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Author: pauleckler Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 457797  
Subject: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants successful Date: 5/14/2013 11:22 PM
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Letter to the editor in today's Post-Dispatch. In St. Louis, some fast food workers are striking for better wages.

Owner made fast-food restaurants successful, not the employees

Regarding the front-page article about protests over fast-food wages ("Protesters target low wages at fast-food outlets," May 10):

Once upon a time there was a man named Dave Thomas. He took some of the $1.5 million he made from Col. Sanders and Kentucky Fried Chicken to invest in a new company, Wendy's old-fashioned hamburgers. As founder and CEO, he was entitled to hire whoever he wanted to be his administrators, other salaried personnel and hourly employees. This company did very well. It has been the third-largest hamburger chain in the world for more than 30 years, with 6,500-plus stores.

All of this, only to have some brainwashed college student say, "They need me just like we need them." No, they don't. You did not invest millions of dollars in this company. You did not decide which policies would be standard for every Wendy's store. You did not hire the personnel at all levels who would implement those policies with the result that the company would be this successful. You merely filled out an application, revealing much personal info about yourself without any guarantee of getting hired. You signed on the line agreeing that you had read all employee rules and policies and agreeing to whatever wage they said they'd pay you. You could be replaced very quickly. They did you no wrong.

If you can't live on $7.35, then go get a job that you can live on!

John Spencer • Ferguson

http://www.stltoday.com/news/opinion/mailbag/letters-to-the-...

-----------

Surely the author is an economist. :)
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Author: wzambon Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Recommended Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422841 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/14/2013 11:36 PM
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Now it's a certainty that Dave can pay his employees anything he wants.

But it's also a certainty that I can take my business anywhere I want.

It's why I dropped Sam's and took out a membership at Costco.

Costco pays its employees a living wage- even offers benefits.

Perhaps the age of unions is gone. Labor has lost its pricing power. And management has adopted the attitude of "Let them eat cake" while driving up their own salaries to multiples over the average wage in the company to levels heretofore unseen...

But as a consumer, I don't have to participate in that, right?

And I won't.

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Author: tim443 Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422850 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 8:01 AM
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But as a consumer, I don't have to participate in that, right?

And I won't.



Bill

The only time Wendy's is busy around here is when they hand out a lot of those "two can dine for $9.99" coupons, I don't even think of planning our Costco run at any time other than Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday evening***.


Any <http://ca.shine.yahoo.com/blogs/shine-food/bacon-dogs-are-he... mouse

*** - Fortunately the store is only 800 meters from our front door.

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Author: steve203 Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422855 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 9:47 AM
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You did not... You did not.... You did not...

You, the minimum wage clerk, *are* the person who makes the customer feel welcome in the store. You *are* the person who gets their order right. You *are* the person who, every day, makes going to Wendy's, or any other retailer, an enjoyable experience that the customer will wish to repeat.

Just another "management is everyting, labor is nothing" elitist screed. *snort*

Steve

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Author: rubberthinking Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422856 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 9:50 AM
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Steve,

Management is for taking the money. Workers are for blaming if the management screws up.

Dave

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Author: steve203 Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422859 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 10:05 AM
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Management is for taking the money. Workers are for blaming if the management screws up.

So says management everywhere. Call up GM, and you'll be told all problems since the beginning of time are the fault of the union, the government, or the Japanese. Never, ever management....those exemplars that flew in their private jets to DC to plead poverty and extort a handout.

In retail, the minimum wage clerk is the public face of the company. A wise person once said, "you never, ever, cut the pay of any employee who has contact with your customers".

Lets see some retailer hire the cheapest people possible, people who noone else would hire, those who can't make change, can't assemble a hamburger properly, can't read, can barely speak, can't get to work on time, and have a bad attitude, and see how successful they are.

Steve

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Author: wzambon Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Recommended Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422861 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 10:08 AM
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Lets see some retailer hire the cheapest people possible, people who noone else would hire, those who can't make change, can't assemble a hamburger properly, can't read, can barely speak, can't get to work on time, and have a bad attitude, and see how successful they are.

True... but it gives them a convenient target to blame when things go wrong.

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Author: desertdaveataol Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422863 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 10:29 AM
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Lets see some retailer hire the cheapest people possible, people who noone else would hire, those who can't make change, can't assemble a hamburger properly, can't read, can barely speak, can't get to work on time, and have a bad attitude, and see how successful they are.

Great idea Steve! It'll provide justification for replacing them with robots.

Revenge of the Machines

Order taking robot/computer programmed to end each order with "would you like fries with that?"

Burger flipper robot.

Fries robot.

Shakes/drinks robot.

Delivery robot collects food/drink orders and delivers to front counter.

Management robot thanks you for your business and blames all mistakes on "that guy" peeling potatoes in the back room.

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Author: pauleckler Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422874 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 12:18 PM
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Wow!! I am surprised at the socialist bent of this thread.

This is after all the METAR board, where economists hang out. And economists feel strongly you should get a better job if you can and buy products cheaper if you can. Supply and demand then takes care of who wins and who loses.

I don't think unions and protecting jobs or workers is part of the game. That all comes from a healthy expanding economy.

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Author: tim443 Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422876 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 12:29 PM
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And economists feel strongly you should get a better job if you can and buy products cheaper if you can. Supply and demand then takes care of who wins and who loses.



Not if it means finding pubic hair in your hamburger?


**** absolutely not signed ****


http://novascotia.ca/news/release/?id=20130131004

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Author: pauleckler Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422877 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 12:37 PM
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Oh, I think supply and demand knows very well how to deal with pubic hair in your hamburger.

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Author: jgc123 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422878 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 12:46 PM
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We have gotten really good at ignoring the hidden costs of cheap products:

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/10/opinion/fire-safety-in-gar...

http://www.amazon.com/Fast-Food-Nation-Dark-All-American/dp/...

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Author: pauleckler Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422881 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 1:03 PM
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Substituting products of lower quality is one way to reduce costs. Of course supply and demand applies when a product is of acceptable quality.

When a competitors learns to supply an acceptable product at lower cost, economics rewards him with higher profits. And he has potential to cut prices and drive competitors out of business. In a highly competitive business, its a good idea to be a low cost producer.

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Author: jgc123 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422883 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 1:05 PM
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You posted this in response to my post, and yet it has nothing to do with my post. Maybe you replied to me by mistake?

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Author: desertdaveataol Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422885 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 1:51 PM
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Thank you for recommending this post to our Best of feature.

When a competitors learns to supply an acceptable product at lower cost, economics rewards him with higher profits. And he has potential to cut prices and drive competitors out of business. In a highly competitive business, its a good idea to be a low cost producer.

I made it a point, nay a mantra, to buy from the importer/manufacturer of the products I sold whenever possible so as to get the lowest price. My competitors bought from wholesalers by the dozen while I'd buy by the gross.

We've had a dozen or so competitors over the years. None of them lasted. (I bought out the inventories of two of them for pennies on the dollar. I went into those deals with the mindset that I'd buy only those items I carried and I'd pay less for them than I'd pay my regular sources or I wouldn't buy at all.)

Those competitors charged prices that were so high their "sale" prices were still more than my regular everyday prices. I spent many hours tracking down importers and manufacturers so as to be able to offer prices my customers were willing to pay while still doubling* my money. My competitors bought from wholesalers and wondered where the customers were.

After 23 years in business we sold our store to one of our long time employees and retired. I still smile at the number of cars in the parking lot when I drive by in my HUMMER.

YEAH BABY ENTREPRENEURIALISM IS WHERE IT'S AT!

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Author: NozRydr Big red star, 1000 posts 10+ Year Anniversary! Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422887 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 2:16 PM
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Hummer? I thought Sam Walton drove a pickup. ;)

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Author: Dwdonhoff Big gold star, 5000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422888 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 2:24 PM
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Hi Paul,

Wow!! I am surprised at the socialist bent of this thread.
Really? "Surprised"???

You've been away, I suppose...

This is after all the METAR board, where economists hang out.
Ahhh... THERE is your mistake!

"Economists" are mechanical quants... they put numbers to cause and effect of incentives.
Put the qualifier *MACRO* in front, and you add in all kinds of fundamentalist voodoo and political claptrap.

There's *lots* of that here now.... better not to fight it, easier to staple jello to a wall.

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Author: steve203 Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422893 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 2:55 PM
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...sold our store to one of our long time employees

So, you must have treated him better than the bare minimum required by law for him to stay on, paid him better than the bare minimum required by law so he was able to buy the business, and generally learned the same thing a skinny guy from Dearborn learned.

Ford was a pioneer of "welfare capitalism", designed to improve the lot of his workers and especially to reduce the heavy turnover that had many departments hiring 300 men per year to fill 100 slots. Efficiency meant hiring and keeping the best workers.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Henry_Ford

Steve

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Author: rharmelink Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422896 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 3:13 PM
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You, the minimum wage clerk, *are* the person who makes the customer feel welcome in the store. You *are* the person who gets their order right. You *are* the person who, every day, makes going to Wendy's, or any other retailer, an enjoyable experience that the customer will wish to repeat.

Well, that *is* the job. And, if you don't do it, you will lose it.

Either singly, or collectively.

Lets see some retailer hire the cheapest people possible, people who noone else would hire, those who can't make change, can't assemble a hamburger properly, can't read, can barely speak, can't get to work on time, and have a bad attitude, and see how successful they are.

And the excess supply of labor allows the employers to demand things like a 4-year college degree for jobs that don't really require it.

Just another "management is everyting, labor is nothing" elitist screed.

Isn't that our current environment? Excess supply of labor. Too little management available.

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Author: rubberthinking Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422901 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 3:35 PM
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Just got through with a small conversation at the donut store. No donuts went in to me. The guy was worried minimum wage will rise.

He thinks small businesses will go out of business. He is right. Deadwood businesses that are inefficient will fail. Then the stronger businesses will do better.

People deserve a liveable wage when they work. If you cant man up and see that perhaps you should avoid mirrors.

Dave

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Author: warrl Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422904 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 3:43 PM
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And economists feel strongly you should get a better job if you can and buy products cheaper if you can. Supply and demand then takes care of who wins and who loses.



Not if it means finding pubic hair in your hamburger?


DW learned from her father to buy cheapest. I have tried (with some success) to teach her, and our kids, to buy the cheapest that is good enough.

Evaluating "good enough" can be complex, circumstantial, and heavily influenced by personal taste/style.

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Author: LOTROQueen Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422906 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 3:58 PM
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And economists feel strongly you should get a better job if you can and buy products cheaper if you can.

Price isn't the only factor in consumers' purchasing decisions. As others have mentioned, I prefer Costco to Wal-Mart/Sam's Club because of how they treat their employees. I'd rather order a t-shirt from American Apparel than one made in a sweatshop ready to collapse in Bangladesh. If price is the only consideration, why do companies spend so much money advertising instead of just lowering their prices?

Not everything in life is all about money.

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Author: tim443 Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422908 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 4:02 PM
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Thank you for recommending this post to our Best of feature.

