Do you Want Fries With That?

Wendy's To Replace Workers With Self-Service Kiosks Due To Minimum Wage Increases

Wendy’s  said that self-service ordering kiosks will be made available across its 6,000-plus restaurants in the second half of the year as minimum wage hikes and a tight labor market push up wages.

It will be up to franchisees whether to deploy the labor-saving technology, but Wendy’s President Todd Penegor did note that some franchise locations have been raising prices to offset wage hikes.

McDonald’s  has been testing self-service kiosks. But Wendy’s, which has been vocal about embracing labor-saving technology, is launching the biggest potential expansion.

Wendy’s Penegor said company-operated stores, only about 10% of the total, are seeing wage inflation of 5% to 6%, driven both by the minimum wage and some by the need to offer a competitive wage “to access good labor.”

It’s not surprising that some franchisees might face more of a labor-cost squeeze than company restaurants. All 258 Wendy’s restaurants in California, where the minimum wage rose to $10 an hour this year and will gradually rise to $15, are franchise-operated. Likewise, about 75% of 200-plus restaurants in New York are run by franchisees. New York’s fast-food industry wage rose to $10.50 in New York City and $9.75 in the rest of the state at the start of 2016, also on the way to $15.

That nearly doubles the labor costs, you know. And a restaurant is nota  high margin business so I wonder how many of them will go out of business because they can’t afford Liberalism??

Wendy’s plans to cut company-owned stores to just 5% of the total.

Still, Penegor said that increased customer counts more than price hikes drove the chain’s 3.6% same-store sales increase in the first quarter.

Although profit exceeded Wall Street estimates, Wendy’s shares dived nearly 9% Wednesday because of weak second-quarter sales.

“We are seeing a bit of a softer overall category in April” relative to the past two quarters, Penegor said on an earnings call, implying more of an industrywide trend than an issue specific to Wendy’s.

Penegor said the reason for softer growth was hard to pinpoint, but he listed a cautious consumer, tougher spring weather in the Northeast, and a wider gap between the cost of food at home vs. food away from home as possible contributors.

While Wendy’s management was upbeat about company prospects, noting that it just experienced its first year with a net increase in restaurants since 2010, its downbeat comments about sector growth were contagious. McDonald’s eased 1.7% after touching a new record high on Tuesday. Yum Brands , which owns Taco Bell, Pizza Hut and KFC, slipped 2.6% and Restaurant Brands International  fell 3.4%.

For now, Penegor said, wage pressures have been manageable both because of falling commodity prices and better operating leverage due to an increase in customer counts. Still, the company is wary about both wage hikes and a possible recovery in commodity prices and is “working so hard to find efficiencies” so it can deliver “a new QSR experience but at traditional QSR prices.”

In addition to self-order kiosks, the company is also getting ready to move beyond the testing phase with labor-saving mobile ordering and mobile payment available systemwide by the end of the year. Yum Brands and McDonald’s already have mobile ordering apps.

Kiosks, of course, do the job of a human at the cost of $0 per hour.

Automation is coming, and it’s going to be at the cost of low-skilled workers–and not just the ones at Wendy’s. McDonald’s is also considering using kiosks, and self-checkout lines are common at grocery stores across the country. Minimum wage laws create an artificial price floor that hurts workers more than it helps.

But “victim” laden greedy Liberals and their Power mad Politicos won’t listen to basic economics. They have baser desires in mind.

And when the jobs go away, it won’t be there fault. It will be big bad “Corporate America”. Mind you, as it said most of the Wendy’s are FRANCHISE operations, meaning they are a SMALL BUSINESS owned by an entrepreneur not a massive corporation. So you’re hurting the small business guy by doubling his labor costs!

Idiots…

Burger Burn

I found this hilarious. All the little Crybabies were mad at the mean old capitalist…

The CEO of Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s has visited the fully automated restaurant Eatsa — and it’s given him some ideas on how to deal with rising minimum wages.

Eatsa, In the very heart of Liberalism, San Francisco: http://insidescoopsf.sfgate.com/blog/2015/08/31/fast-food-reinvented-eatsa-a-fully-automated-restaurant-opens-today/

“I want to try it,” CEO Andy Puzder told Business Insider. “We could have a restaurant that’s focused on all-natural products and is much like an Eatsa, where you order on a kiosk, you pay with a credit or debit card, your order pops up, and you never see a person.”

Puzder takes a highly conservative stance when it comes to the minimum wage issue — he’s written two op-eds against it in the Wall Street Journal.

“With government driving up the cost of labor, it’s driving down the number of jobs,” he said. “You’re going to see automation not just in airports and grocery stores, but in restaurants.” Entrepreneurs make their very living by solving problems and liberals demanding outrageous pay for low level work is one that is easily solved these days. “This is the problem with Bernie Sanders, and Hillary Clinton, and progressives who push very hard to raise the minimum wage,” said Puzder. “Does it really help if Sally makes $3 more an hour if Suzie has no job?” Puzder has really warmed to the idea of robots and I have to say, I’m beginning to as well: “They’re always polite, they always upsell, they never take a vacation, they never show up late, there’s never a slip-and-fall, or an age, sex, or race discrimination case,” said Puzder of swapping employees for machines. Imagine the legal expense saved! Not to mention regulatory compliance. It’s as I have said most of my life… if you want job security, you had better work for yourself. No one will pay you better or work you harder. (RWN)

No one should be shocked that the Carl’s Jr. CEO wants to replace people in his stores. Anyone with the most rudimentary understanding of economics saw this coming, which naturally excludes those supporting the #FightFor15 movement. Bernie Sanders, we’re looking at you…

The Liberals will never see it coming. Their Thought Police/Agenda Uber Alles Filters will leave them totally blind.

But the fact that he’s so blunt about it? I tip my hat to you sir…

“If you’re making labor more expensive, and automation less expensive- this is not rocket science,” Puzder said.

“They’re always polite, they always upsell, they never take a vacation, they never show up late, there’s never a slip-and-fall, or an age, sex, or race discrimination case,” says Puzder of swapping employees for machines. “Millennials like not seeing people. I’ve been inside restaurants where we’ve installed ordering kiosks… and I’ve actually seen young people waiting in line to use the kiosk where there’s a person standing behind the counter, waiting on nobody.”

Leftists of course gotta leftist…

I guess Carl’s Jr saw what happened to McDonalds, WalMart, and the Gap when it came to a minimum wage hike. Also, I’m assuming this man had a calculator.

Of course, leftists could have read this man’s statements, attempted to understand an evolving economy and readjust their policy proposal. Instead, as they always do, they decide to fight against market forces through the demanding of government coercion. Just like when they fought against “right to work” (see those videos here). Just like when they fought against online media sharing. Just like when they, most recently, and incredibly ironically, oppose the emerging “sharing economy” like Uber and AirB&B (read more about that here).

That’s right. Self-professed socialists are attempting to SHUT DOWN THE SHARING ECONOMY. Let that sink in for a moment.

Why? Because to modern leftists, everything else takes a backseat to them getting theirs, period. It’s why Bernie’s promises of endless, mathematically impossible free sh** are so appealing.

Unenlightened Narcissism and “Entitlement” Greed are a very bad combination.

It didn’t work all that well for the Unions…

“This is the problem with Bernie Sanders, and Hillary Clinton, and progressives who push very hard to raise the minimum wage,” says Puzder. “Does it really help if Sally makes $3 more an hour if Suzie has no job?”

But for more rote tasks like grilling a burger or taking an order, technology may be even more precise than human employees.

“They’re always polite, they always upsell, they never take a vacation, they never show up late, there’s never a slip-and-fall, or an age, sex, or race discrimination case,” says Puzder of swapping employees for machines.

But Puzder says that a restaurant that’s 100% automated would have one big plus for millennials: no social interaction.

“Millennials like not seeing people,” he says. “I’ve been inside restaurants where we’ve installed ordering kiosks … and I’ve actually seen young people waiting in line to use the kiosk where there’s a person standing behind the counter, waiting on nobody.” (Tea Party.org)

561f04d1a5af49e217009068_56799faa30c993aa9c000d8a

But conservatives are not immune. Listen, the minimum wage absurdity is obvious. But what do you think will happen if you try to punish trade? If you put more tariffs on China, or American manufacturers with manufacturing plants in Mexico? Businesses aren’t going to eat that cost. It will simply be passed on to you. When people demand government-mandated minimum wages that are not in line with market values, or they demand taxes on goods produced offshore to “bring back American jobs,” it is ultimately a tax on you, the consumer. As a general rule, consumers then migrate to where services are cheaper, and the American businesses go under. At which point they’ll promptly demand a bailout to continue the never-ending cycle.  (Crowder)

Detroit anyone? 🙂

Political Cartoons by Michael Ramirez
Political Cartoons by Glenn Foden

Soylent Green Snake

Hillary Clinton has a new economic plan. In essence, government should get actively involved to make everyone’s wages higher.

Government control of the means of production…hmmm…I’ve heard that somewhere before… 🙂

Paul Krugman, writing in The New York Times, endorses the idea. There was a time when Krugman dismissed rhetoric like Clinton’s as economic quackery. These days he’s trying to sell the same snake oil as the politicians.

The Agenda is The Agenda. And Class Warfare is one of the great succors or The Left. They can’t conceive of life without it.

Here is what economists know and it’s backed by mountains of research. Employees tend to get paid their marginal product – the value they add to final output.

In a competitive market this is almost a truism. Wages are not a gift. They are not at one level, but could have been substantially higher or lower. They are what they are because of the employees’ skills and the market value of what they produce.

Now suppose that were not the case. Suppose there was a firm that paid employees more than their marginal product. That would mean the firm is collecting less from customers at the margin than it is paying out in wages. The firm can try to raise prices to cover the deficit, but then it would lose sales to rivals whose costs are lower and it would eventually go out of business. Or it could cover the deficit with lower profits. But then the investors would fire the manager and hire someone who gets the wages right and provides a market rate of return.

Suppose that there was a firm that paid employees less than their marginal product. In that case, rival firms would hire the employees away – since they are worth more than what they are being paid.

To summarize: A firm that pays workers more than they are worth cannot survive because it cannot match the prices and the rate of return to investors of its rivals. A firm that pays workers less than what they are worth, cannot survive because it will not be able to retain its employees. Competition in the marketplace tends to determine wages; there is a definite logic to what people are paid; and it has nothing to do with miserliness or generosity.

Therefore, Liberals want to eliminate competition thus everyone is equal and their are no winner and no losers. Just like the liberal version of youth sports where no one actually loses.

Competition is evil. So it must be destroyed. Competition is “unfair” and full of nothing but “inequality”.

Also, economists know there is no free lunch.

Unless, they are Liberal adherents to The Agenda, then they are all about the perception of “the free lunch” or the “greedy” capitalist who is a Scrooge and miserly old white privilege asshole.

If one person has a gain – in the absence of any increased production — someone else must endure a loss.

And since that is “unfair” Liberals demand everyone to be equal which holy unrealistic, but then again so are Liberals.

And we know a lot about those losses. For example, when government forces employers to pay higher wages, employers react by reducing other types of spending on their employees – less training and fewer fringe benefits, such as health insurance.

Close down and move to Mexico…Offer less hours of work at that higher pay, say 29. 🙂

On balance it appears that employees are left worse off. After a survey of the literature, economist Richard McKenzie wrote:

[I]f the minimum wage were raised to $10.10 an hour, for example, the estimated 16.5 million workers earning between $7.25 and $10.10 could lose non-monetary compensation more valuable than the $31 billion in additional wages they are expected to receive.

But Liberal work on perception, not reality. So that shiny new toy in the window look good from the outside, but once you own it and start playing with it, you find out just how cheaply made it was and it begins to fall about.

But don’t worry, The Liberal has that covered to! It’s called “victimization” where you are the victim of the evil, greedy capitalists! It’s not your fault you fell for their dog crap hook-line-and-sinker, it’s their fault!

How amazing is that. You took a bite of the apple of socialism and it the snake bit you, but it’s still the snake’s fault! And all you need is for the Liberal to come in and tell you that it was the snake fault and that if you take another bite it will STILL be the snake’s fault so why not go ahead…

In defense of Hillary, Krugman writes:

[E]mployers always face a trade-off between low-wage and higher-wage strategies — between, say, the traditional Walmart model of paying as little as possible and accepting high turnover and low morale, and the Costco model of higher pay and benefits leading to a more stable work force. And there’s every reason to believe that public policy can, in a variety of ways — including making it easier for workers to organize — encourage more firms to choose the good-wage strategy.

Liberalism a snake charmer, not a snake oil salesman, says the snake oil salesman.

But here’s the thing. What works for Costco workers may not work for Walmart workers. And in any event does any rational person think that government should make decisions about these tradeoffs rather than competitors in the marketplace?

Yes, Liberals. 🙂

The other day The New York Times had two contrasting editorials on its op ed page. One, by Paul Krugman, called for a higher minimum wage and other labor market interventions. The other, by the chairman of Starbucks and his wife, Howard and Sheri Schultz, noted that:

[There are] 5.6 million people ages 16 to 24 in America who are not employed or in school. While some have lost hope in this population … we believe these young people represent a significant untapped resource of productivity and talent. With the right support and training, they can benefit our businesses and our communities.

