Saturday, July 2, 2016

The Young Turks on the Minimum Wage.

Very sharp, superb commentary from the The Young Turks as usual.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ORoZgyz_N4c


As momentum builds to raise the minimum wage, Fox News’s Stuart Varney is fighting back. He wants to ensure that the lowly plebs don’t get paid $15 an hour. Cenk Uygur, John Iadarola (ThinkTank), Jimmy Dore, and Michael Shure, hosts of The Young Turks, break it down. Tell us what you think in the comment section below.

"The $15 minimum wage is going into effect in several cities starting today, and the panel at Fox Business’ Varney & Co. today were simply horrified by it.

Speaking from Bermuda, panelist John Layfield explained that there is no minimum wage in the country and it’s an economic paradise where children work for tips...

Varney then marveled that people who work 40 hours a week and make $15 an hour will make a yearly salary of $30,000. Darlings, how ghastly!

Panelist Elizabeth MacDonald shared Varney’s disgust that people who work 40 hours a week would not be making starvation wages anymore because these jobs are “supposed to be an entry-level job, it’s not supposed to be a career.””*


57 comments:

MRW said...

Until the federal government says it will pay that for jobs, it ain’t gonna’ stick.

Andrew Anderson said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Andrew Anderson said...

Well then let's redistribute assets and/or have a generous Universal Basic Income and then we can abolish Minimum Wage Laws.

Ideally, working for someone else (a job) should be voluntary anyway, shouldn't it? Otherwise it's slavery?

Kaivey said...

The Basic Income sounds fab.

The system is stacked against the poor, and many are caught in a capitalist system they hate. They didn't do well at school for one reason or another, and in fact, poverty has a lot to do with it when families get stressed.

In modern society people have no means to support themselves well outside of the system as there is no spare land left. So they are forced to compete with the millions of others for the few jobs that there is. It's either low pay or go hungry on the streets. The Basic Income gives them the power to say no.

Some people say that the poor should work harder if they don't want to live in poverty. They shift the blame onto the individual. Firstly, as companies scour the world for the cheapest labour, this means almost everyone will have do become self employed, and many will fail and suffer - alcoholism is already rife.

Secondly, people have the right in a democracy to vote for something different, but they never get given the choice. A government could help people to set up cooperatives so that they can give themselves work.

Andrew Anderson said...

A UBI and/or asset redistribution is justice too since government subsidies for private credit creation are UNJUST and have led to gross wealth inequality.

And those subsidies go back to at least the Founding of the US since its Constitution fails to provide a risk-free storage and transaction service for its fiat - an increasingly obvious duty of a monetary sovereign given the insights of MMT.

Andrew Anderson said...

That is, a service for all citizens and not just for banks as is the case today.

Andrew Anderson said...

A government could help people to set up cooperatives so that they can give themselves work. Kaivey

You'll never hear it from the "money must be debt" crowd but shares in Equity, common stock, is a perfectly valid private money form that shares wealth and power rather than concentrate them.

However, government subsidies for private credit creation enable those with equity to bypass the need to share it and to legally steal purchasing power instead.

Andrew Anderson said...

In other words, without government subsidies for private credit creation, it's very possible we'd have had a lot more cooperatives formed.

Kaivey said...

Can you recommend a good book on your ideas, Andrew? I find them very radical, and I'm interested. I'm going to be reading The Millenial's Money by J.D Alt next week when I'm on holiday. It looks like a very good book on MMT. I don't get a chance to read so many books nowadays with the internet and Tom keeps me busy.

Andrew Anderson said...

Maybe I'll write one.

But my main inspiration is the Bible, especially the Old Testament. For example, in the OT profit is GOOD but profit taking ISN'T GOOD! So how can one have profit without profit taking? Common stock is one answer since the stock itself can be issued and used as money without touching the assets as paying interest or dividends would necessarily do (thus taking profit). And of, course, common stock does not require usury, a no-no between fellow countrymen (Deuteronomy 23:19-20)

Also, Leviticus 25 informs we (all citizens of a country) should have farmland that we can't permanently lose and the OT has other provisions to prevent anyone from starving such as the right to glean.

