Excellent post.<quoted text>
Minimum wage, maximum folly
About a fortnight ago, Mrs. Williams alerted me to an episode of Oprah Winfrey's show titled "Inside the Lives of People Living on Minimum Wage." After a few minutes of watching, I turned it off, not because of the heartrending tales but because most of what was being said was dead wrong. Let's look at it.
The show claims that 30 million Americans earn the minimum wage of $5 an hour. Actually, the federal minimum wage is $5.15 an hour, and 17 states mandate a higher minimum wage that approaches $7 an hour. At one point, Oprah did manage to clear up this aspect of the show's errors.
The U.S. Department of Labor reports: "According to Current Population Survey estimates for 2004, some 73.9 million American workers were paid at hourly rates, representing 59.8 percent of all wage and salary workers. Of those paid by the hour, 520,000 were reported as earning exactly $5.15." ( http://www.bls.gov/cps/minwage2004.htm#2 )
Workers earning the minimum wage or less tend to be young, single workers between the ages of 16 and 25. Only about two percent of workers over 25 years of age earn minimum wages.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics: Sixty-three percent of minimum wage workers receive raises within one year of employment, and only 15 percent still earn the minimum wage after three years. Furthermore, only 5.3 percent of minimum wage earners are from households below the official poverty line; forty percent of minimum wage earners live in households with incomes $60,000 and higher; and, over 82 percent of minimum wage earners do not have dependents.
The U.S. Department of Labor also reports that the "proportion of hourly-paid workers earning the prevailing Federal minimum wage or less has trended downward since 1979."
Let's also keep mind: Minimum wage was not, never intended to be wages to raise a family on, earn a living on, own a home on, by cell phones, cars and big screen TVs on or be for FULL TIME pay. It was/is intended as a steeping stone for part time workers (not full time) to earn pocket change for teenagers, college students and a motivator to excel in life.
Stop your piss ant whining and get some skills/education if you don't like minimum wage and certainly don't plan on raising a family on it. That's just stupid.