The Schultz’s have formed a foundation and with the aid of other foundations and high profile companies their goal is to “provide jobs, internships and apprenticeships to 100,000 young people over the next three years.”

Although they don’t say so, their editorial clearly implies that the wage that is paid to these youths doesn’t really matter. What matters is they learn the life skills of showing up for work on time, following orders, conducting themselves in appropriate ways, etc. If they learn those skills, their wages will rise through time without any help from government.

Krugman, Clinton and others on the left say there is no economic harm in raising the minimum wage and in adopting other polices that close off job opportunities for those at the bottom of the income ladder. In making this statement they are ignoring the social costs. The Schultz’s write:

[T]he cost of youth disconnection — including health care, public assistance and incarceration — was $26.8 billion in 2013 alone. Quite literally, we can’t afford to do nothing.

And then there are the personal costs, which do not easily lend themselves to calculation in terms of dollars and cents.

I suspect these costs are not of much interest to either Krugman or Clinton. (John C Goodman)

Snake Oil is how much a barrel?

Let’s not forget that those who have their wage increased suddenly find themselves no longer “qualified” to receive governmental benefits and pay higher taxes out of that higher wage.

We’ve already seen that where the “newly waged” want fewer hours so that they don’t lose their benefits.

Which probably explains why they don’t understand the reasoning behind how a wage gets set.

Secondarily, many unions tie their wages to the minimum wage level by some multiplier or other offset. Which means that costs will be going up in those businesses as well.

Krugman and others are dishonest for continuing to promote wage pandering.
But Liberals are never about the truth, but about what gains them power. And keeping people ignorant and jealous plays right into that.
(Townhall)

Keep them stupid, mad, and needy, that’s the Liberal plan. It keeps the Liberals pundits, advocates, and Politicians on their own gravy train.

Liberal version of Soylent Green, just grind them up and feed them back to themselves and make them happy for you and made at everyone else.

Give Me Comfort or Give me…

Matt Walsh had a piece yesterday that was truly brilliant.

It was aimed right at the hearts and minds of the $15/hr whiner crowd.

I want to address this to my generation and younger. The dreaded Youth of America. My fellow Young People. I think I’m still a member of this club, at least for a little while longer. These days childhood seems to extend for many people into their late 30s, so I guess if you use the Extended Adolescence scale, I’m only about 12 or so.

Thirty is the new 13, as they say.

Just trying having a rational discussion with a Liberal, you’ll be lucky if they act like a 3 year old.

In any case, I’m not sure what exactly prompted it – might be a couple of Tweets I sent out about minimum wage this week, or maybe this person stumbled upon an old article of mine — but I received a dire and depressing message yesterday. I’ll show you, just because it makes for an excellent learning opportunity:

Dear Matt, you are uninformed about the minimum wage. I’m NOT saying anyone should just HAND me a six figure income but I DO have the right to live a decent, comfortable life and not go hungry. I am 19 and supporting myself on a minimum wage job and it is not easy. 15 dollar minimum wage would be enough at least that I could be comfortable. I wish you didn’t see life through your privileged lense, then you might understand…

-Jon

Wow. Jon’s email consists of only five sentences, yet still he managed to cram in the word “comfort” twice (and “privilege” once, for good measure). He wants comfort, he says. He has a right to it. And those of us who oppose an increased minimum wage, thus standing in the way of his comfort, are privileged. This is the cartoon world he’s been indoctrinated into; this weird, mystical realm where comfort is owed to him, but evil privileged folks prowl about looking to steal it away. That’s essentially the social theory they teach in college, I’m told.

You have no shot. The privileged have taken everything so you got nothing. So vote for a Democrat to have government take it for you! 🙂

The price: Your soul. Your Pride.  And sense of self-motivation or worth.

It’s terrible to see a young guy already so bored, distracted, and unambitious that obtaining “a comfortable life” has become his objective. And not even an objective he’ll pursue on his own, but one he wants the government to deliver effortlessly to him, like a candy gram left on his doorstep by a secret admirer. It’s a heart wrenching spectacle to behold, but not remarkable. It’s certainly nothing I haven’t heard or read a thousand times before. Still, it made me reflect, not on the effects of a federal $15 minimum wage — we don’t have to speculate about that anymore, we’ve already seen how it destroys businesses in real life — but on the tragedy of so many millennials, millions in my generation, wasting their early life overcome with a fatal obsession over, and desire for, this elusive comfort.

“Everyone deserves a comfortable life”? Is that really going to be our generation’s rallying cry? Is this our revolution? “Give me comfort!” Our ancestors demanded liberty or death, but we’ve slightly modified the slogan, it seems.

A Pew survey found that half of minimum wage workers are between 16 and 24 years old, and another 22 percent are 25 to 34. Then there are the workers near minimum wage (which means they’d also see a massive bump in pay if the federal minimum were increased to $15), and half of them are under 30. This is why I weep over the “fight for 15″ movement. Most of these people are young — their whole lives in front of them, a billion potential paths they could walk, an infinite number of opportunities — yet this is their fight? Fifteen bucks an hour wrapping burritos at Chipotle? That’s all they’re after? Don’t misunderstand me: I’m not saying they want too much. I’m saying precisely that they don’t want enough.

Indeed, an increased minimum wage will certainly make many of them comfortable — especially in the parts of the country where 1$5 an hour really translates to $19 or $20 – and that’s exactly the problem. My great fear is not that an enormously inflated minimum wage will unravel the economy, although it surely will, but that it might actually succeed in its goal of making a bunch of 20-something fry cooks “comfortable” in their jobs. This would be a profound catastrophe because these jobs are not supposed to make people comfortable; nobody is supposed to do them for years and years on end. You’re supposed to get in and get out. Move in and move one. You’re meant to use it as a platform on your way to something better, but the platform is not meant to be a comfortable place to set up camp and hang out for a few decades.

Comfort: a state of ease and satisfaction of bodily wants, with freedom from pain and anxiety.

As the young generation, we are simply not at the point in our lives where we should be striving for “ease and satisfaction.” Least of all should we be looking to derive ease and satisfaction from wearing name tags and microwaving Big Macs all day. These kinds of jobs are tiring and tedious and demeaning and they pay like crap, and that’s the point. They’re not comfortable, and they shouldn’t be.

Besides, a “comfortable life” is by no means a human right, nor is it a need. Comfort, for one thing, is subjective. I’m sure wide swaths of humanity would consider every American, even our poor ones, comfortable. A roof over their head and safe food to eat are comforts to billions. Add in air conditioning, Internet, cell phone, TV, car, and running water, and by their standards you’ve reached the pinnacle of human luxury.

When we say we have a right to a comfortable life, whose idea of comfort are we working with? The Ethiopian version or the lazy, pampered, materialistic American consumer version? And where is the comfort equilibrium? Once we all have apartments, cable, NetFlix, Wi-Fi, stocked refrigerators, and consoles with at least four video games? Is that when comfort will be achieved? But what happens when everyone realizes that standard of comfort? What if my greedy neighbor then goes out and gets another video game, and a faster Wi-Fi connection, and better food? Now, compared to him, I’m less comfortable. Should he be forced to give me some of his stuff to compensate? But what if that makes me more comfortable than him? Do I give it back? Do we just keep up this tug of war until we all fall dead in our comfortable houses and are buried in our comfortable coffins under six feet of comfortable dirt?

REDISTRIBUTION WEALTH IS AN IMPERATIVE! 🙂

“Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.” goes the old Chinese proverb.

And for Liberals it feels good to give the poor a fish, or even better the “rich” person’s fish. Or a “free” or “cheaper” fish that looks like the “rich” person’s fish.

Problem is, then they don’t know how to fish. And if they never learned how to fish to begin with, then you have a person dependent on you for their fish.

Which, for Democrats, works for them. That’s what they like. They can control you, you are their slave if you can’t or won’t fish and they give it to you.

And you demand more! More Comfort! They are wealthy, they can afford it! 🙂

In this photo taken, Aug. 1, 2013, demonstrators protesting what they say are low wages and improper treatment for fast-food workers march in downtown Seattle.  (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson, File)

Have we thought this through? Of course not, but you can’t totally blame us. We live, after all, in the era of birth control mandates, Obama phones, free-speech zones, trigger warnings, and anti-discrimination ordinances. We are told every day that we have the right to feel comfortable, or at least to not be exposed to any ideas or circumstances that would make us uncomfortable. We’re just following the cultural cues, and listening to the voices that tell us our aim in life should be the avoidance of physical and emotional discomfort, at whatever cost. But the voices are wrong, and they’re leading us far, far astray.

Comfort is not a right or a need or even an appropriate desire at this stage. Sure, we can think about comfort when we’re shopping for jeans or sweaters or beds, but comfort shouldn’t be our entire goal in life right now. A comfortable lifestyle is for the old and the retired, not the young and the hungry.

“Give me $15 an hour so I can be comfortable!” What a weak and timid and disappointing banner to march under. We’ve got a world to conquer, for God’s sake. We’re not patients in hospice care. Now is the time to be uncomfortable.

Let’s look again at Jon’s case, for example. He’s supporting himself, he says, which is great. But he used the word “job,” singular, which tells me he only has one. Why? Why not get a second or a third? Instead of waiting for the government to force his employer to pay him about double what he’s making, he could go out and do it himself. Two jobs equals double the income. I worked three at one point, just as many people have. I worked from 4 p.m. to 10 a.m. some days; that’s 16 hours from afternoon to late morning. It was painful and uncomfortable and exhausting. It was awesome.

A while ago, the last time I wrote about the minimum wage, I heard from a guy who told me he’s 22, single, living alone, and he works four jobs. Two full time, one part time, and one that’s more of a freelance gig he does in his spare time (whenever that is). How is it that some people complain they can’t survive on minimum wage, they can’t find a better job, they can’t find a second job, meanwhile that dude is out there with four of them? And, no, I assume he doesn’t want to live like that forever, but he’s living like that now so he won’t have to do it forever. He’s not worried about being comfortable.

So, a minimum wage hike? You’re setting your sights too low, my friends. Here you are, complaining that the government won’t force your employer to give you $15  an hour, when you could be putting a plan in place to make 10 times that amount in the next five years. Better yet, you could be figuring out what your passions are and devising a way to make a career out of them, regardless of the money.

I think you should be chasing something bigger. We all should. Truth, beauty, fulfillment, love, success. Not comfort. And while you hunt for this larger game, what’s the worst that could happen? You eat one meal a day? You go to bed hungry sometimes? You have to cut off the AC to save money? You end up pawning half your possessions to pay the bills? I’ve been there. It’s not that bad. It’s good, actually. It motivates you. It drives you. It teaches you to scrap by and survive and do what it takes.

Why worry about getting a raise at your crappy minimum wage job? You aren’t planning on being there forever, are you? You don’t think of minimum wage employment as a 30-year career option, do you? Right, I hope not. Forget, then, about asking the government to tell your employer to make you comfortable. Comfort is just about the worst thing that could happen to you right now, or to any of us.

Here’s what I can assure you: Minimum wage won’t kill you. You’re not going to die. I mean, you will die eventually, maybe soon for all I know, maybe tomorrow or an hour from now, but it won’t be from lack of income. The coroner report isn’t going to list “minimum wage” as cause of death, I promise you.

So drop this “comfortable” thing, OK? Remove the word from your vocabulary completely. In fact, take out a paper bag, shout “I have the right to live a comfortable life!” into it, tie it shut so the words are trapped in there, then douse it in gasoline and throw it into a volcano. Murder that awful, hideous sentence with terrific violence. Ask for more out of life, and listen to the answer.

Life might not offer you comfort, especially while you’re still working the late shift at Taco Bell, but there’s the potential for something so much better, as long as you’re willing to go out and get it.

I wish I had been that smart in my early years.
But I have little sympathy for the “comfort police”.
I got into big debt because of my own issues and trusting other people.
I didn’t cry to the government or blame “privilege”.
I had 2 jobs. I got up at 4am. I had a nap in the afternoon for an hour. I went to bed at 1:30am! Monday-Friday for  28 months straight.
Now’s that’s not comfortable.
But it it had to be done. No whining. No no crying. Just do it.
Just hard work.
Now, 10 years later I had a house. A good paying job and I still work hard just not that hard.
So suck it up. Turn off your internet. Turn of the Cable with HBO Turn off your cell phone. How many 100’s of dollars is that a month?
Do what has to be done.
It won’t be easy.
But 10 years from now, you’ll thank us all.

That is, unless 10 years from now you’re still flipping burgers and complaining that $15/hr are “slave wages” and that no one can live “comfortably” on that!! 🙂

Political Cartoons by Robert Ariail
Political Cartoons by Lisa Benson
Political Cartoons by Glenn McCoy

Save Yourself!

