulous business owners and should be today a “living wage” that enables people to enjoy all the benefits of living in the USA including housing, healthcare, family, etc. The federal minimum wage is $7.25 an hour and the federal poverty rate is $11,700 a year. If someone works full time (2080 hours a year) at the minimum wage they will earn $15,080.  If the purpose is to keep people above the federal poverty guidelines, mission accomplished where it is now.

The Federal Fair Labor Standards Act that put the minimum wage into effect did have the goal of keeping people out of poverty at $0.25/hour. This was 1938, the height of the great depression, and it was designed for factories mainly. Since that time companies use the minimum wage to offer entry level employment to unskilled and otherwise unemployable people.

Minimum wage will increase the costs for all people and the bulk of the costs will be paid by the people doing most of the buying, not the rich. The CEO’s are making SO much money and should take pay cuts to pay for the increase in minimum wage. This is so stupid I don’t know why people say this crap. McDonalds employs about 760,000 people. The CEO made $8.75 million dollars last year. If McDonalds increased salaries from the federal minimum wage ($7.25) to $15 it would need over 6 billion dollars more to pay the increase. Even if the CEO was paid zero, that leaves McDonalds short $5,991,250. So do the freaking math people. The CEO may make a lot compared to you, but compared to the reality of $15 an hour he makes nothing.
Seven states in 2012-2013 according to the National Education Association paid starting teachers less than the annual pay someone who works full time at $15 per hour would earn ($31,200).

Montana $27,274
South Dakota $29,851
Missouri $30,064
North Carolina $30,778
Nebraska $30,844
Idaho $31,159
Mississippi $31,184
Comparing the minimum wage to teacher salaries who are underpaid isn’t fair. Underpaid according to whom? You’re talking about a market-based, negotiated salary level as opposed to a government imposed salary level based on nothing more than someone pulling a number out of their ass. Raising the minimum wage for uneducated, unskilled workers to the level of a teacher is an insult and a disincentive to undertaking higher education.
Even if you raise the minimum wage to $15 and everything goes up 35% or more, there’s a well-established practice in labor relations called “me too” and if you raise McDonald’s workers above teachers, teachers are going to scream (rightfully so) and the salary will have to be raised. That means higher taxes in addition to the higher costs of commodities and services. But people deserve a living wage for a full days work. Wrong, everyone deserves a full day’s pay for a full day’s work. The level of pay is determined by the market, the skill involved, the effort, the education and training required. With $15 an hour, everyone loses and then gains, and eventually, the balance settles again to make the minimum wage of unskilled people right where it should be again in relation to all other wages, at the bottom, where there is incentive to raise yourself up. What isn’t going to change are the profits and high salaries earned by the shareholders and CEO’s.
Minimum wage should be low enough so that enough people can work to raise themselves up, go to college or tech school, gain the skills and the work experience needed to enter the work force at a higher level. THE VICTIM MODEL

But not all people can work their way through college, they didn’t finish high school, they have family obligations and situations that prevent them from accomplishing a higher education.

True, everything isn’t equal. But the USA never promised equal outcomes, only equal opportunity to reach those outcomes. If you can’t go to college because of life obligations, then them’s the breaks. Do the best you can, work at it more slowly over time, do whatever you can. Not everyone who is successful went to college, but they worked their asses off without excuses until they made it.

 

I am not a fan of victimization. I hate the notion. It is handicapping. It is often debilitating. It is a curse on people who should instead be encouraged and supported to achieve. Why do we think that giving unskilled and uneducated people a salary that is higher than a starting teacher or a Certified Nurses Assistant that make only $12.39 an hour on average nationally (US Dept. of Labor) is beyond me.

The astronomically higher minimum will create a class of servants who have no incentive to move up and improve their education and skills. It is primarily a socialist redistribution of the limited wealth of the middle class! It is not redistribution of the wealth of the 1%. With this $15 an hour minimum wage, all we will accomplish is to beat the economic living crap out of everyone in the middle class under the flailing banner of Bernie Sanders’ socialist propaganda bull shit.

#DotheMath – $15 Minimum Wage is Socialism

$15 minimum wage is socialism and Bernie Sanders likes it.
$15 minimum wage does nothing to reduce the gap between rich and poor.

No wonder Bernie Sanders likes the $15 minimum wage, it has the impact of raising the bottom while pulling the middle down. It is a leveling. It is a forced redistribution of already limited wealth of the middle class. It has nothing to do with capitalism and market forces. It has nothing to do with what made America great, that being offering opportunity that encourages people to rise.

Bernie likes the $15 minimum wage because he is a socialist. Perhaps he is at heart a communist. Afterall, if you pay people in servant jobs enough, people with no job skills or education to rise, you rob them of ambition, you rob them of motivation to be entrpreneurial. Why should anyone rise if the government will raise the minimum wage and use it to take from the middle class to give to the poor.

Bernie Sanders thinks he is Robin Hood. In the sample above, you can see how the rise in minimum wage impacts the price per pound of apples. Yes it is a fictitious example, but notice that if the farmer’s profit stays the same we all pay more. And there are a lot more middle class and lower middle class people than rich people who buy apples. You are going to pay this raise, not the rich. They will keep their profit margins intact.

Is Bernie going to give everyone else a raise to pay for all the higher prices? No, he thinks this is great, that the bottom is lifted up and the middle is brought lower while the rich are not affected, SOCIALISM people. #DotheMath

Cranky Since 2008