Obama’s Minimum Wage Fallacy
Over the past few weeks President Obama has been on a tour of the nation making speeches and amping-up the rhetoric in his efforts to raise the federal minimum wage. As is typical for this president, he has done as much as he can “on his own” (presidential speak for governing via the issuance of Executive Orders.) On February 12, 2014 the President issued an Executive Order requiring the minimum wage to be paid employees of companies doing contract and sub-contract work with the federal government be raised to an initial $10.10 per hour. “Initial” being a key word in the previous sentence. The exact wording of this XO leaves the door wide open for future pay hikes:
“Sec. 2. Establishing a minimum wage for Federal contractors and subcontractors. …shall be at least
(i) $10.10 per hour beginning January 1, 2015; and
(ii) beginning January 1, 2016, and annually thereafter, an amount determined by the Secretary of Labor”
Yes, the $10.10 per hour is just a beginning. After that it’s apparently an amount to be determined at the discretion of whatever the Labor Secretary believes to be “fair.” We do not know who will be the Secretary of Labor come 2016 but it’s reasonable to assume it will be an individual who shares the President’s and Thomas Perez’s (current Secretary of Labor) fundamental views on the “fairness of pay.” Indeed all of this President’s cabinet positions are occupied by far-left-of-center ideologues; it is inconceivable that if a change were to be made, he would fill this seat with someone who may side with employers over employees. (In other words, federal contractors, get ready to shell out even more come 2016.)
Federal contractors having been dealt with via XO, the President is now is forced to deal with the pesky obstacle of our constitutional legislative bodies, the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate, in order to realize his vision of raising the federal minimum wage for all employers and not just those getting a check from the Department of the Treasury to make or help make payroll.
In the aforementioned tour stops, the President continues to state, “Raising the minimum wage will lift millions out of poverty,” most recently before a fawning audience at the University of Michigan. While the constant mantra of “everybody deserves a fair shot” and “we don’t believe in opportunity for just a few at the top” are great for soliciting crowd response, the issue here isn’t how loud you can get a gathering of college students to yell, it’s what are the real-world truths and what policy tact should we pursue in order to legitimately help America’s laborers? The data simply does not support the notion that raising minimum wage lifts people at the bottom of the economic ladder out of poverty. In fact, it does the opposite. Poverty does not drop with minimum wage hikes it increases dramatically every time the minimum wage is raised.
First there’s the ‘non-factual-analysis-common-sense’ test of this. Raising the minimum wage from its current $7.25 to $10.10 per hour would be a gross increase of $2.85 per hour before taxes and other deductions. If we assume zero deductions and a 35 hour work week, $2.85 x 38 hours = a weekly increase of $99.75. Again, not taking any deductions into account. About one hundred additional dollars a week is going to “lift a family out of poverty”? The very notion is ridiculous and the statement an insult to any thinking person’s intelligence.
The statistical and factual analysis makes the President’s statement even more ludicrous.
The Fair Minimum Wage Acts of 2007 and 2012 have raised the federal minimum wage by 70 cents per hour, three times. In 2007 the minimum wage was $5.15 per hour, in 2008 it was raised to $5.85, in 2009 to $6.55 and in 2010 to $7.25.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau and U.S. Dept. of Labor;
- in 2007 there were 37.3 million people living in poverty
- in 2008 39.8 million
- in 2009 43.6 million, and
- in 2010 46.2 million
In 2012 the Census Bureau reported the number living at or beneath the federal poverty threshold (individual filing singularly, $11,670/annual income; couple filing jointly $15,730) rose to 46.5 million. (2013 numbers are not out yet.) Raising the minimum wage seems to put people — millions of people– into poverty.
Considering the number of times the President has made this statement (that “Raising the minimum wage will lift millions out of poverty”), we are left with two possibilities. Either our President is ignorant of these facts, or, he is not ignorant of them at all but is intentionally lying to advance an agenda that will add to the woes of the poor.
