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What is minimally acceptable?

Malintent

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On the topic of minimum wage, I am curious about people's thoughts on entitlement.

How many people is 1 minimum wage supposed to support?
What does it mean to be supported?

One person, living on 5th avenue, NY, with 1 car, 1 parking space, 1 cell phone, and healthy eating habits will spend a minimum of $1,000,000 PER MONTH on these "basic" provisions. 40 hours a week (yea, right), 160 hours per month... that's a required wage of $6,250 PER HOUR.. JUST TO SURVIVE... never mind improving one's self, handling emergencies, investing for retirement, etc..

One person, living in a cardboard box, with no car, no parking space, no phone, and minimal preferences for nourishment will spend as much as $0 per month on these "basic" provisions. 40 hours a week (well, of course), 160 hours per month... (carry the zero)... that's a required wage of $0 per hour... JUST TO SURVIVE... never mind improving one's self, handling emergencies, investing for retirement, etc..

A family of 8, living in an average home, with 2 cars, no parking expenses, 8 cell phones, and a fast-food-exclusive diet will spend at least $25,000 per month on these "basic" provisions. 40 hours a week, 160 hours a month.. that's a required wage of over $150 PER HOUR... JUST TO SURVIVE.. never mind improving one's self, handling emergencies, investing for retirement, etc..


Should minimum wage be $0, $150, or $6,250?? How can we tell?

What does "minimum" mean, with respect to wage?

In our Capitalist society, what economic status is "guaranteed"?
 

fromderinside

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Well we, in US, have a written social contract. Leaders have professed that it is of, by, and for the people. It also states

We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

So here we are with average citizen annual wage above $22 k. 67% of families are home owners, and minimum wage running from about $5.50 to $15 per hour depending where they are located it would seem minimum means wage and housing responsibilities for citizens for everyone. By the range of minimum wages it seems that food and housing are variable.

I'm on board with continuing that.

Argue ably we should be doing more since lower incomes lead to lower expectations and outcomes. Apparently we take "welfare" and "pursuit of happiness" with a grain of salt since we can't even get everybody covered for medical coverage.

I'm on board with that too.

For me minimum includes those elements in our social contract.

Unless we improve social outcomes there eventually will be no minimum since competition models, which we employ, provide for exclusion of some for the gain of many.

I'm an everybody's in kind of guy meaning I'm favoring a limited competition market model.
 

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It is difficult to say what is minimally acceptable, but to present a visual correlation you would likely presume that a young adult fresh out of school would be your typical minimum wage worker. So, how much money does an 18 year old need to keep him alive while he attends college?
 

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A minimum wage rate should meet cost living expenditure, rent for a modest flat, food, clothing, a bit of entertainment, with something left over for savings and emergencies. A full time worker (38-40 hours per week) should not be living in poverty in a rich nation.
 

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In our Capitalist society, what economic status is "guaranteed"?

What a nauseating phrase.

It is not "our" capitalist society.

It is a society where we are forced to endure the immorality of modern capitalism.

Capitalism is an imposition. Nothing anybody ever voted on.

It is a system that is only a tiny step forward from feudalism and slavery.

A top down authoritarian system where the fewer and fewer haves live as larger and larger parasites off the labor of the every present have nots.

Nothing about the system is fair or just.

So trying to determine something like a "just" minimum wage is a difficult quest.

All the minimum wage represents is the idea that theft is inherent to the system. Not paying people in any relation to the value of their labor is inherent to the system.

A market wage is really just another way of saying the lowest possible wage in current circumstances.

Reliance on it is motivation to make and keep current circumstances as bad as possible for most.
 

Malintent

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It is difficult to say what is minimally acceptable, but to present a visual correlation you would likely presume that a young adult fresh out of school would be your typical minimum wage worker. So, how much money does an 18 year old need to keep him alive while he attends college?

Is "keeping an 18 year old alive" the measure of a "fair wage"? $5 per day for 1 McDonalds meal deal and access to a dumpster to sleep in?
 

Malintent

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A minimum wage rate should meet cost living expenditure, rent for a modest flat, food, clothing, a bit of entertainment, with something left over for savings and emergencies. A full time worker (38-40 hours per week) should not be living in poverty in a rich nation.

I agree. What is a modest flat, and who decides that? What is the minimally acceptable cost of food (better quality with better nutrition or lower quality full of chemicals)? What if they are supporting young children... too bad or do we pay for a kid too... or 2 kids... 5 kids?

To refocus the topic... we all agree a person should be able to "live" on minimum wage. The question is about whose idea of "living" are we going with... how many kids should that pay for and what kind of living conditions and financial freedom should we expect that to support?
 

Malintent

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In our Capitalist society, what economic status is "guaranteed"?

What a nauseating phrase.

It is not "our" capitalist society.

It is a society where we are forced to endure the immorality of modern capitalism.

Capitalism is an imposition. Nothing anybody ever voted on.

It is a system that is only a tiny step forward from feudalism and slavery.

A top down authoritarian system where the fewer and fewer haves live as larger and larger parasites off the labor of the every present have nots.

Nothing about the system is fair or just.

So trying to determine something like a "just" minimum wage is a difficult quest.

All the minimum wage represents is the idea that theft is inherent to the system. Not paying people in any relation to the value of their labor is inherent to the system.

A market wage is really just another way of saying the lowest possible wage in current circumstances.

Reliance on it is motivation to make and keep current circumstances as bad as possible for most.

well, look at it this way, if you want... to be able to move from "pure capitalism", to a model more closely resembling socialism, or even just a modified capitalism with social guarantees (like this minimum "living wage" I am discussing with ya'll). Don't we need to figure out a fair and sustainable amount of resources that should be provisioned to each individual or family?
 

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A minimum wage rate should meet cost living expenditure, rent for a modest flat, food, clothing, a bit of entertainment, with something left over for savings and emergencies. A full time worker (38-40 hours per week) should not be living in poverty in a rich nation.

To express that more generally: the minimum wage should be enough to prevent destitution, at least in the absence of abnormal financial pressures such as drug and gambling addictions, unplanned debts etc.

The rubric will also change in the near future. The full-time workweek is slowly being made obsolete by automation: eventually people will need to live off of fewer working hours since they simply won't be able to get 38 hours of work. Not only will it be impossible to full a FT job but it will be difficult to get 38 hours in multiple part-time jobs due to saturation in a shrinking jobs market.

So while 38-40 hours a week is reasonable in 2017, it may cease to be in the near future.
 

Malintent

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I appreciate all the participation. I would like to get to a methodology for a society to calculate what a fair wage is. "not destitution" is too subjective... "living" is also too subjective... what one person considers acceptable versus another person's expectations / demands.

GNP / Population = living annual wage? A kind of national profit-sharing?

average price of a gallon of milk * 52 + interest rate * (average price of home)? A cost-of-living based approach?

number of years of experience needed for job * average cost of college education /100 ? A work effort based approach?

