Wages in Time

Posted Wed, 01/10/07

I remember working for $3.50 an hour at a part-time job in Reno after high school (1979), and being happy about it. I used to clear $300 every two weeks, and thought I was rich. Three years later during my first marriage, I worked for $5.00 an hour for a printing company in Utah, handling payroll, accounts payable, and account receivable. Can anyone imagine being paid five pebbles an hour for such a job nowadays? Of course not.

Minimum wage, although about to be raised, is a paltry thing. But to those just starting out or unskilled, it is a God-send. Nowadays I make much more than the minimum wage for my writing and occasional webmaster duties, so $7.25 an hour now seems to be "too little too late."

An excellent and extensive article about the pending minimum wage increase can be found at MSNBC:

Living Life at $7.25 an Hour

(POSTSCRIPT: The above-mentioned article was taken down the day after I posted this entry, so I found a similar piece about the minimum wage at MSNBC: Would minimum wage hike mean lost jobs?).

The piece highlights the pros and cons of the minimum wage increase, such as effects on those who are delighted to those who are dismayed because their elevated wages will be a detriment to their income-based housing status. In other words, they will earn just enough to put them off the eligible housing list into mainstream rental prices and subsequent utility bills.

Insurance and other costs for large corporations, such as Wal-Mart, are of no consequence as far as I'm concerned. The big companies can well afford it, and then some. However, small businesses may suffer from the new minimum wage passage.

But to give those living on the edge of poverty a few extra dollars to enjoy themselves without the looming specter of constant stress is priceless.

Tags: Politics