Last fall, voters in the Bay Area cities of San Francisco and Oakland followed Seattle’s lead and approved costly new minimum-wage mandates ($15 an hour and $12.25 an hour, respectively) for most businesses in the city boundaries. Now the bills have begun arriving, and some businesses can’t pay them.

The consequences of minimum-wage increases, at the historical levels studied in the U.S., are well known to labor economists. A summary of the research published last year by the Institute for the Study of Labor, and authored by University of California-Irvine economist David Neumark, found that each 10% hike in the minimum wage on the state and federal level has caused a 1% to 2% drop in youth employment. Similarly, researchers at the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago found an increase in fast-food prices associated with the same wage change.

Given the scope and schedule of these new minimum-wage increases, the impact on prices and employment may be even steeper this time. The current federal minimum wage is $7.25, half of what San Francisco’s wage floor will be set at by 2018 after a series of increases that begin in May. Nationally, Congress phased in the last 40% increase to $7.25 over a three-year period; in Oakland, an almost-identical 36% increase happened overnight on March 1.

 
Photo: Getty Images

Businesses’ first line of defense against these labor-cost increases is an offsetting increase in prices. The magnitude is staggering: In Oakland, local restaurants are raising prices by as much as 20%, with the San Francisco Chronicle reporting that “some of the city’s top restaurateurs fear they will lose customers to higher prices.” Thanks to a quirk in California law that prohibits full-service restaurants from counting tips as income, other operators—who were forced to give their best-paid employees a raise—are rethinking their business model by eliminating tips as they raise prices.

Ironically, this change in compensation practices has reduced the take-home pay for some of the employees it was supposed to help: At the Oakland restaurant Homestead, the East Bay Express reported that servers are taking “a substantial pay cut,” earning a flat wage of $18 to $24 an hour and no tips instead of the $35 to $55 an hour they were accustomed to earning when tips were included.

Though higher prices are a risk that some businesses were able to take, others haven’t had the option. The San Francisco retailer Borderlands Books made national news in February when the owner announced that the city’s $15 minimum wage would put him out of business, in part because the prices of his products were already printed on the covers. (A unique customer fundraiser gave Borderlands a stay of execution until at least March of 2016.)

One block away from Borderlands, a fine-dining establishment called The Abbot’s Cellar—twice selected as one of the city’s top-100 restaurants—wasn’t so lucky. The forthcoming $15 minimum wage, combined with a series of factors like the city’s soaring rents, put the business over the edge and compelled its owners to close. One of the partners told me the restaurant had no ability to absorb the added cost, and neither a miraculous increase in sales volume nor higher prices were viable options.

These aren’t isolated anecdotes. In the city’s popular SoMa neighborhood, a vegetarian diner called The Source closed in January, again citing the higher minimum wage as a factor. Back across the Bay in Oakland, the Chronicle reported that some of the city’s businesses have been similarly affected. According to a board member of the Oakland Chinatown Chamber of Commerce, 10 restaurants or grocery stores opted to permanently close this year alone as a partial consequence of the wage hike. Even the Salvation Army’s child-care facility is “scrambling to find ways to keep the doors open” in response to labor cost increases, according to the organization’s county coordinator.

Faced with convincing evidence of the policy’s failures, you’d think advocates would be chastened or apologetic. You’d be wrong: Ken Jacobs, who runs the University of California-Berkeley’s labor-backed Center for Labor Research and Education, chalked up possible consequences of new mandates to labor-market “churn.” Research that Mr. Jacobs co-authored predicted that the Bay Area hikes would be mostly cost-free. At a forum earlier this month where dozens of Oakland business owners fretted about their viability, representatives of Lift Up Oakland—the labor union-backed coalition that advocated for the wage hike—were not in attendance.

It’s probably too late to save other Oakland and San Francisco businesses. But it’s not too late for cities like New York and Los Angeles to heed the evidence before following their footsteps. (Michael Saltsman)

But “sticking it” to “rich” corporations is what Liberals like to use for their class warfare Divide & conquer. Doesn’t matter what the consequences are, they never do.

It makes their minions feel “righteous” and “angry”.

It gets them to vote for Democrats.

In the end the sheep slip their own throat, but they do it happily and will gladly gut themselves afterwards.

Political Cartoons by Glenn McCoy
Political Cartoons by Michael Ramirez
Political Cartoons by Chip Bok

McMinimum

Let’s get one thing straight. We live in America. A country built on free enterprise and capitalism. If you have a good idea and the the drive to see it through to completion.

Just because you make minimum wage doesn’t mean you HAVE to make minimum wage.

America wasn’t built on the backs of men and women who whined about not having enough until they got it.

It was built by men and women who demanded this life give them more than what it had originally allotted them, and they didn’t give up until they got it.

mcdonaldskiosk

What this mass protest does show is that if enough people get together and yell and complain, they probably will have their demands met by a country that continues to cater to those who complain when they don’t get their way instead of actually finding something better.

What ever happened to making the most of yourself and working hard for something more than a job flipping burgers? I personally thank McDonald’s for replacing these people. Maybe now they will strive to do more with their life.

I read an article on TheBlaze a few weeks ago with the title, “Fast Food Workers: You Don’t Deserve $15 an Hour to Flip Burgers, and That’s OK”. this writer is 100% right.

Here’s an important quote from the writer…

“You think the jobs I had when I was 16 should have provided me with the comfortable living I just established in my late 20s? Frankly, I think you’re delusional.

To understand how delusional, consider that a $15 an hour full-time salary would put you in the same ballpark as biologists, auto mechanics, biochemists, teachers, geologists, roofers and bank tellers.”

This kind of wage hike for an entry level food job just adds fuel to the entitlement mentality that is increasingly rising in our nation.

But all they wanted was $15 per hour?

Until 5-10 years from now when $15/hr will be “slave wages” that is…

Hillary Clinton Declines To Support A National $15 Minimum Wage

Clinton says she supports raising the national minimum wage, but adds that “what you can do in L.A. or in New York may not work in other places.”

How hilarious is that? Mrs. “One of you” Populist (who said basically the opposite once already).

If raising the minimum wage were cost-free, why stop at $10 or $15 an hour? Why not go straight to $25 an hour, the average hourly wage? That might be considered fair, because no one would have to earn less than today’s average.

The answer, of course, is because some people are displaced at any minimum wage. It is obvious to the general public that increasing the minimum wage to $25 an hour would displace workers. It is less obvious when amounts are smaller. But when the minimum wage is raised, employers hire higher-skilled people, or switch to different forms of technology such as placing orders through touch screens.

Forbes:

As we keep trying to point out to people there really isn’t anything even remotely resembling a free lunch when it comes to the discussion of wages and labor. Meaning that just because well meaning liberals wave their magic wand and decree that wages will rise there will indeed be countervailing effects. And in San Francisco, where the minimum wage was recently raised we did indeed see that comic book shop insisting that it just couldn’t survive. And now we’ve another tale, this time from Chipotle. Beef prices have been rising around the country so they’ve raised the prices, around the country, of their beef products. Wages in San Francisco have been rising strongly so they’ve raised the prices of all their products in San Francisco strongly. There really is no free lunch. A rise in wages will come out of either less labor being employed, lower profit margins (and fast food doesn’t have those wide enough to take the strain) or price increases to consumers.

And it’s that last which is happening as Mark Perry points out:

• In our weekly survey of ten of Chipotle’s markets, we found the company implemented price increases in half of the surveyed markets this week—San Francisco, Denver, Minneapolis, Chicago, and Orlando. In most markets, the price increases have been limited to beef and average about 4% on barbacoa and steak, toward the lower end of management’s expectation for a 4% to 6% price increase on beef.

• San Francisco, however, saw across-the-board price increases averaging over 10%, including 10% increases on chicken, carnitas (pork), sofritas (tofu), and vegetarian entrees along with a 14% increase on steak and barbacoa. We believe the outsized San Francisco price hike was likely because of increased minimum wages (which rose by 14% from $10.74 per hour to $12.25 on May 1) as well as scheduled minimum wage increases in future years (to $13 next year, $14 in 2017, and $15 in 2018).

A rough guide to the finances of the fast food industry is as follows. 30% goes on wages, 30% of revenues goes on ingredients and the other 40% is everything else. Rents, advertising, capital costs and, of course, profits. Those profits are pretty low. 5% of revenues isn’t an out of order estimation of the net profit margins in the business (and, of course, that’s an average, as some locations and some whole chains lose money).

So, if we by legislative fiat raise the price of one of those inputs then something, somewhere, has to give. Those profit margins are already pretty thin and so they’re not going to be where that extra cost comes from. More than that if we reduce the returns to capital in a particular line of business then less capital will be invested in that line of business in the future. This means fewer jobs in that line of business: This is one of the ways that a rise in the minimum wage destroys jobs. Fewer will be created in the future than would have been in the absence of the rise in the minimum wage.

It’s possible that employers will be encouraged to deploy their labor in a more productive manner as a result of the price increase. This is the same statement as fewer jobs will be created. For if I go and raise labor productivity then by definition I need less labor for any given level of output. Or of course employers could just automate the process a little more and that also means fewer jobs.

So, if employers either economize on labor or profits, there will be job losses: the minimum wage rise does reduce employment.

Or there is this final method: raise prices. Which also causes job losses: for the more money that consumers are spending on reasonably priced Mexican food (although now less reasonably priced Mexican food than it used to be) the less they have available to spend on other things. We might think that there could be an interesting overlap between those who consume reasonably priced Mexican food and those who frequent comic book shops for example. If the food now costs more then there might well be less being spent in the comic book shop: again, we see reductions in the number of jobs.

And just to head off at the pass one of the more insane points that people try to make. That if the workers at Chipotle are now making more money then they’ll spend more at Chipotle, and the company’s profits will rise! This doesn’t even pass the basic math test, let alone any economic one. For note above the split in revenues. About 30% of revenue is spent upon labor. The other 70% is spent upon other things, including that 30% or so on food ingredients. So, if Chipotle raises wages by $100 (just as an example) and all of those wages are then spent in the same store, it is impossible for profits to rise. Think about it for a moment: the wage bill has just gone up by $100. Revenues have just gone up by $100. But the food bill has also gone up by $30. So, the increase in costs is $130 (even in the very best, best, case) while revenues have gone up by $100. This is known to the cognoscenti as a loss, not an increase in profit.

There really is no such thing as a free lunch. Only lunches of variable cost. And if we increase the cost of one of the major inputs into such lunches then something else will give. Here, as a result of the rise in the minimum wage Chipotle has raised prices in that specific location where the minimum wage rise occurred.

This doesn’t help minimum wage earners: some unknown but knowable reduction in sales of reasonably priced Mexican food will take place as a result of this price rise. Demand curves really do slope downwards. Thus some unknown but knowable number of people will not be employed to produce said food.

As we’ve been saying all along: a rise in the minimum wage really does destroy jobs.

Finding the effects of raising the minimum wage is challenging, because 97 percent of American workers now make above the minimum wage—not because it is the law, but because employers have to pay higher compensation packages to retain workers. That is one reason that some academic studies do not find major negative effects of minimum-wage increases.

Those who would be harmed by increasing the minimum wage are young people. Half of minimum-wage workers are under 25, and 24 percent are teens. This group’s unemployment rate is already higher than the 5.3 percent overall rate. The teen unemployment rate is 18 percent, and the African-American teen unemployment rate is 32 percent. The youth unemployment rate is 10 percent. (Federalist)

But the Left will continue with their class warfare because that suits THEIR Agenda, so what if you get hurt in the process, like that matters. The end justifies the means, remember. 🙂

Whoops!

More unintended consequences from Liberal “help”.

SEATTLE, Wash. —

A Seattle-area nonprofit observed some workers recently asking for reduced hours, as they feared that their higher wages now put them at risk of losing housing subsidies.

Nora Gibson is the executive director of Full Life Care, a nonprofit that serves elderly people in various homes and nursing facilities. She is also on the board of the Seattle Housing Authority.

Gibson told KIRO 7 she saw a sudden reaction from workers when Seattle’s phased minimum-wage ordinance took effect in April, bringing minimum wage to $11 an hour. She said anecdotally, some people feared they would lose their subsidized units but still not be able to afford market-rate rents.

For example, she said last week, five employees at one of her organization’s 24-hour care facilities for Alzheimer’s patients asked to reduce their hours in order to remain eligible for subsidies. They now earn at least $13 an hour, after they increased wages at all levels in April, Gibson said.

“This has nothing to do with people’s willingness to work, or how hard people work. It has to do with being caught in a very complex situation where they have to balance everything they can pull together to pull together a stable, successful life,” Gibson said.
Gibson said she fully supports a minimum wage increase but was not surprised when her employees asked for fewer hours.

“The jump from subsidized housing to market rate in Seattle is huge,” she said.

Seattle Housing Authority told KIRO 7: “It’s important that the continuum of affordable housing options in our city and region allows for progression as people’s incomes increase. That needs to be addressed across the housing market so that people don’t feel they are in jeopardy of stable housing as they are able to earn enough to pay more of their housing costs.”