But since the OT says we can't commit sodomy in public, we must ignore everything else it says too, according to Franko. Well, not me.

Matt Franko said...

Don't forget about stoning adulterers and then no shellfish or pork products....

I don't know what I would do without baby back ribs or bluecrabs and oysters....

Matt Franko said...

And PS I'm not going to stone anybody either.....

John said...

Matt: "Don't forget about stoning adulterers and then no shellfish or pork products...."

Have you ever read "The Year of Living Biblically" by A.J. Jacobs? I think you'd enjoy it.

Kaivey said...

And the Bible talks about debt jubilees too, because it can be impossible for some poor people to get out of debt. It just ends up escalating. This happened to a lot of third world countries.

GLH said...

Kaivey
One of the best books I know of on the economy is Michael Hudson's "The Bubble and Beyond." Also, read "Killing the Host" and you will understand what is happening today.

Bob said...

"March towards robotics..."

Which is why, as Neil Wilson pointed out, we should be increasing the cost of labour.

Fox News luddites.

Matt Franko said...

"But since the OT says we can't commit sodomy in public"

It doesn't say that it says they were to put to death these people here:

"Consecrate yourselves and be holy, because I am the Lord your God. 8Keep my decrees and follow them. I am the Lord, who makes you holy." Lev 20:7

Key takeaway: "keep my decrees..."

Ok, does He decree 'no sodomy!" ?

Noooooo....

Here is the decree:

 ‘If a man has sexual relations with a man as one does with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable. They are to be put to death" Lev 20:13

The 'decree' is to put them to death... NOT "no sodomy!"

He knows the sodomy is going to happen because He delivered mankind over to be doing those acts in the first place....

So He can't decree "no sodomy!" if He did then it wouldn't make logical sense... Why would He deliver mankind over to be doing those acts and then say "no sodomy!" at the same time? ("house divided against itself....")

But He can decree for the Israelite cohort to kill those among them who engage in those acts.... At least I don't see any logical inconsistency there.... Think of a filter function in electronics....

But again I'm not an Israelite I'm a Cainite so I have an external perspective on all of this whacky OT stuff...

Andrew Anderson said...

Two or more witnesses, Franko. That's public enough for me.

Andrew Anderson said...

Which is why, as Neil Wilson pointed out, we should be increasing the cost of labour.
Bob

So employers will have even more incentive to automate?

The solution is justice via a UBI and/or asset redistribution. That makes the cost of labour irrelevant since people won't need jobs to live.

Ignacio said...

For me anyone who says "do somethign because is written in an old book" is instantly disqualified to talk about policy making.


Funny enough this dumps in the same category religious nuts and economists, quelle suprise!.

Realize also that only a small fraction of humanity shares your belief-system, and even within that belief system is not homogeneous.


Facts please.

Andrew Anderson said...

Kaivey asked a question and I answered it.

Besides, there's still plenty of Christians in the US and Protestants, at least, are to respect (to say the very least) the Bible, including the Old Testament.

So if Christians in the US should wise up about the injustice of the money system, they'd be a powerful force for reform.

Andrew Anderson said...

The issue needs to be dealt with distributionally rather than restraining innovation.
Tom Hickey

Yes but the need for redistribution could have been largely precluded if the fiat/credit system had been designed ethically to begin with.

Tom Hickey said...

Which is why, as Neil Wilson pointed out, we should be increasing the cost of labour.
Bob

So employers will have even more incentive to automate?


Absolutely.

This is the way forward. Technological innovation increases productivity which increases the opportunity for leisure. The issue needs to be dealt with distributionally rather than restraining innovation.

Andrew Anderson said...

So we a need a JG* to give employers more incentive to automate so we can have more leisure?! Where's the leisure in a job, pray tell?


*The key feature of a guaranteed job is the preemption of 40 or so hours a week of the worker's time so he can't bid down wages so easily.

Tom Hickey said...

