Minimum Wage Addresses Income Inequality - And Response (2)

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Senator Lamar Alexander suggests that raising the minimum wage is not the answer for low income individuals. While it certainly might not comprise the only answer, it does address income inequality. 

It always interests me that those who oppose such things as raising the minimum wage are among the wealthiest "representatives" serving in Washington. Neither Senator Alexander nor Senator Corker support raising the minimum wage.  Senator Lamar Alexander is listed as having an approximate net worth of $11.6 million, while Senator Bob Corker's estimated net worth is somewhere between $22 million and $105 million.  

I might not be the brightest light on the string, but somehow it just doesn't strike me that these two gentlemen are really in an economic position to relate to the plight of someone making $7.25 an hour.

Dr. G. Norman West

Sewanee 

* * * 

With over 70 years of data on the effects of the minimum wage to consider the only argument for the minimum wage is the false income inequality argument.  Every time the minimum wage has increased the poor are the ones who suffer through lost jobs and higher food, energy, shelter, and clothing cost.  

What we really need is something similar to the system in South Korea.  There is no minimum wage but they have a minimum stipend for all citizens for the government.  The catch is that all who receive the stipend must have a job.  (Using example numbers only) The individual may only make $0.25  (or 0.01 or $1.00) per hour but they are receiving an amount of the difference in what they earned and a ceiling stipend of $20,000 (or $30k or $40K) per year.  After an individual passes the stipend ceiling they no longer receive the stipend as they no longer need it.  This allows businesses to hire unskilled workers and train them, which is a great benefit for the company and the worker.  This system has the great benefit of encouraging people to work leading them to become productive citizens.  And yes, this system would be funded through taxes but it would replace the current systems that the non-productive are currently leeching off of at a U.S. nationwide average of over $50k per year. 

Instead of the negative force on our nation's productivity and individual self worth we currently have; this system would make our nations helping hand to poor families a positive force for the good of the nation and especially the poorest among us.  Teaching people that working to support themselves lifts everyone up. 

Wesley Garner
Cowan, Tn. 

* * * 

It sounds really good to raise the minimum wage and help out these people who cannot live on $7.25 an hour. However, I believe there will then be less jobs because businesses will not be able to afford employees. Along with a higher wage comes higher matching employer tax as well as higher workers comp insurance payments and if 401K and profit sharing are a benefit, then additional monies into that, too. Paid vacation and sick time will also be more expensive. The costs of goods will be more expensive, so we can all have a deficit in our income.  

Businesses now are forced to cut employees to part time from full time, because they cannot afford the insurance premiums forced on them by the government, and all the government taxes and regulations, so now let’s just force a higher pay scale on them too. Let’s see how many businesses we can force to shut their doors or move jobs overseas. Then the government can pay additional unemployment benefits. Then we can become a socialist country where the government takes care of us all. Look how well it has worked out for other countries over the years. 

Will this solve the income inequality? No. People who have gone to college and obtained an education or those who have worked their way up the corporate ladder or those who had had inventions or those in sports or entertainment or  those in sales or those who have worked hard and invested well and budgeted, (and the list goes on) deserve what they make. So now let’s force everyone over a certain dollar amount to contribute to the not so well funded folks. That’s socialism, isn’t it? 

Raising of minimum wage appears to be a political move before the November elections. 

Suzanne Keith


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