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Comment: Re:What a guy (Score 1) 387

by jwhitener (#49802961) Attached to: Obama Asks Congress To Renew 'Patriot Act' Snooping

Having said that, It is interesting how much Obama has gravitated toward Bush's positions on a number of topics throughout his presidency.

Is there any post WWII president that hasn't been basically controlled by the military industrial complex (pentagon+contractors+corporations+intelligent community)?

I can't recall any president ever being at odds with military industrial complex. Either the people in the cia/pentagon/etc... truly are just doing the best for the country and when you meet with them, partisan BS is not tolerated, leading to every president basically listening to the experts and making the best decision at the time based on real facts. Or the cia/pentagon/etc. have become masters at being able to convince new presidents of anything they want, good or bad. Or or or...

Comment: Re:did they damage the car? (Score 1) 460

by jwhitener (#49802317) Attached to: D.C. Police Detonate Man's 'Suspicious' Pressure Cooker

When the parent posters said "don't talk to the police" they are likely referring to videos like this one: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6wXkI4t7nuc (Lawyer and detective describe why you shouldn't talk to the police

It is more about the legal rights that every citizen has, and how to use them, than it is about how to win against the system with a high priced lawyer.

Comment: Re:Missed so far...payroll taxes (Score 1) 1092

by jwhitener (#49778865) Attached to: Los Angeles Raises Minimum Wage To $15 an Hour

Wages account for about 70% of employers labor costs

What percent of total costs is labor though? I was always under the assumption that for a company like McDonald's, labor was a small percentage of the cost to produce a burger. I seem to recall someone doing the math and figuring a burger would cost something like 10 cents more, and that would cover raising wages from 7 something to 15 per hour.

Comment: Re:Curious... (Score 1) 1092

by jwhitener (#49778773) Attached to: Los Angeles Raises Minimum Wage To $15 an Hour

What's going to happen is....

No need to make stuff up. Check out any city that has already raised the wage. Or Obama's federal worker raise. Or other countries like Australia where the minimum wage is 17 dollars per hour.

Really. Stop speculating and take a look at the actual effects. Raising the minimum wage to a sensible amount, tied to inflation, so that a family with two full time workers can be out of poverty and off the government dole, is a good thing for the economy.

Comment: Re:The last, lagging symptom of inflation (Score 1) 1092

by jwhitener (#49778329) Attached to: Los Angeles Raises Minimum Wage To $15 an Hour

The government's "basket of goods" used to calculate inflation is blatantly false and misleading, as are its unemployment numbers

I'm just curious since you belief this above statement. Do you think the Government recently changed how they report jobs numbers, or do you realize that these numbers have been reported this way since at least the Reagan Presidency?

Comment: Re:Stupid reasoning. (Score 1) 1092

by jwhitener (#49778281) Attached to: Los Angeles Raises Minimum Wage To $15 an Hour

The progressives in the US have succeeded in turning the US into a European country

I don't think you understand just how far right (conservative) we are compared to European countries. We are by far the most conservative western first world nation.

And I'm not sure why anyone is speculating about what will happen if we raise the wage floor in this country. Cities in the US have already done it. We have the data, and last time I looked, it contained no evidence of negative outcomes.

Comment: Re:Stupid reasoning. (Score 1) 1092

by jwhitener (#49778249) Attached to: Los Angeles Raises Minimum Wage To $15 an Hour

So they will have to raise prices

Source? I have yet to see that happen. More likely, a place like Walmart will just net profit 99 Billion this year instead of 100 Billion.

I thought it was widely known that someone already worked out what this meant for a large company like McDonalds. And the result was doubling or tripling worker pay would only add pennies to the product cost, assuming McDonalds even chose to pass the cost on to the customer, rather than just making a smaller amount of net profit.

When I was 15 or 14 I worked at a McDonalds. I'm trying to remember how many hamburgers I made in a lunch service. It was in the hundreds for sure. Most are meals. 5 bucks for a meal, times say....200 meals I made during one lunch service. McD grossed 1000 dollars. Now how much does it really matter if I'm making 7.25 an hour or 15.00 for that lunch hour when I just made 1000 dollars worth of food?