DW learned from her father to buy cheapest. I have tried (with some success) to teach her, and our kids, to buy the cheapest that is good enough.

Evaluating "good enough" can be complex, circumstantial, and heavily influenced by personal taste/style.



My DW had the same problem, still does thought she occasionally swings to the other extreme rather then the center where I reside. }};-()

I normally only go to burger joints where I can watch them actually assembling the burger (Harvey's) is one. That's probably a left over from my days of eating British army rations out of a 20 year old can (affectionately nicknamed "Awful Offal") at night so I had no idea what was going in. }};-O


Any <you want me to put THAT where> mouse

http://harveys.ca/

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Author: desertdaveataol Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422909 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 4:06 PM
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Hummer? I thought Sam Walton drove a pickup. ;)

He does, I don't.

Desert (won't trade with him either) Dave

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Author: Windchasers Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422910 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 4:07 PM
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Just got through with a small conversation at the donut store. No donuts went in to me. The guy was worried minimum wage will rise.

He thinks small businesses will go out of business. He is right. Deadwood businesses that are inefficient will fail. Then the stronger businesses will do better.



I'm having a few problems with the logic, here, and maybe you can help me. No offense meant.

If those businesses are dead wood, then why are they alive and kickin' right now? I mean, they must be providing some service that customers want, right? If so, I don't see how you can call them "dead wood". And if these business are less efficient than other businesses, then why aren't those other businesses already taking their market share?


Now, you can raise minimum wage, but that's going to have some effects. An owner's choices are some combination of these:

1) Raise prices.
2) Employ fewer workers.
3) Make your workers more efficient.
4) Accept lower profit.

In many markets, raising prices (#1) lowers demand for your services. Nobody wants a $3 Taco Bell taco. Owners already like #3 - to increase efficiency. If they can make their workers more efficient, they tend to already be doing that. And #4, lower profit, often kills businesses, as many businesses are operating on the edge already. And obviously, nobody wants us to employ fewer workers (#2).

So what's the upside to increasing minimum wage? Pretty much just the chance that wage increases will help your boss find new ways to make the workers more efficient that he'd missed before (#3). The downside is generally much bigger.


People deserve a liveable wage when they work. If you cant man up and see that perhaps you should avoid mirrors.

I lived successfully on a near-minimum-wage job in college 10 years ago, and even managed to save up money for a cheap engagement ring while living by myself and paying a tithe to my church. I don't think the situation is so bad as you think. It wasn't luxury, sure, but it was enough to get me through.

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Author: desertdaveataol Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422912 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 4:15 PM
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Thank you for recommending this post to our Best of feature.
You will be able to recommend 10 more posts today. (explain this)


.... better not to fight it, easier to staple jello to a wall.

sputter! But the people need to be protected from those evil people who give them jobs!

Under capitalism, man exploits man. Under communism, it's just the opposite.
-- Galbraith

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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 4:17 PM
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I'm having a few problems with the logic, here, and maybe you can help me. No offense meant.

If those businesses are dead wood, then why are they alive and kickin' right now? I mean, they must be providing some service that customers want, right? ...

Now, you can raise minimum wage, but that's going to have some effects. An owner's choices are some combination of these:

1) Raise prices.
2) Employ fewer workers.
3) Make your workers more efficient.
4) Accept lower profit.

In many markets, raising prices (#1) lowers demand for your services. Nobody wants a $3 Taco Bell taco.



Wind

I'm having a few problems with the logic, here, and maybe you can help me. No offense meant. }};-D

If minimum wage goes up it goes up for the competition as well.

Note: Before Waarl jumps in I'm ignore the possibility that the competition might be on the other side of the state line here. }};-()

Since all of the competitors will be faced with the same choices let the one who does it best win.


Any <BACON what more can I say> mouse

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Author: jwiest Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422916 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 4:21 PM
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Wow!! I am surprised at the socialist bent of this thread.

It's not "socialism" to understand that a successful business is a partnership between labour and management, it's simple common sense. Some businesses have a model or buffer (branding, cash reserves, etc) that prevents this from being explicitly obvious, but time tells.

It's also not socialism to challenge the self-righteous concept of "risking your wealth". You have wealth, another person has "time". Labour risks their time, and the risk is far higher than some silver-spooner risking their wealth. After all, presumably the silver-spooner can just get another job that pays well (or run home to daddy), and wouldn't have to submit to working for some elitist snob like themselves who treats labour like dirt. Where's the risk?

Finally, it's not socialism to recognize that the consistent downward pressure on wages is eventually going to drive the middle class into oblivion, and despite voodoo economic theory, no amount of wealth-risking or capitalist initiative is going to succeed if nobody can buy your product. A healthy labour movement is one of the key preservatives of a healthy market economy.

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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 4:23 PM
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I don't think unions and protecting jobs or workers is part of the game.

Why is it that these 10 stores can buy those 5 stores, and then another 10 stores and so on, finally creating a massive corporation that has great bargining powers over their suppliers because even though there are some independent stores left, the independents each represent 1% of the market while the corporation of stores represents 25% (or more).

This is essentially collective bargining. 25 stores bargining as one.

Why is it good for capitalism when the owners do it, but bad when the workers do?

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Author: warrl Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422920 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 4:50 PM
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Why is it that these 10 stores can buy those 5 stores, and then another 10 stores and so on, finally creating a massive corporation that has great bargaining powers over their suppliers because even though there are some independent stores left, the independents each represent 1% of the market while the corporation of stores represents 25% (or more).

This is essentially collective bargining. 25 stores bargining as one.

Why is it good for capitalism when the owners do it, but bad when the workers do?


It is NOT bad when the workers do it.

However...

A law that says a company may not demand that its clients not buy similar products/services from anyone else, or punish them for doing so, is called an "anti-monopoly" law and leftists agree this is good.

A law that says a labor union may not demand that its clients not buy similar products/services from anyone else, or punish them for doing so, is called a "right-to-work" law and leftists agree this is bad.

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Author: desertdaveataol Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422921 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 4:54 PM
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...sold our store to one of our long time employees

So, you must have treated [her] better than the bare minimum required by law for [her] to stay on, paid [her] better than the bare minimum required by law so [she] was able to buy the business, and generally learned the same thing a skinny guy from Dearborn learned.
(there, fixed that for ya')

As stated many times before, we paid our employees more than minimum wage because (among other things) we valued their expertise.

The few times we brought in other seamstresses to help the two long time employees they would have to show the new girls, again and again, how to sew name/Army tags on the various uniforms. Also the sewing of rank & badges onto the various uniforms using the correct thread and placement took some training too.

The next time you see a picture of an Army guy/gal in uniforms count the number of items sewn onto their uniforms.

Our competitors tried to get by with minimum wage seamstresses and failed. Ours were highly paid professionals. Soldiers often brought their uniforms in to us to fix what others had sewn on incorrectly. At one point I considered advertising that we'd fix our competitor's mistakes.

Before they bought the store I made sure her husband understood just what we did that made us so successful. To this day they follow our lead and satisfy the customers.

The lady who bought the store managed to buy a new house in an upscale neighborhood with a three car garage -- then they added a two car garage for their son's cars so I think they're doing it right.

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Author: desertdaveataol Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422923 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 5:04 PM
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People deserve a liveable wage when they work.

No, no they don't.

Prove anyone deserves anything.

Desert (deserves a mansion on a private island with servants & yachts) Dave

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Author: Windchasers Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422924 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 5:12 PM
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I'm having a few problems with the logic, here, and maybe you can help me. No offense meant. }};-D

If minimum wage goes up it goes up for the competition as well. ...

Since all of the competitors will be faced with the same choices let the one who does it best win.


Hehe. Fair 'nough. But competing is something that the competitors are already doing. You'd figure that the "best" ones are already winning, no?

Businesses already have incentive to wring efficiency out where they can find it. Not to say that they all do, of course, but by not doing so, they make themselves vulnerable to some other company coming along that can do things better, who takes their market share. Which happens all the time: just look at the rise of the megacorp, and the displacement of mom-and-pop stores with Sams, Costco, Wal-mart.

But, you're right, really, that minimum wage increases favor the most efficient. And that fits with something that I'd heard before, but never really understood: that Wal-Mart has supported minimum wage increases in the past because it hits their mom-and-pop competitors harder than it hits them.

Slightly anecdotal bit with a purpose:
I really appreciate some of the good eats in my town; I have a real nice bit of choices when it comes to restaurants. There's a lovely Italian place about a mile from my house, which makes wood-fired pizzas, panini/piadinis, and salads. Their sandwiches and salads are light and reasonably healthy, like I might make for myself at home, most nights.

I eat at this place a few times a month, particularly on busy or long days when I don't have the time to cook for myself. So, say that a $2 minimum wage increase comes along (as it recently did, here), and little stores like these have to increase prices (as they did).

Can I, as a customer, afford those price increases? Not if I want to stick to my budget, no. I have to either cut into my savings, or cut some of my spending, and I'll probably pick the latter. So I switch to eating at home more, cooking my own food. I save some money on food costs by doing this, but I also give up free time that I could spend working extra or goofing off.

Ultimately, the businesses are worse off, since they don't do as much trade. Their employees are worse off, since some of them lost their jobs. And I'm worse off, since I'm forced to pick between an artifically-expensive product and giving up some of my free time.

~w

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Author: pauleckler Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422926 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 5:19 PM
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If price is the only consideration, why do companies spend so much money advertising instead of just lowering their prices?

Price is certainly not the only consideration. Quality is another. And people spend money to create a niche where their product is perceived to be better than the competitive. This often gives the power to charge more and earn better profits. That concept is all around us with brand name products vs generics.

Some products really are better made, better designed. Some come from famous designers whose signature can be worth money.

In the original posting, untrained labor is a commodity. Experience and extra job skills should make it worth more. But it does depend on how available replacements are and how difficult they are to train.

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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 5:27 PM
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... buy the cheapest that is good enough.

Evaluating "good enough" can be complex, circumstantial, and heavily influenced by personal taste/style.


Exactly! We recently returned two Waterpic shower heads that looked like they were stainless steel but turned out to be mostly plastic.

Replaced them with two Delta showerheads that were metal.

Much better.

Desert (3rd time disappointed by Waterpic) Dave

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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 5:38 PM
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I'm having a few problems with the logic, here...

Hee hee yeah, you'll get that with him a lot.

So what's the upside to increasing minimum wage? Pretty much just the chance that wage increases will help your boss find new ways to make the workers more efficient that he'd missed before (#3). The downside is generally much bigger.

Ayup! A couple of minimum wage raises ago one of our local fast food joints had two minimum wage guys in the back peeling potatoes to make french fries.

Come the minimum wage hike he fired them and bought a potato peeling machine (picture a cement mixer with a very rough interior) to keep prices in line with his competitors.

Under capitalism, man exploits man. Under communism, it's just the opposite.
-- Galbraith

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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 5:46 PM
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It's not "socialism" to understand that a successful business is a partnership between labour and management, it's simple common sense.

