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Mulvaney and Stivers: Declaring National 3-D Printing Day Matters More than the Minimum Wage

As inflation continues to erode the value of the dollar, minimum wage workers across the United States are able to buy less and less with their meager pay.  According to MIT’s Living Wage Calculator, someone working full-time in Indianapolis, Indiana needs to earn at least $9.94 an hour to be able to pay for minimal living standards for themselves if they are working on a year-round, full-time basis.  Expenses are still higher if they have kids to feed.  Yet the federal minimum wage is set at just $7.25 — and minimum wage is just what the McDonald’s on Graham Road in Indianapolis is offering.  McDonald’s has long told its workers they should expect to work two full-time jobs to get by.  Is that kind of exploitation reasonable in a world where the McDonald’s corporation raked in $1,310,000,000 in profit in the 3rd Quarter of 2015?  Shouldn’t a person who works year-round, full-time be able to provide for themselves?

Here’s where we can cue in the conservative objection that minimum-wage workers are 16-year-old kids living at home who get fed and clothed by their parents.  But according to the latest report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, more than half of minimum-wage earners in the United States are above the age of 25.

Republican Representatives Mick Mulvaney of South Carolina and Steve Stivers of Ohio haven’t bothered to sign on to H.R. 2150, a bill to raise the minimum wage to livable levels.  They’ve got better things to do with their precious time (surely valued at much more than a measly $7.25 per hour).  What are Reps. Mulvaney and Stivers doing in Congress instead of raising wages for workers to livable levels?  They’re throwing their support behind legislation to declare December 3, 2015 the “National Day of 3D Printing” — a day of celebration everyone beyond the Washington, DC beltway entirely ignored.

8 thoughts on “Mulvaney and Stivers: Declaring National 3-D Printing Day Matters More than the Minimum Wage”

  1. Leroy says:

    And although States can raise their state’s minimum wage above that of the Federal level (as several have done), you can be pretty assured that the State of Indiana will not!

    1. Jim Cook says:

      And has not!

  2. Leroy says:

    Good article about the role of unfettered ultra capitalism in the mix….

    http://www.truthdig.com/report/item/the_illusion_of_freedom_20151227

    “A disenfranchised white working class vents its lust for fascism at Trump campaign rallies.”

  3. Jon sanders says:

    I am far, far from a hard right conservative, but I do consider myself a moderate capitalist, and look at wage scales from more of an employer standpoint. At latst report about 85% of the NUMBER of businesses in the US were catorgized as Small Business run my small LLC’s or sole proprietorships. Such businesses, if profitable, provide the owners with a living commensurate with the risk they are taking – usually their net worth is tied up in the business. If these businesses are forced to meet a steadily higher minimum wage standard, expenses will increase, return on equity and profitability will decrease and many will be forced to close. Multi-nationals and major corporations can handle expense increases, many smaller operations cannot. The other side of the wage issue is supply and demand. Employers would not be able to get away with paying ANY wage level if they were not able to find people who would work for it. If an area is faced with a labor shortage, wage levels will increase as a matter of necessity.

  4. Jon sanders says:

    As an added comment, much of the population has been brainwashed into the belief that the term “profit” is a negative concept. “Profit” may be preceeded by the word “obscene” which is seen as a serious negative and often is linked to actual dollars rather than a percentage of revenue. When profit is in the billions of dollars, it is often seen as “obscene” while the percentage of revenue may be within industry standards. In any event profitability is the key ingredient in a businesses ability to remain viable. Without it, in the normal course, the business fails and the workforce is dispersed. When a business fails it is invariably because expenses exceed revenues for enough time that equity is wiped out. Fraud, embezzlement, illegal operations, creative accounting are also reasons businesses fail, but lack of profitability is by far the major reason, and expenses, the major one of which is salaries and benefits, cannot unilaterally increase without corresponding increases in revenues for long.

    1. Jim Cook says:

      That’s all very nice abstract talk. But concretely speaking, it’s incorrect. Salaries and benefits actually CAN increase if there is room for it in profit. McDonald’s is a profitable corporation and has been for decades. There is room for an increase in salaries in the budget. The question is, what are your values? Which do you value more: humans who work full-time earning a wage upon which they can afford to live or the maintenance of a high level of profit?

      1. Jon sanders says:

        My point was centered in the concerns that ownership of small businesses face when confronted with increases in mandated personnel expenses outside of their control. As I noted, large corporations, which usually face the brunt of minimum-wage protests, can probably absorb such mandated increases. You might comment on my main point: the effect on an increase on businesses employing several people with annual revenues in the million dollar range. The usual answer is that such businesses just have to tighten their belts, increase prices and soldier on. The end result is that such actions often result in a non-competitive environment and/or a reduction in the owner’s income, neither of which is usually acceptable to the owner based on the risks taken for even being in the small business community.

        1. Jim Cook says:

          If a business absolutely cannot afford to pay its employees enough to live on when those employees work full time, then the business isn’t a sustainable business and you shouldn’t pretend it is. If a business can afford to pay its employees enough to live on when those employees work full time, then it should.

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