Obviously it wouldn't be something so simplistic (or stupid - I am no economist).

What does it mean to be fair, when it comes to deciding what a person's work effort is worth and how it should be compensated?
 

fromderinside

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OK I have a mechanism;  Decision Theory. Its well formed and it makes verifiable predictions given the presumptions of unknowns are sound. However, so far anyone in the economic realm who has used it has twisted those beyond recognition - not that correcting that would make everything all warm and cuddly again -I suspect the same would be here too since what you ask is personal and subjective, in other words unpredictable..

Unfortunately:

A general criticism of decision theory based on a fixed universe of possibilities is that it considers the "known unknowns", not the "unknown unknowns": it focuses on expected variations, not on unforeseen events, which some argue (as in black swan theory) have outsized impact and must be considered – significant events may be "outside model". This line of argument, called the ludic fallacy, is that there are inevitable imperfections in modeling the real world by particular models, and that unquestioning reliance on models blinds one to their limits.

So even if we proposed living wage that was strongly tied to existing metrics with good future predictive structure it would ultimately become another case of the butterfly effect causing havoc somewhere else. Remember, multiple well defined linear variables combined lead to chaos.
 

Malintent

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Are you saying that a methodology is unknowable? There already exists a thing called the minimum wage, and it is in use today. I am looking for opinions on a methodology for calculating if that existing value is too high or too low or just right... and what that corrected value might be.

Let's back up and start from the beginning.

Should there be a minimum wage, or should companies be able to offer whatever they want, or nothing, for work? Consider monopolies and what that would do to their workforce.

If there should be a minimum wage, should it be universally global, national, or regional? should geography be a factor? what about population density versus available labor force?

for whatever scope a minimum wage applies, how does one calculate (or justify) the amount? What should it be generally based upon? That is, what ARE the variables that should be considered?
 

fromderinside

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No. I'm saying no one methodology is workable.

Scenario: People shouldn't have to starve. OK. We'll feed them or give them money so they can eat. Yeah, but some will just not work so they can get money. OK we'll add a Work requirement Yeah, but some don't work because they're disabled. OK we'll establish a welfare system that determines whether people are not working because they are incapable of so doing. OK, but some people object to being monitored just because they are poor. OK so we'll make the program voluntary. OK but some people don't volunteer no matter what their need. OK so we'll put those we find starving on the dole and help them get more useful. .......

Or we can determine what is a working wage .... see above for model for how this might wring out.
 

untermensche

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What a nauseating phrase.

It is not "our" capitalist society.

It is a society where we are forced to endure the immorality of modern capitalism.

Capitalism is an imposition. Nothing anybody ever voted on.

It is a system that is only a tiny step forward from feudalism and slavery.

A top down authoritarian system where the fewer and fewer haves live as larger and larger parasites off the labor of the every present have nots.

Nothing about the system is fair or just.

So trying to determine something like a "just" minimum wage is a difficult quest.

All the minimum wage represents is the idea that theft is inherent to the system. Not paying people in any relation to the value of their labor is inherent to the system.

A market wage is really just another way of saying the lowest possible wage in current circumstances.

Reliance on it is motivation to make and keep current circumstances as bad as possible for most.

well, look at it this way, if you want... to be able to move from "pure capitalism", to a model more closely resembling socialism, or even just a modified capitalism with social guarantees (like this minimum "living wage" I am discussing with ya'll). Don't we need to figure out a fair and sustainable amount of resources that should be provisioned to each individual or family?

The solution is easy.

Implementing the solution is extremely difficult.

The solution is to move from a system where wages are determined by market forces to a system where wages are based on overall earnings of the company.

A move from top down control to horizontal democratic control.

This is not utopia, but it spreads wealth without force. At least no more force than presently exists to prevent outright slavery.

If there is immorality that is causing extreme harm, like top down dictatorial control in the workplace, then sane societies outlaw the immorality.

Then once you spread wealth as far as possible you need to have as strong a system of social services as possible.

These solutions are easy.

Getting present day humans raised in a different kind of system to instantly convert is impossible.

But with focus and education humans could move to such a system in a generation.

But people who cared about society would have to be running the government.

All we ever get are people that care about big business. Because they are hand selected and put there by big business.
 

untermensche

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Read my last post. Apply it's process to your plan. See the problem?

Basically you're saying that humans will behave the same no matter what system they are in.

I don't agree.

German's in general do not behave as Americans.

Humans are products of their environments and take on the norms of their environments.

In the US it is normal to blame the poor for their poverty.

In other societies the causes are addressed and people are helped not scapegoated.
 

Bomb#20

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A minimum wage rate should meet cost living expenditure, rent for a modest flat, food, clothing, a bit of entertainment, with something left over for savings and emergencies. A full time worker (38-40 hours per week) should not be living in poverty in a rich nation.

I agree. What is a modest flat, and who decides that? What is the minimally acceptable cost of food (better quality with better nutrition or lower quality full of chemicals)? What if they are supporting young children... too bad or do we pay for a kid too... or 2 kids... 5 kids?

To refocus the topic... we all agree a person should be able to "live" on minimum wage. The question is about whose idea of "living" are we going with... how many kids should that pay for and what kind of living conditions and financial freedom should we expect that to support?

I appreciate all the participation. I would like to get to a methodology for a society to calculate what a fair wage is. "not destitution" is too subjective... "living" is also too subjective... what one person considers acceptable versus another person's expectations / demands.

GNP / Population = living annual wage? A kind of national profit-sharing?

average price of a gallon of milk * 52 + interest rate * (average price of home)? A cost-of-living based approach?

number of years of experience needed for job * average cost of college education /100 ? A work effort based approach?

Obviously it wouldn't be something so simplistic (or stupid - I am no economist).

What does it mean to be fair, when it comes to deciding what a person's work effort is worth and how it should be compensated?

You appear to be trying to decide what's fair based on guaranteeing some to-be-defined standard of living to an employee, some minimum increment an employer must improve an employee's quality of life by. Do you also want to try to be fair to employers? Is there any corresponding minimally acceptable amount for an employee to increase an employer's quality of life by? If so, what would you propose to do about people who don't have the ability to make an employer better off by that increment? Alternately, if what you're proposing is to have somebody employ a person even though having him as an employee doesn't do her any good, do you have any method in mind for motivating employers to hire employees they don't benefit from?
 