Cognizant, well reasoned, even handed & logical arguments.

You'll find you'll have a hard time here ;-)

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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 5:55 PM
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Can I, as a customer, afford those price increases? Not if I want to stick to my budget, no. I have to either cut into my savings, or cut some of my spending, and I'll probably pick the latter. So I switch to eating at home more, cooking my own food. I save some money on food costs by doing this, but I also give up free time that I could spend working extra or goofing off.

Ultimately, the businesses are worse off, since they don't do as much trade. Their employees are worse off, since some of them lost their jobs. And I'm worse off, since I'm forced to pick between an artifically-expensive product and giving up some of my free time.

~w



Not sure about y'all but the studies done up here with the "frozen chosen" (according to the Nova Scotia government) has been that this effect is generally temporary. The increase in minimum wage also puts some upwards pressure on others earning more. Your results may be different according to the gini.

Companies such as Costco who pay top wages in the industry have very low turn over and a list of highly experienced good people currently working next door at Superstore or Walmart more than willing to jump at the chance.

Any <off to the Mall to rescue wife and FIL> mouse


Hmmmm ours has been slipping lately. }};-()

http://www.conferenceboard.ca/hcp/details/society/income-ine...

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Author: warrl Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422934 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 6:03 PM
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Not sure about y'all but the studies done up here with the "frozen chosen" (according to the Nova Scotia government) has been that this effect is generally temporary. The increase in minimum wage also puts some upwards pressure on others earning more. Your results may be different according to the gini.

Companies such as Costco who pay top wages in the industry have very low turn over and a list of highly experienced good people currently working next door at Superstore or Walmart more than willing to jump at the chance.


I submit that forcing Superstore or Walmart to pay more will not cause the people working there to get better. Except to the limited extent that these stores decrease their staff by getting rid of the worst of their current employees.

Eventually, of course, if there are not other significant impediments, the effect of raising the minimum wage will be to cause wages in all surviving jobs to increase by more or less the same amount, meaning that there will be no permanent improvement in the lot of minimum-wage workers... but the disruption of the artificially-imposed change, plus the persisting effects of the shorter-term reactions (e.g. capital expenditure to replace a worker with a robot, which once everything rebalances it may not make sense to *do now* but the shops that *already did* will generally not shut down the robot and hire a worker), will mean there are fewer jobs than would otherwise be the case.

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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 6:09 PM
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Can I, as a customer, afford those price increases? Not if I want to stick to my budget, no. I have to either cut into my savings, or cut some of my spending, and I'll probably pick the latter. So I switch to eating at home more, cooking my own food. I save some money on food costs by doing this, but I also give up free time that I could spend working extra or goofing off.

Ultimately, the businesses are worse off, since they don't do as much trade. Their employees are worse off, since some of them lost their jobs. And I'm worse off, since I'm forced to pick between an artifically-expensive product and giving up some of my free time.


Ayup! But not to worry. I saw a study once that showed that prices and wages of above minimum wage people rose about 18 months after a minimum wage increase thus putting the unskilled minimum wage workers right back where they'd started.

Desert (It's one of those "all boats rise with the tide" things.) Dave

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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 7:51 PM
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The next time you see a picture of an Army guy/gal in uniforms count the number of items sewn onto their uniforms.

Your point notwithstanding, isn't it all velcro now? Last time Fleet Week was in town I saw a sailor peel off his flag to show someone.

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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 8:02 PM
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I eat at this place a few times a month, particularly on busy or long days when I don't have the time to cook for myself. So, say that a $2 minimum wage increase comes along (as it recently did, here), and little stores like these have to increase prices (as they did).
Can I, as a customer, afford those price increases? Not if I want to stick to my budget, no.


Please. An increase in the minimum wage might add about 5-cents to the cost of a pizza. Any pizza joint that isn't doing at least 20-40 pizzas an hour isn't going to be in business long. And since the wage applies to all establishments, it doesn't advantage one over the other. At the end of the year, if you ate every single night, every week, you'd be out $13. Perhaps that would dent your budget, but I rather doubt it.

Lets see some retailer hire the cheapest people possible, people who noone else would hire, those who can't make change, can't assemble a hamburger properly, can't read, can barely speak, can't get to work on time, and have a bad attitude, and see how successful they are.

WalMart.

I don't think unions and protecting jobs or workers is part of the game. That all comes from a healthy expanding economy.

Actually if you just go back to the 19th century you find 1) no unions and 2) no concern for jobs, and you also find a dysfunctional economy, with a tiny cadre of superwealthy at the top, and a large underclass living in poverty and slums at the other end. Bob Crachit, anyone?

It was precisely "unions" - and the violence which accompanied their entrance into our modern society - and the growth of the middle class worker - which caused us to be the economic titan of the 20th century. And we can see, at least some of us can, that the dissolution of unions and the deference we give to the weathy and the corporate titans that is returning us to a barbell economy, with all of the polarization that was attendant the first time around.

Surely unions overreached in some cases, and surely corporations are overreaching now in some cases. For those who shout that the minimum wage destroys the economy, I ask "Since when?" Since 1938, when it was first established? In the 1960's when it was at its highest inflation-adjusted mark? In the late 1980's? In the late 1990's, when adjustments again raised it? Where is the evidence?

Oh, right, manufacturers have chased textile jobs out of China, into Vietnam, and now into Bangladesh because they can squeeze an extra dime out of each T-shirt. And all we give up for that marvelous economic savings is our humanity.

A law that says a company may not demand that its clients not buy similar products/services from anyone else, or punish them for doing so, is called an "anti-monopoly" law and leftists agree this is good.

This is not true. It's only true if the company has achieved "market dominance", generally ascribed to be at least 70%-80% of the relevant market. There is nothing which stops Target from dissuading a vendor from selling to WalMart.

If price is the only consideration, why do companies spend so much money advertising instead of just lowering their prices?

Who will know you've lowered your prices unless you tell people?

Ayup! A couple of minimum wage raises ago one of our local fast food joints had two minimum wage guys in the back peeling potatoes to make french fries. Come the minimum wage hike he fired them and bought a potato peeling machine (picture a cement mixer with a very rough interior) to keep prices in line with his competitors.

This was the rationale for slavery and picking cotton, too. Efficiency happens; it especially happens at the intersection of cost and efficiency. You could make the same statement about Henry Ford and the "hand built cars" that came before his assembly line, the mixmasters that Ray Kroc sold and the wretched "shakes" McDonald's sells today, or any of a thousand different things.

I'd be the first to agree that the minimum wage causes employers to seek out efficiencies, but since when is that a bad thing? It's better to pay people a starvation wage than to invent something which improves efficiency, causes a factory producing the new widget to be built and employs thousands more selling and servicing it? What kind of logic is this? That we're better off with less efficiency and poorer people?

Very odd, this so-called logic.
 


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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 8:27 PM
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People deserve a liveable wage when they work.

Again, that nefarious phrase. How much money is required for room and board?

If one employee can earn a liveable wage by producing 10 units a day, while the next employee can only produce 5 units a day, will you reward the less productive employee by paying him the same daily wage?

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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 8:41 PM
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If minimum wage goes up it goes up for the competition as well.

Since all of the competitors will be faced with the same choices let the one who does it best win.


Yup. That's the way it works.

But, in the process, both had to raise prices on their products to pay their employees a higher wage. Which reduced demand for their products. Maybe significantly. Maybe only a little. But it's unlikely that it stayed the same.

But very likely fewer companies and fewer employees in the biz.

And now, we need to charge higher taxes on those fewer companies and employees to make sure those that were unemployed can be subsidized and have a "liveable income".

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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 8:53 PM
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This is essentially collective bargining. 25 stores bargining as one.Why is it good for capitalism when the owners do it, but bad when the workers do?

As long as they don't interfere with "non union" individuals that are willing to take the jobs as is, I wouldn't take issue with it.

The main difference, though, between your two situations is that the corporation is BUYING products through "collective bargaining" while the workers are SELLING a product.

How would you feel about all of the local gas stations banding together, and then refusing to sell gasoline for less than $10 a gallon? And then prevent you from buying gasoline from any stations that didn't join their group?

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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 9:05 PM
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But very likely fewer companies and fewer employees in the biz

And now, we need to charge higher taxes on those fewer companies and employees to make sure those that were unemployed can be subsidized and have a "liveable income".



rharmelink

Scheesch, Wow, groan, REALLY!!!!!! Who would have thought a lousy ten cent an hour raise at a pizza joint would destroy the world as we know it?

Perhaps a touch too much hyperbole?


Any <has to wonder how we Nova Scotians survive with our $10.30 minimum wage that very few actually get paid> mouse

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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 9:07 PM
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Eventually, of course, if there are not other significant impediments, the effect of raising the minimum wage will be to cause wages in all surviving jobs to increase by more or less the same amount, meaning that there will be no permanent improvement in the lot of minimum-wage workers...

Like I said in another post, it takes about 18 months for prices/wages to rise to the new "normal" level.

but the disruption of the artificially-imposed change, plus the persisting effects of the shorter-term reactions (e.g. capital expenditure to replace a worker with a robot, which once everything rebalances it may not make sense to *do now* but the shops that *already did* will generally not shut down the robot and hire a worker), will mean there are fewer jobs than would otherwise be the case.

Exactly! The newly installed robot ain't goin' back to the robot factory and the laid off worker is still out of a job.

Now multiply this times tens of thousands of jobs and the entire economy/nation slips down a notch.

As computing and robotics continue to improve the space in the work place left for workers continues to shrink.

Except for the emotional backlash I believe McDonald's and others could run their franchises with a manager, an on call mechanic and three shift managers/counterpersons to interact with the public.

No wait! The novelty of interacting with a computer/robot might outweigh the need for human contact.

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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 9:09 PM
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How would you feel about all of the local gas stations banding together, and then refusing to sell gasoline for less than $10 a gallon? And then prevent you from buying gasoline from any stations that didn't join their group?


Oh you mean something like this?


Any <will the fun never end> mouse

http://www.slate.com/blogs/future_tense/2013/05/13/north_car...

North Carolina May Ban Tesla Sales To Prevent “Unfair Competition”

By Will Oremus | Posted Monday, May 13, 2013, at 6:55 PM


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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 9:19 PM
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What was I thinking? Of course, programmable robots with attitudes!

How'd you like to place your order with a Jack Nicholsonesque voiced robot? Maybe you'd like a Marilyn Monroeesque robot voice asking if you'd like a hot pocket?

Eventually technology and licensing would morph this into a hologram of the actor/actress asking if you'd like fries with that.

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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 9:38 PM
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People deserve a liveable wage when they work

Why? (a serious question)

Even the next door kid who babysits or mows the lawn?
What about an internship?
Where do you draw the line?

Every single job that someone works at full time, by definition, should pay a liveable wage in Manhattan? What does it cost to live there? All the street vendors would probably be out of work, in that case.