The amount of public assistance one receives depends on the income and size of the family. The scale is determined by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, and the qualifications are based on area median income.

Justine Decker, who is a full-time student at Seattle Central College, said she works part-time so she can still get subsidies for rent and child care.

“A one-bedroom can cost upward of $1,200. And so imagine paying that, and paying child care which can be $900 something dollars,” Decker said.

She said she doesn’t want to work full time, or she wouldn’t be able to afford market-rate rents. Decker said she’s in school to become a teacher and hopes to eventually become a principal, to make well over minimum wage levels to be able to pay for everything on her own.

Mohamed Muktar drives an Uber and also receives public assistance for housing. He said he would love to work more hours.

“If you can get more hours, I think you need to work more hours, so you can take care of your bills,” Muktar said.

Seattle Councilmember Nick Licata said he hadn’t heard of purposeful reduction of hours before.

“We need more information, for one thing. This is anecdotal,” Licata said.

Still, he said people need more options, especially after breaking the threshold that pushes them out of public housing.

“We do not want this to be an improvement on one side of the scale, and then decrease in living conditions on another,” Licata said. “We should not be using this as an excuse not to address the overall problem.” (KIRO)

The Union Label

Liberal Doublethink alert: UNIONS against Minimum Wage Increase!

Last week, the Los Angeles City Council approved an increase in the legally required minimum wage to result in a minimum wage of $15.00 per hour by 2020. During the months preceding the City Council’s decision, the underlying intellectual position in favor of the increase in the minimum wage was that everyone should receive a living wage. The arguments against raising the minimum wage revolve around the possibility that certain businesses such as restaurants will close based on their inability to pass along such wage increases to their customers. Opponents also argue that jobs will move elsewhere, whether it is another U.S. city or overseas if the minimum wage is increased.

The arguments presented above have not changed very much over the past fifty years. It is axiomatic that most interested individuals would like to see minimum wage discussions disappear because the overall community is more highly educated and lower wage jobs are the province of young individuals who will soon move into the marketplace of skills and ideas. Sadly, such is not the case.

Enter the union leaders of Los Angeles. Now, the Federation of Labor in Los Angeles is asking for exemptions from the minimum wage for companies where the workers are represented by a union. The position is that workers represented by unions should have leeway to negotiate a wage below the amount mandated by law. The underlying theory according to Randy Hicks, a leader of both the county Federation of Labor and the Raise the Wage coalition is ” “With a collective bargaining agreement, a business owner and the employees negotiate an agreement that works for them both. The agreement allows each party to prioritize what is important to them. This provision gives the parties the option, the freedom, to negotiate that agreement. And that is a good thing.”

And now, the Mad Hatter enters stage left. Apparently, only a union worker should be able to work for a wage that is less than a ‘living wage’. And that union worker is apparently able to work for that lower wage and also able to pay union dues to support the crack union negotiating team working to procure or maintain his or her wages that are less than those required by the new minimum wage law.

In this Alice in Wonderland proposal by the unions, two identical restaurants serving the same food, hiring from the same labor force, located on the same street and owned by the same person could be operating under two different sets of laws with respect to the wages paid to their employees. Restaurant A, operating under a union contract, would be able to negotiate wages less than the minimum wage. Restaurant B, operating without a union contract, would be forced to pay a minimum wage higher than the wages paid by Restaurant A. Likely, Restaurant A would charge their customers lower prices than Restaurant B and drive Restaurant B out of business costing the employees of Restaurant B their higher paying jobs.

It does sound like the unions are looking for their own form of crony capitalism in Los Angeles. Who would think that the unions would accept and lobby for lower wages for their members in an effort to compete successfully with entities paying higher wages to their employees? What is the purpose of a union if it is attempting to successfully negotiate lower compensation for its members? Only in Wonderland, also known as Los Angeles. (Townhall)

LA Times:

Landmark plan to boost the Los Angeles minimum wage took another step forward Friday, as a panel of city lawmakers vetted a draft ordinance putting the pay hikes into law.

But a host of complex and divisive questions about the plan will likely remain unanswered even after the law is passed — including whether unionized companies will ultimately be able to opt out of the wage requirements if their workers agree.

“This is an ongoing process,” City Councilman Curren Price, who heads the Economic Development Committee, said Friday. “There’s still a lot of things to be resolved.”

Passing a Law to find out what’s in it is the latest fad trend in “transparency” these days. 🙂

When it takes up the proposed law next Wednesday, the full council is widely expected to pass the ordinance, which would gradually increase the citywide minimum to $15 hourly rate by July 2020. But because the pay hikes do not start until the middle of next year, officials could make changes to the law before the increases begin.

Political and Union maneuvering, just like on ObamaCare, where the unions were the ones that got the vast majority of the exemptions.

And of course, Unions are a Democrat money machine so they always get what they want.

So, yes, you could likely get Liberals voting to exempt Unions from “living wage” but still be Democrats who are fighting for it.

Orwell, is proud of you my sons.

But here’s the secret:

Labor leaders also pressed to include some controversial wording that could exempt unionized companies from the wage requirements if management negotiates a waiver with workers. Business groups have attacked that idea as a gambit to prod more companies to unionize.

Rusty Hicks, who heads the county labor federation, said that would provide union workers the flexibility to trade off pay for other benefits that might be more important to them.

“This isn’t a secretive way to incentivize workers to organize, or about paying union workers less than they deserve,” Hicks told reporters before the hearing. “This is about staying consistent with previous provisions and crafting something that will withstand legal scrutiny.”

Wanna pay less, well then you have to unionize and when you unionize the Union will screw you and your employees for Union Dues that will go the The Democrats!!

But the Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce and other major business groups criticized the proposed exemption as defying the stated goals of the minimum wage ordinance. They pointed out that labor activists had previously opposed a number of suggested exemptions for other kinds of businesses, saying no one should have a “subminimum wage.”

They were for it, before they vote against it! 🙂

If the exemption is approved, “it will replace the mantra of helping the working poor with hollow rhetoric that enables organizers to sign up more dues-paying members,” Chamber President Gary Toebben wrote in a letter to Price this week.

Ta Da!  More money for The Democrats. More Union control of the means of production.

Crafty, aren’t they.

Many labor activists have raised concerns about how L.A. will ensure that the new wage rules are enforced. City officials pressed forward Friday with a plan to create a new city division to crack down on employers who pay less than the minimum wage.

More Bureaucrats, more control…Gee, that never happens when Liberals attack! 🙂

Political Cartoons by Michael Ramirez

Real Tragedy

I look to a day when people will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.—Martin Luther King, Jr.

Sorry, Dr. King, there’s no money or power in that so forgettaboutit!

Walter Williams: Hustlers and people with little understanding want us to believe that today’s black problems are the continuing result of a legacy of slavery, poverty and racial discrimination. The fact is that most of the social pathology seen in poor black neighborhoods is entirely new in black history. Let’s look at some of it.

Today the overwhelming majority of black children are raised in single female-headed families. As early as the 1880s, three-quarters of black families were two-parent. In 1925 New York City, 85 percent of black families were two-parent. One study of 19th-century slave families found that in up to three-fourths of the families, all the children had the same mother and father.

Today’s black illegitimacy rate of nearly 75 percent is also entirely new. In 1940, black illegitimacy stood at 14 percent. It had risen to 25 percent by 1965, when Daniel Patrick Moynihan wrote “The Negro Family: The Case for National Action” and was widely condemned as a racist. By 1980, the black illegitimacy rate had more than doubled, to 56 percent, and it has been growing since. Both during slavery and as late as 1920, a teenage girl raising a child without a man present was rare among blacks.

Much of today’s pathology seen among many blacks is an outgrowth of the welfare state that has made self-destructive behavior less costly for the individual. Having children without the benefit of marriage is less burdensome if the mother receives housing subsidies, welfare payments and food stamps. Plus, the social stigma associated with unwed motherhood has vanished. Female-headed households, whether black or white, are a ticket for dependency and all of its associated problems. Ignored in all discussions is the fact that the poverty rate among black married couples has been in single digits since 1994.

Black youth unemployment in some cities is over 50 percent. But high black youth unemployment is also new. In 1948, the unemployment rate for black teens was slightly less than that of their white counterparts — 9.4 percent compared with 10.2. During that same period, black youths were either just as active in the labor force or more so than white youths. Since the 1960s, both the labor force participation rate and the employment rate of black youths have fallen to what they are today. Why? Are employers more racially discriminatory today than yesteryear? Were black youths of yesteryear more skilled than whites of yesteryear? The answer to both questions is a big fat no.

The minimum wage law and other labor regulations have cut off the bottom rungs of the economic ladder. Put yourself in the place of an employer, and ask: If I must pay $7.25 an hour — plus mandated fringes, such as Social Security and workers’ compensation — would it pay me to hire a worker who is so unfortunate as to possess skills that enable him to produce only $5 worth of value per hour? Most employers view that as a losing economic proposition. Thus, the minimum wage law discriminates against the employment of low-skilled workers, who are most often youths — particularly black youths.

The little bit of money a teenager can earn through after-school, weekend and summer employment is not nearly so important as the other things he gains from early work experiences. He acquires skills and develops good work habits, such as being prompt, following orders and respecting supervisors. In addition, there are the self-respect and pride that a youngster gains from being financially semi-independent. All of these gains from early work experiences are important for any teen but are even more important for black teens. If black teens are going to learn anything that will make them a more valuable employee in the future, they aren’t going to learn it from their rotten schools, their dysfunctional families or their crime-ridden neighborhoods. They must learn it on the job.

The bulk of today’s problems for many blacks are a result of politicians and civil rights organizations using government in the name of helping blacks when in fact they are serving the purposes of powerful interest groups.

And if you disagree with them,you’re just evil old “racist” anyhow so gives a crap what you ignorant idiots think! 🙂

Political Cartoons by Michael Ramirez
Political Cartoons by Chip Bok
Political Cartoons by Gary McCoy
Political Cartoons by Steve Kelley

The Left’s Compassion Problem

It is fascinating to see brilliant people belatedly discover the obvious — and to see an even larger number of brilliant people never discover the obvious.

A recent story in a San Francisco newspaper says that some restaurants and grocery stores in Oakland’s Chinatown have closed after the city’s minimum wage was raised. Other small businesses there are not sure they are going to survive, since many depend on a thin profit margin and a high volume of sales.

At an angry meeting between local small business owners and city officials, the local organization that had campaigned for the higher minimum wage was absent. They were probably some place congratulating themselves on having passed a humane “living wage” law. The group most affected was also absent — inexperienced and unskilled young people, who need a job to get some experience, even more than they need the money.

It is not a breakthrough on the frontiers of knowledge that minimum wage laws reduce employment opportunities for the young and the unskilled of any age. It has been happening around the world, for generation after generation, and in the most diverse countries.

It is not just the young who are affected when minimum wage rates are set according to the fashionable notions of third parties, with little or no regard for whether everyone is productive enough to be worth paying the minimum wage they set. (thomas Sowell)

Seattle’s $15 minimum wage law goes into effect on April 1, 2015. As that date approaches, restaurants across the city are making the financial decision to close shop. The Washington Policy Center writes that “closings have occurred across the city, from Grub in the upscale Queen Anne Hill neighborhood, to Little Uncle in gritty Pioneer Square, to the Boat Street Cafe on Western Avenue near the waterfront.”

Of course, restaurants close for a variety of reasons. But, according to Seattle Magazine, the “impending minimum wage hike to $15 per hour” is playing a “major factor.” That’s not surprising, considering “about 36% of restaurant earnings go to paying labor costs.” ..,

“Washington Restaurant Association’s Anthony Anton puts it this way: “It’s not a political problem; it’s a math problem.”

In reference to that last quote, it’s certainly a math problem for the restaurant owners, but that doesn’t eliminate the fact that it’s a political problem for the social justice warriors who shoved this initiative through. Of course, the problems in question are all too real for the workers who are now “benefiting” from having their wages bumped up by more than 50% in some cases, and it involves some calculating as well. Our friend Bruce McQuain asks the question which puts this whole math issue in focus. What’s $15 times zero again?

Are there alternatives to closing? Sure. But they’re the same ones we’ve talked about for years:

Restaurant owners, expecting to operate on thinner margins, have tried to adapt in several ways including “higher menu prices, cheaper, lower-quality ingredients, reduced opening times, and cutting work hours and firing workers,” according to The Seattle Times and Seattle Eater magazine. As the Washington Policy Center points out, when these strategies are not enough, businesses close, “workers lose their jobs and the neighborhood loses a prized amenity.”

Welcome to the land of $17 dollar cheeseburgers. And, as you can figure out fairly quickly, everything else will be more expensive too … which, of course, erodes the purchasing power of that $15 wage. More importantly, if you work for one of those establishments that is closing, your wage is $15 times zero hours, isn’t it?