With the advent of significantly more leisure, a new concept of distribution and therefore economics will emerge. What it will look like is not foreseeable. On the way a JG will almost certainly be required to keep the system functional. The way to do a UBI is not to distribute money but rather real social benefits that lessen or obviate the need for private indebtedness by expanding the notion of public goods and utilities to include all necessities and even some amenities.

Andrew Anderson said...

On the way a JG will almost certainly be required to keep the system functional Tom Hickey

Does not follow. An income guarantee, yes. But a work-for-someone-else-gaurantee, no.


The way to do a UBI is not to distribute money but rather real social benefits that lessen or obviate the need for private indebtedness by expanding the notion of public goods and utilities to include all necessities and even some amenities. Tom Hickey

The solution to private indebtedness is to abolish it in a manner that does not cheat non-debtors, such as Steve Keen's "A Modern Jubilee" - periodically if necessary - and to eliminate government privileges for usury.

Tom Hickey said...

Income guarantees are right wing ploys to eliminate social benefits and cut back spending on public goods.

It's a trap and those who fall for it are just politically dumb. It would not work economically anyway for the reasons that others have pointed out.

Andrew Anderson said...

Then forget an income guarantee and make it a Universal Basic Income for all adult citizens with no means testing.

Btw, what social benefits and public goods do you have in mind?

Andrew Anderson said...

It would not work economically anyway for the reasons that others have pointed out. Tom Hickey

But paying people to waste their time will? Since the point of a JG is to employee people, not necessarily to get meaningful work done?

Matthew Franko said...

"Two or more witnesses, Franko. That's public enough for me."

I dont give a flying F if you have 2,000 witnesses.... I'm not stoning anybody period and none of that OT stuff does or ever did apply to me I can assure you... to learn from it, you have to take it in the context that it was all a big demonstrative failure of the approach of 'repentance' (change) and all of that is over now...

(btw just picked up 3 racks of pork back ribs at COSTCO ($2.99/lb) for barbeque tomorrow on the 4th can't wait!)

Tom Hickey said...

Btw, what social benefits and public goods do you have in mind?

Free schooling from preschool to PhD

Free day care.

Free health care on demand.

Free elder care.

Free access to educational materials for life-long learning including free Internet access for all and publicly funded content open to all.

Free recreational facilities and cultural events.

Free public transportation.

Free communication.

Free basic food supply.

Free public housing.

You get the idea. These are just some of the necessities.

But paying people to waste their time will? Since the point of a JG is to employee people, not necessarily to get meaningful work done?

Providing all this is going to take public hiring and publicly funded non-profits. There's plenty of work to go around that is productive of necessary and useful goods and services.

"From each according to ability, to each according to need." Where have I heard that before? This is a description of a reciprocal society.

The bottom line question is, what does it mean to live a good life in a good society? That's a question that all are called up to answer as individuals and for the society as a whole to answer through its culture and institutions.

The aim is ideal society in which negative factors are reduced to a minimum and positive factors maximized to the extent that resources permit.

This is neither novel nor "Marxist" in spite of the above quote. Bucky Fuller wrote a number of books about it, for instance. It's doable with present resources simply by reorganizing priorities and changing the prevailing mindset, which leads to social, political and economic dysfunction.

It's a no brainer. Only a deeply brainwashed society would fail to realize it and commit social resources to making a tiny group super-rich and keep the world engaged in perpetual war or threat of war, which keeps the present system going. It's totally dumb.



Andrew Anderson said...

I dont give a flying F if you have 2,000 witnesses.... Franko

It makes a difference since it invades OTHER people's privacy - including that of children. Public spaces are public spaces and rules should apply concerning behavior. Do it in private and there's no problem.


(btw just picked up 3 racks of pork back ribs at COSTCO ($2.99/lb) for barbeque tomorrow on the 4th can't wait!) Franko

And I'm waiting for my split pea soup with BACON bits to heat up. Yum!

Tom Hickey said...

In some (many) countries public displays of affection are either discouraged culturally or made illegal.

It's always a question of drawing lines.

Who gets to the draw the lines? On what basis?

Andrew Anderson said...

Free schooling from preschool to PhD

Free day care.

Free health care on demand.

