Fast-food protests spread overseas

Campaigns bring attention to low wages
Associated Press
May 16, 2014

 

Labor organizers turned up the pressure on McDonald's and other fast-food chains to raise worker pay on Thursday, with plans to stage actions in more than 30 countries.

The demonstrations build on a campaign by unions to bring attention to the plight of low-wage workers and get the public behind the idea of a $15-an-hour wage.

Industry groups say such pay hikes would hurt their ability to create jobs and note that many of the participants are not workers.

The protests are being backed by the Service Employees International Union and began in New York City in late 2012. Since then, organizers have steadily ramped up actions to keep the issue in the spotlight.

In March, for instance, lawsuits filed in three states accused McDonald's of denying breaks and engaging in other practices that deprive employees of their rightful pay. Workers were referred to lawyers by union organizers, who announced protests over "wage theft" the following week.

Organizers say workers across the country walked off the job on Thursday, including 20 from a restaurant in St. Louis that had to temporarily close as a result. But turnouts have varied and the scope of actions planned for overseas also differed depending on the country.

In Denmark, McDonald's worker Louise Marie Rantzau said a collective agreement with McDonald's in the country prevents workers from protesting the chain. But Rantzau, who earns about $21 an hour under the agreement, and workers planned to demonstrate outside Burger King or other restaurants and post photos on social media.

Images on social media showed workers demonstrating in places including Dublin and Sao Paulo, Brazil.

In New York City, a couple hundred demonstrators beat drums, blew whistles and chanted in the rain outside a Domino's for about a half hour. Among those who took turns speaking were local lawmakers, community leaders and fast-food workers.

"Corporations are able to make money — millions and billions of dollars. We should be able to make a decent salary so we can take care of our families," said Sheila Brown, a mother of four who works at a KFC.

In Philadelphia, 19-year-old Justice Wallace said she earns $7.50 an hour and was on strike because she wants $15 an hour and a union.

"It's a poverty wage. We can't live off of it," she said.

Although many customers say they're not aware of the ongoing actions, the campaign has captured national media attention at a time when the income gap between the rich and poor has widened and executive pay packages have come under greater scrutiny.

President Barack Obama has also been working to raise the federal minimum wage to $10.10 an hour. The current rate of $7.25 an hour translates to about $15,000 a year, assuming a person works 40 hours a week.

Still, fast-food workers have historically been considered difficult to unionize, since many are part-timers who don't stay on the job for long. But supporters say that is changing, with more people relying on such jobs to support families. Last week, workers and union representatives from countries including Argentina, China, El Salvador, France, Ireland and the United Kingdom met in New York City to strategize for the day of global actions.

McDonald's, which has more than 35,000 locations globally, said in a statement that the debate over wages needed to take into account "the highly competitive nature of the industries that employ minimum wage workers."

The National Restaurant Association called the actions "nothing more than big labor's attempt to push their own agenda."

 

Comments

The Hero Zone's picture
The Hero Zone

"Meet 'Smart Restaurant': the minimum wage crushing, burger flipping robot"
http://www.zerohedge.com/news/20...

"McDonald's hires 7,000 touch screen cashiers"
http://www.cnet.com/news/mcdonal...

Super Size the Minimum Wage
"So, as recently as six years ago, cutting jobs likely wasn’t necessary to meet pay increases in the restaurant industry. But now that technology has improved and brought iServers with it, would pay increases put jobs at risk anyway? It’s difficult to predict what the effect would be on the U.S., but this sort of employee automation has already happened overseas. In Europe, McDonald’s has installed thousands of touch-screen ordering systems to replace human workers. If such a regime were implemented in the U.S., it could mean 14,000 fewer jobs at McDonald’s restaurants alone."
http://www.slate.com/articles/bu...

We have seen this already happen elsewhere. Look at your grocery checkout lanes. Look at airports. Look at banks. All of these are things that even our own President bemoans (http://www.atmmarketplace.com/ne...) while simultaneously creating technology "hubs" around the U.S. to compete with Europe.

We want to create jobs yet we make coal not an option, unemploying miners and all the industries that are attached to the manufacture of machines, transportation, and even the power plant workers. We want to create jobs yet ever more is asked of an employer to do on behalf of his/her employees creating high hurdles of entry at worst or dissuasion from continuing business at best because it's just too troublesome and not worth it.

