Thursday, January 28, 2016
Do You Suppose $15 an Hour as a Community Minimum Would Have Kept WallMarts in Small Town America?
Maybe but the probabilities would certainly be questionable.
The problem here is not only wages as a cost factor, but the whole idea of what is a reasonable profit, and how much competition to balance that with reasonable prices. Henry Ford was able to pay what were considered ridiculous wages at the time and still make a decent return on an affordable auto, but he wasn't facing the kind of competition the world revolves in today. Global markets certainly provide a lot of options in regards to not only where you can sell things, as well as where you can also produce them, but then create the pressure to seek the lowest common cost denominator.
The further problem with Seattle's new minimum is that even that isn't really a living wage. Any more than low cost labor is really in a producer's best interest in the first place. After all, how can you want world competitive infrastructure, well educated populace, and purchasers able to buy lots of what producers in general produce, and yet not want to pay the wages that would allow those things to be supported, or your fair share of taxes on profits to aid in same?
And then we throw in all of the delayed costs of mass production, and consumption, that have harmed the planet, and us, that are only now coming fully due. Another factor nobody wants to take responsibility for, but isn't going away.
And whether you are a Trump Chump, a Hillary High Hoper, or a Sanders Secret Socialist, you are not going to get someone who will be able to, or even want to, change what is the fundamental problem: Livelihoods based on the current mass productive/consumptive model, where everything is cost based, as opposed to effort based, is simply no longer viable. A comprehensively new alternative is absolutely the only thing that will address what needs to be addressed. This is the choice you better come to terms with, and soon.