I choose to believe the latter. The fact is that most in this nation are not aware of this adverse relationship between minimum wage hikes and numbers living in poverty. Stating, “We need to raise the minimum wage to help the poor” sounds good. Therefore there is little political risk in continually making this false claim. In fact not only is it not politically risky it’s actually quite politically shrewd. The perception that Democrats are in favor of the poor and underclasses and Republicans favor the wealthy and upperclasses is quite real, alive and well. A Democrat President running around the nation banging the “raise the minimum wage to help the poor” drum only adds to the misconception that he and his political party are the one’s “looking out for” those in lower economic classes. As just demonstrated, it’s the polar opposite of the truth but a masterstroke of manipulating the ignorant masses.
Not only does the President sell the “I’m looking out for the little guy” myth but in each of these stops and speeches he’s careful to demonize Republicans in congress for their opposition to minimum wage increases. Screaming about Republican resistance to raising the minimum wage advances the other misconception about Republicans only caring for the rich and looking out for big business. “They don’t want to see the little guy get ahead, they’re only concerned with protecting the one percent.”
It’s a shame that we have a President so willing to divide our nation and a greater shame that he’s do so using completely false information. Not misleading, not half-truth – false. By opposing minimum wage hikes the Republicans are actually the ones protecting millions from falling into or deeper into poverty; by supporting such hikes the Democrats are dooming the poor. And our President is preying on the ignorance of those very same impoverished and working poor to try and assure they stay that way. After all, who cares if they’re perpetually poor so long as they’re perpetually voting Democrat?
Derrick Wilburn www.blackandconservative.com
Taken from American Thinker.
Freedom to Marry, Freedom to Dissent: Why We Must Have Both
The last few years have brought an astonishing moral and political transformation in the American debate over same-sex marriage and gay equality. This has been a triumph not only for LGBT Americans but for the American idea. But the breakthrough has brought with it rapidly rising expectations among some supporters of gay marriage that the debate should now be over. As one advocate recently put it, “It would be enough for me if those people who are so ignorant or intransigent as to still be anti-gay in 2014 would simply shut up.”
The signatories of this statement are grateful to our friends and allies for their enthusiasm. But we are concerned that recent events, including the resignation of the CEO of Mozilla under pressure because of an anti-same-sex- marriage donation he made in 2008, signal an eagerness by some supporters of same-sex marriage to punish rather than to criticize or to persuade those who disagree. We reject that deeply illiberal impulse, which is both wrong in principle and poor as politics.
We support same-sex marriage; many of us have worked for it, in some cases for a large portion of our professional and personal lives. We affirm our unwavering commitment to civic and legal equality, including marriage equality. At the same time, we also affirm our unwavering commitment to the values of the open society and to vigorous public debate—the values that have brought us to the brink of victory.
Diversity Is the Natural Consequence of Liberty
The gay rights struggle is about freedom and equality for all. The best and most free society is one that allows the largest number to live true to their core beliefs and identities. It is a society that allows its members to speak their minds and shape their own aspirations.
The natural consequence of true liberty is diversity. Unless a society can figure out a way to reach perfect agreement, conflicting views will be inevitable. Any effort to impose conformity, through government or any other means, by punishing the misguided for believing incorrectly will impoverish society intellectually and oppress it politically.
The test of our commitment to liberal principles is not our eagerness to hear ideas we share, but our willingness to consider seriously those we oppose.
Read it all HERE.
Fed’s Wealth Effect: Richest 200 Moguls Made $13.9 Billion Today
Former Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke doesn’t regret much about the Fed’s actions during and after the financial crisis, he told the Economic Club of Canada on Tuesday, during a speech for which he was most likely paid a small fortune.
So he doesn’t regret that the Fed, under his reign, handed out trillions of dollars to the largest banks and corporations, US and foreign, to teach them once and for all a crucial lesson, that the Fed – and hence the public at large – would always be there for them when their horrid and reckless bets got them into very predictable trouble; that the Fed would always do whatever it would take to fan inflation in order to raise corporate revenues and profits, whittle down real wages, and inflict financial repression on savers.
He doesn’t regret either that the Fed has destroyed what was left of the financial markets as a means of price discovery. Nor does he regret that the wealthy were bailed out during the financial crisis and that they have then become much wealthier while the rest of the people were left to struggle the best they could with the conditions the Fed has created.
But there’s one thing he does regret: that he wasn’t able to explain the Fed’s actions well enough to the vast majority of Americans, namely those who’ve gotten shafted by the Fed’s very actions. “They think somehow or another that we favored Wall Street instead of favoring Main Street and that’s unfortunate,” he said. “I still think there are a lot of people out there who really don’t understand why we did what we did.”
