low wage work

Just a reminder to peeps never to do design contests where they only offer you several hundred dollars as a prize. I’ve seen contests where a big name company, nationally known held a rebranding/logo contest to college students and would have only paid them 500$. 

Thats what you would make -before taxes- working one full week at $12.50 an hour.

Stuff like that is what companies would normally pay thousands of dollars for minimum to rebrand, so don’t settle. Always read the fine print. Most contests I’ve seen, the artist gets shafted to some degree. Always consider the hours you need to put in, the value of the work you’re doing, and the value of the company (based on their size is the pay they’re offering stingy or reasonable?), and if you win or submit your work if they’ll get all copyright to it to do whatever they want with it. 

As much as I love the “down with capitalist racist CEOs” attitude, what does harassing the Denny’s Tumblr have to do with that? I mean, the people running it aren’t the CEO. They’re working too. It feels like y'all are basically saying “Down with the capitalist idea of wage slaves! To make my point, I’m going to harass these low ranking wage slaves working in advertisement!”

anonymous asked:

Is communism good or bad?

  • Things that countries have tried to do with communism as a justification: bad,  universally so.

  • (Things that countries have tried to do with anti-communism as a justification: bad, universally so with the exception of the space program.)

  • Using some mechanism other than markets to decide what goods are produced in what quantities and how they are distributed: bad.

  • The Communist critique of the pain and dehumanization associated with low-wage work: basically correct.

  • the workers owning the means of production: neutral? like, this could happen in America right now, many workers in certain industries can afford to buy stock in the company such that they collectively owned a voting majority. They just generally seem to prefer to have their money in other forms which are more risk-averse and/or more liquid. Workers, when given the choice, do not seem to actually prefer to own the means of production.
The Working Class

The working class, or proletariat, are waged employees. They rely on this wage to survive.

They are hired to make money (surpluses) for their employers. In order to keep a job, workers must create more wealth than they receive in wages.

Employers collect these surpluses. Everything left after wages are paid is profit. Employers therefore receive more wealth than they create.

How profit is created and distributed (simplified).

Under capitalism, the wealth dynamic resembles that of older economic systems - lord and serf, or master and slave.

In each instance, those who work create surpluses, and in turn may receive enough to survive, but not enough to escape reliance on the exploiter.

The use of ‘exploiter’ is not moralistic. Under capitalism, individuals must be one or the other - employer or employee, exploiter or exploited. The relationship is systemic.

Wage competition between workers forces wages down.

When workers cannot live on the wage, the capitalist state subsidises the employer through welfare schemes.

If workers could not live, the market would collapse.

The term exploitation is not meant to allude to especially low wages or especially bad working conditions. Exploitation refers solely and exclusively to the fact that the producer only receives a portion of the newly produced value that he or she creates—regardless of whether wages are high or low or working conditions good or bad.

Exploitation—contrary to a widespread notion and despite corresponding statements by many “Marxists”—is also not meant to be a moral category. The point is not that something is taken away from workers that “actually” belongs to them, and that this act of taking is something morally reprehensible. The reference to “paid” and “unpaid” labor is also not intended to argue for the compensation of “all” of the labor expended. On the contrary: Marx emphasizes that—according to the laws of commodity exchange—the seller of the commodity labor-power receives exactly the value of his or her commodity. The fact that the buyer obtains a particular advantage from the use value of the commodity is no longer of any concern for the seller. Marx compares this to the example of an oil dealer: the dealer obtains the value of oil as payment, but does not receive anything in addition for the use value of the oil (Capital, 1:301). “Exploitation” and the existence of “unpaid labor” are not the result of an infringement of the laws of commodity exchange, but are rather in compliance with them. If one wishes to abolish exploitation, then this cannot be accomplished through a reform of the relations of exchange within capitalism, but only through the abolition of capitalism.
—  Michael Heinrich, An Introduction to the Three Volumes of Karl Marx’s Capital (2012)
Home care workers have our lives in their hands. They're paid only $10 an hour
Home care is expected to add more jobs than any other field in the coming years. Carers will look after us in old age – but do we care enough about them?
By Sarah Jaffe

“Some of her clients are bedridden, meaning she must bathe and change them, as well as bring food and water. But she says that the thing that many of them value the most is when she sits with them and listens to them talk about their lives. For Ramirez, it is meaningful work.

Still, the low wages (she is paid $11 an hour) and the sometimes harsh conditions led her to the National Domestic Workers Alliance. Her listening skills from years of care work have made her a natural organizer, a role in which she listens to the complaints of other home care workers and brings them into the organization.