Mike

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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 10:30 PM
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DD: ...a hologram of the actor/actress asking if you'd like fries with that...

That can be fun. For a couple of times. Then....it pales.

So, buckle your seat belts here comes a flyerboys RANT!

Plain truth is that humans need & crave interaction and attention from other fleshly bloody humans and suffer & die without it (goes back to forming alliances for survival -- whether picking lice from hair, raising children and elaborating cultures, or facing inevitable death), and neither videos, "teacher" interfaces, pre-recorded graveside bugling of taps, dildos/vibrators/silicone dolls, robotic wet-nurses, nor automated bartenders/priests/shrinks make the grade.

Yet personal connection and human caring, while desired and appreciated, are greatly undervalued, disrespected, and underpaid.

Why?

Partly because our culture has lost its ethical and egalitarian ethos and become plutocratic (not aristocratic! -- aristocracy makes at least a pretense towards honoring virtue rather than wealth and power) and nihilistic, as more folk respect money more than virtue, or worse still, mistake money/market success for virtue, or simply decide "Virtue be damned, I want prestigious stuff and I'm going to get it."

Partly we are still in the early days of adjusting to the charms of robotic slavery, including the saccharine soothing of our basic needs.

Partly we idolize market capitalism as a Righteous Path to Pareto Paradise when it is but one tool in the toolbox of cultural construction. Our expectation should be that, left to "its own devices" (also known as leaving it up to banksters and crooks), markets WILL FAIL both as a system of homeostasis and as a system for determining (rather than registering and following) values.

<rant off>

david fb
<Minor League and college baseball RULE -- sprawling on the grass in the sun, chomping strawberries and Cava, listening to the banter coming off the field, Go JetHawks!>

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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 10:38 PM
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Prove anyone deserves anything.

owners of businesses deserve to make a profit off of a sale. Or maybe as adamantly you'd like to argue that people with businesses should only lose money?

If you <generic> hire someone and you cant afford to pay them a good wage why should you be in business? You are a bum, the employee is not the 'problem', but a victim. Shut down and do the world a favor get a real job. And do it for less than a liveable wage to prove your self. Seriously.

Dead wood businesses in America are holding the country back.

Dave

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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 10:38 PM
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As stated many times before, we paid our employees more than minimum wage because (among other things) we valued their expertise.

So you, me and Henry Ford are in agreement: treating employees better is profitable.

If every employer saw it that way, instead of only looking at this Friday's payroll, we wouldn't need minimum wage laws.

But that is not the case. Most retailers seem to think labor is simply a cost to be minimized, and if that means paying as little as possible, then pressuring employees to work off the clock, then beating them out of their benefits, it's all "good for business".

Steve

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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 10:43 PM
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Again, that nefarious phrase. How much money is required for room and board?

<?b>
You know Ralph, the truth, I have no sympathies for this hoard of retirees on this board who dont want to be honestly paying for what they want because they will run out of money before they die.

I hope the kids in the next generation see through the crapola.

It is not our problem if you guys cant afford things in retirement. Who cares? I dont.

Dave


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Author: Windchasers Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422964 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 11:04 PM
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Prove anyone deserves anything.

owners of businesses deserve to make a profit off of a sale. Or maybe as adamantly you'd like to argue that people with businesses should only lose money?

Sorry, but I have to disagree. Business owners don't 'deserve' to make a profit. Making a profit is the reward you get for selling something that people want to buy, for more than it cost you to make it.

Plenty of business owners "deserve" to lose money, since they run their business badly, or make a bad product, or really don't like their customers. Others "deserve" to make money, if their business is well-run and their product is needed.

Who decides? The market. Or, to put it another way, you and I decide, the consumers.


If you <generic> hire someone and you cant afford to pay them a good wage why should you be in business? You are a bum, the employee is not the 'problem', but a victim. Shut down and do the world a favor get a real job. And do it for less than a liveable wage to prove your self. Seriously.

My view is that my employee can decide for himself what is a "good wage". If he decides that he doesn't want to work for me, I'd rather he not, honestly. I'll wish him all the best and send him off with a good recommendation letter.

Don't you think it's just a little patronizing to say that you know what's better for an employee than they do?

When I was a teenager, I appreciated working for a minimum wage job. It was better money than I could get doing chores. Same in college, really.

Krugman wrote an article on cheap wages a while back; I highly recommend it:
http://www.slate.com/articles/business/the_dismal_science/19...

~w

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Author: rubberthinking Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422967 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 11:13 PM
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~w,

We could all say nice catch seeing Krugman as a hypocrite for saying third world workers deserve less than first world workers.

But what is of more import to me is that retirees fork over their money before they die for anything they need. After all how much does a room and board cost?

Let those retirees eat cake.

I am all for the worker. If the business in a given industry cant afford workers they should be plowed under unceremoniously. They are in the way of this country's greatness. And I do mean that.

Good businesses need good consumers from the next generation. They dont need "YOU". You just need a room and board. And how much could that cost?

Good luck. I hope we remain friends. I will search for your iceberg when you age a bit more. We will set you adrift. But not just yet. You can endure till we get your money.

Dave

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Author: Windchasers Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422969 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 11:23 PM
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I eat at this place a few times a month, particularly on busy or long days when I don't have the time to cook for myself. So, say that a $2 minimum wage increase comes along (as it recently did, here), and little stores like these have to increase prices (as they did).
Can I, as a customer, afford those price increases? Not if I want to stick to my budget, no.


Please. An increase in the minimum wage might add about 5-cents to the cost of a pizza. Any pizza joint that isn't doing at least 20-40 pizzas an hour isn't going to be in business long. And since the wage applies to all establishments, it doesn't advantage one over the other. At the end of the year, if you ate every single night, every week, you'd be out $13. Perhaps that would dent your budget, but I rather doubt it.

Maybe if they're selling to college students, sure. This isn't exactly Papa John's, though, but rather a nicer restaurant, where I'm paying $8 for a sandwich and salad.

Of course, the minimum wage changes don't just affect the price of the labor needed to make the pizza, but any minimum wage labor in the entire product chain. For a pizza, it might affect the prices of growing tomatoes and wheat, processing them into flour and sauce, milking cows and turning that into cheese, shipping, stocking, and selling theseat the stores, etc., etc.

Honestly, given how many businesses - particularly restaurants - go out of business for lack of profits, and given how sensitive customers are to price increases, you really can't justify saying that raising costs doesn't matter. Heck, if a $1 wage increase is fine, why not raise wages by $2? $5? $10?


Ayup! A couple of minimum wage raises ago one of our local fast food joints had two minimum wage guys in the back peeling potatoes to make french fries. Come the minimum wage hike he fired them and bought a potato peeling machine (picture a cement mixer with a very rough interior) to keep prices in line with his competitors.

I'd be the first to agree that the minimum wage causes employers to seek out efficiencies, but since when is that a bad thing? It's better to pay people a starvation wage than to invent something which improves efficiency, causes a factory producing the new widget to be built and employs thousands more selling and servicing it? What kind of logic is this? That we're better off with less efficiency and poorer people?

Whoa, slow down there. No one's saying that more efficiency is bad. Heck, no one is saying that minimum wages are "destroying the economy", either - both of those are strawmen.

What we're saying is that making wages artificially high will put some people out of a job. Sure, the owners may bring on machines to do their job, if that's the next cheapest option. But who's better off? Not the fired employees, who now have to find a new job. And not the customer, who has to pay more for the product.

Of course, us guys who make potato peelers or other automated machines are happy. Thanks for subsidizing us. =)

~w

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Author: Windchasers Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422970 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/15/2013 11:45 PM
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We could all say nice catch seeing Krugman as a hypocrite for saying third world workers deserve less than first world workers.

No, I agree with Krugman there. You'll hear no accusations of hypocrisy from me.

You keep putting this in moral terms: "deserve". But that's the wrong way to think about it. I'm not claiming to be a better person than some Bangladeshi kid. I'm not claiming to "deserve" to make more than he does. But because of the system of government, education, and infrastructure that we have in this country, I'm far more productive than he is, so, yeah, I make more money.

Is it "right"? No, not really. But it does do something else, and perhaps more important: It provides incentives towards improving the system. It shows a country what they need to do to improve their economy, and it gives you and me signals about what we can do to improve our own life.
For instance: pursue engineering, and you'll have a better chance of getting a good job than if you pursue art. The higher pay for engineering grads is the market's way of telling us that engineers are more in need than more artists.

~w

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Author: wzambon Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Recommended Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422972 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 12:35 AM
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Wow.... what a thread!

(wipes glistening sweat from body)

Anyone got a cigarette?

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Author: rharmelink Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422973 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 12:36 AM
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Who would have thought a lousy ten cent an hour raise at a pizza joint would destroy the world as we know it?

Geez. I didn't know everyone was only ten cents an hour away from a "liveable wage". Let a guy know, huh?

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Author: rharmelink Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422975 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 12:48 AM
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I hope the kids in the next generation see through the crapola.

Like my 26-year-old nephew, that bought the condo I used to live in?

He's living below his means.

In any case, the next generation can't live the standard of living we did. As soon as we entered a global economy, our standard of living needed to drop significantly.

Can you imagine the rest of the world consuming resources at the rate we do?

But again, how much is required for room and board, to have a living wage? Apartments could be available cheaply:

http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2013/05/01/seattle...

...and some of the frugal boards I watch have people feeding themselves for under $5 a day. So, what, about $20-$30 a day for room and board? My current room and board is about double that.

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Author: desertdaveataol Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422977 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 1:11 AM
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... isn't it all velcro now? Last time Fleet Week was in town I saw a sailor peel off his flag to show someone.

Yeah! We got a big laugh out of that. Someone at the Pentagon got tired of paying to have all those bits of cloth sewn on (one time) when they bought a new uniform so they dreamed up the Velcro idea.

The theory was that the soldier/sailor would have just one name tag/flag etc. and switch it out between uniforms when sending the dirty uniform to the laundry. Didn't work out that way.

The shops around bases simply charged more for the nametag + sewing + Velcro and, as it turned out, GI's bought tags/flags etc. for all their uniforms. We also made a few bucks on rush orders when a GI lost one of his Velcro tags and needed a new one NOW! We didn't charge extra for rush orders, but others did.

Also, the Velcro tags wrinkled and bunched up and looked bad so I came up with a way to sew a thin piece of stiff plastic between the nametag and the Velcro witch stiffened it. I did charge extra for that. I called them "Hard Tags".

BOTTOM LINE:
We all owe a vote of thanks to that guy at the Pentagon.

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Author: desertdaveataol Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422981 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 1:54 AM
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DD: ...a hologram of the actor/actress asking if you'd like fries with that...

That can be fun. For a couple of times. Then....it pales.


(pun intended?)

No problem. One time you get your hamburger from Marilyn Monroe, the next time from Marilyn Manson.

Also, we're talking about a 10 second exchange for a hamburger, not a heart to heart talk. Do you even remember the name of the last guy/gal who passed you a paper bag through the drive-through window?