Malintent

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You appear to be trying to decide what's fair based on guaranteeing some to-be-defined standard of living to an employee

yes. That is how I started us off
...some minimum increment an employer must improve an employee's quality of life by.
Yes, that is a valid aspect, IF increasing quality of life is a part of what we would like to call "minimally acceptable"
Do you also want to try to be fair to employers?
I suppose we would have to be... It's not the focus of this discussion, but an important aspect, I agree.
Is there any corresponding minimally acceptable amount for an employee to increase an employer's quality of life by?
Not in my opinion... if by "employer" you mean the business itself. That is more of a Performance Management issue between employer and employee. The "employer", as an individual manager or business owner, is identical to the worker (employee), in this respect, in my opinion.
If so, what would you propose to do about people who don't have the ability to make an employer better off by that increment?
well, not so, in my opinion, but if an employer is not benefiting from their employee, then they need to fire them and hire a "better" employee, or look more carefully at their business processes and increase efficiency.
Alternately, if what you're proposing is to have somebody employ a person even though having him as an employee doesn't do her any good, do you have any method in mind for motivating employers to hire employees they don't benefit from?
No, not at all the intent. this discussion is not about dictating how businesses should run, but about HOW one would assess a minimum wage as appropriate (and what "appropriate" in this context means.

Thank you.
 

fromderinside

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Read my last post. Apply it's process to your plan. See the problem?

Basically you're saying that humans will behave the same no matter what system they are in.

I don't agree.

German's in general do not behave as Americans.

Humans are products of their environments and take on the norms of their environments.

In the US it is normal to blame the poor for their poverty.

In other societies the causes are addressed and people are helped not scapegoated.

Not at all. True, I am saying there is one system that covers all, but, that system is very flexible in it's elements. Better, what I just called system is a process. Processes are often environmentally adaptable. So much for German American, chines differences. What we're talking about here is finding some singular way to describe minimally acceptable re income or access to live sustaining material.

I took the problem in two steps. First is there a methodology that will get us there. That methodology is based on signal human behaviors like greed and difference. Then that method must accommodate different conditions which gets us to a suite of giving or support methods that makes life more than survival for every population in every environment.

Then I considered the effects of system longevity in any environment and came to the conclusion that the systems should be reconstructed perhaps every generation and we'd still have not arrived at even individual consensus leading to the conclusion there is no system that will accomplish the requirements of the OP.
 

rousseau

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A minimum wage rate should meet cost living expenditure, rent for a modest flat, food, clothing, a bit of entertainment, with something left over for savings and emergencies. A full time worker (38-40 hours per week) should not be living in poverty in a rich nation.

Pretty much this.

When you create a nation state with a social contract that citizens are born into and have no choice but to be a part of, I would argue that you have a moral imperative to provide for all of them. Whether that actually happens in practice is something else entirely.

At that point you're basically arguing over what constitutes the poverty line. For instance, should people making minimum wage or on welfare be able to afford a family? Is having a family a natural right, or only basic sustenance?

At the end of the day these questions only matter insofar as there is a legal body to enforce the answers.
 

Loren Pechtel

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The problem with defining a minimum wage is that that says nothing about whether it's worth it to an employer to pay that. Set it too high and you find low pay is replaced with unemployment.
 

fromderinside

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Good. Change attributes of business to that or providing for needs. Those that trend to wants can charge more since the only reason to satisfy wants is to scratch the itch. Tax those puppies until satisfying needs is profitable at which point there should be some similarity of wages across professions in both need and want suppliers.
 

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...some minimum increment an employer must improve an employee's quality of life by.
Yes, that is a valid aspect, IF increasing quality of life is a part of what we would like to call "minimally acceptable"
Well, I would presume it is. For concreteness' sake, let's say a wage needs to be $10/hr in order for a person to buy himself a "minimally acceptable" standard of living with it. Presumably the whole point of requiring a wage to be that high is because without that $10/hr his quality of life will be worse -- he'll be living on the street and eating nothing but soup at the Salvation Army or wherever. If the $10/hr weren't making his life any better then why insist on it in the first place? Just in order to make some third party feel ideologically well-satisfied?

Do you also want to try to be fair to employers?
I suppose we would have to be... It's not the focus of this discussion, but an important aspect, I agree.
Is there any corresponding minimally acceptable amount for an employee to increase an employer's quality of life by?
Not in my opinion... if by "employer" you mean the business itself. That is more of a Performance Management issue between employer and employee. The "employer", as an individual manager or business owner, is identical to the worker (employee), in this respect, in my opinion.
I don't understand your answer. If the business owner has to make the employee's life better by whatever he can buy himself for $10/hr, but the employee doesn't have to make the business owner's life better by whatever she could buy herself for $10/hr, then how do you figure the owner and the employee are identical in this respect? That sounds pretty unidentical.

Or do you only mean they're both entitled to the $10 benefit, but making sure the employee gets his $10 benefit is a job suitable for the government, while making sure the employer also gets her $10 benefit is a job you think the employer is perfectly capable of doing for herself?

If so, what would you propose to do about people who don't have the ability to make an employer better off by that increment?
well, not so, in my opinion,
Sorry, again I don't understand. What are you saying is "not so", in your opinion? Do you mean you don't believe any people exist who don't have the ability to make an employer better off by $10/hr? [Or whatever minimum wage you think appropriate.]

but if an employer is not benefiting from their employee, then they need to fire them and hire a "better" employee, or look more carefully at their business processes and increase efficiency.
Sure; and more often, if an employer doesn't expect to benefit from her employee then she won't hire him in the first place. Either way, assuming there does exist a person who isn't able to make an employer $10/hr better off than she'd be without him, that person will not get a wage at all. So the question is, do you have any method in mind for keeping him from living on the street and eating nothing but soup at the Salvation Army?
 

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Many employers tend to pay less even if their profit margins are high, especially with a pool of applicants to choose from...applicants being in the position of competing for jobs with very little bargaining power may get the message; ''this the rate we are offering, here's the contract, take it or leave it.''
 

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If the business owner has to make the employee's life better by whatever he can buy himself for $10/hr, but the employee doesn't have to make the business owner's life better by whatever she could buy herself for $10/hr, then how do you figure the owner and the employee are identical in this respect? That sounds pretty unidentical.

The owner is not putting in an hour of labor that the employee is profiting from. The principle has to do with a person getting some minimal compensation in exchange for giving an hour of their own labor toward someone else's profit. The employee giving an hour of their labor does not mean the employer has given an hour of their labor, so there is no reason that the employer should get any compensation for someone else giving their labor. It’s a rather simple and obviously ethical principle to anyone that does not endorse slavery. A person getting no compensation for their labor that others profit from is a slave, and tiny amounts of compensation are only slightly better than slavery. A person has finite labor to give, so if there is not a minimum amount they must get in return for it, they suffer and die. An ethical and civil society deems this unacceptable, so puts rules in place to prevent it.

Since the principle is about how people treat/mistreat other people, it logically does not apply to how an employer treats themselves in terms of giving themselves compensation for their own personal hours of labor. They have 100% of the power to determine how much they compensate themselves. However, they can still receive public assistance if the income from their business is so low that after paying others for their labor, there is not enough left for them to sustain a minimum standard of living. Of course, that would also depend upon the level of stored wealth, which includes any equity in their company.
 

