I'm going to keep this brief, as I have less than 6 hours before I'm out the door for another day at work.
$15/hr sounds great. I make north of $20/hr and it is definitely better than the $12/hr I made building custom cabinets. Even with what I make, things get tight financially speaking, but we do ok. But there is something I thought about while getting ready for bed that I wanted to share with everyone who is all excited about a government mandated minimum wage.
Why are they mandating it?
Seriously, ask yourself that question. Why would a politician want you to get paid more than you're potentially worth? Is it because they are truly good people? There are politicians who oppose $15/hr- are they bad people? Look at the people who are advocating and attempting to pass a $15/hr wage. Look at the other things they want to pass and pay for. Free college. Free healthcare. Free <insert thing that can get them votes here>.
Before you get your paycheck, Uncle Sam gets your paycheck. Taxes come out, and you get what's left. If you're lucky, you'll get that cash back next year in a lump sum payment. Supposedly. But what you won't get is interest on what amounts to a loan to the government from you for stuff you want/think you need (seriously- Imagine if the government had to pay you interest on the money they refunded each year, but they don't, and in fact that cash you pay in loses value due to inflation, so even though you got back the exact same amount, its purchasing power has actually decreased... Thank you Government).
You: I want free college.
Government: Ok, we'll give you that. <raises taxes>
You: My paycheck is smaller, I want a higher minimum wage- a LIVING wage.
Government: Ok, we'll give you that. <Raises wage> <Doesn't lower taxes>
Employer: We are faced with a problem, either we reduce staff, or raise prices. We chose to reduce staff.
You: I was laid off, I want you to give me money to live.
Government: Ok, we'll give you that. <Raises taxes> <Doesn't raise minimum wage>
Your friend: Man, I'm making more per hour now than ever, but my take home is less!
This is really simplified, but I think it gets my general point across. Taxes have to go up when something new is being paid for (because the government isn't a profitable business). You want something, you have to pay for it. One way, or the other, YOU pay for it. If you get $15/hr, then the government will take a proportional amount out in taxes- and all those businesses that before didn't have the burden of a $15/hr minimum wage now have to offset that burden somehow, or go broke. Goods go up in price, and your $15/hr now works as well as your $7.50/hr did before.
My point? If you want cheap goods (and the ability to save money) go learn some skill that people will pay you good money for, and then marshal your time effectively to maximize your profit doing that skill. Then, with the money you make, start learning how to make it work for you without wasting any more of your precious time getting money. Time doesn't equal money. Time is GREATER than money. Stop wasting it by working for someone else so that you can pay your dues to the government so they can do things you could do for yourself if you just had the money in the first place. In short, don't let the political leeches sucker you into a mandated paycheck for them disguised as a raise for you. It isn't, and they really don't care about you (only their election coffers).
Thoughts? Comment below.