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Friday, May 23, 2014

The Minimum Wage Deal Is Just Fine, Says Sally Clark

Posted by on Fri, May 23, 2014 at 1:55 PM

Yesterday, I wondered on Slog whether the city's minimum-wage deal was "unraveling," after multiple members of the mayor's advisory committee on the matter said they were growing unhappy with where the debate was heading. Business interests have been lobbying the city council to water down the bill, now the labor side is swinging back, and the whole thing seems more precarious than ever.

City council minimum wage chair Sally Clark, however, says that's a buncha hooey:

Asking questions, she says, "is what council members do." Getting lobbied is part of their job. Looking into all the options is part of their job. The relatively business-friendly policy options presented to the council by their central staff thus far are not the only options they'll consider, she stressed multiple times throughout the meeting. Of course, the council knew full well that debating policy options like expanding "training wages" beyond what the state allows and pushing the start date of the legislation back a full six months would likely rile up the people who spent four months creating the compromise deal. (Let's not even get started on Council Member Tom Rasmussen, who appears to be arguing that franchises should be exempt from the "large business" category—a move tantamount to pointing a rocket launcher at the deal, not just debating it.) But hey, Clark repeated, just because they ask questions doesn't mean that's how they're going to vote!

So, in case y'all were wondering, we're cool. Everything's fine! Or, more realistically: Go have a holiday weekend, chill, and let's see if next week we're all still okay.

Confidential to the dude at minute 6:05, who asked Council Member Clark if it would be "okay for me to wait for you to leave work at the end of the day, hit you over the head with a club, and steal $200 from your purse, provided I didn't kill you in the process? Would that be okay?" (That's basically the same thing as raising the minimum wage, he argued)... Dude: Comparing public policy to the physical assault of a politician is not acceptable. Just a heads up, since you seem a little unclear on that.


Comments (12) RSS

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Just one more time for those read-challenged types, who know nothing of economic and financial history: traditionally, minimum wage was tied to worker productivity --- this was decoupled by President George H.W. Bush.

If productivity was still tied to the minimum wage, today it would be $27 per hour.

Posted by sgt_doom on May 23, 2014 at 3:35 PM · Report this
collectivism_sucks 2

@1 That is a big fat lie, one of many the Troskyites in 15Now are pushing. The MW peaked at around 8.32.hour for most jobs and 10/hour for others. As for the "worker productivity" argument, that is simply because of technology. A cashier can work four self service checkouts at Fred Meyer while ten years ago he could only work one. So why does he deserve a raise because technology makes his job easier?
Posted by collectivism_sucks on May 23, 2014 at 3:51 PM · Report this
collectivism_sucks 3
As for the guy comparing government enforced wages to theft, he isn't completely right, but only because it is a bad metaphor. A better metaphor would be this:
What if Seattle passed a new law saying all straight men can only date women rated an "8" or higher? What, do you think people deserve to be with ugly women? Oh, but one man's ugly is another man's hot? So you're saying the government doesn't know what's good enough for us better than we do?

Fast forward to minimum wage. I make 9.32/hour plus tips. I'm happy with that. Now the government wants to come and say "no, your boss has to pay you more and if that means your hours are going to get cut or you may get laid off, it is better than you get zero than settle for 9.32"

I am 100% happy making what I make now, just as a man going out with a less attractive woman may be okay with that. Just as I don't want the government getting in the way of my relationship with my girlfriend (who's about a 8.5) I also don't want the government getting in the way of the relationship between me and my employer.

How the hell is it wrong for government to regulate what goes on in the bedroom but perfectly okay for the government to regulate what goes on between consenting adults who agree to work for a certain pay rate?

And the big question none of the white, trust fund hipster brats at 15Now are answering: what if I am okay with working for a little less than 15/hour, and I would take 10/hour as opposed to not having a job at all? What exactly will happen to me and my employer? Will he/she be fined and thrown in jail, or will I? And will I be allowed to keep that job at the rate that the employers is able to pay me?