One of those complaints in New York, she says, is that many home care workers moved into the field from other low-wage service work, hoping that it would be an improvement. But then Andrew Cuomo, the state governor, increased the minimum wage specifically for fast-food workers, pushing some care workers to consider returning to fast food.

Barrett first heard about domestic worker organizing when the New York Domestic Workers Bill of Rights passed, in 2010. Then, a year ago, she got a phone call from the Miami Workers Center, and they told her that they were organizing workers like her. When she went to the first assembly, she saw women wearing T-shirts that read “National Domestic Workers Alliance”.

“I can’t explain to you the joy that came to me,” she says of that first meeting. “I’ve always been involved with activism, but I didn’t want it to get involved with work, so I’ve kept my politics, including my queerness, quiet.”

But after the assembly, she says, “I was on fire”. She called her current clients’ daughter, technically her boss, and asked to meet her and her father. In that meeting, she says, she told them that she was going to be a part of the domestic workers’ movement. “I said, ‘I’m sorry, but if this movement needs me then I’m going to be there. If you want, you can fire me, but please give me two weeks’ notice so I can get another job.”


Without a planned economy, there is no way to ensure full employment.

Capitalism consistently operates under capacity. This means empty facilitates, full of productive machinery, while those who could operate it are unemployed.

That’s not an accident.

Competition for jobs drives wages down. If 1000 people are willing and able to fill one post, the employer can choose the cheapest from a large pool of workers, all undercutting the cost of each other’s labour to secure the job.

If there are only a handful of people to do a job, wages cannot be forced down as far.

Near-full employment would leave employers with a very small pool of potential workers, forcing wages to increase or stay the same.

The market drives unemployment, demanding the longest possible hours from the cheapest available labourers.

Much like a wolf in sheep’s clothing, the falsely cloaked Working Families Flexibility Act (H.R. 1180/S. 801) would hurt, not help, working women and families. The Working Families Flexibility Act, a true misnomer if ever there was one, would in reality ensure that workers have less time, less flexibility and less money.

This anti-family proposal would force workers to spend more time away from their families in exchange for possibly getting to spend time later with their families. Under this proposal, the employer, not the employee, would determine when earned comp time can be used.

In other words, a low-wage working mother could be forced to work 50 hours one week during Spring Break when her children are off from school, and in exchange for that overtime work get 10 hours off another week when they are back in school. This may be flexibility for the employer, but it would cost the employee extra money for child care, less money in overtime earnings and less time with her family.

Low-wage workers frequently have to rely on their overtime earnings to make ends meet.

Employers currently steal billions of dollars annually from workers in unpaid overtime compensation. This proposal would make this problem even worse, because it would become easier for employers to avoid overtime compensation obligations. Although the bill provides the right to sue in court, low-wage workers lack the resources necessary to engage in costly and protracted litigation, and rightly fear retaliation or losing their jobs.

The bill would also allow employers to “cash out” an employee’s comp time over 80 hours or discontinue the comp time program altogether. This means an employee’s carefully crafted plan to bank time for a child’s birth or surgery could be thwarted by an employer’s decision to cash out the employee’s time or end the program. Under this proposal, there are also no protections for employees to receive the value of their earned comp time if their employer goes out of business or goes bankrupt.

Finally, workers already have some flexibility because of the Fair Labor Standards Act. Currently, employers can and some do allow employees to rearrange their schedules to fit in a school recital or doctor’s appointment. Employees who work a lot of overtime and don’t need more money can already be allowed to take unpaid days off.

anonymous asked:

Actually, inflation increases about the same amount every year! Regardless of whether wages are raised that year or not. I can't send links on mobile sadly, but if i could I'd send you some economic data

Don’t worry about the link situation! So I just did some research of my own.

You raise a good point about inflation – that’s definitely true, and it becomes apparently obvious when you hear old people complain about a movie theatre ticket being so expensive now, compared to the dime it costed when they were children.

Here’s something important I found: A single person must earn $11,170, or $5.21 an hour to be above the poverty level. For that person, the minimum wage would be adequate. (x) Now, clearly, that would be highly inadequate for a family of four, considering that the Federal poverty level for a family this size is $23,050 (that’s equivalent to $10.60 per hour for a full-time worker).  

However, regardless of there being inflation every year, it doesn’t change the fact that raising the minimum wage could have dire consequences on those who are employed in the first place. Raising the minimum wage makes employment more expensive, so to speak. In order to keep their net earnings, businesses lay off employees as a result (x). 