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If the business owner has to make the employee's life better by whatever he can buy himself for $10/hr, but the employee doesn't have to make the business owner's life better by whatever she could buy herself for $10/hr, then how do you figure the owner and the employee are identical in this respect? That sounds pretty unidentical.

The owner is not putting in an hour of labor that the employee is profiting from. The principle has to do with a person getting some minimal compensation in exchange for giving an hour of their own labor toward someone else's profit. The employee giving an hour of their labor does not mean the employer has given an hour of their labor, so there is no reason that the employer should get any compensation for someone else giving their labor.
That's not an explanation for how the owner and the employee are identical in this respect; that's an explanation for why you think it's a good idea for the owner and the employee not to be treated as identical in this respect. I was asking for a clarification to Malintent's answer to "Is there any corresponding minimally acceptable amount for an employee to increase an employer's quality of life by?". If you have a different answer to that question, that's fine; but there was a followup question for that case. Do you have any method in mind for motivating employers to hire employees they don't benefit from?

It’s a rather simple and obviously ethical principle to anyone that does not endorse slavery.
You appear to be asserting that trading your labor to someone belongs in an entirely different mental category from trading anything other than labor to someone. Do you have any empirical evidence that every person who doesn't impose the same mental categorizations on the world that you impose on the world in fact endorses slavery? Or are you making that accusation as a way of poisoning the well and thereby shutting down challenges to your ethical assumptions? Tell us what you endorse; let others speak for themselves.

It is not obvious to me that the principle you propose is ethical. To me your principle looks like a rather simple and entirely ordinary tribal double-standard, one rule for your in-group and a different rule for your out-group. According to you, that means I endorse slavery. You're wrong. I do not endorse slavery. Slavery is evil.

A person getting no compensation for their labor that others profit from is a slave,
When a libertarian calls a person a slave because his labor is taxed to pay for some government program that doesn't benefit him, normal people laugh at that libertarian for his over-the-top rhetoric. When I volunteered to help sort donations for a few hours at a charity, I received no compensation. So according to your theory, if one of the poor people who received a handout turned around and pawned his handout for a cash profit, that means I was a slave. The test for slavery is not whether you receive compensation. It is not whether someone else makes a profit. It is whether someone will make you come back to work if you walk off the job.

and tiny amounts of compensation are only slightly better than slavery. A person has finite labor to give, so if there is not a minimum amount they must get in return for it, they suffer and die.
That's over-the-top rhetoric. If there is not a minimum amount they get in return for it they go on the dole. This makes the theory that they must get a minimum amount or they'll die kind of implausible.
 

Malintent

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I'm saying that the owner and the employee are identical in that they both deserve "minimally acceptable" life opportunities.

There is a lot of great philosophical discussion around compensation for effort here. It is important to understand why we pay people to work in order to understand what is fair compensation for work, I guess.

I'm trying to get to a list of variables, and maybe even a way to weigh them, that are valid for consideration in a discussion about compensation.

would anyone like to disagree that minimum wages should be a calculated value based on these philosophical issues - such as the ability to gain wealth.
The ability to feed how many children on a single worker's income? Why do we even have a minimum wage.. what is it for?
 

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I'm saying that the owner and the employee are identical in that they both deserve "minimally acceptable" life opportunities.
Would you agree that people who are neither owners nor employees also deserve "minimally acceptable" life opportunities? We provide for orphans, for the elderly and disabled, even for people who can't hold down a job because they're chronic screwups. Apart from criminals we deliberately deprive of some life opportunities as punishment, the whole society is identical in that respect, yes? When one of us can't provide for himself, all of us chip in who can.

But it's only non-orphan children and employees and elderly parents (in some states) for whom we designate some particular person and define providing those people with those minimally acceptable life opportunities to be all on him. When a guy can't work because he's crippled, we don't draw straws and make the guy who draws the short straw support the guy all by himself; instead we all chip in to buy him minimally acceptable life opportunities. But when the reason a guy can't work is because he's five, we don't all chip in. Instead we save ourselves some money by just ordering his mother or father to buy him minimally acceptable life opportunities. That makes sense from a certain point of view -- it was his mother's and father's procreation decision, after all, that put the kid in the position of having needs he couldn't fill by himself. When you impose costs on somebody else you should "internalize your externalities", as the expression goes. But that's not what was going on when Pennsylvania put a woman in a nursing home and ordered her son to pay for it. It's not clear what justification there can be for that. It wasn't the son's fault that his mother was in need. But apparently having the poor woman out on the street was something the majority of the people of Pennsylvania didn't want on their conscience; and they found their conscience a bit less burdensome when they could fob off paying for their conscience onto somebody else; so justification be damned. Of course they could undoubtedly think up some so-called justification -- filial piety, or treating family members as interchangeable parts, or holy scripture, or whatever -- but it's just rationalization for a majority discriminating against a minority because it's in their interest to.

It seems to me that the son who was ordered to be wholly individually responsible for providing minimally acceptable life opportunities to an elderly person is not being treated identically with the average Pennsylvanian who is only ordered to chip in a ten millionth of what it costs to provide minimally acceptable life opportunities to some other elderly person. Do you think he's being treated identically?

Likewise, it isn't an employer's fault that an employee has needs. So what justifies there being a minimally acceptable amount for an employer to increase an employee's quality of life by, but no corresponding minimally acceptable amount for an employee to increase an employer's quality of life by? Why aren't their duties to each other identical? Why would either of them have any duty to provide minimally acceptable life opportunities to the other over and above the identical duty we all have to one another, to chip in when one of us can't fulfill his own needs?

It is important to understand why we pay people to work in order to understand what is fair compensation for work, I guess.
What caused us to pay people to work is that ten thousand years ago a subset of our species took up farming. This caused a population explosion, which caused there to be far too many mouths to feed for them all to survive on the limited amount of game and wild edible plants in the environment. Consequently, there was a lot of work that needed doing, and there were a lot of people willing to trade work for food. When a willing buyer meets a willing seller, trade ensues. So there is no grand plan, no collective general decision to pay people to work; there are just billions of people willing to make deals for mutual benefit. There isn't any single reason "we" pay people to work; instead there's just person A's reason to pay person B, and person C's reason to pay person D, and so on and so forth and such like.

would anyone like to disagree that minimum wages should be a calculated value based on these philosophical issues - such as the ability to gain wealth.
Certainly. Determining a price based on philosophy strikes me as exactly as sensible as determining a price based on religion. It's exactly as sensible as telling somebody else which sex to choose sex partners from based on philosophy or religion.

Why do we even have a minimum wage.. what is it for?
I don't think you will have any chance of figuring out why we have it and what it's for until you try to come to grips with the question I asked you at the beginning. What would you propose to do about people who don't have the ability to make an employer better off by whatever number of dollars per hour we set the minimum wage at? Are those people going to get minimally acceptable life opportunities too?
 