Bigger companies who can absorb the financial hit from implementing new technology have already been preparing for these changes. McDonald’s has been experimenting with point of sale automation for taking orders and Applebee’s rolled out smart tablets at tables in multiple locations last year. The latter solution is the most interesting to me because it seems like the easiest for younger consumers to adapt to. Most of the people going out to eat in such places are already familiar with laptops, tablets and smart phones anyway. Having one waiting at the table which takes the place of not only the menu, but the waitress as well, isn’t going to come as much of a shock to the system.

I ran into one of these setups at the Philadelphia airport this winter and they work surprisingly well. If you plan to pay by credit or debit card (which is the only option in some cases) you barely interact with a human at all. You browse the drinks and food on the touch screen, place your order, swipe your card, and a short while later somebody strolls up with your food and beverage, says hello and drops them off. It’s a terribly impersonal service as compared to a bartender or waitress who stops to chat with you, but it gets the job done.

Of course, that last phrase is the big issue here, isn’t it? It gets the job done. That job used to be done by a person. Now it’s essentially a robot. So those workers are no longer on the payroll, but hopefully they’ll catch on someplace else. Unfortunately, as Seattle is finding out, employers who run single outlets and don’t have the backing and buffer range of a major chain often won’t be able to make the shift in technological infrastructure required to cut back on staffing while staying open. Those folks will shut down, and it’s apparently already beginning in Washington state. (hot air)

Back to Mr Sowell:

Low-income minorities are often hardest hit by the unemployment that follows in the wake of minimum wage laws. The last year when the black unemployment rate was lower than the white unemployment rate was 1930, the last year before there was a federal minimum wage law.

The following year, the Davis-Bacon Act of 1931 was passed, requiring minimum wages in the construction industry. This was in response to complaints that construction companies with non-union black construction workers were able to underbid construction companies with unionized white workers (whose unions would not admit blacks).

Looking back over my own life, I realize now how lucky I was when I left home in 1948, at the age of 17, to become self-supporting. The unemployment rate for 16- and 17-year-old blacks at that time was under 10 percent. Inflation had made the minimum wage law, passed ten years earlier, irrelevant.

But it was only a matter of time before liberal compassion led to repeated increases in the minimum wage, to keep up with inflation. The annual unemployment rate for black teenagers has never been less than 20 percent in the past 50 years, and has ranged as high as over 50 percent.

You can check these numbers in a table of official government statistics on page 42 of Professor Walter Williams’ book “Race and Economics.”

Incidentally, the black-white gap in unemployment rates for 16-year-olds and 17-year-olds was virtually non-existent back in 1948. But the black teenage unemployment rate has been more than double that for white teenagers for every year since 1971.

This is just one of many policies that allow liberals to go around feeling good about themselves, while leaving havoc in their wake.

But they “feel” so good about themselves and you’re so “greedy” if you disagree.

sowell- liberal care

Mob Rule

While we talk about democracy and equal rights, we seem increasingly to let both private and government decisions be determined by mob rule. There is nothing democratic about mob rule. It means that some people’s votes are to be overruled by other people’s disruptions, harassments and threats.

But the Democrats like to use it as a bully tactic for for their agenda. Whether it does any good, which it frequently doesn’t, for “the masses” is irrelevant as long as it works for the agenda.

And as I have said on many occasions, there are few things in life greedier than a union. And few things more incestuous with politicians.

The latest examples are the mobs in the streets in cities across the country, demanding employers pay a minimum wage of $15 an hour, or else that the government makes them do so by law.

Some of the more gullible observers think the issue is whether what some people are making now is “a living wage.” This misconstrues the whole point of hiring someone to do work. Those who are being hired are paid for the value of the work they do.

If their work is really worth more than what their employer is paying them, all they have to do is quit and go work for some other employer, who will pay them what their work is really worth. If they can’t find any other employer who will pay them more, then what makes them think their work is worth more?

As for a “living wage,” the employer is not hiring people to acquire dependents and be their meal ticket. He’s hiring them for what they produce.

Are some people not able to produce much? Absolutely! I know because I was once one of those people.

After leaving home as a teenager, I discovered that what I could earn would only enable me to rent a furnished room about 6 by 9 feet. Instead of a closet, it had a nail on the back of the door — which was completely adequate for my wardrobe at the time.

It became painfully clear that there was no great demand for a high school dropout with no skills and no experience. My choices were to get angry at my employer or to acquire some skills and experience — and try to pick up some more education, while I was at it. Even to a teenage dropout, that choice was a no-brainer.

There was no one around to confuse the issue by telling me that I was somehow “entitled” to what other people had produced, whether at the expense of the taxpayers or the employer.

There was a minimum wage law, even back in those days. But it had been passed 10 years earlier, and inflation had raised both prices and wages to the point where it was the same as if there were no minimum wage law.

 

Thank heaven! The unemployment rate among black teenagers then was a fraction of what it would become later, after “compassionate” politicians repeatedly raised the minimum wage rate to keep up with inflation.

In 1948, the year I left home, the unemployment rate among black 16-year-olds and 17-year-olds was 9.4%, slightly lower than that for white kids the same ages, which was 10.2%.

Over the decades since then, we have gotten used to unemployment rates among black teenagers being over 30%, 40% or in some years even 50%. Such is the price of political “compassion.”

Whatever the good intentions behind minimum wage laws, what matters are the actual consequences. Many people have ideological, financial or political incentives to obfuscate the consequences.

Labor unions are the biggest force behind attempts to raise the minimum wage, not only in the U.S., but also in other countries. That may seem strange, since most union members already earn more than the minimum. But unions know what they are doing, even if many gullible observers do not.

Low-skill workers with correspondingly low wages compete in the labor market with higher skilled union members with correspondingly higher wages. Many kinds of work can be done by various mixtures of low- and high-skilled workers.

Minimum wage rates that are higher than what most low-skilled and inexperienced workers are worth simply price those workers out of the job markets, leaving more work for union members. All the unions have to do is camouflage what is happening by using rhetoric about “a living wage” or “social justice” or whatever else will impress the gullible.

Life was tough when all I could get were low-paying jobs. But it would have been a lot tougher if I couldn’t get any job at all. And a tough life made me go get some skills and knowledge. (Thomas Sowell)

Me too. But what do I know, I’m just a tea party “hater” after all…

Powerful public employee unions regularly criticize American government as undemocratic and call for campaign finance reform, more citizen participation and greater governmental transparency. Many of these unions, especially those representing teachers, increasingly seek to democratize corporations though shareholder activism.

Yet these unions themselves often operate as oligarchies with a democratic veneer. Federal law requires that private sector unions conduct secret ballot elections to choose officers. A patchwork of state laws does the same for public sector unions. But, for the most part, American labor unions are democratic only on paper.

Very few union members vote in leadership elections, if they are contested at all.

Union leaders often go unchallenged for years and even decades, only to anoint a successor upon retirement. The average tenure atop the nation’s most powerful public employee unions is 15 years. (The average tenure of Fortune 500 CEOs is 10 years.) The vast majority of current workers have never been asked to vote on whether they want union representation.

Although statutes require a “certification” election to set up a union, some 93% of public sector union members today belong to unions that were organized before they were hired. (IBD)

So the cart is before the horse and the cart wants all the goodies for itself, and will use the cart to get it.

Nothing wrong here…. 🙂

Political Cartoons by Gary Varvel

Political Cartoons by Lisa Benson

Political Cartoons by Dana Summers

 

McJob

McDonald’s Replacing Cashiers With Machines?

“Would you like fries with that?” may soon be a long forgotten relic of American pop culture.

mcdonalds

McDonald’s employees who picketed for a better living wage (whatever that means) may come to regret that decision. According to a Redditor, a McDonald’s in Illinois replaced their cashiers with machines.  The machines appear to be the cousins of the ones found in grocery stores, big box stores, and CVS that allow customers to complete transactions.

How cost effective is replacing an organic employee with a mechanized one? According to an economic blog, and unsurprisingly, the machines likely come out on top in terms of pricing:

  • For a location open 24 hours: The cost of human cashiers, not counting benefits, $15/hour * 24 hours * 365 days/year = $131,400

  • For a location open 6AM to Midnight:  $15/hour * 18 hours * 365 = $98,550.

  • For the machine to be cost effective, all it needs to do is cost less than $100,000 a year to buy and maintain.

Who could’ve possibly seen this coming? Forbes. They predicted this exact scenario last July.

A recent article at the Huffington Post makes the claim that if McDonald’s MCD +0.26% doubled its employees salaries it would only cause the price of a Big Mac to go up by 68 cents. The implication here is that 68 cents isn’t much money, so they should do it. There’s a few things missing from this.

One is that the article itself alleges that doubling wages would lead to a 17% increase in costs. And I guess this is obviously supposed to seem like a small amount? It doesn’t look that way to me. What do people expect will happen when prices go up 17%? If McDonald’s could raise its prices by that much without lowering demand they would. No, what would happen is people would shop at those stores less, there would be less profit and less McDonald’s stores to hire workers.

Doubling of labor costs will simply increase a fast food restaurant’s incentives to adopt technology like this. And if fast food wages doubled everywhere it would spur the development of these technologies even faster.

This is all basic economics, really. As costs of labor increase the added cost must be offset. In order to satisfy operating costs, produce a product consumers want to purchase, and still turn a profit, it’s perfectly reasonable for a company like McDonald’s to look for cost-cutting alternatives. As Forbes pointed out, the added pressure to increase wages only serves to expedite technological solutions.

McDonald’s has already installed kiosks to replace human cashiers in about 7,000 of its stores in higher-minimum-wage Europe. So it seems inevitable that technology will make its way into the kitchen as well.

But cooks are safe from the machination of American fast food, right?

Not if companies like Momentum Machines has anything to do with it. “Our technology will democratize access to high quality food making it available to the masses,” their site claims. They also claim their burger making machines can, “do everything employees do except better” and that the machines reap such large labor savings, restaurants will be able to afford twice as fancy ingredients. Tempting little proposition they have there.

“Would you like fries with that?” may soon be a long forgotten relic of American pop culture. And all because it makes good economic sense.

Naturally, the Left will interpret this as “class warfare” and a “war on the poor” rather than see the obvious.

Update (WAJ): Prof. Reynolds notes that Robot makers must be loving the recent NLRB ruling, as well, which held McDonald’s parent corporation liable for franchisee employment practices. Can a kiosk file an employment grievance? (LI)

ATLANTA – Outrage is growing against federal restrictions on school bake sales and fundraisers.

“We don’t have enough teachers in our classrooms and now we are expected to hire some type of food police to monitor whether we are having bake sales or not. That is just asinine,” John Barge, Georgia state school superintendent tells WSB-TV.

We are from the Government and we are hear to help you. We are from a Union, we are here to Help you… 🙂

http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2014-01-12/meet-smart-restaurant-minimum-wage-crushing-burger-flipping-robot

Is thinking obsolete?

Is thinking obsolete?

Is thinking obsolete?

By Thomas Sowell

(well, if you ever got in an “argument”with a mindless leftist you’d think so.)

Some have said that we are living in a post-industrial era, while others have said that we are living in a post-racial era. But growing evidence suggests that we are living in a post-thinking era.

Many people in Europe and the Western Hemisphere are staging angry protests against Israel’s military action in Gaza. One of the talking points against Israel is that far more Palestinian civilians have been killed by Israeli military attacks than the number of Israeli civilians killed by the Hamas rocket attacks on Israel that started this latest military conflict.

Are these protesters aware that vastly more German civilians were killed by American bombers attacking Nazi Germany during World War II than American civilians killed in the United States by Hitler’s forces?

Talk show host Geraldo Rivera says that there is no way Israel is winning the battle for world opinion. But Israel is trying to win the battle for survival, while surrounded by enemies. Might that not be more important?

Has any other country, in any other war, been expected to keep the enemy’s civilian casualties no higher than its own civilian casualties? The idea that Israel should do so did not originate among the masses but among the educated intelligentsia.

In an age when scientists are creating artificial intelligence, too many of our educational institutions seem to be creating artificial stupidity.

It is much the same story in our domestic controversies. We have gotten so intimidated by political correctness that our major media outlets dare not call people who immigrate to this country illegally “illegal immigrants.”

Geraldo Rivera has denounced the Drudge Report for carrying news stories that show some of the negative consequences and dangers from allowing vast numbers of youngsters to enter the country illegally and be spread across the country by the Obama administration.

Some of these youngsters are already known to be carrying lice and suffering from disease. Since there have been no thorough medical examinations of most of them, we have no way of knowing whether, or how many, are carrying deadly diseases that will spread to American children when these unexamined young immigrants enter schools across the country.

The attack against Matt Drudge has been in the classic tradition of demagogues. It turns questions of fact into questions of motive. Geraldo accuses Drudge of trying to start a “civil war.”

Back when masses of immigrants from Europe were entering this country, those with dangerous diseases were turned back from Ellis Island. Nobody thought they had a legal or a moral “right” to be in America or that it was mean or racist not to want our children to catch their diseases.

Even on the less contentious issue of minimum wage laws, there are the same unthinking reactions.

Although liberals are usually gung ho for increasing the minimum wage, there was a sympathetic front page story in the July 29th San Francisco Chronicle about the plight of a local non-profit organization that will not be able to serve as many low-income minority youths if it has to pay a higher minimum wage. They are seeking some kind of exemption.

