## Arguments for livable minimum wage.

• 2
I have taken a couple economics classes in college and in both they ask the question of whether a minimum wage is even necessary. Perhaps out of academic duty because a minimum wage may be a kind of inefficiency for the economy. However it was created to be fair to raise up people at the bottom.

Now I believe it was created with a living wage in mind at the very onset, but I sense a more conservative person might say it is basically for "extra" money so a teenager can buy a PS5 or whatever. But clearly it isn't only teenagers who earn only minimum wage these days. Maybe 1/3 or more are adults.

It kind of feels like minimum wage should be made livable that a person working 40 hours a week should require no public assistance or government health insurance (unless in the future we all do). And if those that make only minimum wage are a significant number of people that seems like an argument to get their income up to livable, and if it's not significant than it would be a drop in the bucket to sponsor.

It makes sense to do this right?
• 2
capitalism and socialism actually need each other to survive. you cant have one without the other. either one alone would collapse.

we need a balance of the two. because in balance they help each other but too much of one will sink the other and then sink itself.

conservatives have the strongest foundation, but they are simple minded and overlook some things. this is where we need some democrats to fill in some of the missing pieces.

alot of these new age democrats take the economy, and the conservative principles that built it, for granted.
• 18
It makes sense to do this right?

Yep. But the only thing more abhorrent to conservatives than the state paying for something is the rich paying for something. I think their preferred MO would be to let the poor die, a sort of Thatcherite Darwinism based on the fallacy that if you're not born fortunately that's your manifest inferiority and if I am that's my manifest superiority (see the Monopoly experiment), but that's frowned upon these days (but then again, what isn't? as Royal Tenenbaum pointed out).
• 26
It makes sense to do this right?

Yes! The dollars you earn as minimum wage should be able to feed a family of 5 (the poor have more mouths to feed), buy other basic necessities, pay for decent accommodations, send children to school, and enough to spare for recreation - all the stuff the so-called middle-class are said to "enjoy."

I wonder how the government calculates what a minimum wage should be? Probably in a way to keep people just, only just, above the international definition of the poverty line. There are many ways to look rich, one of them is on a technicality.
• 1
It makes sense to do this right?

Of course. No one that is able to work should be struggling to make ends meet. They deserve a livable wage.
• 2
Homeless people live and they don't even have a wage.
• 2

Yes homeless people do live, until they don't. But that is no standard to set for ones lowest economic group? And generally they do rely on social programs.
• 2
I am just wondering if my logic isn't too full of confirmation bias. If those that make a livable minimum wage are few than it is a small price to pay, but if they are many than it becomes everyone's problem and therefore we must pay for it regardless. Is this sound logic even if it points in the same direction?
• 2

A "livable" wage is arbitrary and subjective. Someone's income is not based according to their needs and wants. It's based on their ability to produce value. If someone feels entitled to a higher wage, they need to develop their skills. This is not an everyone's problem, this is a you problem.
• 28
It makes sense to do this right?

There are two issues. First - I believe that for a society to be good, everyone, must have ready access to decent working conditions, a decent place to live, nutritious food, clothing, education, and health care. I also believe that our society should work to become a good one.

Second - What is the best method to achieve this goal? Does the minimum wage help do it? I'm not sure, but I am sure it's not enough by itself.
• 8
best method
One way, a sketch, numbers not exact:
The IRS determines "reasonable" rent for an area, lets say $1000/month. Any employer hiring any employee full-time on the instant owes the IRS a tax of$1000/month! This the rule of thumb that rent should be about a week's pay. The employer may reduce its tax owed by the amount paid to the employee. The employer pays $10/hour? He owes the IRS$150/week. $20/hour? The employer owes$50/week. Or if the pay is $30/hour, then no tax. Part-time 20 hours at$10/hour? Landlord owes $75/week. On the landlord side, the landlord charges whatever he likes for rent, but any excess over the tenant's weekly amount is immediately taxed away. If the landlord wants$3000/month rent, his tenant should be making $156,000/year. If the landlord is collecting$3000/month from a tenant making $2000/week, then landlord owes$1000.