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The owner is not putting in an hour of labor that the employee is profiting from. The principle has to do with a person getting some minimal compensation in exchange for giving an hour of their own labor toward someone else's profit. The employee giving an hour of their labor does not mean the employer has given an hour of their labor, so there is no reason that the employer should get any compensation for someone else giving their labor.
That's not an explanation for how the owner and the employee are identical in this respect; that's an explanation for why you think it's a good idea for the owner and the employee not to be treated as identical in this respect. I was asking for a clarification to Malintent's answer to "Is there any corresponding minimally acceptable amount for an employee to increase an employer's quality of life by?". If you have a different answer to that question, that's fine; but there was a followup question for that case. Do you have any method in mind for motivating employers to hire employees they don't benefit from?

My answer exposes the false equivalence behind your question. The issue of "minimally acceptable" is not about some minimally acceptable amount that the employer must improve the employee's life by. The issue is the minimally acceptable amount a person should get in return for giving their very finite labor. Very finite labor is the source of all food, clothing, and shelter that all people depend upon to exist. Every single person either used their own labor or other people's labor to procure these essentials of existence. Capital is infinite and itself does absolutely nothing for these essentials, except to buy the finite human labor that creates all of it. This is not market philosophy, this is undeniable facts of reality.

These facts make the labor and capital fundamentally different and create an inherent asymmetry between what expectations and rules should be put in place regarding the return one gets for giving labor (what employees do) versus the return for giving $ and capital (what employers do). Since employers are giving non-finite $ and not finite labor to the employee, then the concept of minimal compensation for giving finite labor does not apply to what the employer is getting in the exchange.

It’s a rather simple and obviously ethical principle to anyone that does not endorse slavery.
You appear to be asserting that trading your labor to someone belongs in an entirely different mental category from trading anything other than labor to someone.

Yes, because labor isn't just a different mental category but an objectively different type of thing. It is THE root source of all goods and services, and every person can only give the same finite amount of it.

Do you have any empirical evidence that every person who doesn't impose the same mental categorizations on the world that you impose on the world in fact endorses slavery? Or are you making that accusation as a way of poisoning the well and thereby shutting down challenges to your ethical assumptions? Tell us what you endorse; let others speak for themselves.

I am observing the logical fact that the standard ethical objections to slavery apply to taking a person's finite labor without enough compensation for them to exist a result of that labor.

It is not obvious to me that the principle you propose is ethical. To me your principle looks like a rather simple and entirely ordinary tribal double-standard, one rule for your in-group and a different rule for your out-group.

It is not a double standard. You're making a false equivalence between giving two objectively different things, labor and $. They have different names because they are different. The burden is on you to show that two separate things given different names are identical in all ways that matter for the exchange of those things. I have already gone beyond my burden by specifying how they differ in ways that are critical.

According to you, that means I endorse slavery. You're wrong. I do not endorse slavery. Slavery is evil.

If you endorse people being able to take another's labor with livable compensation, then that violates similar core ethical principles that make slavery evil. I am not saying you endorse slavery, but rather that some of the ethical principles that slavery violates apply to taking a person's one innate and finite resource for survival (their labor) without giving them enough in exchange to survive on.

A person getting no compensation for their labor that others profit from is a slave,
When a libertarian calls a person a slave because his labor is taxed to pay for some government program that doesn't benefit him, normal people laugh at that libertarian for his over-the-top rhetoric. When I volunteered to help sort donations for a few hours at a charity, I received no compensation. So according to your theory, if one of the poor people who received a handout turned around and pawned his handout for a cash profit, that means I was a slave.

Nope, it doesn't mean that at all. You chose to use your labor to promote your own social/ethical goals. That is qualitatively different than when a person's engages in labor that doesn't result in any benefit to them, unless there is compensation for it (which is the case for 99.99% of paid employees).

The test for slavery is not whether you receive compensation. It is not whether someone else makes a profit. It is whether someone will make you come back to work if you walk off the job.

The reason that slavery requires physical force to keep the workers on the job is because they are not compensated. They are doing tasks that have no benefit to themselves, and thus compensation from those who benefit is the sole reason they would do the work without threat of violence. Physical enslavement is the byproduct of taking labor from people who get no benefit from that labor and thus have no will to do it.
In a modern world where it is impossible for most people to use their labor to direct produce their food, clothing, and shelter, they have no choice but to give their labor to others in exchange for compensation to buy these things. Thus, similar to slavery, there is no real "choice" to work for some employer. The only choice they have is which employer and even that is often very limited (and increasingly so with corporate consolidation). Thus, their only choice is often to trade their labor for whatever a particular employer is willing to pay them or have nothing at all, beyond what some generous others donate to them. So, free-market faith that "choice" is free and thus their are no moral obligations to compensate more than you can get desperate people to work for is utter nonsense.
Using people's desperation and lack of options to coerce them into giving their labor for sub-sustaining pay is not actual slavery, but only a shade less grotesquely immoral slavery, and something decedent society should prevent, and any sustainable society must prevent.

and tiny amounts of compensation are only slightly better than slavery. A person has finite labor to give, so if there is not a minimum amount they must get in return for it, they suffer and die.
That's over-the-top rhetoric. If there is not a minimum amount they get in return for it they go on the dole.

Only in a system where people with more human decency than those employers give up part of the fruits of their labor to save them, which is only possible if enough other employees are getting compensated above what is minimally acceptable. IOW, a system that most "libertarians" and conservatives oppose.
The fact that the worker would die without the generosity of others does nothing to lessen the gross immorality and indecency of the employer who took their labor without given them enough compensation to survive.

This makes the theory that they must get a minimum amount or they'll die kind of implausible.

They would die without others generously giving part of their own labor to save them. Thus, it is both ethical and perfectly compatible with any defensible economic system for those others to create rules of compensation that limit the degree to which they are forced to either give up part of their own labor to sustain these people or watch them die.
 
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Malintent

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I think we have agreement that compensation for work is ethical, and the reverse is not. Continued discussion about differences in compensation for differences in work effort, previous experience, accountability, etc... is another topic.
What is an ethical manner for determining what the minimum compensation should be for 1 unit of work (whatever that means - 1 hour of unskilled labor - work that any able-bodied person can do with simple, on-the-spot instruction). IF we are to agree that this minimum pay for minimum work should be something that can provide a certain standard of life for a certain number of family members. beyond that, what is that methodology for calculation, and upon what should it be based?

Should a single person be able to house and feed themselves on 40 hours per week of minimum wage work? is that the intent? If so, feed themselves what? caviar and Champaign daily, or 1 happy meal a day? Should it support their family's needs too? what size family? does size matter? If you have eight kids, does the minimum go up from someone that has 1 kid? What if they had 3 wives and pay alimony? What if they are drug addicts and need crack every day... should that be included in the consideration? Looking for parameters.
 