Does it not occur to these people that the very same thing happens when a minimum wage increase applies to profit-based employers? They too tend to hire fewer inexperienced young people when there is a minimum wage law.

This is not breaking news. This is what has been happening for generations in the United States and in other countries around the world.

One of the few countries without a minimum wage law is Switzerland, where the unemployment rate has been consistently less than 4 percent for years. Back in 2003, The Economist magazine reported that “Switzerland’s unemployment neared a five-year high of 3.9% in February.” The most recent issue shows the Swiss unemployment rate back to a more normal 3.2 percent.

Does anyone think that having minimum wage laws and high youth unemployment is better? In fact, does anyone think at all these days?

I’m not sure they do. And that is sad. I have said that critical thinking skills are not in fashion anymore and they don’t seem to teach people how to think, just WHAT to think, Then it’s pretty mindless from there.

Have you ever tried to install Critical Thinking into the mindless?

I think that’s harder than trying to discover the true origins of the universe because sometimes, many times, the truth is outside of your ideological cage but you have to be smart enough to recognizxe it and wise enough to use it.

Political Cartoons by Glenn Foden

Political Cartoons by Bob Gorrell

 

 

 

Minimum Wage

Americans of all political stripes would like to see wage growth, especially among the lowest wage-earners. The difference of opinion, of course, is how to make that happen.

Liberals in Congress are pushing for an increase in the federally-mandated minimum wage. But increasing the minimum wage is not the solution to slow wage growth. In fact, wage regulations ultimately harm workers by reducing the number of jobs available. A better solution to our nation’s wage woes is economic growth.

Public polling suggests the majority of Americans support a minimum wage increase. That’s understandable, given our nation’s frustratingly slow “recovery” from the recession of 2007-2009, and the desire to reduce poverty.

While support for minimum wage might come from a good intention, it is misguided. If it seems too easy to reduce poverty simply by promulgating wage regulations, it probably is. Like Newton’s Third Law of Motion, actions in economic policy have reactions as well. Raising the cost of labor does not come without a tradeoff.

Raising the minimum wage will reduce the number of minimum wage (low-skill) jobs available. Basic arithmetic tells us this. If a company can afford to employ 3 workers at $7.00 per hour, the same company will be able to employ only 2 workers (technically 2.1 workers) at $10.00 per hour without increasing labor costs.

Liberal economists have attempted to blur the effect of minimum wage on employment, and sometimes minimum wage studies are flawed or inconclusive. But a comprehensive survey of minimum wage studies shows that among papers with “the most credible evidence, almost all point to negative employment effects.”

A recent projection from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) confirms this. The CBO projected that the proposed minimum wage increase up to $10.10 per hour would “reduce total employment by about 500,000 workers.”

Limiting the number of minimum-wage (that is, entry-level) jobs available is not helpful to low-skilled workers who could be priced out of the labor market with a higher price floor.

As Rachel Currie highlights in this policy brief, a minimum wage increase may not even target the working poor that we all intend to help. Economists Joseph Sabia and Richard Burkhauser found that 63 percent of workers who would experience a raise due to a minimum wage increase came from households were they were second or third earners contributing to household incomes more than double the federal poverty line.

If we can’t help the working poor through a federal mandate, then what is a better solution to slow wage growth?

The real reason wage growth has stagnated is that today’s labor market is simply an employer’s market. Where there is slow GDP growth and high unemployment, there is slow wage growth. More workers are seeking jobs than there are job openings. This means employers don’t have to compete for workers as fiercely as workers are competing for jobs, and this robs workers of their bargaining power for wages.

That’s why conservatives suggest that the real solution to slow wage growth is job creation. If the economy created more jobs, then employers would have greater demand for workers. With higher demand, prices increase. In other words, if workers had more job opportunities, employers would have to value (pay) workers more to attract and keep them.

How do we make job creation happen? A job is created when a firm recognizes that adding another worker would allow for greater profit. For example, a store might decide to hire another shift of workers to stay open longer because longer store hours allow for more sales, and the revenues from these sales are more than enough to pay for the additional labor (and other costs, like electricity to keep the lights on).

To facilitate this process, our public policies should focus on making job creation easier for firms. This means reducing tax and regulatory burdens, providing easier access to capital, and encouraging investment.

While this growth-focused approach may be less obvious to most Americans than a simple change in wage laws, it is the only approach that will result in real, sustained wage growth to the benefit of all workers, and especially those who are currently struggling. No one wants minimum wage workers to live in poverty or to face stagnant economic opportunities, but raising the mandated wage is not the solution. (IWF)

Full Steam Ahead!

The City of Seattle just passed a law enforcing $15/hr minimum wage over time.

Councilmember Tom Rasmussen said “Seattle wants to stop the race to the bottom in wages” and address the “widening gap between the rich and the poor.”

“Seattle, and other cities, are taking direct action to close our nation’s huge income gap because the federal and state governments have failed to do so,” City Councilman Nick Licata said. “By significantly raising the minimum wage, Seattle’s prosperity will be shared by more people and create a sustainable model for continued growth.”

THE AGENDA IS THE AGENDA!

HEIL COMRADE!

The measure, which would take effect on April 1, 2015, includes a phase-in of the wage increase over several years, with a slower process for small businesses. The plan gives businesses with more than 500 employees nationally at least three years to phase in the increase. Those providing health insurance will have four years to complete the move. Smaller organizations will be given seven years. (FOX)

The S0cialists on the City Council weren’t happy it was going to take so long so now they want to fight to get it implemented even faster. After all, someone else’s “rich” money  is never too good for a socialist. 🙂

The International Franchise Association, a Washington, D.C.-based business group that represents franchise owners, said it plans to sue to stop the ordinance.

“The City Council’s action today is unfair, discriminatory and a deliberate attempt to achieve a political agenda at the expense of small franchise business owners,” the group said in a statement.

Yeah, so?  That’s what Progressive Liberals do. The Agenda is The Agenda. They don’t give a crap about consequences!!

Like…

The 215-room Clarion Hotel closed its full-service restaurant in December, laying off 15 people, said general manager Perry Wall. The hotel also let go a night desk clerk and maintenance employee and is considering a 10 percent increase in room rates for the spring travel season, Wall said.

He estimates that without a reduction in head count, the hotel’s annual payroll costs would have increased $300,000. It still employs about 30 people for jobs Wall describes as more in-demand than ever.

“I just think unskilled workers are going to have a harder time finding jobs,” he said. “You’re going to have people from as far away as Bellevue or Tacoma wanting these jobs, and they’re going to come with skills and experience. For $15 an hour, they’ll go that extra distance.”

Others say workers who already made at least $15 an hour want a raise to stay ahead of their less-experienced colleagues, leading to tense relations between labor and management.(Seattle Times)

Sounds like a great place for the inexperienced and undereducated greedy socialists-in-training. 🙂

OR…

Last January, SeaTac implemented a $15 per hour minimum wage for hospitality and transportation workers. The consequences to the drastic hike in wages are just beginning to be realized—and it’s not pretty.

A writer for NW Asian Weekly recently blogged about her experience attending an event at a SeaTac hotel. She asked employees if they were “happy with the $15 wage.” The ensuing conversations,

“It sounds good, but it’s not good,” the woman said.

“Why?” I asked.

“I lost my 401k, health insurance, paid holiday, and vacation,” she responded. “No more free food,” she added.

“The hotel used to feed her. Now, she has to bring her own food. Also, no overtime, she said. She used to work extra hours and received overtime pay.

“What else? I asked.

“I have to pay for parking,” she said.

“I then asked the part-time waitress, who was part of the catering staff.

“Yes, I’ve got $15 an hour, but all my tips are now much less,” she said. Before the new wage law was implemented, her hourly wage was $7. But her tips added to more than $15 an hour. Yes, she used to receive free food and parking. Now, she has to bring her own food and pay for parking.”

Parking in terminal is about $35 a day (but that is likely to be increased to pay for the extra expenses).

SeaTac is a small city—10 square miles in area and a population of 26,909—with an economy almost exclusively defined by the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. Five months into the implementation of a $15 minimum wage and it appears that a deep sense of regret has already flooded the city and workers who should have “benefited” from the terrible economic policy.

Meanwhile, as the largest city in the Pacific Northwest and one of the fastest growing major cities in America, Seattle is on the verge of following in SeaTac’s woefully unfit footsteps. Seattle Mayor Ed Murray’s $15 minimum wage plan includes a phase-in period of three to seven years and makes no exception for business type or size. Murray’s plan elicited back-lash from prominent Seattle businesses owners and economists alike. (NW Asia)

Letter to NW Asian Weekly sent to local TV Station as well:

Dear KIRO TV,

Thank you for your piece on the minimum wage raise in Seattle and how it can affect the immigrant community and businesses. We have not heard the side of the minimum wage opposition and how it will hurt the immigrant community and businesses. I am a small business owner and very concerned about my employees, my community, and my business.

There is much complexity to this debate. We want to close the gap on income inequality, but raising the minimum wage is not the answer. The unintended consequences are that many who are earning minimum wage are entry workers, immigrants, less skilled, and inexperienced workers. They will now have an even harder chance in the job market if the minimum wage goes up to $15/hour. In theory, it is noble, but the economics of it does not help many people that they intend to help. It will hurt the ones they intend to help the most. Large businesses that have millions and billions of dollars can endure this devastation, but not small businesses, in which a minimum wage hike of 61 percent will cause businesses like mine to cut staff, invest in automation, relocate, or just close our doors. Business is already hard enough, and I just don’t think I can endure this minimum wage hike. Please continue to cover segments like you did to bring different perspectives to the mayor’s office, council members, and citizens.

A Local TV Report:

A new report warns that if Seattle nonprofits are forced to pay workers more to comply with a $15 per hour minimum wage, they would have to cut services to the poor.

The preliminary findings of a Seattle Human Services Coalition survey show that 21 of 29 organizations surveyed by the group would have to cut services if they were not given additional revenue to cover the extra payroll cost.

The impacts include cutting shelter beds, Head Start programs, food bank hours and senior lunches.

One group said it would have to stop housing people with significant disabilities.

Another said it would have to cut breast feeding and peer counseling services to low-income new mothers.

The Liberal Response:

“Socialist Seattle City Councilmember Kshama Sawant, who is leading the charge for $15 per hour, said the solution is to tax big businesses to help small businesses and nonprofits meet larger payroll demands.

“There are no unintended consequences while fighting for $15 an hour while making sure small nonprofits and small businesses are able to survive,” Sawant said.” (KIRO)

So you raise the minimum wage on businesses, then the bigger you are the more the city wants to tax you to support the smaller businesses that can’t take the hit.

Sounds like a disaster waiting to happen.  Sounds like it’s time to leave Seattle if your a “big” business because now you’re considered the endless pool of money for the socialist to drain.

So stay small and hope the large Predatory Socialists don’t see you…

Even social justice champion Starbucks said, “Schultz said that when Starbucks totals up the amount it spends on pay, plus benefits for each employee, everyone earns more than $15 an hour “in addition to that we pay more than the minimum wage in also every place we do business. 

But if Starbucks were required to pay $15 an hour, those benefits could be at risk.

“If it goes to $15 an hour we’d have to assess whether or not we could continue to do those things,” Schultz said.” (KIRO)

I can’t wait for this to fail. But even if it does, the Liberals will prop it up and patch it up, and fake it up because as we already know, they are never wrong about anything- no matter what (in their own heads).

And they hide any data to the contrary.

And if you object YOU’RE The greedy one, not them!! 🙂

Enjoy, Comrade.

 

Dining Out

The fight over the minimum wage, which President Obama and Democrats hope to make a centerpiece of this year’s midterm elections, comes down to two simple arguments. Obama says low-income working Americans deserve a raise, while Republicans say raising the minimum wage would cost jobs.

It was a mostly theoretical argument until Feb. 12, when Obama signed an executive order raising the minimum wage for employees of federal contractors to $10.10 an hour from $7.25.

“This will make a difference for folks,” Obama said at a White House signing ceremony. “Right now, there’s a dishwasher at Randolph Air Force Base in Texas making $7.76 an hour — $7.76 an hour. There’s a fast-food worker at Andrews, right down the street, making $8.91 an hour. There’s a laundry worker at Camp Dodge in Iowa making $9.03 an hour. Once I sign this order, starting next year, as their contracts come up, each of them and many of their fellow coworkers are going to get a raise.”

Obama’s order does not take effect until January 1, 2015. But there are signs it is already having an effect — and it is not what the president and his party said it would be.

In late March, the publication Military Times reported that three McDonald’s fast-food restaurants, plus one other lesser-known food outlet, will soon close at Navy bases, while other national-name chains have “asked to be released from their Army and Air Force Exchange Service contracts to operate fast-food restaurants at two other installations.”

Military Times quoted sources saying the closures are related to the coming mandatory wage increases, with one source saying they are “the tip of the iceberg.”