Free elder care.

...

Free basic food supply.

Free public housing.You get the idea. These are just some of the necessities.
Tom Hickey

With just income and wealth distribution, a lot of those "free" goods and services would not be necessary in the first place since people could afford to buy what they needed to a large extent.

So the provision of those "free" services to a large extent is not justice but rather an attempted substitute for it.

Tom Hickey said...

Neither are going to happen anytime soon so there is no use in arguing over it while the world speeds toward oblivion.

Bucky Fuller wrote a book entitle, Utopia or Oblivion.

Those are the stark choices. Either we get ahold of this military-industrial-financial-intelligence-governmental complex or it will exterminate us all.

What's happened since the end of WWII and especially since the collapse of the USSR is that the US and its allies are building up the world's most powerful military machine ever assembled to guarantee world hegemony for the US and its vassals and minions.

One might expect that this would provoke a reaction and of course it has. Proliferation is increasing and accelerating as Russia and China arm up for example, driving yet more military expansion in the West.

This has a very predictable outcome and the nuclear clock has never been closer to midnight.

The alternative according to Fuller:

"The present top-priority world problem to be solved may be summarized as how to triple, swiftly, safely, and satisfyingly, the overall performances per kilos, kilowatts, and man-hours of the world's comprehensively invested resources of elements, energy, time, and intelligence. To do so will render those resources - which at the present uncoordinated, happenstance, design level can support only 44 per cent of humanity - capable of supporting 100 per cent of humanity's increasing population at higher standards of living than any human minority or single individual has ever known or dreamed of and will thus eliminate the cause of war and its weapons' frustrating diversion of productivity from the support of all mankind." (p.334)

Bob said...

The solution is justice via a UBI and/or asset redistribution. That makes the cost of labour irrelevant since people won't need jobs to live.

Before that can happen, the ideologues must be confronted with the specter of increasing unemployment. And instead of blaming the individual, the blame will fall on structural changes in the economy i.e. automation.

Matthew Franko said...

" BACON bits"

Don't tell me... its turkey bacon????

Calgacus said...

Andrew Anderson: With just income and wealth distribution, a lot of those "free" goods and services would not be necessary in the first place since people could afford to buy what they needed to a large extent.

So the provision of those "free" services to a large extent is not justice but rather an attempted substitute for it.


Tom, of course is right on all counts above.

For this gets things even more backwards than the average UBI proponent, who in turn make the neoclassical/mainstream economists look good (Wray). And (mainstream) economists (econometricians/forecasters) according to old saw that Galbraith liked but didn't originate, make astrologers look good.

Again, UBI /= justice, UBI = slavery (but because it simply can't work, it is just the tragedy repeated as a farce). On the other hand, a JG is logically, apodictically necessary to a "just income & wealth distribution".

The free (or affordable) services are "justice". The crazy idea to charge for them & pay people a fake UBI income to pay for them (why on earth bother? - this is just playacting, at best) is not even an "attempted substitute for", but the antithesis of justice. This is the pernicious privatization = briberization going on right now - replace state run prisons or schools or medical services with inferior, more expensive, private ones. Replace public water systems with ones that charge an arm and a leg. Etc everywhere ad infinitum. For surely these wonderful private providers (of "justice" - ha!) wouldn't raise prices to get every bit of the lesser people's UBI/BIG "income" - oh no no no. BIG = Billionaire's Income Guarantee.

I know you mean well, but this is hyper-neoliberalism for those born ass-backwards yesterday.

Matt Franko said...

Tom that "complex" is what is making all of our material systems function right now.... And function very well imo....

You get rid of that "complex" and we are Venezuela or back to teepees... Noooooo thanks...

You non material people should just let us material people handle it and take a chill pill...

. But of course, we want to get paid well you just have to get over it...

Matt Franko said...

Tom if everyone majors in bongo playing in college or if you drive out all the non bongo players we're going to have a hard time with things like clean water, sanitation, transportation, medicine, agriculture you name it look at Venezuela....

Tom Hickey said...

A lot of people agree with you, Matt.

Historically countries that prepared for war have gone to war.