What is anyone doing (R or D, this isn't partisan) in our government to actually try and let us take care of each other, innovate, employ, and live our own lives in the "private sector"? We can't even take care of our own people yet immigration reform is somehow an economic magic bullet? Our VA health system is a complete mess yet we want the government to control more of our country's medicine? Social Security is going broke yet we need a government "MyRA" or some piddly Band-Aid on a gaping wound because they can do it better?

Sheeeeeeesh. Come on.

#justsayin'

Factitious

If indeed a minimum living wage is only a band-aid that can't fix all problems workers face in the long run, it's still much better than an open gaping wound, and you seem to be also against more effective measures against workers' plight, and only accept supply-side, trickle-down voodoo. Corporatocracies like free markets when it works in their favor, but like subsidies that pay them to automate labor to diminish its cost and hence value. At the same time they promote unsustainable population growth, which further ensures cheap, desperate, and easily exploited labor.

The Hero Zone's picture
The Hero Zone

While a bit late to revisit you are welcome to point out where I specifically endorse any of that. You can also define "effective measures" and "workers' plight". Thanks for the reply.

goofus

Amen, well played

coasterfan

Minimum wage definitely needs to be raised. No one who works fulltime should be unable to afford the basic necessities of life: food, clothing and shelter. $15 an hour is a bit much, unless we're going to also raise salaries of those in other professions. But $11-12 an hour isn't too much to ask, considering that McDonald's is making millions selling overpriced $7 "value meals".

My guess is that fastfood giants will eventually give in, and pay a living wage, and I won't be surprised if this results in increased pay in other professions, as well. That exact thing happened in America's past. When unions were able to successfully bargain for fair/higher wages for their workers, non-union companies were forced to also raise their wages in order to attract workers.

Today, although union workers only make up 7% of the workforce, all Americans continue to benefit from the changes they made possible. Five day work week...40-hour work week...high wages...disability benefits... employee-provided health care... safe working environment...these are all things for which we can thank unions.

Worker productivity is up 90% since 1980, but pay has only increased 8%, and people are fed up. The increased cost of a meal at McDonald's over the past 30 years has far outpaced inflation. Fastfood CEOs can obviously afford to pay better, they just choose to not do so.

Contango

Re: "No one who works fulltime should be unable to afford the basic necessities of life: food, clothing and shelter."

So these protesting fast food workers are all starving, naked homeless people?

-----------------

How's the house sellin' goin'?

Contango

Re: "employee-provided health care..."

Know your Amer. History:

That and employer provided retirement plans were responses to FDR's WWII-era wage and price controls.

-----------

So how's the house selling goin'?

Contango

Re: "Worker productivity is up 90% since 1980,"

Why start with the yr. 1980?

Regardless, technological advances and automation were/are the primary drivers.

Thank the Fed Resv. for fueling the financial sector which has been the major beneficiary of the central bank's monetary actions.

The rich are getting richer, but it's the U.S. central bank that is providing the booze for the party.

Peninsula Pundit

So where da heck you been?
I thought maybe your hard heart had finally given up on you.
The McDonalds on Catawba Island is advertising work $10 an hour.
Labor scarcity driving up wages?

downthemiddle

Port Clinton is so full of useless, unemployable druggies that McDonalds probably gave up and is trying to hire some retirees.

Contango

Re: "So where da heck you been?"

Busy. Thank you for your 'sincere' concern.

Re: "heart had finally given up on you"?

lol

I'll be dancing on your grave. BMI - 23.8

downthemiddle

?

grumpy

Much, if not most of your worker productivity has been raised through technology. Fewrer workers doing the same amount of work because a machine, that is depreciated on taxes every year does more of the work thus increasing the amount of work done per dollar spent. The same will happen on the minimum wage jobs. In fast food the customer will not care who, or what makes his order, he is concerned that it is fast and cheap. He doesn't care that it is a machine that makes it and not a minimum wage worker. Making a burger is simple for a machine. unwrap drop on grill flip after x amount of time and sit it on bun and send to next machine for condiments. No scheduling problems, no call offs, no problem and you can write off the expense on your taxes. Fewer jobs for High School kids and college students trying to pay their way through school. Good plan. Too bad common sense in not common anymore.

downthemiddle

The machines already exist... might be a good stock to buy....