Desert (did you hurt their feelings by not giving them your name?) Dave

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Author: desertdaveataol Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422983 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 2:36 AM
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Prove anyone deserves anything.

owners of businesses deserve to make a profit off of a sale.


No. The owners of a business try/hope to make a profit. They don't deserve it. It is not a right.

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Author: tim443 Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422987 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 8:47 AM
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Geez. I didn't know everyone was only ten cents an hour away from a "liveable wage". Let a guy know, huh?


Well if you would raise them every year based on the increase in cost of living as we do then it wouldn't be necessary to play catch up.

In truth I'm busted as the latest one here was actually 15 cents.

On that note I think this thread has gone into the weeds.


Tim

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Author: TMFMurph Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Home Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422989 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 8:53 AM
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...You have wealth, another person has "time". Labour risks their time, and the risk is far higher than some silver-spooner risking their wealth. After all, presumably the silver-spooner can just get another job that pays well (or run home to daddy), and wouldn't have to submit to working for some elitist snob like themselves who treats labour like dirt. Where's the risk?...

Hi jwiest!

I'd just like to point out that not everyone starting a business has a "silver spoon", and thus, sometimes the risk situation is reversed.

In my case, after a surprise divorce in a no-fault state, half my/our assets left with her and the country rock drummer she "ran away" with. After much reflection, I decided to take a chance and dropped out of my corporate career...and start a restaurant in a location where two prior ones had failed, using about 95+% of my remaining assets

The risks were well-defined:

If the restaurant failed I would be over 50 and essentially broke....with no clear career path ( corporate types don't like "rebels" who leave the corporate world ).

The person I hired to run the restaurant day-to-day received a more than competitive salary, plus 10% of the operating profit above breakeven. If the restaurant failed, he could leave and get another job.


For the first two years, I took no salary and lived out of what was left of my savings, working some 100 hours/week. Everyone else never missed a paycheck.

Due to the combined efforts of all of us ( me, the manager, the employees ), the restaurant became a great success...and after a decade, I sold it to my manager...who still owns/runs it today.

So, when you think about business owners, please keep in mind that most small businesses are not started by "silver spooners"; rather folks who take a risk....sometimes a huge one....with limited assets.

If the business fails, there is no "bailout"...there is only the mirror ( and an empty bank account ) looking back at you.

Cheers!
Murph
Home Fool

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Author: jgc123 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422991 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 9:33 AM
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goofy: "Actually if you just go back to the 19th century you find 1) no unions and 2) no concern for jobs, and you also find a dysfunctional economy, with a tiny cadre of superwealthy at the top, and a large underclass living in poverty and slums at the other end. Bob Crachit, anyone?"

I obviously agree. Unrestrained capitalism which treats people as nothing more than commodities, has a history of failure including, but not limited to, the boom bust run from the 1890's to the roaring 20's to the Great Depression.

Even if you have no empathy or compassion for the people who do the hard labor that runs our country, there is a pretty clear historical record in favor of basic safeguards for workers being implemented after unrestrained capitalism has failed.

As for the argument that you should not draw a line just because it is not always easy to draw such a line, consider the following examples:

It's hard to draw a line on the minimum age for smoking. Drinking. Having sex. Driving. Yet we do. It is also hard to draw a line sometimes on the minimum wage.

But, unless we want to a repeat of the Great Depression with 40% of the population ultimately winding up in soup lines, or a slow descent to the point that our workers are competing in factories that regularly burn down and kill them, we need to a basic safety net that protects all of us.

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Author: desertdaveataol Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422992 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 9:46 AM
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So you, me and Henry Ford are in agreement: treating [skilled] employees better is profitable.

There, fixed that for ya'.

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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 10:04 AM
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Thank you for recommending this post to our Best of feature.

Heck, if a $1 wage increase is fine, why not raise wages by $2? $5? $10?

LOL! That's the argument Rush Limbaugh used a few years ago. You should have seen the consternation he caused.

But the argument is valid. People don't mind the 18 (or so) month wage cycle (i.e. retail prices rise approximately 18 months after a minimum wage increase) but get upset if it's sooner and bigger?

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Author: desertdaveataol Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422995 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 10:09 AM
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Thank you for recommending this post to our Best of feature.

You keep putting this in moral terms: "deserve". But that's the wrong way to think about it. I'm not claiming to be a better person than some Bangladeshi kid. I'm not claiming to "deserve" to make more than he does. But because of the system of government, education, and infrastructure that we have in this country, I'm far more productive than he is, so, yeah, I make more money.

Is it "right"? No, not really.


Er... yes, yes it is right. The Universe doesn't care what you deserve, but efficiency rules the roost. You produce more and therefore are more valuable to the society in which you live.

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Author: jwiest Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422996 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 10:15 AM
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For the first two years, I took no salary and lived out of what was left of my savings, working some 100 hours/week. Everyone else never missed a paycheck.

You had two years to live on. That's a pretty nice buffer which few other people have. Kudos to you for making it work, but the issues at hand are:

a) is it right for owners to treat labour like dirt
b) is it accurate to insist labour provides no value
c) is it accurate to insist that risking one's capital entitles one to the kinds of rewards prevalent in our system

You don't strike me as someone who believes the first two, so I have no beef with you. The first two are ethical, the last is a matter of debate.

So, when you think about business owners, please keep in mind that most small businesses are not started by "silver spooners"; rather folks who take a risk....sometimes a huge one....with limited assets.

I don't know about "most", but I take your point, and would have made it myself but for space. It's difficult to summarize the full range of reality in a quick post. I have nothing but admiration for small business owners who make it work and treat their workers fairly.

But the OP was about Dave Thomas, someone who had millions to start with. His "risk" is having to live like the top 10-20%, rather than the top 1%, and I find the expectations of reward-entitlements for taking that kind of "risk" to be grossly exaggerated.

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Author: desertdaveataol Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422997 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 10:24 AM
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Well if you would raise them every year based on the increase in cost of living as we do then it wouldn't be necessary to play catch up.

WHAT! And take the political drama out of it? What're ya' some kind of commie ;-)

Desert (looks forward to the pathos each time;-) Dave

Under capitalism, man exploits man. Under communism, it's just the opposite.
-- Galbraith

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Author: hrse Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422998 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 10:28 AM
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A law that says a company may not demand that its clients not buy similar products/services from anyone else, or punish them for doing so, is called an "anti-monopoly" law and leftists agree this is good.

A law that says a labor union may not demand that its clients not buy similar products/services from anyone else, or punish them for doing so, is called a "right-to-work" law and leftists agree this is bad.


A contract between a buyer and a seller can stipulate excluisvity on one side, the other or both.

Right to work laws prevent unions from making a contract that includes exclusivity.

In my office, if we have an office party that has food we have two options: Buy from the approved vendor, or be pot luck. There is an exclusivity between my employer and the food vendor.

My fraternity made an agreement with Rolling Rock, that as long as we didn't bring any other brand of keg into our house, they would provide us with a discount and promotional items.

These contracts are made all the time between businesses. Why not between business and labor?

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Author: jgc123 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 422999 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 10:28 AM
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"Heck, if a $1 wage increase is fine, why not raise wages by $2? $5? $10?

dave: "LOL! That's the argument Rush Limbaugh used a few years ago. You should have seen the consternation he caused.

"But the argument is valid


No it's not.

In fact, it is a really stupid argument.

You don't refuse to draw a line just because it is diffult.

You don't legalize sex with a five year old just because you can't decide whether the minimum age should be 16, 15 or 14.

You don't refuse to adopt a minimum age for drinking, smoking or driving just because you can't decide between 19, 18, 17 or 16.

And you don't completely abolish the minimum wage and turn us into Pakistan or the U.S. in 1932 with 40% of the population in soup lines unable to find work to feed their families.

The argument that you cannot draw a line just because it is hard to do, is a really, really stupid arguemnt. It makes Rush Limbaugh appear to be stupid. And it makes his followers appear to be stupid.

It lowers the level of the discourse to the point that it ruins the board for people of average intelligence.

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Author: hrse Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 423001 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 10:41 AM
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How would you feel about all of the local gas stations banding together, and then refusing to sell gasoline for less than $10 a gallon? And then prevent you from buying gasoline from any stations that didn't join their group?

That's not quite exactly what unions do.

I believe that new car sales closer fit the model you describe.

Halliburton essentially did this with the US government. Saying you can't do business with anyone else because we are the only ones big enough to handle it all. As if the government could not handle multiple vendors supplying the same item.

Health Insurance companies do this. By buying up all the little insurers only the big ones are left.

Banks have been trying to do this for a long time, and have the government convinced that if they don't keep charging $35 per month for checking that the US economy will fail, even if they are found partnering with drug dealing gangs.

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Author: tim443 Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 423002 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 10:49 AM
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Thank you for recommending this post to our Best of feature.
Sorry, you can only recommend a post to the Best of once.
jgc123 is already one of your Favorite Fools.
Sorry, you can only recommend a post to the Best of once.
Sorry, you can only recommend a post to the Best of once.


The argument that you cannot draw a line just because it is hard to do, is a really, really stupid arguemnt. It makes Rush Limbaugh appear to be stupid. And it makes his followers appear to be stupid.



Darn they need to fix that limit!!!!


Any <how do you spell loud mouth, obnoxious, misogynist A$$hole> mouse


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rush_Limbaugh%E2%80%93Sandra_Fl...

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Author: desertdaveataol Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 423003 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 10:52 AM
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But the OP was about Dave Thomas, someone who had millions to start with.

Er... Dave Thomas earned, saved & invested for years to accumulate $1.5 million. Not bad for a kid who started life as an orphan.

Dave Thomas was born on July 2, 1932 in Atlantic City, New Jersey to a young unmarried woman he never knew. He was adopted at 6 weeks by Rex and Auleva Thomas,[2] and as an adult would become a well-known advocate for adoption, founding the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption. After his adoptive mother's death when he was 5, his father moved around the country seeking work. Dave spent time in Michigan with his grandmother, Minnie Sinclair, whom he credited with teaching him the importance of service and treating others well and with respect, lessons that helped him in his future business life.[3]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dave_Thomas_(businessman)

In my experience most small businessmen/women start off with a cheap plastic spoon, not a silver one.

It's become fashionable to depict successful business men & women as starting off with "millions" but it just ain't so. Steve Jobs, Bill Gates & Dave Thomas started off like most of us small businesspeople: broke.

It's become fashionable to fault business people for being cold hearted if they're successful. Not so, but business decisions have to be made with an eye on staving off bankruptcy not whether or not someone(s) deserve to lose a job.

Deserve is an emotional term. It has nothing to do with whether or not something will work.

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Author: desertdaveataol Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 423004 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 11:09 AM
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In fact, it is a really stupid argument.

You don't refuse to draw a line just because it is diffult.


Same ol' knee jerk reaction to the name Rush Limbaugh. And by people who don't listen to his show. Gosh, who'da thunk it.

