Anyone who knows me knows that I try to stay out of politics, but I find I do have something to say about raising the minimum wage. This will not be a polemic (word for today: means a strong verbal or written attack) either for or against, but instead a question that seems to be getting ignored. Where does the money come from?
Honestly, that's my question with a lot of issues in the present day, and it doesn't get brought up as much as I wish it would. There is no pot of gold under the rainbow. We can't raise funds by clicking our heels or snapping our fingers or wishing on a star. Money always comes from somewhere. Earned, borrowed, donated, but somewhere.
Let's explore, just as a starting point, the money involved in raising one worker's wages by one dollar an hour. Doesn't seem like much, does it? (Echoes of my tenth grade musical, The Pajama Game, in which the workers at the pajama factory go on strike over seven-and-a-half cents an hour. Oh, the times, how they have changed.)
So if that worker makes eight dollars an hour right now, oh frabjous day, calloo, callay! Wages have risen to nine dollars an hour! But follow that dollar. One dollar an hour, makes eight dollars a full-time day, makes forty dollars a full-time week, and at fifty-two weeks a year, comes out to two thousand eighty dollars by my reckoning.
I don't know about you, but $2080 is not an insignificant amount in my books. And that's only for one worker. A business with ten workers, or one hundred, or one thousand... well, I assume you all have calculators on your phones or computers, and know how to use them, so I won't bore you with more math you can do for yourself.
Please note that at no point in this discussion have I raised any question of values, of good or bad ideas. I have only said that this is an idea with consequences, some of which I have seldom seen discussed, and I wish I would. That $2080, and its multiples, are going to affect a lot of people, and it has to come from somewhere.
And how can businesses come up with more money? Either they raise the amount coming in, by more sales, higher prices, etc, or they lower their costs, by becoming more efficient, cutting out waste, etc. Both approaches have good points. Both also have drawbacks. But as I've seen it said, if the game was easy, anybody could play.
So, that's about all I have to say on the topic. Just a few facts that seem to be left out of a lot of discussions. If you, too, wish to discuss it, all I ask is that you do so in a polite and adult manner, as I reserve the right to delete, unseen, any comment which does not obey this rule. Comes with being the author, and the blogger.
Was it a good or a bad idea to break my usual silence on political topics? Heaven only knows... but it will surely have consequences. Thanks, as always, for reading, and light thoughts on inconsequential things such as writing and fantasy and dogs resume tomorrow. Perhaps. Depends on how crazy a weekend it turns out to be.