The Hero Zone's picture
The Hero Zone

Coaster, productivity has gone up due to things like automation. Look at the starting date you throw out there and tell me that doesn't coincide with a great push towards computerization and automation. Yet at the same time the wages haven't gone up because you may fire nine out of ten guys to do the same job as the one remaining and a robot, but does the one remaining get to keep the money "saved" by pushing a button (for a simple example)?

Here, you are a former teacher and I presume a learned man. Enjoy this read, "The Ethic of Truths" (http://www.plijournal.com/files/...) which are an "ethics of progress" per se. If you don't want to read progressive philosophy, you can watch this video from the PBS Idea Channel (which I assure you is hardly part of the vast, right-wing conspiracy): http://youtu.be/95KhuSbYJGE

This is why production is going up but not pay: we are being ethical in our treatment of each other and making each others' burdens less, requiring less pay to do the same job. Everything you said about unions are true to the point where government has taken over what they used to do and are making them more and more unnecessary while simultaneously all the regulations are meaning less opportunity to work.

Is that a bad thing? Well, what does your philosophy (progressive or otherwise) have to say? I'm not going to argue against safe working conditions, but I will argue for the understanding that everything comes with a price.

ohioengineer

"My guess is that fastfood giants will eventually give in, and pay a living wage, and I won't be surprised if this results in increased pay in other professions, as well."

Been there, done that. In the late 1970's I was receiving annual pay increases of 10% a year. Life was good! Oh, wait - inflation was simultaneously running at 12% a year, so I was losing ground!

Learn from history. Anytime government sticks its nose into the marketplace, we average citizens take a hit in the wallet.

Contango

Re: "Learn from history. Anytime government sticks its nose into the marketplace, we average citizens take a hit in the wallet."

Here, here!

Central planning bureaucrats highly distrust the free mkt. which is composed of millions of individuals making day to day decisions.

No central planning bureaucracy can have ALL the answers. Their friends, the Russian Bolsheviks proved that.

They engineer "fixes" and then need to engineer more "fixes" to "fix" the unintended consequences their original "fixes" caused.

Better living through centralized planning? I think NOT.

looking around

While I agree that the minimum wage be raised, these are franchises owned by individuals. The corporation does not set the wages, however they may for the purpose of standardization recommend wage levels to the franchise owner. Many of the owners have more than one store and live pretty well on the profits, I think they could afford to be a little less greedy and pay a better wage. These owners while investors did not start these businesses from the ground up, they bought into a turn key franchise with a proven track record. The main corporations take care of the traffic flow study's, training, and supply and they set the prices, so they can predict very closely how profitable a store is. Look at one of your local Wendy's franchises the owner lives pretty good I would say, I hope he values his help. Remember also that these service industry workers receive no tips.

The Hero Zone's picture
The Hero Zone

What do you presume these owners do with their profits? Hide them in a sock drawer? Or do you reckon they invest them in companies allowing them to continue to maintain/hire their own employees, create new products/services, or continue to fund millions of peoples' retirement plans? Perhaps those profits are saved up to build a new business? You have no idea what is done with that money that is so callously chalked up to "greed".

I'd suggest looking into that, or if you'd prefer, find a business plan template online and create a quick service restaurant with a successful model that allows you to pay your part-time cooks $15/hour. It seems there is an opportunity to pay employees more, so perhaps you can find a way to make that happen? I don't say that sarcastically as I believe you do want to help others. This would be the first step in doing so. How feasible is this to do?

looking around

"What do you presume these owners do with their profits?" Well the one example I gave you that appears to do well on cheap labor owns a very large boat belongs to several yacht clubs, owns and drives various race cars, owns and fly's a three quarter million dollar personal aircraft, lives in gated community in a million dollar house, has other homes in warmer climates and the list goes on.....not saying he has not worked hard, invested well and is said to be a great guy, but I think someone who's employees have worked hard to help him be successful could be a little more generous with wages and benefits.

