Minimum wage should be linked to the poverty level.
This is basic economic fact.
A business that claims it can’t afford to pay a living wage to its workers is admitting that by definition it fails to meet its basic operating expenses. That major multinational corporations can be “successful” while failing to meet a basic operating expense is only possible because We The People pick up their greedy/lazy slack through taxes and charity.
And yet somehow it’s everybody else who’s a moocher and a looter…
And this corrosive greed is a big part of what’s slowly poisoning the U.S. economy. Money being hoarded at the top and put in “safe” investments and bank accounts is money that does nothing for no one. It’s just an elaborate means of keeping score. Money put into the hands of the workers does what money is meant to do: it circulates. It gets spent. The same dollar will go through dozens of sets of hands, touching dozens of lives, feeding dozens of people and sparking profits for dozens of businesses. The same dollar, in the hands of the rich, will generally do… nothing. It won’t create jobs. It won’t fund innovations. It won’t start businesses.
Less than 1% of corporate revenues become wages for workers. Less than 3% of the wealthy are actually entrepreneurs (people who risk their money on business ventures that create jobs).
But 100% of the working class spends their money. That money creates jobs. That money fuels innovations. That money becomes profits. That money keeps the economy ticking.
We have been lied to about who are the parasites and who are the drivers of the economy. We have largely accepted a view of money as a means of keeping score and the economy as something that must have winners and losers, rather than money being a proxy for barter and an economy being a way to divide the labor of society and distribute the load of living
"A business that claims it can’t afford to pay a living wage to its workers is admitting that by definition it fails to meet its basic operating expenses."
"Less than 1% of corporate revenues become wages for the workers."
When you’re using the internet to learn about the world and about social justice movements, ask yourself: whose voices are missing and why?
Dalai Lama (via acontemplativedrunk)
I believe this to my core. The temptation to pursue security can be paralyzing, tbh.
It’s not a temptation. Try doing something ELSE when you know you have nothing to fall back on. The only time I was ever able to passionately throw myself into the study of anything that wasn’t immediately marketable (as in, wouldn’t have any employment/trade application within a year) was when I was 20 and in college, and when my ex-husband was putting me through school. Very brief times in my life.
Yes, I wished forever that I could’ve studied all those academic subjects that I wanted to study in school, passionately pursued the study of a language, gone into illustration/animation, etc, but I have nothing to fall back on, and I’ve always known that. Even when I went back to school to finish my AA in graphics, it was still largely about “marketability” and I didn’t get to take all those pottery, painting, etc classes I’d like to take.
My entire adult life has been about becoming and staying marketable/employable and I haven’t had time to do anything but dabble in anything else.
I haven’t pursued my “passions” in a long time, and don’t even know what they are anymore.
The time for that will unfortunately be after I retire, if I ever get to retire, which is unlikely. I will probably be working my entire adult life. I don’t really anticipate living very long after that’s over as I’m not sure how I’ll afford to stay alive.
I realize this was really depressing. But. Being able to be an “interesting, fun” person is a class privilege.
Class mobility is not just a process of struggling to fit in amongst your new peers, but also feeling like you’re betraying your roots. It’s really, really difficult to successfully walk on both sides of an invisible line.
“Both Karl Marx and Max Weber emphasized that religion performs a legitimating function for members of the dominant class, whereas it provides a means of escape for members of subordinate classes. Weber’s discussion of theodicies of good fortune and misfortune indicated how religion can sanctify the status quo and mollify those at the bottom of the social structure. Marx argued that religion serves to reinforce the power of ruling groups by providing heavenly sanction for existing social conditions. A Marxist perspective stresses that those with wealth and power can do much to control the belief system of the society, and they appropriate religious ideas that legitimate current forms of inequality (Howe 1981). Each ruling class constructs an ideological expression of its outlook on life. Marx believed that Protestant theology, which served the interests of the bourgeoisie, discouraged workers from efforts at social, political, and economic change. He claimed that for the proletariat, religion is a narcotic that dulls their understanding of their life experiences.”