But Rush isn't drawing a line. You are! To the contrary he was saying there should be no line.

Why don't you tell us why the minimum wage shouldn't be raised by $3.00?

You don't legalize sex with a five year old just because you can't decide whether the minimum age should be 16, 15 or 14.

Er... that sex thing is your idea not Rush Limbaugh's. Maybe y'all are projecting?

Aside from the fact that he's the most listened to talk radio host in America, the fact that the name callers crawl out of the woodwork to attack every time his name is mentioned tells me he must be right.

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Author: jgc123 Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 423005 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 11:21 AM
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dd: "Aside from the fact that he's the most listened to talk radio host in America, the fact that the name callers crawl out of the woodwork to attack every time his name is mentioned tells me he must be right.

By that logic when name callers denounced Osama bin laden, his followers could take that as proof that he must be right.

And by your logic the attacks on Obama are proof that he must be right.

Do you really want to stick with that argument?




dd: "To the contrary he was saying there should be no line."

If he wanted to argue for the total abolition of the minimum wage, he should have done so and cited the historical basis for it. The argument as cited by you was a stupid argument for the reasons cited.


dd: "Er... that sex thing is your idea not Rush Limbaugh's. Maybe y'all are projecting?"

And that is an ad hominem attack. You *should* know that, too. But I no longer have that expectation.

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Author: desertdaveataol Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 423006 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 11:36 AM
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how do you spell loud mouth, obnoxious, misogynist A$$hole

Er... non listener?

Perhaps you'd like to argue with some facts for a change.

http://www.lectlaw.com/files/cur52.htm

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Author: desertdaveataol Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 423007 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 11:47 AM
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dd: "Aside from the fact that he's the most listened to talk radio host in America, the fact that the name callers crawl out of the woodwork to attack every time his name is mentioned tells me he must be right.

When people like you and Tim have the same knee jerk reaction at every mention of Rush Limbaugh it tells me you don't listen to the Rush Limbaugh show. That's OK, you just ought to admit to that fact when you attack.

If he wanted to argue for the total abolition of the minimum wage,...

Rush Limbaugh wasn't arguing for abolition (as you would know if you would know if you listened to The Rush Limbaugh Show) but talking about raising the minimum wage.

Er... isn't calling other people's arguments "stupid" an ad hominem attack?

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Author: steve203 Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 423008 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 11:50 AM
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So you, me and Henry Ford are in agreement: treating [skilled] employees better is profitable.

>>There, fixed that for ya'.<<


If we consider a "skill" as something that not everyone can do, that building a hamburger, correctly and efficiently, or operating a computerized cash register accurately and quickly, are skills. I had employees who couldn't even manage to get to work on time.

If all employees were paid on merit, then the ones who work accurately and efficiently, and are reliabile, get paid more, because those are the ones you want to retain.

The reality however, is everyone gets paid the same. The unreliable and inefficient are fired and they simply go the the next burger joint down the road for the same pay. Those who are reliable and efficient leave for a place where their reliability and efficency are rewarded.

The burger joint manager is left constantly training new people, constantly absorbing employee errors, constantly dealing with employees who don't show up, because his determination to pay as little as possible results in high turnover. This is the kernel of Ford's insight that lead to paying double the going rate.

If every employer had the same mindset, we would not need a minimum wage. Employers who valued their employees would benefit from their experience and reliability. Employers who did not value their employees would fail, because the turnover, errors and lack of productivity, would cost them more.

Steve

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Author: desertdaveataol Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 423020 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 1:37 PM
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If every employer had the same mindset,...

If cows could fly farmers would wear pith helmets and carry umbrellas.

Employers who valued their employees would benefit from their experience and reliability.

Again, that would work best with skilled employees. If all that's needed is to learn how to stack hamburger, cheese, lettuce and tomato on a bun it seems to be easier/cheaper to just train new employees.

Employers who did not value their employees would fail, because the turnover, errors and lack of productivity, would cost them more.

Did your business have such workers?

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Author: mschmit Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 423021 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 2:03 PM
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But the OP was about Dave Thomas, someone who had millions to start with. His "risk" is having to live like the top 10-20%, rather than the top 1%, and I find the expectations of reward-entitlements for taking that kind of "risk" to be grossly exaggerated.

That is very true.

But an even worse distortion in our system is when someone can risk virtually no capital and find those say super-sized monetary results.
For example, the Kardashins and other media stars, atheletes and the like.

It is amaing that there are so many so willing to rant against those that risk their capital and get rewards, but those who risk almost nothing (except their celebrity reputation) get a pass.

Mike

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Author: JediGALT Big funky green star, 20000 posts Top Favorite Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 423022 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 2:05 PM
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Congrats Murph....

I've had similar experience as you did, although not in the restaurant industry.

Losing company turned into a very profitable company, $50million annual sales.

People working entry-level jobs trained to do jobs paying $50-60k. People out of high school given apprenticeships, today earning $80k. Many key people got equity stakes...their incomes exceeded $200k. TONS of income taxes paid, many local charities supported.

No money given by parents.

Raised money thru BB/T bank, paid them 15% return on investment. Great bank.

In a way, I'm GLAD that some of them like to rest on their laurels, nose stuck up, smugly proclaiming "silver spoon"....

...it means less competition for those taking risks and succeeding!

JediG

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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 2:15 PM
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A fellow I've become friends with (he is a tenant of mine), currently owns 17 Taco Bell stores.

17.

He is an immigrant from Lahore, Pakistan and came to America in 1970's.

He didn't sit around at his I.T cubicle and whine at his H.R department or write about how only Silver Spoons have good businesses....or at least, I don't think he did.

Anyways, he shared a 2 bedroom apartment with another couple. They of course didn't have new cars, designer clothes, or many frills. But they saved money.

Eventually he got full-time work at a Taco Bell because his part-time gig didn't have health insurance.

Well, I know this guy. Pakistani immigrant to america, started out working in fast-food, now owns 17 profitable restaurants and on any given day, he's in one of those restaurants working very hands on with his employees.

Luckily he came to an America where aspirations and ambition was encouraged, not written off and ridiculed.

Lucky for him. And lucky for the wealth he created that benefitted people around him and for the treasury that enjoys his yearly tax recipt...which I'm sure is far higher than the average taxpayer's contribution to the Treasury.

jediG

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Author: desertdaveataol Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 423028 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 2:29 PM
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It is amaing that there are so many so willing to rant against those that risk their capital and get rewards, but those who risk almost nothing (except their celebrity reputation) get a pass.

Ayup! Famous for being famous with little contribution to society other than selling tabloids at the grocery checkout line.

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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 2:44 PM
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It is amaing that there are so many so willing to rant against those that risk their capital and get rewards, but those who risk almost nothing (except their celebrity reputation) get a pass.

a) who said they get a pass? Does every statement have to be accompanied by a bibliography and footnotes about special exceptions or a comprehensive list of "people who deserve ire"?
b) if I'm ranting, it's only against those think risking their capital means they are like god's gift to creation. That attitude is endemic in our culture, promoted and fostered by such.

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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 2:55 PM
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It's become fashionable to fault business people for being cold hearted if they're successful.

No, it's necessary to fault people for being cold hearted when they express the kind of elitist claptrap in the OP. Unfortunately, it's fashionable for a lot of successful business people to demand some form of worship for their "risk", political access for their "risk", and if the worship and political access isn't evident, to cry "socialism" or pretend people envy success.

One is not better than everyone else or more worthy in our society because they choose to be a business person.

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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 5:57 PM
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If all that's needed is to learn how to stack hamburger, cheese, lettuce and tomato on a bun it seems to be easier/cheaper to just train new employees.

Every time you hire someone new, you don't know if they'll be productive, or even show up for work, until you have invested your time in interviewing candidates, running background checks and training. Again, I'll used Ford's example. It doesn't take a lot of brain power, or training, to drop a couple bolts into the frame of a Model T, but Ford found it worthwhile to pay a premium wage to retain people who showed up and got the bolts in place reliably.

turnover, errors and lack of productivity, would cost them more

>>Did your business have such workers?<<


Yes, and I couldn't do anything about it. Over the years, there have been several suits against Radio Shack by store managers for nonpayment of overtime. RS contends store managers are exempt, because they are "management". The managers counter that they are not management, because they have no authority, including no authority to hire or fire.

July 17, 2002

The RadioShack Corporation said yesterday that it would pay up to $29.9 million to settle a class-action lawsuit in which some California store managers charged that they were improperly denied overtime pay


http://www.nytimes.com/2002/07/17/business/company-news-radi...

November 19, 2007

Fort Worth-based RadioShack to pay $8.8 million to settle overtime lawsuit


http://www.pegasusnews.com/news/2007/nov/19/fort-worth-based...

May 10, 2013

RadioShack faces $5.8M liability in Pennsylvania overtime suit


http://www.bizjournals.com/dallas/blog/morning_call/2013/05/...

I had minimum wage employees who, consistantly, did not show up for work if I scheduled them in the evening. I had minimum wage employees who I had to chase down when they wandered down the mall to shoot the breeze. I had minimum wage employees who flat refused to perform routine tasks in the store. I couldn't do anything about it, because diciplinary authority is held by the District Manager, meanwhile, I alone was held responsible for store performance, so I had to do work the employees were paid to do, on top of my own work...and that's how you get store managers working 80 hrs a week for 40 hours pay...with the resulting rapid turnover in store managers.

The result? 30 years ago, RS was dominate in it's field. Now it's hemmoraging money and being written off.

Steve

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Author: Umm Big gold star, 5000 posts Top Recommended Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 423046 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 6:07 PM
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"Heck, if a $1 wage increase is fine, why not raise wages by $2? $5? $10?"

"LOL! That's the argument Rush Limbaugh used a few years ago. You should have seen the consternation he caused.

But the argument is valid."


Taking arguments to absurd extremes is rarely a valid logical argument (not that Rush Limbaugh listeners care about logic). The reason it is poor logic is that by taking an opposing argument to an extreme, a person ignores the nuances and implied caveats that are inherent in the original argument.

For example, if the original argument is that the voting age should be raised to 21. A person taking the argument to an absurd extreme trying to show it to be incorrect would say "Why not just raise the voting age to 31, or 45, or 60, or even 75?" By taking the argument to extremes, the person ignores the fact that, in general, humans are still developing and maturing into adults at a greater rate at age 18-21 than they are at age 31, 45, 60, or 75.

Back to the topic at hand, there are reasons that people advocate raising the minimum wage only $1. Ignoring those reasons by implying their logic also holds at $2, $5, $10 or more is not valid. It is just ignorant (uninformed; unaware) of their actual argument.

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Author: Windchasers Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 423056 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 7:09 PM
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Taking arguments to absurd extremes is rarely a valid logical argument (not that Rush Limbaugh listeners care about logic). The reason it is poor logic is that by taking an opposing argument to an extreme, a person ignores the nuances and implied caveats that are inherent in the original argument.