The closures, real and contemplated, are a serious concern to 40 Republican members of the House Armed Services and Education and Workforce committees, who this month wrote Labor Secretary Thomas Perez asking that the mandatory increase not apply to some businesses on military bases.

“Should these policy changes be fully implemented, we are concerned they will eliminate jobs, negatively impact recreational services on military bases, and limit the dining options for servicemen and women on military installations,” the lawmakers wrote.

The administration is making it very expensive to do business on military bases, and not just because of the minimum wage. Under federal contracting law, some businesses operating on military installations must also pay their workers something called a health and welfare payment, which last year was $2.56 an hour but which the administration has now raised to $3.81 an hour.

In the past, fast-food employers did not have to pay the health and welfare payment, but last fall the Obama Labor Department ruled that they must. So add $3.81 per hour, per employee to the employers’ cost. And then add Obama’s $2.85 an hour increase in the minimum wage. Together, employers are looking at paying $6.66 more per hour, per employee. That’s a back-breaking burden. (Just for good measure, the administration also demanded such employers provide paid holidays and vacation time.)

And one more thing. Military contracting laws do not allow businesses to raise their prices above the level prevailing in the local community. The fast-food operators can’t charge more to make up their losses.

One group perhaps most concerned about the administration’s increases is the military itself. Earlier this month, Russell Beland, who is deputy assistant secretary of the Navy for military manpower and personnel, wrote a letter to the Labor Department asking for relief for fast-food contractors.

“Given the business model typical in the fast-food industry, this increase in the cost of labor dramatically disrupts the profitability and viability of food service operators” on military bases, Beland wrote. “The increased labor burden resulting from the new (wage structure) eliminates any profit the operator might otherwise realize and puts him in an impossible business dilemma.”

Beland wrote that Navy exchange officials estimate that 390 fast-food concessions in the U.S. and territories will close because of the increased costs. “Closure of these facilities would result in loss of work for nearly 5,750 contracted concession employees who are currently gainfully employed,” Beland wrote.

And that’s just for the Navy and Marines. The Army exchange system is much bigger, and including the Air Force, could affect as many as 10,000 more jobs.

The Obama administration knows it is placing a massive burden on businesses that operate on military bases. A few days ago, the Labor Department temporarily rescinded some of the new costs while it “re-evaluates” its actions. But President Obama’s executive order is still there, waiting to go into effect.

Under any conceivable scenario, Obama’s edict, combined with his administration’s policies, will place unbearable new burdens on businesses at military bases and, yes, result in fewer jobs. It looks like the president’s critics were right. (Bryon York)

The LEFT’s response:

But labor activist George Faraday told The Fiscal Times the argument against the new wage rules is bunk:

“The specter of mass layoffs being raised is an illusion. If they care about the welfare of military spouses they should care about whether military spouses [working at fast food outlets] are making a living wage.”

The Daily Kos:

If companies can afford to pay their CEO between $3125 and $4206 an hour, they can afford to pay their front line employees $10.10 to $15.00 an hour. The argument that they would need to raise the price of food to subsidize this pay raise is also faulty. Instead of raising food prices and closing restaurants to pay for an across the board pay increase for their lowest paid front line employees, maybe they should cut bloated executive pay. It would take someone earning the average wage at McDonald’s 523 years to make what the CEO makes in a year.

Does Class Warfare/Class Envy/Hatred get any clearer than that?? 🙂

Political Cartoons by Gary Varvel

Vision Problems

Liberals are always going on about how they are more “sensitive” to the concerns of “the poor”…yet…

May 20 marks the 1,245th straight day that the national average for a gallon of regular gasoline costs more than $3 a gallon, according to AAA data. That’s nearly three-and-a-half years above $3 a gallon.

That can’t help the poor. But it does help the Liberal Agenda.

So does ObamaCare, their nearly 100 year old wet dream of Government control of everyone through Health Care.

Mind you, the VA scandal is just an annoying blip they have to find a a way to sweep under the rug…Nothing about Government Health Care to see here…

In the meantime… they are “angry” about it. So “angry” in fact…

As the Veterans Affairs (VA) fiasco rages on, the House passed a piece of legislation that would make it easier to fire VA employees and make the department more accountable.  It was passed with bipartisan support, with the vote being 390 in favor to 33 against.

There was only one problem.  The bill (VA Management Accountability Act, H.R.4031) failed to pass the U.S. Senate.  Senate Democrats decided mark this Memorial Day by blocking this bill.

I’m, sure it was “too partisan” or some such BS. They are proud to wear their Union diapers. So the Democrats will want to pass their own bill, which undoubtedly will be all style and no substance and full of cronyism and super regulations that are ridculous and just look like a band aid, but if you’re against this one you obviously hate veterans! 🙂

And when the Republicans reject THEIR bill (not the bi-partisan one they rejected) they’ll bash them repeatedly in the media right before the election. The “other” bill will not even register in their consciousness.

After all, they “care”. 🙂

They care about “jobs”

The unemployment rate has been higher than ever before ever since The Liberals took over. But it’s around 3% in North Dakota because of the oil boom.

But Liberals hate Oil. They refuse to pass the Keystone Pipeline. They have the EPA Nazis going out and harassing business people and destroying jobs that aren’t politically correct.

They want a $15/hr minimum wage, that will ruin businesses and put EVEN MORE people out of work.

But opposing them is just “greedy” and “insensitive” to the poor. So they send out their shock troops to make an irrational fear-based circus out it.

Because they “care”.

There is the lowest labor participation rate in 35 years.

BUT their narrative feeds their Agenda.  And they “care”. 🙂

So back off.

They talk incessantly about the “War on Women” over abortion and birth Control but are absolutely silent as the grave about Sharia Law and the treatment of women under their hand picked Politically Correct Religion, Islam.

You “misogynist”!

Liberals loudly proclaim they are Pro-Choice.

As long as that choice fits THEIR Agenda that is.

pro-choice butAre you starting to see a pattern?

Oh, and if you happen to protest them expect the IRS to harass you, and then they’ll deny they were ever doing it.

The Holier than thou Liberal media will call you a “racist”, “a Homophobe”,”a radical”,”a Misogynist”,”a partisan”, “A domestic Terrorist” or even the hail mary of them all you “racist!”, or any other schoolyard nasty name in an attempt to shut you the hell up.

But they like the First Amendment, they say. As long as you say something they don’t disagree with that is.

Oh, and they absolutely hate the 2nd Amendment. The idea of you carrying a gun around to defend yourself is utterly mad-hatter time to them. That’s the Government’s job.

After all, the NSA is only “protecting” you. And we wouldn’t want you to go off like a loose cannon when they Stormtroopers come with their drones and take over, now would we?

It’s for for your own good.

The Government is here to Protect & Serve. How can we Help you, today? 🙂

You can keep your Doctor. Your Health Care. And it will cost less.

Trust Us.

We’ll Protect you from yourself.

Feel Better Now? 🙂

Political Cartoons by Eric Allie

Well, Mama ain’t happy.

Look out, everyone: The nation’s school lunch lady, Michelle Obama, is mad. With her federal nutrition program under fire across the country and now on Capitol Hill, Mrs. Obama put out a “forceful” call to arms this week to “health activists,” according to The Washington Post.

Read: radical Leftists!

She’s cracking the whip. Her orders are clear: There must be no escape. The East Wing and its sycophants zealously oppose any effort to alter, delay or waive top-down school meal rules. Big Lunch must be guarded at all costs.

We “care” so much that we will not be denied. You will comply! Resistance is Futile. You will be assimilated!

Progressives blame kid-hating Republicans and greedy businesses for the revolt against Mrs. Obama’s failed policies. But the truth is right around the corner in your students’ cafeterias. Districts are losing money. Discarded food is piling high. Kids are going off-campus to fill their tummies or just going hungry.

According to the School Nutrition Association, almost half of school meal programs reported declines in revenue in the 2012-13 school year, and 90 percent said food costs were up. Local nutrition directors are demanding more flexibility and freedom. Look no further than school districts in Los Angeles and Chicago.

As I noted in 2011, the L.A. Unified School District pronounced the first lady’s federally subsidized initiative a “flop” and a “disaster.” Principals reported “massive waste, with unopened milk cartons and uneaten entrees being thrown away.” The problem has only worsened. The Los Angeles Times reported last month that the city’s students throw out “at least $100,000 worth of food a day — and probably far more,” which “amounts to $18 million a year.”

Draconian federal rules dictate calorie counts, whole-grain requirements, the number of items that children must put on their trays, and even the color of the fruits and vegetables they must choose. Asked for a solution, LAUSD Food Service Director David Binkle told the Times bluntly: “We can stop forcing children to take food they don’t like and throw in the garbage.”

Or you can do what Arlington Heights District 214 in Michelle Obama’s home state of Illinois just did: Vote yourselves out of the unsavory one-size-fits-all mandate. Last week, the state’s second largest school district decided to quit the national school lunch program altogether. Officials pointed out that absurd federal guidelines prevented them from offering hard-boiled eggs, hummus, pretzels, some brands of yogurt, and nonfat milk in containers larger than 12 ounces.

The district will deliberately forgo $900,000 in federal aid and instead rely on its own nutritionist to devise healthy choices that students actually want. One local parent summed it up well: “(T)he government can’t control everything.”

As more schools look to withdraw, you can bet on the White House to ramp up the Republican-bashing rhetoric. Mrs. Obama’s advocates have already taken to social media to complain about Big Business special interests.

But let’s remember: Mrs. Obama has been working the food circuit since 2005, when the wife of newly elected Sen. Barack Obama was named to the corporate board of directors of Wal-Mart processed foods supplier TreeHouse Foods Inc. — collecting $45,000 in 2005, $51,200 in 2006, and 7,500 TreeHouse stock options worth more than $72,000 for each year.

Fact: The first lady has been the most insatiable crony at the center of the Fed Foods racket. Her nonprofit Partnership for a Healthier America has reported assets of $4.5 million from secret donors. It’s not just mean conservatives pointing out her Big Business ties. The left-wing documentary “Fed Up” made the same point before being edited under pressure. Hello, Chicago Way.

Mrs. Obama’s allies also have accused opponents of wanting to repeal “science-based” standards. But the first lady herself was caught spreading false claims that her program was responsible for reducing childhood obesity, when the decline began a decade ago.

And as I’ve reported previously, deep-pocketed Big Labor’s push to expand public union payrolls with thousands more food service workers is also driving Mrs. Obama’s agenda.

Waste, failure, lies and special interest ties. If federal food policy were really about the children, the East Wing would be embracing change. But this is not about protecting the kids. It’s about protecting Michelle Obama. Her thin-skinned response to criticism is telling:

Hell hath no fury like a Nanny State control freak scorned. (CNS)

And it’s all YOUR FAULT for resisting the “caring” and “compassion” smothering of the LEFT.

They just care about you too much. And it’s your fault for resisting their superior vision for your life.

Kinda like the mother on “The Goldbergs” don’t you think?… 🙂

Political Cartoons by Glenn McCoy

But as long as you do as Momma and Pappa Government say and don’t back talk everything will be happy and  perfect.

Kumbuya! Praise the Government!

Your Lord and Master demands it.

WHAT DIFFERENCE DOES IT MAKE!

🙂

Political Cartoons by Chip Bok

 

 

 

The Rise of The Left

 

Medical Costs: President Obama used to talk about “bending the cost curve” as a justification for his health overhaul. But it looks increasingly like ObamaCare is sparking a major health care inflation spiral.

This week three big insurance companies in Massachusetts announced they lost money in the first quarter, thanks to ObamaCare’s new taxes and fees.

Just wait until Burger King and other have to play $15/hr as a minimum wage, the job loss and the companies loss will mount.

But at least the Left will be happy in their “superiority” and their “vision” of a “better” America…

And it will be someone elses fault when it all comes crashing down because they had “good intentions” so it can’t possibly be their fault.

After all, these companies make millions of dollars, they can afford to make a little less to help out “the people” The Leftists would say.

The fact that they don’t fundamentally care about how business works is the scariest part.

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts reported a $59.3 million loss after it had to pay $73 million toward financing ObamaCare. Pilgrim Health paid $22.9 million in ObamaCare taxes, leading to a loss of $17.3 million. And the Tufts Health Plan would have broken even if not for ObamaCare.

The main cost imposed on these insurers is ObamaCare’s “health insurance tax,” which is based on a company’s market share. This year, the tax will cost the industry a total of $8 billion, and the burden will go up from there.

“We think of it as a sales tax on health care,” Lora Pellegrini, president of the Massachusetts Association of Health Plans, told the Boston Globe. “This is going to be passed on in higher premiums.”

And guess what, that will raise your Auto Insurance and your Home Insurance costs too. After all, Liability BODILY INJURY and uninsured BODILY INJURY…

Got that? Higher premiums. And that’s in Massachusetts, which had already imposed ObamaCare-like changes years before and has among the highest premiums in the nation.

And is dumping that exchange because it went bust!

But suggest anything else to a Liberal and they’ll howl about how you want to push grandma over a cliff and kill children.