In terms of who makes up the demographics of min. wage workers, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 1.8 million paid-hourly employees were paid the federal minimum wage of $7.25 in 2010. These 1.8 million employees can be broken down into two broad groups:

●  Roughly half (49.0 percent) are teenagers or young adults aged 24 or under. A large majority (62.2 percent) of this group live in families with incomes two or more times the official poverty level. Looking just at the families of teenaged minimum wage workers, the average income is almost $70,600, and only 16.8 percent are below the poverty line. Note that the federal minimum wage applies to workers of all ages.

●  The other half (51.0 percent) are aged 25 and up. More of these workers live in poor families (29.2 percent) or near the poverty level (46.2 percent had family incomes less than 1.5 times the poverty level). However, even within this half of all minimum wage employees, 24.8 percent voluntarily work part-time, and just 34.3 percent are full-time full-year employees.

Only 20.8 percent of all minimum wage workers are family heads or spouses working full time, 30.8 percent were children, and 32.2 percent are young Americans enrolled in school.The popular belief that minimum wage workers are poor adults (25 years old or older), working full time and trying to raise a family is largely untrue. Just 4.7 percent match that description.Indeed, many minimum wage workers live in families with incomes well above the poverty level.

The congressional Joint Economic Committee published a major review of 50 years of academic research on the minimum wage in 1995. The study found a wide range of direct and indirect effects of increased minimum wages that may occur. These include:

●  Increasing the likelihood and duration of unemployment for low-wage work- ers, particularly during economic down- turns

●  Encouraging employers to cut worker training

●  Increasing job turnover

●  Discouraging part-time work and reducing school attendance

●  Driving workers into uncovered jobs, thus reducing wages in those sectors

●  Encouraging employers to cut back on fringe benefits

●  Encouraging employers to install labor- saving devices

●  Increasing inflationary pressure

●  Increasing teenage crime rates as a result of higher unemployment

●  Encouraging employers to hire illegal aliens (which happens all the time even now)

Finally, increasing the min. wage doesn’t help those in poverty the way many think it does. Evidence from a large number of academic studies suggests that minimum wage increases don’t reduce poverty levels. Some of the reasons include:

●  Many poor Americans (63.5%) do not work, and thus aren’t earning wages.

●  Even among the working poor, the relationship between earning a low hourly wage rate and living in poverty is weak and has become weaker over time. That is because most workers who gain from a minimum wage increase live in nonpoor families and most of the working poor already have wages above the required minimums.

●  While an increase in the minimum wage will lift some families out of poverty, other low-skilled workers may lose their jobs, which reduces their income and drops their families into poverty.

●  If a minimum wage is partly or fully passed through to consumers in the form of higher prices, it will hurt the poor because they disproportionately suffer from price inflation.

Some more stuff…

  In 2010, Joseph Sabia and Richard Burkhauser estimated: “nearly 1.3 million jobs will be lost if the federal

minimum wage is increased to $9.50 per hour.”

Evidence shows minimum wage increases disproportionally hurt the people they’re supposed to help:

  The 2006 Neumark and Wascher review found the literature “as largely solidifying the conventional view that minimum wages reduce employment among low-skilled workers.”

  A 2010 analysis by Michael J. Hicks found: “the latest round of minimum wage increases” account “for roughly 550,000 fewer part-time jobs,” including “roughly 310,000 fewer teenagers working part-time.”

The Meaning Of "Merit" In The Market

The low wage employee works hard at his job, and contrary to the opinions of some men, so does the successful entrepreneur and businessman.  But it is not actually hard work that justifies the wealth of the rich, or that makes them “deserving” of their wealth; it is the right of property.  

Let us use the example of a  popular actor and a coal miner.  The actor   makes tens of millions of dollars a year, while a coal miner in a certain part of the country makes less then a dozen an hour. Why is this the case ? Does the coal miner not work as hard as the actor? The simple reason for this is because the coal miner himself, dozens of his friends at the coal mine, the workers at the local dairy, the workers at the local diner, and the workers at the local bank all choose to take the money they have rightfully earned and invest it in that actor in order to enjoy his films. If one accepts the principle that the coal miner should have the right to use the money that he has earned digging for coal, however he chooses, then one must also accept the fact that the actor has a right to  the collective wealth that has been willingly invested into him, and into his commercial activities.  

It is only what free men willingly do with their own property that accounts for wealth in a free society. 

Low wage workers deserve a raise. #15now

While you probably know the wage gap exits, these five facts about the gender pay gap may come as a surprise.

1. Millennial women think the pay gap is a myth.

2. There’s a reason Equal Pay Day always falls on Tuesday. 

3. Women out-earn men in low-wage work

4. Education can help

5. Lawmakers have the narrowest gap

- 5 Things You Don’t Know About the Wage Gap


Senators, New York City Council Members, and low wage workers gathered in front of New York City Hall to rally for a $15 minimum wage.