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IF we are to agree that this minimum pay for minimum work should be something that can provide a certain standard of life for a certain number of family members. beyond that, what is that methodology for calculation, and upon what should it be based?

If the minimum wage must provide for the basic needs of a household, then it is just a crude method for outsourcing the welfare state to private employers, and should be abolished.

Wages should not be tied to cost of living at all. A household's basic costs should be paid by a basic income, while additional costs such as dependents should be paid by parent/guardian/carer payments.

Markets work when the price acts as a signal to consumers and suppliers--a low price signals to suppliers that they should not add more supply to the market--but suppliers in the unskilled labour market are compelled to disregard this signal in order to earn whatever money they can to pay for their basic needs. Without a price floor on unskilled labour there would be much more poverty and far less economic activity due to the loss of consumers.

If people's basic needs are paid for by the welfare state then the labour market can function without a price floor. Many suppliers will withdraw from the unskilled labour market and the market will reach equilibrium.
 

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IF we are to agree that this minimum pay for minimum work should be something that can provide a certain standard of life for a certain number of family members. beyond that, what is that methodology for calculation, and upon what should it be based?

If the minimum wage must provide for the basic needs of a household, then it is just a crude method for outsourcing the welfare state to private employers, and should be abolished.

Wages should not be tied to cost of living at all. A household's basic costs should be paid by a basic income, while additional costs such as dependents should be paid by parent/guardian/carer payments.

Markets work when the price acts as a signal to consumers and suppliers--a low price signals to suppliers that they should not add more supply to the market--but suppliers in the unskilled labour market are compelled to disregard this signal in order to earn whatever money they can to pay for their basic needs. Without a price floor on unskilled labour there would be much more poverty and far less economic activity due to the loss of consumers.

If people's basic needs are paid for by the welfare state then the labour market can function without a price floor. Many suppliers will withdraw from the unskilled labour market and the market will reach equilibrium.

So what are people's basic needs, then? You seem to be lumping everything into "basic" and "not basic". I'll go with that, if "basic" can be defined.
What are the basic needs of (a household or an individual?) that a minimum wage should guarantee. I understand that you seem to believe that capitalism, in the area of meeting individual needs, is wrong.. but that is a different discussion. I probably agree with you at least half-way in that area.

Given that any needs in this society has a cost, what are the needs that should be guaranteed by having the most basic of employment?

I am of the opinion that basic human rights should have no cost, and be guaranteed by all levels of government. Those needs (in my opinion) include clean water and air, physical security, health care, and an education (and more, I am sure I am not thinking of on the spot). NOT included (in my opinion) as a guaranteed right is the ability to reproduce / sustain children, own property, engage in any form of entertainment whatsoever, or have a cell phone... and much, much more...

Backing up for a sec... should minimum wage represent the buying power to access basic needs that are not provided for free or should it represent something other than that?
 

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If the minimum wage must provide for the basic needs of a household, then it is just a crude method for outsourcing the welfare state to private employers, and should be abolished.

Wages should not be tied to cost of living at all. A household's basic costs should be paid by a basic income, while additional costs such as dependents should be paid by parent/guardian/carer payments.

Markets work when the price acts as a signal to consumers and suppliers--a low price signals to suppliers that they should not add more supply to the market--but suppliers in the unskilled labour market are compelled to disregard this signal in order to earn whatever money they can to pay for their basic needs. Without a price floor on unskilled labour there would be much more poverty and far less economic activity due to the loss of consumers.

If people's basic needs are paid for by the welfare state then the labour market can function without a price floor. Many suppliers will withdraw from the unskilled labour market and the market will reach equilibrium.

So what are people's basic needs, then? You seem to be lumping everything into "basic" and "not basic". I'll go with that, if "basic" can be defined.
What are the basic needs of (a household or an individual?) that a minimum wage should guarantee. I understand that you seem to believe that capitalism, in the area of meeting individual needs, is wrong.. but that is a different discussion. I probably agree with you at least half-way in that area.

Basic needs are a function of fundamental human rights: the right to food, shelter, clothing, clean water etc. In action, basic costs would include utilities, groceries and housing. The quality of the housing and the quality of the food would be a function of the capacity of the economy (i.e. the best level of housing and food we can guarantee for the entire population).

Given that any needs in this society has a cost, what are the needs that should be guaranteed by having the most basic of employment?

There's no satisfactory answer to that question as employment need not guarantee any needs.

I am of the opinion that basic human rights should have no cost, and be guaranteed by all levels of government. Those needs (in my opinion) include clean water and air, physical security, health care, and an education (and more, I am sure I am not thinking of on the spot). NOT included (in my opinion) as a guaranteed right is the ability to reproduce / sustain children, own property, engage in any form of entertainment whatsoever, or have a cell phone... and much, much more...

Meeting basic needs always has a cost, as the means always consume resources. When you say 'no cost', it just means that the state pays the supplier on behalf of the consumer.

Mobile phones are a means to an end: they allow an individual to function in society by providing internet access and telecommunication. While there are other ways to achieve that, mobile phones are the most common means. So long as we live in a society that requires people to use phones and internet then they have a right to access the means. In that sense, it is no different than education, which is also required to function in a society. Counting the price of a phone contract as a basic cost is probably the simplest way to do that.

Property rights facilitate the means by which we live. We buy and consume goods and we own houses, appliances and furniture. The alternative to individual property rights is collectives that share resources, and I am skeptical that such collectives can replace current institutions.

People don't have the right to reproduce, but children have human rights which should be respected the same as those of adults. Since our society is based on nuclear family units rather than communal child-rearing, the fundamental rights of children are usually met by giving resources to their parents. (We could always switch to a Huxleyan model of child-rearing.)

Unlike other basic rights, people have a highly variable need for healthcare. The medical costs of serious illness can't be factored into a minimum wage. A baseline level of healthcare is best provided by the state in a single-payer model.

People also have a right to a baseline level of leisure. It's not something I've given much thought to, but I think a person on a minimum guaranteed income should be able to afford a minimal amount of entertainment, and a wide variety of leisure activities can be conducted at a low price. In Australian culture, for instance, there is also great benefit in guaranteeing that everyone can afford to participate in community sporting clubs.

Backing up for a sec... should minimum wage represent the buying power to access basic needs that are not provided for free or should it represent something other than that?

Yes, although I would replace 'wage' with 'income' as it should not be paid in exchange for labour. A person's minimum income should cover the costs of their basic needs and the basic needs of their dependents.
 

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I think I agree with everything you are saying. I am curious about this, though..

Bigfield said:
employment need not guarantee any needs

Then why do people insist on a 'minimum wage'? I think I understand that you would like to separate 'wage' from 'income', in that one should be a guarantee and the other should not. However, most people do not separate that (as the concept of socialism versus capitalism philosophically is not a part of economics in America).