The fact that THEY are pushing them over doesn’t even occur to them, because they are “doing the right thing” because “they care”.

Meanwhile, a new industry survey suggests that overall employer health costs will climb by 9% this year, and other surveys find small-business premium hikes in the double if not triple digits.

Keep in mind that premium growth was decelerating before ObamaCare — they climbed less than 6% in all but one of the past eight years, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation.

In addition, ObamaCare’s massive insurance subsidies are fueling demand, pushing first-quarter health spending up at a rate not seen since 1980.

The administration is aware of this problem. This week it decided to let insurance companies cap the amount they’ll pay toward expensive procedures (while requiring them to pay 100% of low-cost “preventive” treatments). It’s meant to keep premiums down, but turns the concept of insurance completely upside down.

Good luck with that Cancer treatment! But hey, you’ll get free birth control pills! 🙂

In the wake of this, Kaiser CEO Drew Altman predicted that “the conversation will soon shift back to health care costs because they are rising more sharply again.”

No kidding. Anyone with a rudimentary understanding of economics knows you can’t turbocharge demand, pile on mandates and taxes, and expect prices to go down.

EXCEPT THE LEFT.

After all, it’s the “right” thing to do. 🙂

Anything else would be “greedy”, “racist” and “discriminatory”!! 🙂

Working Hard

This is liberal “comedy”: http://www.truthrevolt.org/news/obama-skips-self-deprecation-lashes-out-republicans-vicious-whca-dinner-monologue

Oh, and it’s Cinco De Mayo, so if you’re white, wear an American Flag Shirt today and piss off the leftist Latinos!  or get your kid thrown out of school for being “insensitive”. 🙂

Harry Reid, the Senate majority leader from Nevada, released a statement about the formation of a select committee in the House of Representatives to investigate the federal government’s response to the 2012 terrorist attack in Benghazi, Libya. In his statement, Reid criticized the Republican party for having “nothing to offer the middle class.” Reid also mentioned the Koch brothers.

Here’s the full statement:

Republicans are showing yet again that they have nothing to offer the middle class. Republicans care more about defending billionaires like the Koch brothers and trying to rekindle debunked right-wing conspiracy theories than raising the minimum wage or ensuring women receive equal pay for equal work.

There have already been multiple investigations into this issue and an independent Accountability Review Board is mandated under current law. For Republicans to  waste the American people’s time and money staging a partisan political circus instead of focusing on the middle class is simply a bad decision. While Republicans try to gin up yet another political food fight, Senate Democrats will remain focused on fostering economic growth for all hard-working Americans.

This them “working” for you…

On the surface, both the payroll and the household survey reported good news. Employers added a net 288,000 payroll jobs while the unemployment rate fell by 0.4 percentage points. April experienced the fourth largest growth in payroll jobs and ties for the largest drop in unemployment since the recession began in 2008—very welcome news for struggling workers.

However, this large drop in unemployment occurred because of an enormous number of Americans simply giving up looking for work. In April, an estimated 800,000 Americans simply left the labor market. As a result, the labor force participation rate dropped back to 62.8 percent—tied for the lowest rate since the 1970s. Fewer prospective workers, not more jobs, caused the decline in unemployment.

This is them “working”. 🙂 After all the unemployment rate continues to drop so they must be doing a good job right? 🙂

Further, the largest decreases in unemployment came among younger workers—not prime-age adults. Three-fifths of the total reduction in unemployment occurred among those aged 16 to 24. So while the overall unemployment rate fell by 0.4 percentage points, it only fell 0.2 percentage points among those 25 and older. Much of the statistical improvement in April came from teenagers and young adults dropping out of the labor force.

This is them “working” for you… 🙂

Great news that 288,000 payroll jobs were created in April and the unemployment rate fell to 6.3% — the lowest since 2008. Sadly, that’s not the whole job picture.

You know things are bad when you gauge your progress by a decline in unemployment back to where it was in the middle of the last recession.

We’re happy that businesses, following a freezing winter, began adding to payrolls again in April. But the broader employment picture remains deeply troubling.

Start with April’s 288,000 new payroll jobs, a number that comes from surveying businesses. Impressive, until you consider that a broader job survey of households shows a decline of 73,000 jobs in April.

Then there’s the labor participation rate — perhaps the broadest gauge of demand for workers. That fell 0.4 percentage point to 62.8%, an all-time low.

And, no, contrary to what some say, it wasn’t due to baby boomers retiring. It’s because 806,000 people left the labor force last month.

Overall, the job picture isn’t pretty.

Some 7.5 million Americans worked part-time last month for economic reasons. An additional 2.2 million were “marginally attached to the labor force” — looking for, but not finding, jobs. Of these, 783,000 were “discouraged,” meaning they’d given up looking for work.

When you add these people into the mix, you get the U6 unemployment rate. That gauge now stands at 12.3%, down from a high of 17.1% in 2010 and the lowest level since early in the last recession.

But even during the Bush recovery — one we were repeatedly told by the left was the “worst since the Depression” — U6 unemployment never got above 10.4%.

And by the way, none of these numbers has improved much, if at all, over the past year. If anything, the slack in the labor force is getting worse.

In April, 93 million adults were “not in the labor force,” a record and a gain of 2.2 million since last year. That’s a lot of people not working. Put a bit differently, for each person not in the labor force, just 1.3 people are working full-time. That, too, is a record low.

So the real unemployment picture is disastrous. And it’s that way because of bad policies that have prolonged Americans’ misery and hobbled our economy.

The president and his Democratic allies in Congress own this job recession. The only remedy for such policy incompetence comes at the ballot box. (IBD)

Political Cartoons by Bob Gorrell

Actions Have Consequences

Political Cartoons by Eric Allie

President Obama’s proposal to raise the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour would increase earnings for 16.5 million low-wage Americans but cost the nation about 500,000 jobs, congressional budget analysts said Tuesday. (WP)

Then they can pay for ObamaCare! They just might not have a Job…:)

A bipartisan group of lawmakers is asking the Obama administration to scale back draft regulations under ObamaCare that would force restaurants to post nutritional information on their menus.

“Specifically, the proposed rule limits the ability of businesses to determine for themselves how best to provide nutritional information to customers,” (The Government knows best always, right?) the lawmakers wrote in a letter to FDA Commissioner Margaret Hamburg. “As a result, the proposal harms both those non-restaurants that were not intended to be captured by the menu labeling law as well as those restaurants that have flexibility and variability in the foods they offer.” 



Pizza places and grocery stores in particular have complained about the draft standards, saying they would be all but impossible to maintain. For instance, there are 34 million different combinations of pizza toppings, according to an industry trade group. It’s impractical to require that they list calorie counts for all of the options, they say.



“Yet, to date there is little evidence to suggest that the FDA has considered these alternatives,” the lawmakers wrote to Hamburg. “Instead, it appears that the FDA has withdrawn from interacting with affected industries and instead proceeded on a path that will unnecessarily burden many small businesses across the country.” (The Hill)
THE AGENDA IS THE AGENDA!  And no grubby Congressperson or Pizza joint is going to stop us from our holy mission to force you to do the right thing and make you less fat!

We’ll just remove the source… 🙂

And, of course regulations like this and a $3 raise in the minimum wage won’t have any effect on a businesses bottom line or cause them to go out of business.

And if it does, who needs them.

The equivalent of about 2.5 million Americans will quit their jobs, cut their hours or stop looking for work during the next decade because of new benefits available under the health-care law, according to recent Congressional Budget Office estimates that have renewed debate over the program’s effect on the economy.

The White House and its allies argue that the government has a role in addressing a failure of the health-insurance market: the high prices and coverage restrictions that have kept health coverage out of reach for so many people. Like Social Security, which provides a safety net so people can retire, the health law may have the effect of leading some Americans to stop working, they say.

We are from the Government and we are here to help you…:)

But they called the impact positive, arguing that people have for too long been stuck in jobs that are a poor fit or that they dislike, simply for the benefits. While some people may make the calculation to just work less to keep more generous benefits, many will use their time to do something more productive, such as start their own business or take care of family members, advocates of the new law say.

Government assistance is so much more satisfying, after all…Sponge off other people, after all, they’ll be making more money to pay for it. 🙂

All you have to do is lower your expectations and swallow your pride and the government trough is open slop for you!

Here little piggy!…

Extending the maximum length of benefits beyond 26 weeks made highly educated unemployed people “more ‘relaxed’ and more patient in selecting jobs,” wrote Lei Fang and Jun Nie in a new working paper, “Human Capital Dynamics and the U.S. Labor Market.” Had unemployment benefits not been extended, they estimated, “the unemployment rate during the 2010-2012 period would have been 0.5 percentage point lower than the actual level.”

Their findings follow earlier research by Makoto Nakajima, a senior economist at the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia. Mr. Nakajima estimated extended jobless benefits accounted for 1.2 percentage points of the jump in the unemployment rate from the end of 2007 to the fall of 2009. (WSJ)

And now for the Orwellian doublespeak of the week: “You can’t say the Affordable Care Act has killed job growth,” <WH advisor> Schiliro told an audience at a Kaiser Family Foundation presentation Wednesday. “In the 46 months since it passed, over 8 million jobs have been created… No one would say the Affordable Care Act created those jobs, but you can’t say the ACA has killed job growth.”

You can’t say it created those jobs, but I just did! You can’t say it killed jobs, because that is not the Agenda Message so stop saying that!

The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that the financial crash and resulting recession lost the U.S. economy 8.8 million jobs.

The Congressional Budget Office issued a report concluding that the equivalent of 2.3 million jobs would be lost because Obamacare’s structure incentivizes less work with more taxpayer subsidies.

Business leaders such as the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) estimate that the Health Insurance Tax will reduce employment by up to 262,000 jobs by 2022. (DC)

The Labor Participation is the lowers it’s been in 35 years! Yet, we have 14 million new Americans since Obama came into office.

And after all, that’s why the employer mandate has been put off several times, because it’s just so good for everyone! 🙂

The employer mandate will only begin in 2015 for businesses with 100 or more full-time employees, the Treasury Department announced. Companies with between 50 and 99 employees will be exempted from the law for another year — unless a company fires workers to make it beneath the threshold for the delay.

The IRS regulations on the delay make it very clear that only companies that shrink from 100-plus full-time workers just before the delay for “bona fide business reasons” will be exempted from the mandate to have coverage.

The government that is going to force you to go out of business or fire people must approve of the reasons or else you won’t be allowed the benefit of their benevolence!

Nice. 🙂

It’s good to be the King! or the King’s Minions! 🙂

Oh, and that choice thing…

California’s health care exchange promised potential customers they would have enough physicians to choose from. But some new enrollees, including an Alameda County woman, are discovering that their doctor choices are extremely limited.

Julia Turner is surprised that she even has to search for a doctor. When she signed up for a policy through Covered California late last year, her long-time physician was listed as participating in her Blue Shield plan. It turned out; however, that he is not accepting patients with her Blue Shield policy, purchased on the Covered California exchange.

When Turner called around to find someone else to treat her, she got more frustration. “The only doctors accepting new patients are urgent care clinics,” Turner told KPIX 5 ConsumerWatch.

None of the doctors are located in the city in which she lives. Instead, Turner said, “They are in areas of East Oakland that have a lot of violence.”

Which I’m sure is some rich person’s fault, or “income inequality”.Don’t worry, Obama will demand they get paid more and everything will be alright!

Promise! Trust Him, he’s got your back! 🙂

When KPIX 5 contacted all of the 41 doctors on the list Blue Shield provided to Julia, it found only four of the doctors were actually accepting new adult patients, and only one of them was board certified.

The California Department of Managed Health Care said there is no law that requires the insurer’s provider list to be accurate. However, state law does require insurers to have an “adequate” network of doctors. That means there must be at least one doctor for every 1,200 enrollees within 15 miles of their home.

But many enrollees, in both Blue Cross and Blue Shield plans purchased on the exchange said they are struggling to find even one doctor willing to take new patients due to what are now being call “narrow networks.”

The narrowest networks – those with the fewest doctors – are in some of the Northern California counties with the lowest median household income and the highest number of Medi-Cal recipients. Alameda County falls into that category.

Pat Johnston of the California Association of Health Plans, the industry group representing the insurers, admits there some issues with doctor availability. Johnston calls it a “tradeoff.”

 

“Remember one of the factors here is trying to make it affordable,” he explained. He admits that depending on the insurer, there are fewer provider options for enrollees who purchase the subsidized policies on the exchange.

 

Those you trade Freedom (of Choice) for “security” deserve neither, and you’ll likely get it too! But be happy, it’s not the Government’s fault!! They are here to save you! 🙂

After all the pressure the insurer rolled over and made nice for her. but…“This is not what we were promised. I see those (Covered California) commercials now and I want to scream,” Turner said.

And Obama wants to mess with you even more, rejoice! 🙂

Political Cartoons by Steve Kelley

Political Cartoons by Steve Breen

Political Cartoons by Lisa Benson
 Political Cartoons by Michael Ramirez

 

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