I would want an exception to this idiotic minimum wage mandate. I would want to be able to willing opt-out and set my own labor price lower to have a better chance of getting a job, as others would as well. Why should we have that choice taken away from us by the government?

Just as people should have the right to choose to fuck less attractive women, people should have the right to choose to work for what they can get if they choose to settle. 15Now is just as anti-choice as some anti-gay marriage fundy.
Posted by collectivism_sucks on May 23, 2014 at 4:01 PM · Report this
That metaphor is not better than the previous one.
Posted by JonCracolici on May 23, 2014 at 4:17 PM · Report this
collectivism_sucks 5
Again, with smaller words this time: Why is it okay for the government to regulate financial agreements between consenting adults, but not sexual/romantic agreements between consenting adults?

If I consent to fuck a fat girl, should the government step in and stop me because "I deserve a skinnier girl"? At the same time if I consent to work for 10/hour, should the government stop me because "I deserve 15"?

Oh, and if this passes before I leave Seattle, and I somehow keep my job and I somehow make more money, any extra I'm getting I'm donating to the state GOP.
Posted by collectivism_sucks on May 23, 2014 at 4:28 PM · Report this
I would say that romantic relationships are not essential to your survival. They are surplus, a bonus, a wonderful thing, but you won't starve or freeze without them. Some people dont even want a partner.
Work is not like that for the vast majority of people. They MUST work, and many do not enjoy it, and wouldnt if they didnt have to (being single in your metaphor?). Therefore the "choice" in the former is not the same "choice" in the latter. And the people who have to work(everyone) but dont have power to negotiate(lots of people) tend to get shafted. This isn't good for them, and its not good for society. Its only good for the business.

If you like, you can think of movements like this as the low power workers finally negotiating their pay with they bosses.
Posted by JonCracolici on May 23, 2014 at 4:34 PM · Report this
seatackled 7

It is surely in the realm of the impossible that you would ever need to consent to fucking anyone.
Posted by seatackled on May 23, 2014 at 5:03 PM · Report this
collectivism_sucks 9
Actually, sex is pretty high on the needs list:…

And it doesn't answer the issue: Why can't I choose to work for what a boss can pay me? I only need about 12/hour to survive. If a company can't hire me at 15 but can afford 12, why should my choice be impeded because the government says so? And how the fuck is making 0/hour "better for society" then if I made 12/hour?

And if people want to negotiate with their bosses, they can from a union. That is them negotiating with a boss. Why do I, who does want anything to do with this, have to have this crap thrusts on me by the government?

I should have the right to say what I will and will not accept as starting pay and if I decide that a job making less is better than no job at all, that should be my right to decide. You seem to believe I, and everyone else, need a nanny state to make these decisions for us.
Posted by collectivism_sucks on May 23, 2014 at 8:48 PM · Report this
why are you SO obsessed with money?
Posted by Foonken2 on May 23, 2014 at 9:00 PM · Report this
Haha, awesome, I want to frame this thread to show that this is the kind of people the GOP attracts.
Posted by themightywoozie on May 23, 2014 at 10:02 PM · Report this
collectivism_sucks 12
I'm not a member of the GOP and very rarely vote for a republican...however, the enemy of my enemy is my friend.

And this also serves as a good example of what kind of people 15now attracts: people who refuse to answer difficult questions, have no regard for individual rights and think the government should make every important decision for us.

That, and 15Now also attracts wealthy white privileged kids who drink copious amounts of Pabst Blue Ribbon and wake up and eat Kix at 3PM and run around blasting capitalism while playing with their smart phones, courtesy of Apple computers.
Posted by collectivism_sucks on May 23, 2014 at 11:32 PM · Report this
@*:That is plausible. There are precedents. I like that fact that you ask readers to look at the resumes of those in City Hall: not exactly Mother Jones, are they?!? :D ---
Posted by 5th Columnist on May 24, 2014 at 1:18 PM · Report this

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