Adjustable, tweakable, exceptions possible? Sure, why not.
• 28
Sure, why not.

I don't know if that would work or not. One thing I like about the universal basic income approach is it cuts out all the frim fram - just write a bunch of checks. Get rid of bureaucrats, complex formulas, multiple overlapping programs, red tape.
• 2

It isn't entirely arbitrary. We know enough about nutrition to know what a body needs to be its best, and the healthcare and shelter needed to keep a person from freezing to death. They need not a mansion. A small space without rot or infestation should be fine.
• 2

I mean you could let some homeless people live in your house if you care about them so much.
• 65
I mean you could let some homeless people live in your house if you care about them so much.

Or increase taxes on those best able to afford paying more taxes and use the increased tax revenue to help reduce poverty.

This is not an everyone's problem, this is a you problem.

Five ways poverty hinders economic growth

1. The effects of poverty cost U.K. citizens about 1,200 pounds per person every year.

According to the Guardian, 25 percent of health care spending is associated with treating conditions related to poverty; 20 percent of the U.K.’s education budget is spent on initiatives, like free school meals, to reduce the impact of poverty.

2. Child poverty reduces U.S. productivity and economic output by 1.3 percent of GDP each year, which costs the U.S. about $500 billion per year. Economic hardship disproportionately affects children more than any other age group. The Center for American Progress believes impoverished children are more likely to have low earnings as adults and are somewhat more likely to engage in crime. This “reduced productive activity” generates a direct loss of goods and services to the U.S. economy. 3. Children living in poverty have higher dropout rates and absenteeism, which limits their employability. The Council of State Governments Knowledge Center found that nearly 30 percent of poor children do not complete high school, which limits future economic success. A more educated individual is more likely to participate in the job market, to have a job, to work more hours, to be paid more and less likely to be unemployed according to an Economic Policy Institute report from August 2013. Countries may see a rise in economic productivity by ensuring that children from low-income backgrounds have equitable access and are motivated to stay in school. 4. Poverty increases the risk of poor health; it is a$7.6 billion burden on the Canadian health care system.

The link between poor health and poverty is undeniable; the World Health Organization (WHO) declares poverty as the single largest determinant of health.

Poverty increases the likelihood of developing conditions that are expensive to treat such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Therefore, reducing poverty not only cultivates a healthy economy but it can also create a physically healthier society.
• 5
You’re not addressing what he said.

A "livable" wage is arbitrary and subjective

Is false. There’s some subjectivity to it but not much.

Someone's income is not based according to their needs and wants.

That much is known. And people want to change this to at least be based on needs.

You haven’t given an argument as to why this should be the case. Just asserted that it is, which no one is disputing.
• 13
If someone feels entitled to a higher wage, they need to develop their skills.

Why is lobbying a government to pay your wage out of taxation income not allowed then? This, surely, is a 'skill' which secures a wage by its exercise?
• 2
if the individual, using their own skills, manages to convince the government to increase that individuals wage, then yes, it is a skill which secures a wage by it's exercise. However, since that is very nearly never the case, as those lacking said skills are provided skilled advocates, usually on the government's dime, to lobby the government, that should not be allowed.
• 13
if the individual, using their own skills, manages to convince the government to increase that individuals wage, then yes, it is a skill which secures a wage by it's exercise. However, since that is very nearly never the case, as those lacking said skills are provided skilled advocates, usually on the government's dime, to lobby the government, that should not be allowed.

That's just moving the goalposts. If they didn't do the advocacy themselves, they still lobbied and voted for a government who provided them. Somehow a set of legal and organisational circumstances has come about which allows this, why is the evolution of such a set of circumstances different from the evolution of the set of circumstances which allow the working population to receive remuneration? These workers didn't bring all those circumstances about by themselves either.
• 2
I am unclear as to how supporting those who are unwilling to support themselves is of value, end of story.