So, forgetting employment for a moment, what is means for determining the dollar value that one individual should be guaranteed as an income (in this capitalist society) to support the 'minimally acceptable' existence? If one were to take that dollar value, and divide by 180 working days a year, divided by 8 working hours a day, would one have calculated the "fair" minimum wage?

Regarding children... a sticking point for me when it comes to accommodations for parents that non-parents cannot benefit from - like dependent child tax deductions... I agree that reproduction is not a right (but physical security is - so forced sterilization would still be a human rights violation), and that it is the responsibility OF THE PARENT to support their children. What I strongly disagree with is the idea that people have the RIGHT to have as many children as they can and the cost of support the children falls upon society. That is the parent failing to meet their responsibilities, if they cannot afford to feed their 19 children on their existing income... they had no RIGHT to have that 19th child if they could not support it in a minimally acceptable way.

Related to this discussion, I guess I am saying that NO part of calculating what a minimum wage (or income) is has anything to do with children, and further, that having children is not a basic need and society holds no FINANCIAL responsibility to support them.
 

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I think I agree with everything you are saying. I am curious about this, though..

Bigfield said:
employment need not guarantee any needs

Then why do people insist on a 'minimum wage'? I think I understand that you would like to separate 'wage' from 'income', in that one should be a guarantee and the other should not. However, most people do not separate that (as the concept of socialism versus capitalism philosophically is not a part of economics in America).

As ronburgundy has argued above, people have a finite amount of labour to sell. In a society where a person's basic needs are paid for by the wage/salary that they earn then that finite amount of labour must have a minimum price in order to cover the costs of those needs.

However, most developed countries that have a minimum wage also have a welfare state, and the welfare state is better suited to paying for those basic needs. Some cultures (USA, Australia) are much more hostile that that idea than others (Netherlands).

So, forgetting employment for a moment, what is means for determining the dollar value that one individual should be guaranteed as an income (in this capitalist society) to support the 'minimally acceptable' existence? If one were to take that dollar value, and divide by 180 working days a year, divided by 8 working hours a day, would one have calculated the "fair" minimum wage?

Fairness is usually just the label applied to a compromise that is tolerated by everyone. Your chosen number of working days, and the length of each working day, is based on a workload that is tolerated in contemporary Western culture. It's high by hunter-gatherer standards, low by agrarian standards, and high by the standards of a hypothetical automated economy of the future.

Regarding children... a sticking point for me when it comes to accommodations for parents that non-parents cannot benefit from - like dependent child tax deductions... I agree that reproduction is not a right (but physical security is - so forced sterilization would still be a human rights violation), and that it is the responsibility OF THE PARENT to support their children. What I strongly disagree with is the idea that people have the RIGHT to have as many children as they can and the cost of support the children falls upon society. That is the parent failing to meet their responsibilities, if they cannot afford to feed their 19 children on their existing income... they had no RIGHT to have that 19th child if they could not support it in a minimally acceptable way.

Related to this discussion, I guess I am saying that NO part of calculating what a minimum wage (or income) is has anything to do with children, and further, that having children is not a basic need and society holds no FINANCIAL responsibility to support them.

I agree that people do not have a human right to bear and raise children, but if you accept that people have a right to healthcare and that children have human rights, then it follows that people have a de facto right to medical care for pregnancy and must be paid to provide for the rights of their dependents. I agree that parents have an obligation to care for children--it's a necessary condition of welfare benefits paid to parents for their children's needs. The legal obligation to care for children also provides a disincentive the bear more children than one can raise.

It's also worth noting that large families tend to be a feature of religious households (that believe in fruitful multiplication and no contraception) and poor people with less education and less access to contraceptives. Most middle-class and upper-class parents can afford many children but are wise enough to only bear as many as they can comfortably raise. This suggests that birth control is a function of (secular) education and universal access to contraceptives rather than a response to a price signal.
 

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However, most developed countries that have a minimum wage also have a welfare state, and the welfare state is better suited to paying for those basic needs. Some cultures (USA, Australia) are much more hostile that that idea than others (Netherlands).

Seconded--which is why I'm opposed to minimum wage. This is both because I feel that welfare is better because it avoids the economic disruptions of minimum wage and that I'm categorically opposed to off-the-books spending--and minimum wage is a form of off-the-books welfare spending.
 

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There has to be a set minimum wage because those in that position are not in a strong bargaining position regardless whether a business can afford to pay double or triples the minimum, many employers only pay what they can get away with, hence workers with little bargaining power are vulnerable to exploitation. It happens.
 

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I've always taken reproductive rights to be similar to the right to pursue happiness. We have the right to pursue reproductive success as long as relevant others agree. Both are social rights.

What is a "relevant other"? Also, does the right "to pursue happiness" include pedophilia (for those that are "in to" that sort of thing - what makes them happy)? How about drug abuse? What if my pursuit of happiness cannot be fully realized unless I am allowed to discriminate against gay people (or any other protected group)?

I am of the opinion that the "pursuit of happiness" has a minimal meaning (as opposed to a broadly applicable meaning)... like, "you have the right to expect to do more with your life than work and sleep". NOT "I have the right to never be offended by anything I ever experience or hear about others experiencing or imagining".
 

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There has to be a set minimum wage because those in that position are not in a strong bargaining position regardless whether a business can afford to pay double or triples the minimum, many employers only pay what they can get away with, hence workers with little bargaining power are vulnerable to exploitation. It happens.

Ya, it's important for many reasons. The topic of this thread is about how a government (or society) fairly comes to determination of what the minimum wage should exactly be. What should "the minimum standard for income" be based upon.. how should it be calculated.

Basic question... should the minimum wage be on a sliding scale? If so, then should it be based on individual attributes (location, number of dependents)... or group attributes (industry of employment, gender, religion)... or societal attributes (cost of a loaf of bread, gross national product)

I am particularly interested in number of children as being a relevant variable. Should a person earning "minimum wage" be able to support a child? how about 17 children (how many should they be able to support)?

We started talking about the purpose of even having a minimum wage.. to facilitate the "pursuit of happiness" is a decent response. OK, what is the minimally acceptable amount of money one needs to do that?
 

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What is a "relevant other"? Also, does the right "to pursue happiness" include pedophilia (for those that are "in to" that sort of thing - what makes them happy)? How about drug abuse? What if my pursuit of happiness cannot be fully realized unless I am allowed to discriminate against gay people (or any other protected group)?

I am of the opinion that the "pursuit of happiness" has a minimal meaning (as opposed to a broadly applicable meaning)... like, "you have the right to expect to do more with your life than work and sleep". NOT "I have the right to never be offended by anything I ever experience or hear about others experiencing or imagining".


Relevant other is for you to decide. If it's not living you needn't so much ask permission as ask yourself "Is it prudent", after GHWB.