Taking arguments to an extreme is an excellent way to highlight what's really going on. Meaning, if a $5 wage increase is going to cause inflation and unemployment, we'd expect a $1 wage increase to do the same, only to a lesser degree*. Moreover, when arguing about something with pros and cons - like raising the voting age - you can take the extreme both ways, to better point out those pros and cons. For instance:

"If a voting age of 18 is better than 21, why not let kids vote at age 5?" Well, because 5-year olds are much less mature than 18-year olds, and will make worse voting decisions.

"If 21 is better than 18, why not move the voting age to 30?" Well, because maturation has mostly stopped well before 30, and it's immoral to expect someone who can't vote to go die for his country.


Are you okay with that take on the argument? It shows that for voting age, neither extreme is right, and the best spot is somewhere in the middle. But is this the case for a minimum wage?

Read the Krugman article I linked, if you haven't already. Here, I'll link it again: http://www.slate.com/articles/business/the_dismal_science/19...

My problem is this: I can clearly see the downsides of a $5 minimum wage increase, and I expect the downsides of a $1 wage increase to be similar, but proportionately smaller. We know that a lot of businesses are operating on the edge, so they have to pass price increases on to customers. We also know that money is tight and consumers are very price-conscious right now.
Putting these together, it's quite likely that raising minimum wage is just going to cut consumer demand even more. And that means more unemployment, particularly among the people who're struggling the most.

I don't see much upsides to a $1 minimum wage increase, short of hoping that business owners will find new efficiencies that they'd previously missed, or unless you want to attempt to stimulate inflation.

~w

*Of course, this linear approximation doesn't always hold, but it's a good place to start.

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Author: warrl Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 423059 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 8:07 PM
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Putting these together, it's quite likely that raising minimum wage is just going to cut consumer demand even more. And that means more unemployment, particularly among the people who're struggling the most.

And of those people who currently have jobs, what easily-economically-identifiable group includes a large share of those who are struggling the most?

How about those who work for minimum wage?

Of those who are NOT currently employed, but want to be, which ones are struggling the most?

How about those who apply for minimum-wage jobs, because they don't expect to be able to get anything better given their work history (or lack thereof) and credentials (or lack thereof)?

These are the folks who will be hurt most by raising the minimum wage: the folks the increase is allegedly intended to help.

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Author: mschmit Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 423060 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 8:10 PM
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I said: It is amaing that there are so many so willing to rant against those that risk their capital and get rewards, but those who risk almost nothing (except their celebrity reputation) get a pass.

a) who said they get a pass? Does every statement have to be accompanied by a bibliography and footnotes about special exceptions or a comprehensive list of "people who deserve ire"?

I'd bet that if someone analyzed all the posts on this board for a year or more the number of anti-business posts compared to anti-media-celebrities is on the order of 10:1 or 100:1. I'm not even sure if you can find any anti-celebrity posts except as jokes.

if I'm ranting, it's only against those think risking their capital means they are like god's gift to creation

I don't know about other but I've never mentioned being god's gift. But, IMO, about 95% of the time any business success is mentioned, it gets turned around into he/she must have been taking advantage of the workers else how else could he/she have become so wealthy? The possible except is Steve Jobs ...and on other boards he's consider more than god's gift :) (even though he did verbally abuse employees according to many accounts).

I say, let's just be fair about it. There are both good and bad employers/entrepreneurs...just as there are good and bad employees...and many shades in between. There is no need to completely polarize every discussion.


Mike

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Author: rubberthinking Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 423062 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 8:49 PM
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Mike,

the surest sign of a bad employer is one who cant afford more than minimum wage. They just aren't making it.

The surest sign of a bad employee is one that does not show up on time or steals.

They are two different matters. What is of import is getting rid of businesses that are unproductive. No politicians runs honestly on how poor businesses cost this society. But all the politicians of import run on keeping wages low. That is changing.

Listen all of this is neither here nor there to the board. All that matters to most here is that they keep in labor inflation in check because they have limited means for retirement. I dont see why any young adult trying to raise a kid or be married etc should care about retirees hoping not to pay reasonably for what they get in markets, restaurants, etc.....Slavery and indentured servatude are gone. At least I hope they are gone even if it means people who did not save much for retirement get nothing. Tough luck.

Dave

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Author: desertdaveataol Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 423063 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 8:50 PM
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No, it's necessary to fault people for being cold hearted when they express the kind of elitist claptrap in the OP.

Like I said, fashionable to fault business people for being cold hearted if they're successful.

Dave Thomas did a lot for the world. Did you read his bio?

One is not better than everyone else or more worthy in our society because they choose to be a business person.

Who said they were?

Be thankful you've got a job.

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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 8:53 PM
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Be thankful you've got a job.

nice and simplistic.

Dave

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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 8:56 PM
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The result? 30 years ago, RS was dominate in it's field. Now it's hemmoraging money and being written off.

Given the conditions you've outlined could we expect any other outcome?

Once again we've shown that the owners make businesses successful, or not.

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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 9:02 PM
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Once again we've shown that the owners make businesses successful, or not.

Ddave,

You are not listening for the last 50 years or so. Most managers/owners blame employees. That was true in the RS story as well. They dont blame themselves. We all know how you were super boss, but you were minor. You had a shop or two and nothing else. RS is many hundreds of shops or thousands of shops. And their blaming the employees is par for the course.

While we, you and I, agree management/owners are to blame for what happens under their roof and they will all eagerly agree with us, well, in practice they do the opposite and blame the employees.

And they try to underpay the employees at every turn. You get what you pay for and that is not much in corporate America.

Again none of this is what this board is on about, they are all on about keeping labor inflation low. They dont want to pay for what they get. 'They', most of them are retired and cant afford their own way if they have to pay properly for what they want.

Dave

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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 9:04 PM
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Rush Limbaugh; "Illustrating absurdity by being absurd."

Ayup, it works! To bad not everyone is smart enough to get the point.

Back to the topic at hand, there are reasons that people advocate raising the minimum wage only $1. Ignoring those reasons by implying their logic also holds at $2, $5, $10 or more is not valid.

Why not?

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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 9:11 PM
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We know that a lot of businesses are operating on the edge, so they have to pass price increases on to customers. We also know that money is tight and consumers are very price-conscious right now.

Putting these together, it's quite likely that raising minimum wage is just going to cut consumer demand even more. And that means more unemployment, particularly among the people who're struggling the most.

I don't see much upsides to a $1 minimum wage increase, short of hoping that business owners will find new efficiencies that they'd previously missed, or unless you want to attempt to stimulate inflation.


Yes, a real world argument.

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Author: OrmontUS Big gold star, 5000 posts Feste Award Nominee! Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 423069 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 9:20 PM
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Children - do you realize that this thread is approaching 100 posts?

Employees earn a wage based on a supply and demand basis. They are mobile and will leave a business at a moment's notice if something significantly better comes along.

With all but the lowest tier employees (undifferentiated cannon fodder) I paid significantly higher wages and provided better benefits than my competitors. This allowed me to have the piece of mind to take long vacations because my employees' interests were aligned with staying on the payroll.

Did they love me? Despite their protestations to the contrary, I suspect not. Did I love them? Not enough to stay and slave on rather than take a voluntary retirement.

Compensation packages are created as a matter of the interests of the firm and the understanding of how they will extend the motivation of the employees. THERE IS NO SOCIAL CONTRACT requiring paying enough to allow the employees to enjoy any particular social status or standard of living. What there is, is the requirement to make sure they are motivated (by earnings and other methods) enough to provide continuing benefit to the firm.

If the employees are undifferentiated and come from an overly large labor pool, they obviously are not as uniquely valuable to the firm than those who provide service which are more rarely found.

I am a true believer that a small company's employees are an extension of "the boss" and as such should excel beyond his/her abilities in the notch that they fill. They should provide incremental profit beyond their cost (and the more they cost, the more incremental profit they should provide to the company). While they may be highly compensated, this payment is not for their benefit, but rather for the additional wealth they are contributing beyond their cost. Even "pure overhead" employees (stock clerks, receptionists, bookkeepers, truck drivers etc.) have to provide clear benefit on a cost effective basis (and I have been responsible for reorganizing and developing new systems which have caused each of those title's numbers to be cut or eliminated for the benefit of the firm).

Companies are not democracies and, while bosses like "team players" this is primarily for the benefit of their ability to manage, focus and control employees rather than to participate (beyond those actions required by the dictates of leadership - to always be pulling, rather than pushing and never asking an employee to do any task the boss was unwilling to do).

I agree that this country has too many "working poor" making minimum wage. There are many reasons for this. That said, there are also solutions which may be taken by workers (including enhancing their education to allow them to be suitable for employment in more highly compensated professions) which can allow them to climb the compensation ladder. As long as they exist as part of the undifferentiated (not to be confused as uneducated, but rather not having acquired any salable tools during that education) mob they have no leverage (nor should they expect any) to increase a company's costs without increasing their contribution to its profits.

Jeff

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Author: Umm Big gold star, 5000 posts Top Recommended Fools Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 423076 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/16/2013 10:26 PM
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"Ayup, it works! To bad not everyone is smart enough to get the point."

Rather ironic that you read a whole post explaining to you why Rush's logic is poor, fail to understand the post, then say that other people are not too smart.

"Why not?"

I wrote a whole post on it. Perhaps you should try reading and understanding it.

The reason is that by taking an opposing argument to an extreme, a person ignores the nuances and implied caveats that are inherent in the original argument.

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Author: desertdaveataol Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 423081 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/17/2013 12:14 AM
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I say, let's just be fair about it. There are both good and bad employers/entrepreneurs...just as there are good and bad employees...and many shades in between. There is no need to completely polarize every discussion.

Good point, Mike.

Desert (to bad it will fall on deaf ears) Dave.

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Author: desertdaveataol Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 423082 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/17/2013 12:18 AM
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the surest sign of a bad employer is one who cant afford more than minimum wage.

So not being able to afford to pay more than minimum wage makes one a bad employer?

Desert (who knew) Dave

PS
so to become "good" the employer should fire the employees?

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Author: desertdaveataol Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 423083 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/17/2013 12:20 AM
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Be thankful you've got a job.

nice and simplistic.


Basic truths usually are.

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Author: desertdaveataol Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 423084 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/17/2013 12:24 AM
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Once again we've shown that the owners make businesses successful, or not.

You are not listening for the last 50 years or so.


No, you are not listening to yourself.

You made a very good case for management causing a business to go down in flames.

Congratulations?

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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/17/2013 12:28 AM
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Compensation packages are created as a matter of the interests of the firm and the understanding of how they will extend the motivation of the employees. THERE IS NO SOCIAL CONTRACT requiring paying enough to allow the employees to enjoy any particular social status or standard of living.

Exactly!

Children - do you realize that this thread is approaching 100 posts?

Good point. I've said all I need to say here.