Comment: Re:Stupid reasoning. (Score 1) 1092

by jwhitener (#49778181) Attached to: Los Angeles Raises Minimum Wage To $15 an Hour

Two important things to consider:

1. It will increase prices of products as well, so at the end of the day it's just a cycle where nothing really happens.

2. Do you actually think the same amount of employees will be employed if companies are mandated to pay them more? Many of them will lose jobs.

Minimum wage hikes tend to hurt two parties the most:

1. Small businesses, who are typically operating on rather small margins anyway. Unlike larger businesses, they can't easily move to places with lower minimum wage or offshore jobs.

2. Middle class, because they suffer the increase in costs incurred by minimum wage hikes, but don't benefit at all from it because they're already above the minimum wage.

Minimum wage increases try to tackle a real problem, but do nothing to actually solve it. Minimum wage should be adjusted in accordance with inflation and nothing else.

Isn't it widely known that doubling or tripling, say, McDonalds workers' pay, would mean that burgers cost something tiny like ten cents more? We don't really have to speculate though, do we? Look at the cities that have already raised the min. wage. They are just fine. and many of them reported an increase in the available jobs / decrease in unemployment. Whether that is correlation or causation I don't know.

But as far as I know, raising the minimum wage to a reasonable rate that allows a two member household to get out of poverty and off the State's welfare, has never resulted in an increase in unemployment, nor a noticeable cost to the middle class.

I don't know your politics, but it has never made sense to me why some conservatives feel that a higher minimum wage is a bad thing. If as a society we agree that letting someone starve to death is unacceptable, we have to accept the notion of food stamps/temporary assistance from the public in an emergency. And if we accept that, then a full time job should not qualify as a state of emergency for a family.....

I think there is this naive 1950's view that "Timmy mowing the lawns this Summer" is what a typical minimum wage job is like, but that isn't true. Only 50.4% of minimum wage workers are younger than 24.

50.4% are ages 16 to 24; 24% are teenagers (ages 16 to 19).
Mostly (77%) white; nearly half are white women.
Largely part-time workers (64% of the total).

Economists continue to debate the extent to which minimum-wage laws reduce poverty, income inequality and/or overall employment. What’s clear, though, is that after a three-step increase in 2007-09, today’s minimum wage buys more than it did recently, but its real purchasing power is about where it was in the early 1980s — and below its late-1960s peak.


Comment: Re:ENOUGH with the politics! (Score 1) 1092

by jwhitener (#49755701) Attached to: Los Angeles Raises Minimum Wage To $15 an Hour

You see causation, I just see correlation.

We've slowly moved into a global market over the last 50 years. That has meant lots of things: 'race to the bottom' in terms of wages, benefits, etc.. for practically all companies. Generous retirement packages didn't disappear because of wage hikes. Businesses, in general, have also become quarterly profit motivated. Everyone cuts costs as deeply as possible.

But all that aside, one of the largest issues that I think has cut out 'bag boys', and other service oriented jobs that used to make our experiences at stores better, is the conglomeration and near monopolies that the huge chains have become.

When you had a diversity of small businesses providing goods and services, those small businesses were competing with each other for customers. And that meant good customer service, like bag boy that would carry your groceries out for you.

After all those small businesses get run out of business by a Walmart, or bought up by a chain, that competition disappears. Walmart has no pressure to add service jobs to make your experience at the store better. And when racing to the bottom on a global scale, even less incentive.

Comment: Re:Republicans could... (Score 1) 609

by jwhitener (#49755669) Attached to: The Demographic Future of America's Political Parties

I don't see how it would be difficult to argue to Fox News viewers that drug legalization is a conservative opinion. Cite William F. Buckley. Less 'big government nanny-state nonsense' telling you what you can and cannot do. And state's rights!

Except those are logical conclusions based on a framework rooted in reality. All bets are off when you happen to give equal weight to a faith-based religious framework when deciding stuff about the world. Which, according to self-reporting on the matter, is 100% of all Repulican House members. (I'm not sure if 100% of the Senate Republicans would also state that a faith based framework is used in their decision making methods or not, but if I had to bet, I'd guess 100% just like the House).

"I'm growing older, but not up." -- Jimmy Buffett