For sure for sure. But there are a few people out there who do understand: the billionaires, or those who became billionaires during the worldwide money-printing and interest-rate repression binge. It’s been one heck of a bonanza for them.
Just today, the world’s 200 richest people made $13.9 billion. In one single day, according to Bloomberg’s Billionaires Index. That’s big bickies, as my friends from down-under might say.
We may quibble over the accuracy to the penny of these net-worth estimates, and their daily changes, but Bloomberg is pretty confident, even concerning assets that are not publicly traded. And in case of doubt, they’re left out, Bloomberg explains in its Methodology. And so here is the crème de la crème:
Read all of this HERE.
Judge Rules Water Not Allowed in School Because It’s a Weapon
Senator Introduces Bill to Silence Christians and Conservatives
Brains on socialism….
Ex-NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg is spending $50 million to fight the National Rifle Association in his latest push for gun control. Which begs the question: is Bloomberg necessarily the best face for this campaign? On This Week Sunday morning, ABC News Senior Washington Correspondent Jeff Zeleny said that Bloomberg could “give his money and someone else can be the front of this,” while Crossfire host S.E. Cupp went one step further and said that Bloomberg is just a horrible face for the movement.
She said, “He is the best—-and by that I mean the worst—-face for gun control, and believe me, my friends at the NRA high-fived when they heard about this.”
Cupp argued Bloomberg is wasting his time targeting law-abiding gun owners instead of criminals, and his past attempts at leading a gun control movement have been “immeasurable failures.” Donna Brazile shot back that Bloomberg “should be praised” for what he’s doing, and said, “If saving lives is a bad thing, well, God knows we’re in serious trouble.”
Cupp insisted that Mayors Against Illegal Guns was a “duplicitous” name for a group that Bloomberg used to go after law-abiding gun owners instead of the titular illegal guns.
Walid Phares: The Lost Spring; U.S. Policy in the Middle East and Catastrophes to Avoid
Obama’s Muslim Brotherhood Agenda
It is a task just to keep up with the conflicts dividing America, so it is no surprise that many Americans are unsure of what occurred during the “Arab Spring” that began in 2011 and its aftermath since then.
It is likely, too, that most do not know who or what the Muslim Brotherhood is, but it has been around a long time seeking to control events in the Middle East and North African nations. It also plays an astonishing and frightening role in America.
“The Brotherhood’s peak in the United States came with the victory of Barack Obama in the U.S. presidential election of 2008,” says Walid Phares in his book, “The Lost Spring; U.S. Policy in the Middle East and Catastrophes to Avoid” ($27.00, Palgrave Macmillan). “The network, via its front groups, supported the campaign, not as a formal entity, but as a prelude to receiving influence within American bureaucracies and the new administration when Obama took office.”
“The factions within the global lobby had an overarching common interest: to push back against the forces of secular democracy in the Arab world and Iran, and thus against their representatives and friends within the United States and Europe, for the real threat to the Islamists in the East was a secular liberal revolution backed by the West.”
Phares is an internationally acknowledged and respected expert on terrorism, the Middle East, and events that reflect Islamism, the movement to impose strict Islamic law—Sharia—and other cultural restrictions globally, but most specifically in nations where Islam is the dominant faith.
For now, one of the most powerful Islamists in the world resides in the White House
It’s important to know that the Muslim Brotherhood has been around in the U.S. for decades, as often as not working through front organizations like the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR), the Muslim Student Association, and others. Using petrodollars, it has supported the creation of Islamic studies departments in universities and maintains a communications program to present through the U.S. media its interpretation of events and thus influence public perceptions and opinion.
Obama and the Muslim Brotherhood members who joined his administration after he took office in 2009 were caught completely off guard, however, by the Arab Spring, the name given to a number of revolutions to cast off despots ruling the Middle East. It began in Tunisia, spread swiftly to Egypt, then to Libya, and affected events in other nations of the region. It was led initially by the youth that were connected to one another by communications technology such as iphones and the Internet. They were joined by secular groups, Muslims who did not wish to live under the repression of fanatical Islamists. Swiftly, ordinary Muslims, women, and others joined them.
Much more HERE.