The Hero Zone's picture
The Hero Zone

I can understand where you think those vehicles and homes are unnecessary but ask this in followup: who built and designed those boats? Cars? Houses? Who extracts oil for jet fuel? Who maintains all these properties? What does he do with these things? They may seem like extravagant toys but does he use them to woo other business owners into the area?

The rate he pays his employees is based off the type of work they do given the supply/demand of the skills the job requires and what's available in the area. In North Dakota where the shale fracking is surging you can work at McDonald's for $20/hr. AND get a several thousand dollar signing bonus.

Why do you suppose it is happening there and not here? It has nothing to do with a man with a plane who by virtue of having said plane employs many other people of various skill sets directly and indirectly.

The Big Dog's back

Such a bogus argument.

8ballinthesidepocket

So easy to say that, but if they are under educated, under experienced, have no marketable skills of any sort, we are to pay for their lack of being able to add value? Instead of wasting their time and energy walk in the protest lines, why don't they invest that time in improving their skill levels? Or would that take some energy and drive which they do not have. Raising the minimum wage is a short term fix at best and an incentive to further mechanize burger joints so less and less labor is required. Plus when prices go up for burgers, so does the price and cost of everything else. Another attack on the retirees and seniors living on fixed income.

Bottom Line

Fast food workers making $15 per hour or anything close... It's unreal how stupid and ignorant people can be.

downthemiddle

This sounds good to a liberal.

They just don't think things through very well, do they.

The term 'unintended consequences'' was coined to explain away some previous liberal utopian idea.

goofus

If you are over the age of 16 and are still depending on your fast food CAREER TO COVER your expenses, you are excuse me, a loser! Thank you Coasterfan for the Dnc point of view on this issue. I'm sure it takes hours to research your leftist diatribe on a daily basis!

coasterfan

I don't like freeloaders, either. However, I also know that there are a lot of breadwinners who are now forced to work in minimum wage jobs, since they lost their job/career during the Bush recession through no fault of their own.

I know, I know...in your Republican brain those people don't exist, and all poor people are poor because they are lazy and/or want to be poor. Thank your for your typically callous RNC point of view.

I also know that there are 3 job applicants for every job opening, and that Republicans in the House have refused to pass any of Obama's jobs initiatives.

No diatribe here, just cold facts. I urge you to partake. Step 1 will be to turn off Fox News.

Contango

Re: "Bush recession"

And five yrs. of the "Obama malaise" after $8 trillion in addition debt proves his admin. and the Dems are clueless.

Funny that Pres. Bush 'caused' the recession, when the Fed Resv. with the best financial forecasting tools available didn't see it coming and move to prevent it.

----------------------

What 'should' be most important to you:

How's the house selling goin'?

downthemiddle

coaster... Bush cut taxes on EVERYONE... your man reinstated them and thus made everyone poorer...

Love those dems!!!

Contango

Re: "research"

I.E., Bill Maher, the Comedy Channel and MSNBC.

freespeech1

Oh my, yeah the unions are such a good thing, take a look at Detroit!! There's a booming metropolis if I ever saw one. Chicago is bankrupt, Lorain, Cleveland, Youngstown, the list goes on and on. Oh and lets not forget the teachers union, what a lovely bunch they are as well. So.... lets talk about wages at fast food joints shall we. These jobs are not meant to be (living wage jobs) they are stepping stones to get a higher paying job. Anyone that thinks that they are jobs to make a career at isn't thinking clearly. For years they were mostly kids and older folks that worked in these places.

I worked union for many years regretfully, and would never do it again. What I find amusing is you have union fat cats siting in an office making huge salaries off its member backs, but you seem ok with that? Kinda contradictive don't you think?

downthemiddle

uaw is gonna raise dues 25% in June... and they were stupid enough to announce that while trying to organize VW.... !!! WOW!!!!

Give the uaw fat cat decision makers a fat raise!!

coasterfan

I agree that union leadership is a problem, but it's no worse than the greed/corrupt leadership anywhere else. I take the good with the bad, and unions ARE the only advocacy/protection out there for rank and file workers. The CEOs are making huge salaries off their workers' backs, and they do a lot fewer things to help their workers than do the unions, wouldn't you say?

If that wasn't true, there would be no need for unions...