Moreover, it's a foregone conclusion that the next one will involve WMD, either nuclear (Russia, China), or chemical/biological (radicals). In fact, the radicals are already using chemical weapons.

To me all this looks like insanity.

Tom Hickey said...

Bucky Fuller gave the example of Bell Labs. It was designed as an R&D center outfitted with state of the art resources and staffed with the best and brightest who were turned loose to "play." The creativity was amazing and the innovation paid for the investment thousands of times over.

Fuller suggested that doing this even on a limited scale socially would produce similarly enormous innovation that would "pay for itself" thousands of times over in real terms owing to the innovation that would be unleashed.

The mistake of capitalism is that money-incentivized entrepreneurship is needed to create the incentive for innovation.

The reality is that humans are naturally creative and love to play. Create "sandboxes" for teams to play in and watch the outcome, especially when this is the basis of education beginning in preschool.

According to Sir Ken Robinson, every child is a genius at age three but the percentage of geniuses begins to decrease with every successive year of education. He lays it to the educational paradigm and advocates changing the paradigm.

Most of the issues that humanity faces now are self-imposed. We have the knowledge and resources to solve virtually all the so-called problems that humanity faces and we also know how to go about solving those issues that remain to be resolved.

The trouble is that we just can't get our shit together to do it. As Roger says, it's a coordination issue. We are not taking advantage of return on coordination, which is exponential.

Tom Hickey said...

The secret to creating ideal society is simple.

The way to abiding individual happiness lies in making others happy.

The more people that do this, the more the process is self-augmenting.

Why this is not easy: It requires love.

Real love is putting others' happiness before one's own.

This is the teaching of perennial wisdom.

John said...

Matt: "If a man has sexual relations with a man as one does with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable. They are to be put to death" Lev 20:13

Well, perhaps this is pedantry on my part, but it is a literal and physical impossibility for a man to have have sexual relations with a man *AS ONE DOES WITH A WOMAN* because men don't have vaginas. Or am I missing something here? It really wasn't the kind of thing that came up during my youthful happy clappy Anglican days.

Other than a bad translation, which the Bible is rife with, there is another possibility. A man may sodomise a woman but to do so to another man (that is the anal sex "as one does with a woman") is "detestable" and "are to be put to death". There is therefore a double standard in the law of sodomy.

I'll have to pop visit my local churches and ask for clarification.

Andrew Anderson said...

Neither are going to happen anytime soon so there is no use in arguing over it while the world speeds toward oblivion. Tom Hickey

One message of the Old Testament is that it is never too late to repent if we are willing. Even when Nebuchadnezzar was outside the walls of Jerusalem the Jews could have repented and spared themselves a lot of misery. Indeed, they did repent for a while by freeing their illegally held Hebrew (presumably debt) slaves and God called off the Babylonians. (Alas, the repentance was only temporary since they re-enslaved those they had freed when they thought the Babylonians were gone for good. God was not amused to say the least (See Jeremiah 34:12-22))

My focus on justice is precisely because that is what can move God to spare us. We can start with a Steve-Keen-like debt jubilee to free our own debt slaves. And we should eliminate a major cause of that slavery: government subsidies for usury.

Matt Franko said...

John stand by let me check my translation....

Matthew Franko said...

John

I think I took that from a translation on-line somewhere here is the one I use:

"a man who lies with a male as bedding with a woman they do an abhorrance. The two of them shall be put to death... yada yada..."

or here is a literal interlinear one here just go to Lev 20:13

http://scripture4all.org/OnlineInterlinear/OTpdf/lev20.pdf

Pretty fair to say it was talking about what we would term today male homosexual activity (and btw females not even mentioned...) ... and imo our Greek ancestors would term those among them of the 'sodomite' and or 'catamite' temple sects (1 Cor 6:9) .. like we have today Catholics, Lutherans, Baptists, Pentacostals, etc...

bottom line here is 'Andrew' is trying to pick and choose from those laws and is obsessed with the qualities/details of the method rather than focusing on the results... this is completely missing the mark...