Your response looks like that of a free range chicken unmindful that you are part of a group for which this set of freedoms are being written.

This is a declaration for free persons so I'd expect them to choose what is meant by happiness. In a society "other" is always relevant so happiness relative to others requires consideration their happiness as well.

This is the part of the declaration written by Jesus. The only part of Jesus legacy that is worth considering. Thad doing unto others need taking into account your feeling about what if they were to do it unto you.
 

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Why should a wage be calculated on living expenses rather than by market forces of what the work is worth and what deal is arranged between the parties?

Why should it be the employer's responsibility to pay for all of the living needs of the employee?

Why does hiring somebody to do something put the onus on you to make sure they have enough food to eat?

Shouldn't that be the collective responsibility of all?

If I make millions of dollars running a company with no employees, should I not still be responsible to contribute to the society around me, and to help lift people up so they can get those necessities of life?

DBT said:
There has to be a set minimum wage because those in that position are not in a strong bargaining position regardless whether a business can afford to pay double or triples the minimum, many employers only pay what they can get away with, hence workers with little bargaining power are vulnerable to exploitation. It happens.

That's where unions can come into play.

And if we have the basics of life covered by society at large, and people don't need to work to merely live, that also goes a long way towards negating any bargaining advantage an employer would have over employees.
 

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Why should a wage be calculated on living expenses rather than by market forces of what the work is worth and what deal is arranged between the parties?

Why should it be the employer's responsibility to pay for all of the living needs of the employee?

Why does hiring somebody to do something put the onus on you to make sure they have enough food to eat?

Shouldn't that be the collective responsibility of all?

If I make millions of dollars running a company with no employees, should I not still be responsible to contribute to the society around me, and to help lift people up so they can get those necessities of life?

DBT said:
There has to be a set minimum wage because those in that position are not in a strong bargaining position regardless whether a business can afford to pay double or triples the minimum, many employers only pay what they can get away with, hence workers with little bargaining power are vulnerable to exploitation. It happens.

That's where unions can come into play.

And if we have the basics of life covered by society at large, and people don't need to work to merely live, that also goes a long way towards negating any bargaining advantage an employer would have over employees.

There should be no masters deciding what the pay of others should be.

That is the formula for reducing pay to the lowest possible level.

What are needed are mechanisms to raise pay to as high as level. Businesses should be run with the express purpose of paying ALL the people working within them as much as possible.

Right now it is only top executives that are paid like this. At the expense of all other workers. Many times at the expense of the whole company.

These top down dictatorial business models are primitive and ultimately destructive, and they are at the heart of the problem. They need to be eliminated or nothing will change.
 

Loren Pechtel

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There should be no masters deciding what the pay of others should be.

That is the formula for reducing pay to the lowest possible level.

What are needed are mechanisms to raise pay to as high as level. Businesses should be run with the express purpose of paying ALL the people working within them as much as possible.

Right now it is only top executives that are paid like this. At the expense of all other workers. Many times at the expense of the whole company.

These top down dictatorial business models are primitive and ultimately destructive, and they are at the heart of the problem. They need to be eliminated or nothing will change.

So you have some fantasy that workers can figure out their own compensation?

Or do you envision a world of sole proprietorships?

And note that in a world where businesses pay their workers as much as possible there's no reason to create a business so there are no businesses.
 

untermensche

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There should be no masters deciding what the pay of others should be.

That is the formula for reducing pay to the lowest possible level.

What are needed are mechanisms to raise pay to as high as level. Businesses should be run with the express purpose of paying ALL the people working within them as much as possible.

Right now it is only top executives that are paid like this. At the expense of all other workers. Many times at the expense of the whole company.

These top down dictatorial business models are primitive and ultimately destructive, and they are at the heart of the problem. They need to be eliminated or nothing will change.

So you have some fantasy that workers can figure out their own compensation?

Or do you envision a world of sole proprietorships?

And note that in a world where businesses pay their workers as much as possible there's no reason to create a business so there are no businesses.

Workers can do anything in terms of running a workplace. They have brains and can use them if allowed.

No masters, or the rats who do nothing but kiss up to the masters (if the shoe fits), are needed.

This immorality of the master/slave relationship is not needed in any way. It is primitive and inefficient.

But the masters do well.

Especially when there are many stupid rats that don't have a clue what is good for them singing their praises.
 

DBT

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[ OK, what is the minimally acceptable amount of money one needs to do that?

It's probably relative to the economy to which it applies.

''The poverty lines in Australia are not consistent it changes and depends on the income levels of different income units. In 1973 Henderson poverty theory had established a benchmark income at $62.70. It was the income at that period for a comfortable subsistence of a family of a couple and two children who are dependent. This benchmark is updated regularly are very recently in March 2007 the poverty line has been upgraded to $661.45. The research and the estimates are made by the Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research.

The poverty line is related to the income of the country. The measurement of the poverty line also changes with the rise in income of the community. The standard of living might be stable but the cost of living might change the value of the poverty line.''


Of course, the aim should be to lift everyones income above the poverty line in order to
enable a good standard of living for all within a decent equatable society.
 

Loren Pechtel

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So you have some fantasy that workers can figure out their own compensation?

Or do you envision a world of sole proprietorships?

And note that in a world where businesses pay their workers as much as possible there's no reason to create a business so there are no businesses.

Workers can do anything in terms of running a workplace. They have brains and can use them if allowed.

I figured you were going to regurgitate anarchist claims.

1) Many of the low-level workers do not have much upstairs. That's why they are in low level jobs. My boss figures everything for the shop floor must be 4th grade friendly--with good reason.

No masters, or the rats who do nothing but kiss up to the masters (if the shoe fits), are needed.

Next time you get in your car don't take the wheel and see what happens when you don't have a boss.

This immorality of the master/slave relationship is not needed in any way. It is primitive and inefficient.

But the masters do well.

Especially when there are many stupid rats that don't have a clue what is good for them singing their praises.

Quit thumping your bible.
 

untermensche

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Workers can do anything in terms of running a workplace. They have brains and can use them if allowed.

I figured you were going to regurgitate anarchist claims.

1) Many of the low-level workers do not have much upstairs. That's why they are in low level jobs. My boss figures everything for the shop floor must be 4th grade friendly--with good reason.

No masters, or the rats who do nothing but kiss up to the masters (if the shoe fits), are needed.

Next time you get in your car don't take the wheel and see what happens when you don't have a boss.

This immorality of the master/slave relationship is not needed in any way. It is primitive and inefficient.

But the masters do well.

Especially when there are many stupid rats that don't have a clue what is good for them singing their praises.

Quit thumping your bible.

Your ignorance of the world and history do not make anything I say "thumping a bible".

And one cannot be a master over an inanimate object. And an inanimate object cannot be a slave.

The master/slave relationships, that capitalism is founded on and allows, are relationships between humans.

I don't even know why I waste my time with such ignorance.
 
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