If you don't like how things went while you were a union member, I urge you to read about American worker experiences during the years 1870-1910. Things were a LOT worse back then for people like you and me.

Fastfood jobs USED to be a starter job/stepping stone. For many, it still serves that purpose. However, many adults lost jobs/careers during the Bush Recession have been forced to work in minimum wage jobs, because that's all they can find. What was true in 2006 is no longer true today.

Contango

Re: "What was true in 2006 is no longer true today."

True.

There are more millionaires and billionaire then before the recession.

Should they thank Pres. Obama?

http://articles.latimes.com/2014...

Justme...

Then they should organize, rather than pushing the gov't to raise the wage for all business owners.

freespeech1

I work for a great company that treats its employees very well. Non union I might add. As an upper level manager Things are much easier without the union BS. Such as needing 20 different trades people to complete a job. My guys are well trained and are capable of doing any task asked of them. So instead of needing 20 all I need is a couple. That's the problem, in the construction industry there is so much cost playing the union game project prices are skyrocketed. I have bid union vs non union jobs and there is a huge difference between the 2. Mind you my guys make good money, its just the damn manpower costs that kill you when you have to have an ironworker,sheetmetal worker,electrician,concrete worker,laborer,equipment operator just to do a simple task.When I can have a few well trained people and do it cheaper.

downthemiddle

Unions ALWAYS make it cost more.

The Big Dog's back

nofreespeech, people like you are what destroyed the American dream. People like you turned it into the American nightmare.

freespeech1

Yeah OK. All my guys own their own homes have nice vehicles and love what they do. Yeah sure sounds like I ruined their lives. God your stupid.

The Big Dog's back

"My guys"? Sounds like something a slave owner would say.

grumpy

Especially when the words he uses directly after my guys are they own their own homes, have nice cars, and love what they do for a living. Nice editing. When the rest of the sentence is included it is obvious that he is speaking about employees. But it was some creative editing that we have come to expect from left wingnuts such as yourself. Have a nice weekend, I sure am!

Justme...

Coaster and others, you do realize if minimum wage goes up, all business owner have to pay it, not just McDonalds and Walmart, don't you??? I'm not in favor of unions, but these people should organize rather than try to get the gov't to increase minimum wage for everyone. The article says that's difficult because many of these people are part time and don't stay on the job. No kidding...its a starter job.

coasterfan

The problem is that we stopped making adjustments to the minimum wage to keep pace with inflation. Even though inflation has dropped way low during the Obama years, a dollar doesn't buy the same as it did in 1980.

We know that, and we feel it, so we know that low income people feel it, too. Yet some say "too bad, so sad, sorry you have to choose between paying rent or buying food for your toddler".

Minimum wage SHOULD be a starter job, but to insist that that's what is actually happening in every case, in spite of all evidence to the contrary, is burying your head in the sand. There are lots of displaced workers who are now working minimum wage jobs. They aren't all kids, and they don't all work part time. These are often people who are in their 30's or 40's with kids, who have been trying to find better work, without success.

downthemiddle

NAFTA caused much of this... it has Bill Clinton's signature on it.

looking around

Learn your history, it also has Bush seniors signature on it......

Donegan

Maybe your god should quit doubling the debt and making the money worthless? Nah that is common logic and libtards can't have that.

deertracker

I see people on some of these jobs that should be retired. Starter jobs? What world do you live in?

The Big Dog's back

You right wingnuts just hate it, hate it when people try to organize. Shame on you Fascists.

grumpy

People don't care when they "organize". some hate when those who attempt to get unions in , and there is a secret ballot, that the VAST majority of the time that the vote is not for union. See the VW vote. Unions have been trying to get the secret ballot changed to where they can just privately collect signatures from workers, instead of the secret ballot. I like how they think that union members (thugs) coming up and telling you to sign up is not intimidating. The secret ballot has been used for decades, but when the vast majority of times the secret ballot votes not for unions, they try to use intimidation instead. And they wonder why their "organizers are referred to as "thugs".

It was called Card Check:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Car...

This was pushed by Union management aka goons. Even the union membership was not for this.
Linked from above article.