The working population works and receives remuneration for their efforts. Effort in, something of value in return. Nothing in, nothing of value out. Simple math.
• 13
I am unclear as to how supporting those who are unwilling to support themselves is of value, end of story.

They're not unwilling to support themselves. as I've said, they vote for governments who pay them benefits, they shop for food, make dinner, attend the benefits office... You're setting an arbitrary bar for 'amount of work' that only applies to those on benefits.

Effort in, something of value in return.

As I made clear on the other thread where you're arguing the same nonsense. If Jeff Bezos can be used as an example of your 'effort in - value out' principle, then a person on benefits only needs to put in five minutes of effort in order to justify the payment they receive. This threshold is easily met by all by the comatose.
• 2
Hardly. Let those benefit receivers get up bright and early and spend as much time lobbying for their wage as the people going to full time jobs. I am just not seeing that. Maybe that's just the locals there though. Do they spend 40 hours a week at the government offices in your area?
• 13
Hardly. Let those benefit receivers get up bright and early and spend as much time lobbying for their wage as the people going to full time jobs. I am just not seeing that. Maybe that's just the locals there though. Do they spend 40 hours a week at the government offices in your area?

See my edit above. They don't need to work 40hrs a week, why would they? What is it about 40hrs that's so special? Equal value in - equal value out, that's the principle you are espousing here.
• 2
Sure. Equal value. I am not seeing that in your position
• 13
Sure. Equal value. I am not seeing that in your position

You were talking about hours worked, now you're talking about value. It would help if you remained consistent. What is it that you are using to measure whether people deserve the remuneration they get hours worked or value? If the latter, then how are you measuring value?
• 2
This is reminiscent of a debate I had 28 years ago with one of my girlfriend's Mother. She was angry because I was applying for a job that paid more than she made and I was 25 years younger than her. She apparently felt that my four years of education and specialty trade training was not relevant to how much I should be paid, nor should the fact that we did completely different jobs play into wage at all. As per her, everyone should make the same wage. It was perhaps one of the most ridiculous discussions I have been in. Her position amounted to "because".
• 13

You've not answered the question. How are you measuring value?
• 2
value is set by someone other than the worker. You might have a more valuable skill than I have, ergo, you make more when you use that skill. I may work 80 hours a week, so despite you earning more each hour that you work, I may take home more each week as I work longer hours. Bob might work longer than both of us, and have amazingly valuable skills, so he makes more than both of us combined.
Whoever is paying us determines our value.

In a world with no cars, mechanics have little value. If you are the only mechanic in the world and everyone has a car, you charge whatever you like.
• 13
value is set by someone other than the worker. You might have a more valuable skill than I have, ergo, you make more when you use that skill. I may work 80 hours a week, so despite you earning more each hour that you work, I may take home more each week as I work longer hours. Bob might work longer than both of us, and have amazingly valuable skills, so he makes more than both of us combined.
Whoever is paying us determines our value.

Right. So the government who pays the benefits determines the value. The five minutes of work done by those on benefits is valued by the government (the ones paying them).

So what's your problem?
• 2
I support the government through taxes. The government is not allowed to tell groups of it's citizens that they have no value, especially now when everyone is whining about the injustice of the world.

My problem is that I do not want to support someone that elects to do nothing. Do nothing, get nothing.
• 13
My problem is that I do not want to support someone that elects to do nothing. Do nothing, get nothing.

But they don't do nothing, we've just established that. They do very little, and they get very little - the exact amount determined by the organisation paying them. It's all exactly as you claim you want it to be. Value is determined by the person paying and no one gets anything for nothing. So, again, what exactly is the problem you're trying to describe?
bold
italic
underline
strike
code
quote
ulist
image
url
mention
reveal
youtube
tweet

#### Welcome to The Philosophy Forum!

Get involved in philosophical discussions about knowledge, truth, language, consciousness, science, politics, religion, logic and mathematics, art, history, and lots more. No ads, no clutter, and very little agreement — just fascinating conversations.