Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Twelve bucks an hour: What would happen?



We know that Walmart gets away with paying its employees so little because Uncle Sam picks up the slack. Taxpayers pay for the workers' health care (via the emergency room, usually) and for food stamps. Basically, your money is being used to make the Walton family rich. What would happen if Walmart workers received enough money to make it on their own?

Twelve bucks an hour should do it. That's a living wage.
Now, a new study by UC Berkeley has proven that, if they were to implement a $12 minimum wage and passed on the entire cost to customers, it would only cost them a measly extra $.46 per trip. Would YOU be willing to pay an extra 46 cents if it meant that America’s largest employer would finally pay their employees enough to live a dignified life?
By the way: If you go to the story on the other end of that link, you'll see an interesting dialog about unions. One reader opined that unions were the reason why the American auto industry (almost) went under. The response:
sorry to burst your bubble your living in, but the auto makers problems were caused by executive greed and mismanagement. Working in the auto industry for 35 years I have seen the mismanagement first hand. and after the union didn't take raises for 12 years did you see the price of the vehicles come down? nope. but you did see fired CEO's get millions in bonuses.
The Randroids simply cannot argue away the fact that America's most prosperous years occurred when unions thrived. Why? Because well-paid workers buy things, and the buying of things keeps the economic engine humming. Walmart is starting to struggle because underpaid American workers can't even afford to buy the cheap crap made by underpaid Chinese workers.
Comments:
"Walmart is starting to struggle because underpaid American workers can't even afford to buy the cheap crap made by underpaid Chinese workers."

Relying on the kind of goods sold at Walmart drives up the cost of living, because they're designed to be disposable. In the long run people with low incomes really can't afford the cheap crap. Full disclaimer: I have an easy time taking that stand because I'm alone and have no problem making do while saving up for something.
 
I meant to write "full disclosure" instead of "full disclaimer." My pride compels me to make that correction.
 
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