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Published 2 years ago with 18 Comments
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Conversation 18 comments by 6 users
  • Gozzin
    +9

    It's all about money for them and nothing for anyone else. The forget,of course,is if no one has any money,who will buy their stuff?

    • SMcIntyre
      +5

      That works both ways though: just because the Government decides to mandate higher wages, that doesn't mean that businesses can afford to pay them.

      • spaceghoti
        +8

        Oh, they'll figure it out. They always have.

        • SMcIntyre
          +5

          They've already figured it out; automation is the name of the game. Most of these people are going to go from making $10 hr to making $0 hr when they're replaced by tablets, and kiosks, and smartphone apps.

          • AdelleChattre
            +8

            Which is a matter of time, not a question of whether there is a minimum wage, or even what that minimum is.

            • jcscher
              +9

              I wish I could up vote your comment more then once!

          • spaceghoti
            +7

            That's going to move up the time table when we need to work out a way to guarantee income to everyone, not just those lucky or connected enough to find work.

            • Appaloosa
              +7

              Maybe the robots will be hiring. We are headed for a societal upheaval on a global basis. This will not end peacefully.

            • SMcIntyre
              +6

              We have a way to guarantee income for everyone, they're called jobs.

              These politicians in California are simply buying votes from people who don't understand this law has effectively given them an expiration date, and condemned them to a life of Government dependence. No one's life is going to be made better from this raise in the Minimum Wage- quite the contrary. The unskilled, uneducated workers who depend on these jobs are going to be the very first ones priced out of the market. It's simple Supply & Demand and it's the most fundamental, basic principle of a market economy.

            • AdelleChattre (edited 2 years ago)
              +8
              @SMcIntyre -

              On the labor supply and demand chart you have in your head, there is a region that you're overlooking. It's across from the unemployment region you're stressing over, and it should be labeled 'Underemployment.' You know, like when you have perhaps several jobs and still can't make ends meet. The inevitable result of suppressing the minimum wage, as surely as abolishing the minimum wage, underemployment is as conveniently forgotten as it is obviously there on the chart. The people there are the precariat every bit as much as those in the unemployment region, only more tired and worn out.

              Do you consciously choose for most people to be underemployed so that a few homeless people can find jobs for literally pennies an hour? Is that the balance you want to strike?

              Clearly, a job that no longer exists is no guaranteed income. If it makes more financial sense for orders to get picked and palettes to get packed optimally by machines than by people, that's what'll happen. In all honestly, that's likely to've already happened years ago. If an employee being displaced by automation is lucky enough to work for a company that offers to retrain them, often they choose to retire rather than learn something new. Of course, that decision quite depends on guaranteed retirement income, or at least Social Security.

              Which, like the minimum wage, has been fought for and over, tooth and claw, for generations now. Imagine, for a moment, what the landscape of desolation and despair would be had labor protections like social security and the minimum wage never been enacted. What would those displaced workers have done? Mind you, I'm not talking about hypothetical workers in some near future under pressure from automation, because that's been the case all along. I'm talking about the already-displaced, and for many, the newly-retired.

              The original, U.S. federal minimum wage in 1938 was 25¢ an hour. In today's money, that's $4.20 an hour. Some people, especially Republicans, said back then the sky would fall if people made at least that. Sky's still there. If, as you suggest, a minimum wage means fewer people have jobs, well, at least having a job means something.

            • spaceghoti
              +6
              @SMcIntyre -

              Jobs are already scarce, and it's not because those damned furriners have been taking them. Income has become divorced from productivity, and increasing automation is gradually making human labor obsolete. Even skilled jobs like medical diagnosis and computer programming are starting to encounter methods for automation.

              So it's unreasonble to assume everyone will be able to find or create jobs. Sooner or later we're going to have to face reality that people who can't find work deserve to live just as much as everyone else. It's not about pandering, it's about basic human decency, a concept that the politicians of California seem to grasp better than most.

            • Appaloosa
              +4
              @spaceghoti -

              Decency is often a casualty of desperation and anger. We are on an unsustainable path. If we do enact a basic wage, it will only keep a lid on, even further magnifying the underlying proclivities of human behavior. The disparity will grow, not diminish. I don't have an answer and I am fearful of the future as I will most certainly be caught up in a great struggle within my lifetime.

            • AdelleChattre (edited 2 years ago)
              +4
              @Appaloosa -

              How‘s this for a viable, near-future dystopia then: in return for a lifetime basic income stipend, one must be irreversibly sterilized? Optionally, to extend the basic income further, one must kill or otherwise permanently incapacitate some set number of ”the enemy,“ for some given definition of ’enemy?‘

            • Appaloosa
              +4
              @AdelleChattre -

              I have said this before, I don't like the idea of basic income....for some of those exact reasons....and they will continue to push for a cashless society...and ultimately chipping. Tis' a dark view ahead I see.

            • spaceghoti
              +4
              @Appaloosa -

              I don't see that trend happening in countries where basic needs are met. Rather, people are free to take more risks in entrepreneurial pursuits since the consequences of failure aren't so dire. They're also free to engage in more artistic pursuits without worrying about pandering to current fads.

              I'm sure there are weaknesses in the system that will reveal themselves in the long run, but humans are like that. Human institutions are notoriously prone to points of failure. We'll keep trying out solutions and hopefully going with the ones that work best for the prevailing circumstances.

            • Appaloosa
              +4
              @spaceghoti -

              I admire your optimism, and history is full of those very transitions. I'm struggling to find one that has not happened violently (war) or without great loss of life (disease or climate change). Things will change though, as you say, to the prevailing circumstances.

            • spaceghoti
              +4
              @Appaloosa -

              It all depends on whether or not we can get past the people looking to protect the status quo. Humans have been known to regress as well as progress, so yes, I'm optimistic but cautiously so. We're also prone to snatching defeat from the jaws of victory.

            • Gozzin
              +3
              @AdelleChattre -

              This is something I have thought about. I've also thought the same thing about life extenders..If you opt for that, your also fixed so you can't reproduce..This could make for some interesting sf and i suspect some on this topic is already out there.

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