“Researchers have looked at the degree to which religious beliefs sanctify inequality by promoting harsh attitudes toward the poor. Weber (1958 [1904-1905]) argued that a Calvinist doctrine of predestination served as legitimation for inequality by advocating the view that success was a sign of divine favor and poverty an indication of moral failing. Feagin (1975) has suggested Calvinist views served as inspiration and legitimation for a judgmental stance toward the poor. Rokeach (1969) has argued that Christian values are associated with austere attitudes toward the impoverished, and Tropman (1986) suggests that a Protestant ethic has encouraged condemnation of those who require public assistance.”
"Tearing Down the Gates: Confronting the Class Divide in American Education" (p. 115)
fucking rich white people laughing at how poverty is some diet they should try.
…if the misery of our poor be caused not by the laws of nature, but by our institutions, great is our sin. — Charles Darwin (1839)
For most of recorded history, poverty reflected God’s will. The poor were always with us. They were not inherently immoral, dangerous, or different. They were not to be shunned, feared, or avoided. In the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, a harsh new idea of poverty and poor people as different and inferior began to replace this ancient biblical view. In what ways, exactly, are poor people different from the rest of us became – and remains – a burning question answered with moral philosophy, political economy, social science, and, eventually, biology. Why did biological conceptions of poverty wax and wane over the last century and a half? What forms have they taken? What have been their consequences?
The biological definition of poverty reinforces the idea of the undeserving poor, which is the oldest theme in post-Enlightenment poverty discourse. Its history stretches from the late eighteenth century through to the present. Poverty, in this view, results from personal failure and inferiority. Moral weaknesses – drunkenness, laziness, sexual promiscuity – constitute the most consistent markers of the undeserving poor. The idea that a culture of poverty works its insidious influence on individuals, endowing them with traits that trap them in lives of destitution, entered both scholarly and popular discourse somewhat later and endures to this day. Faulty heredity composes the third strand in the identification of the undeserving poor; backed by scientific advances in molecular biology and neuroscience, it is enjoying a revival. The historical record shows this idea in the past to have been scientifically dubious, ethically suspect, politically harmful, and, at its worst, lethal. That is why we should pay close attention to its current resurgence.
This article excavates the definition of poor people as biologically inferior. It not only documents its persistence over time but emphasizes three themes. First, the concept rises and falls in prominence in response to institutional and programmatic failure. It offers a convenient explanation for why the optimism of reformers proved illusory or why social problems remained refractory despite efforts to eliminate them. Second, its initial formulation and reformulation rely on bridging concepts that try to parse the distance between heredity and environment through a kind of neo-Lamarkianism. These early bridges invariably crumble. Third, hereditarian ideas always have been supported by the best science of the day. This was the case with the ideas that ranked “races”; underpinned immigration restrictions; and encouraged compulsory sterilization – as well as those that have written off the intellectual potential of poor children.
In its review of the biological strand in American ideas about poverty, this article begins in the 1860s with the first instance of the application of hereditarian thought I have discovered; moves forward to social Darwinism and eugenics, immigration restriction, and early IQ testing. It then picks up the story with Arthur Jensen’s famous 1969 article in the Harvard Educational Review, follows it to the Bell Curve, and ends with the astonishing rise of neuroscience and the field of epigenetics. It concludes by arguing that despite the intelligence, skill, and good intentions of contemporary scientists, the history of biological definitions of poor persons calls for approaching the findings of neuroscience with great caution.
It’s grotesque how so many jobs are so abusive to people, but they have to put up with those jobs because those jobs are the only things standing between them and abject poverty, unsafe living conditions, hunger, violence, etc.
And it’s even more grotesque that there are people out there who CANNOT FATHOM this condition because they’re privileged enough to be shielded from it, AND are willfully ignorant enough to be incapable of sympathy or empathy. And the fact that many of these people are in charge of said abusive jobs? Yikes.