Andrew Anderson said...

rather than focusing on the results.. Franko

Results such as the Great Depression and WWII? Since both are a result of the unprincipled, unjust banking model you support?

Malmo's Ghost said...

"Real love is putting others' happiness before one's own"

Sure, but on a limited basis.

Parents generally do this for their children. If childless, then one might sacrifice for parents or close friends. It gets far more complicated when legislating love (forced love of EVERYBODY and all the social engineering that goes with it) rears its ugly head.

Perennial wisdom also teaches charity begins at home. Tribal charity if you will. That's pretty much where mine and most others selfless love ends. Especially in a world of 7 billion. But limited charity also implies a desired harmonic world too, otherwise the limited ones you sacrifice for could not be happy. But that's the rub. And that's why the utopia Tom speaks of will never come to pass in the "global" sense.

Malmo's Ghost said...

.....Think good neighbors and the tall fences needed to maintain the arrangement in the "REAL WORLD".

Tom Hickey said...

Parents generally do this for their children. If childless, then one might sacrifice for parents or close friends. It gets far more complicated when legislating love (forced love of EVERYBODY and all the social engineering that goes with it) rears its ugly head.

In the world as it presently exists, uncondtional universal love is only possible in a limited way, But that way is not fixed. As Stephen Pinker argues in The Better Angels of our Nature, we have come a long way.

This is what I means when I say that the prerequisite for positive social change is raising the level of collective consciousness.

The important message of perennial wisdom is that increasing love in the direction of unconditional universal love is possible for any individual and therefore for societies to the degree that individuals influence each other reciprocally.

This is what it means to ask the fundamental question, What does it mean to live a good life as an individual in a good society.

An answer can be given intellectually but intellectual understanding is not sufficient to bring it about.

But intellectual understanding can address creating the conditions for this both by removing obstacles and upgrading.

If humanity doesn't shoot for this, then the result, as history amply demonstrates, is conflict. In an age of WMD, that is not an option for intelligent people to accept.

Tom Hickey said...

It gets far more complicated when legislating love (forced love of EVERYBODY and all the social engineering that goes with it) rears its ugly head

Of course, it is impossible to legislate love or any of the other virtues.

It is possible to legislate freedom, distinguishing between freedom and license. Freedom is not merely freedom from constraint, or freedom to chose, but freedom for self-actualization individually and self-determination socially. This implies that freedom entails responsibility in its exercise.

While it is possible to legislate freedom, living a good life in a good society requires training in its exercise.

American philosopher and educator John Dewey wrote extensively on this relative to liberalism and democracy.

Education based on reading, writing and 'rithmetic is insufficient and education based on teaching to the test is crazy.

Education needs to be redesigned as learning for life.

Tom Hickey said...

.....Think good neighbors and the tall fences needed to maintain the arrangement in the "REAL WORLD".

What happens is that the focus then falls on "tall fences."

See Robert Frost, Mending Wall

Then there is, Build bridges not walls.

But then the problem becomes imagining trolls under the bridges.

As I have said, real love depends on apprehension (not just understanding) of the unity of being.

Those who busy themselves with building walls, imagining trolls under bridges, or wasting their freedom on trivial pursuits won't develop this apprehension, even though it is their birthright as human beings. This is the metaphorical meaning of selling one's birthright for a bowl of porridge.

Then humanity descends into animality and fights over territorial control. That's what walls are about.

Malmo's Ghost said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Malmo's Ghost said...

When the interests of your loved ones butts up against those you hardly know, then human nature kicks in and "family" wins. Collective consciousness goes right out the window.

Tom Hickey said...

When the interests of your loved ones butts up against those you hardly know, then human nature kicks in and "family" wins. Collective consciousness goes right out the window.

Family, clan, tribe, nation.

Territorial disputes.

War.

Humans are brainier primates.

That sums up history.

At the same time, evolution has been at work and continues to be at work.

The potential is there to advance but opportunity needs to be seized.

Otherwise, get ready for a big culling.

Malmo's Ghost said...

Tom,

The bulk of the breeders nowadays are generally the middling to low IQ bunch.

Idiocracy.