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Author: LOTROQueen Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 423086 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/17/2013 12:45 AM
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I agree that this country has too many "working poor" making minimum wage. There are many reasons for this. That said, there are also solutions which may be taken by workers (including enhancing their education to allow them to be suitable for employment in more highly compensated professions) which can allow them to climb the compensation ladder. As long as they exist as part of the undifferentiated (not to be confused as uneducated, but rather not having acquired any salable tools during that education) mob they have no leverage (nor should they expect any) to increase a company's costs without increasing their contribution to its profits.


So what do you think should happen to the stupid? Should we just let them starve?

Seriously, not everyone is as smart as you are. There are many good, honest, hardworking people that just don't have the smarts or skills to command a high wage. What kind of a life should those people have if they're willing to work hard? Is it OK to just let them die when they get sick? They might be "undifferentiated cannon fodder" to you, but they're people.

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Author: mschmit Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 423089 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/17/2013 3:12 AM
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What is of import is getting rid of businesses that are unproductive.

OK. But who decides? The government? Solyndra probably had good wages. I'm all for living wages...but I'm also for low wage entry jobs for teenagers and college students. And while we are discussing fairness shouldn't different regions have different minimums...you can live in some areas on a given wage but not in others. If we go down that path why should tax rates be the same everywhere?

Mike

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Author: rharmelink Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 423090 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/17/2013 3:25 AM
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So not being able to afford to pay more than minimum wage makes one a bad employer?

I would have said the reverse -- not being to able to produce more than the value of minimum wage makes one a bad person to employ. At least if an employer is required to pay a minimum wage.

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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/17/2013 8:18 AM
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Jeff: "That said, there are also solutions which may be taken by workers (including enhancing their education to allow them to be suitable for employment in more highly compensated professions"

And yet we are cutting support for education and driving tuition costs up to make it harder for the generations that follow us to climb the ladder.

We are creating a growing cheap labor pool of undereducated high school dropouts and immigrants to compete with peasants in China and Pakistan.

And we are simultaneously cutting programs that enable people to provide for their families.

There IS a social contract to provide affordable education and healthcare to children to enable them to compete.

And in the interim, there IS a social contract to at least build a society where people can feed their families.

My Dad made the jump from farm boy to attorney in part thanks to WWII and the GI bill. That made it easier for me to go to college and law school.

Now my generation is working to make it harder for succeeding generations to make that jump.

I agree that we have wasted too much time on this thread, but I knocked it down from 100 posts to 50 by simply putting desertdave on ignore.

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Author: jwiest Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 423093 of 457797
Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/17/2013 8:29 AM
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"One is not better than everyone else or more worthy in our society because they choose to be a business person."

Who said they were?

Be thankful you've got a job.


You just proved my point. Who said they were? You did, one sentence later. That's the "worship" you expect, it's nauseating.

I'm thankful for my job. Be thankful I did my job, to the best of my ability and with an eye for our mutual benefit.

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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/17/2013 8:34 AM
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I say, let's just be fair about it. There are both good and bad employers/entrepreneurs...just as there are good and bad employees...and many shades in between. There is no need to completely polarize every discussion.

Surely not every discussion, but when an OP starts of denigrating labour, it's already polarized. And when we have a system that streams 90% of wealth gains of national growth to a very select few, while leaving many jobless, it's already polarized.

If you actually wanted to be "fair" about it, you'd have joined in the rejection of the OP.

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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/17/2013 8:34 AM
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We are creating a growing cheap labor pool of undereducated high school dropouts and immigrants to compete with peasants in China and Pakistan.


I wonder if the peasants in China and Pakistan at least get paid the wages they are owed?


Any <had this thread on ignore but nothing was going on> mouse


http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/05/16/fast-food-workers-w...

Fast-Food Workers Decry Widespread Wage Theft In New York: Report

Posted: 05/16/2013 4:36 pm EDT

Vicente de Jesus Garcia says he had a bad feeling when he arrived at a Harlem housing project three years ago to deliver a pizza. He didn't like the looks of the place, so he told the customers to meet him outside. As he waited, a group of men pulled him into the lobby, threw him to the ground, kicked him until he was black and blue, and stole $400.

On Thursday, Garcia, a Mexican immigrant and a father of seven, appeared at a rally outside a fast-food outlet in New York City to denounce the people he views as the real thieves -– not the men who took his cash in the lobby but the multinational corporation that employs him.


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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/17/2013 9:59 AM
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I wonder if the peasants in China and Pakistan at least get paid the wages they are owed?

Unfortunately this is the way of the world. The more powerful take advantage of the less powerful.

http://www.3news.co.nz/Greek-farmers-shoot-workers/tabid/417...

Greek officials have promised "swift and exemplary" punishment for three strawberry plantation foremen who allegedly shot and injured 29 Bangladeshi labourers protesting late pay.
Police are seeking the three suspects who disappeared after Wednesday's shootings, which occurred during a confrontation with some 200 Bangladeshi farm workers in the country's rural south who say they have not been paid for half a year.


http://www.strategypage.com/htmw/htatrit/articles/20130516.a...

Worldwide the number of internal refugees (from various forms of violence) rose nine percent last year, to 28.9 million.

This refugee problem is a rather recent phenomenon, as it was not until the last century that the international community became capable of rapidly mobilizing food and medical resources to keep large numbers of refugees alive. Before that, people driven from their homes and regular supplies of food would die in large numbers. If the weather turned bad, starvation, disease, and exposure could kill half or more of the refugees.

In Africa foreign aid organizations, usually invited in by the government, find that the process of bringing in aid, especially food and distributing it, is corrupted by local warlords as well as bandits, thieving businessmen, and corrupt officials. Using force, intimidation, and bribes, food aid programs are plundered to the point where over half the aid is stolen.

the UN has to pay millions of dollars each year in bribes to get armed groups to allow food aid in. Even that isn't always possible. Islamic radical organizations will sometimes block food aid because all the free food makes it difficult for local farmers to stay in business.



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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/17/2013 10:17 AM
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There are many good, honest, hardworking people that just don't have the smarts or skills to command a high wage. What kind of a life should those people have if they're willing to work hard? Is it OK to just let them die when they get sick? They might be "undifferentiated cannon fodder" to you, but they're people.

If you want to help people like this, wouldn’t it make more sense to promote a program targeting them specifically? Minimum wage laws don’t necessarily help low-income households. Raising the salary of a high school student working part-time to pay for his cell phone doesn’t do anything for the underprivileged.

It would seem to be more logical to approach this through something like the EITC, which is specifically designed to aid low income households.

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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/17/2013 11:17 AM
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I agree that the "stupid" should not starve. I also agree that it is idiocy to cut support from education - the obtaining of which (in appropriate technical areas) is the primary advantage our country would have in the global competition.

I would also point out that, unless assisting in one of the above is in a firm's best interests (my firm reimbursed and gave time off to those who were taking coursework or certifications which would justify making their employment more profitable to the firm), this is an issue for government.

My personal belief is that everyone should have access to a free (or at least affordable above high school) educational system. That does not mean that everyone should be able to waste the resources to attend.

This would require a bit of "tweaking" of our current system.

Elementary school is the foundation upon which our education is based. Teachers should be evaluated based on their performance. So should schools. I could care less if my tax dollars go to a public institution, a charter school or a private school - as long as that institution provides superior education (in compliance with the national standards required to compete for a free higher education). A buck is a buck and if the teachers and methods of one school are superior to another, a Darwinian process should take place. Poor neighborhoods should have additional financial resources available to hire the best teachers to compensate for additional presumed challenges at home, but being poor has never correlated to being a poor student. Classes within each grade level should be "tranched" with the brighter kids receiving enhanced programs which further their probability of performing better in higher grades.

Entrance to free higher education should be filtered on three tiers:

1) How much a graduate of the degree will contribute to the overall prosperity of the United States. This would favor technical (engineering, sciences, math, medicine, etc.) and business subjects.

2) Students would then be selected based on their performance based on standardized exams

3) Aid would be given to students who required financial assistance without the requirement to pay it back.


The "stupid" (as LOTROQueen called them) would be able to obtain employment which would provide for a reasonable (but likely below average - as everyone can't be above average at the same time) standard of living. Those who simply can't cut the system at all would be provided "welfare" safety net programs which would provide subsistence level existence without access to taxpayer provided luxuries and encouraged to join the workforce.

Singapore has, over the past couple of decades, succeeded in transforming itself from a low wage, third world manufacturing country (with far fewer resources than we have) into a modern educated country with a standard of living paralleling the US. If we want to at least maintain our position, we would do well to study what has worked here in the past (not all that different from what I laid out above) and how other countries are changing their programs in order to compete.

We are too interested in having the freedom to "do it my way" as we grow up, rather than building a plan to create the next generation of contributers equivalent to those who grew up under the shadow of Sputnik.

Jeff

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Subject: Re: PD: Owner made fast-food restaurants succes Date: 5/17/2013 2:19 PM
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Children - do you realize that this thread is approaching 100 posts?

Yes, but you still have things to learn, so on we go.

Compensation packages are created as a matter of the interests of the firm and the understanding of how they will extend the motivation of the employees. THERE IS NO SOCIAL CONTRACT


Actually there is, much to the chagrin of Ebenezer Scrooge and the 19th century barons. We dcn't allow child labor anymore, although at one time they made up a goodly percentage of factory workers. We have safety rules, generally enforced by OSHA thanks to horrible abuses by employers over the year while employees were maimed and killed, but it was cheaper to replace them than to fix the problems which caused the accidents. And we have minimum wages, because there is always an oversupply of labor which drives wages to unlivable levels - in perpetuity - until government steps in and forcibly raises them. See the history of the US, Japan, Korea, Vietnam, and now even China. And see what is just starting to happen in Bangladesh.

Yes, manufacturers will abandon ship looking for even cheaper wages elsewhere - but they leave in their wake a richer society, one with a larger middle class, and one which learns to introduce efficiences into industry, rather than relying on an endless stream of near-slave labor.

An often unspoken benefit of minimum wages is that it does engender efficiency, that it does promote a larger middle class, and that it does create a better class of peasant, if you will. People who are below the poverty line, working 10-15 hours a day, six or seven days a week cannot get more education or otherwise improve themselves, they are too busy just surviving.

Does that mean that all of them will? Of course not, there have always been laggards and always will be. But on balance, over the objections of industrialists and business owners since the beginning of time, the minimum wage has proved its value in country after country after country. Indeed, it is difficult to name a developed country which does not have it, and it is even more difficult to name an undeveloped country which does.

It is my view that owners don't realize that 1) it creates a level-ish playing field for all competitors, and so does not disadvantage them in commerce, and 2) it puts more money in circulation, which helps business in the longer term and society in general.

There are small costs at the margin, I am told, and I am sure that is true. But I don't believe that the McDonald's now employing 25 people is going to employ 50 if they can pay them less. I'm equally sure requiring McDonald's and BurgerKing to adhere to the same minimum without specifying other wage rates does not hurt one vs. the other in any way.

Social contract? We have a social contract. It's called "civilization."
 


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Subject: Re: PD: Owner