"According to a 2004 Zogby survey conducted for the Michigan-based, free market Mackinac Center for Public Policy, when asked if they wished to keep the current voting process or replace it with one "less private," 78% of union members support keeping the current secret ballot system to one "less private".[13] As noted above, in both card check and NLRB secret elections, employers never see authorization cards or identifying information of how an employee voted, though in card check unions would see how an employee voted."

Justme...

I would prefer they organize over forcing everyone to raise minimum wage. If the cost of a burger goes up, so be it. I can choose not to buy fast food. Wait, I already chose that. ORGANIZE, don't raise min. wage for all businesses.

downthemiddle

@dog... So organize 'em... get your buds from uaw 913 to picket all up and down Milan Rd.,,, wearing those stupid satin jackets with some bozo's name on the back. And don't forget to bring the big blow up rat with the red eyes... and prance around it... GAWWWDDD

Solidarity Forever!!

How did that VW organizing drive work out for you?

freespeech1

What's funny is that blow up rat is made in china by slave labor lmao. That's a fact. Bwahahahha

AJ Oliver

Here is a good article from those commies at Bloomberg in favor of a $15 minimum wage. It demolishes all the right wing talking points.
http://www.bloombergview.com/art...
The basic problem, as we see on these blogs, is that the extreme right has totally lost any sentiment that we are all in this together. They have allowed the demagogues to turn them against their countrymen. It really is sad.
And really people, nobody but nobody takes like the ONE PERCENT.

downthemiddle

Demagogues... demagogues.... Nothing succeeds like crony capitalism.. Obama and CERTAIN corps (all unionized) are making one percenters on a daily basis.

Try watching ''Bulls and bears'' or ''Forbes on Fox'' tomorrow morning. Learn how the money works.

The Big Dog's back

I've heard it all now. Now it's the unions who are making the 1 percenters? Now you know why I call you right wingNUTS!

The Hero Zone's picture
The Hero Zone

Ah that wacky one percent is invoked again. If only you'd stop using that hackneyed straw man your points may be better received. So for fun every time you say one percent I replace it with: aliens, Bigfoot, those meddling kids and their dog, Hydra, and gremlins in my mind. I sure would have enjoyed being in your college class because if you talked like this in it I would stand up to your paid absurdity and propaganda every day.

Contango

Re: "ONE PERCENT."

And you're NOT a millionaire?

Willing to bet that you're in the 3-5% 'at least.'

Be very careful, centrally planned collectivism has a way of trickling down to those on the lower rungs.

downthemiddle

@ dog... close but you're still wrong. Look at the companies that Obama loves... GM, GE... huge companies. None of the shoprats are getting rich.. just those at the top who tow the line. The unions are doing what they do best.. being parasitic passengers milking off the take.
---
Solyndra... well... top, bottom.. a few still got rich. YOUR dollars are in their pockets.

Pete

Battle Cry of the lifetime minimum wage earner:

It's no my fault I didn't graduate HS!
It's the One Percent!

It's not my fault I can't pass a drug screen!
It's the rich guy down the street's!

It's not MY fault I have 3 kids with 3 partners at 22!
It's the Koch Brothers'!

It's not my fault I don't apply myself!
It's the Republican's!

It's not MY fault I didn't check earning potential or job openings before I got a $300,000 Art History Degree!
It's the Tea Party's!

I have absolutely zero sympathy for these people. I started at $3.35\hr when I graduated but make a heck of a lot more than that now. I applied myself, worked my arse off, and even reinvented myself a few times along the way. There were plenty of rough times, but never did I demand the government raise my wage. I've worked in the office and in the field, and have the back x-ray and scars to prove it. What I am doing now wasn't even in the back of my mind when I graduated HS.

I heard an ad on the radio that Norfolk Southern is hiring in Bellevue. That has to pay better than flipping burgers. But I'm curious why they had to buy air time? If people are desperate for better paying jobs they should have been beating down the door before there were even openings.

We just hired a young lady to be an EIT in our engineering department and had to offer her a nice salary package as we had plenty of competition.

We also hired a young man who is graduating with an Associates in CADD from a community college. He'll do well we think.

Want to work with your hands? Check shortage reports on welders. Plenty of openings out there.

Don't whine there aren't good paying jobs. There are. You just have to EARN IT! No one is going to give it to you.

downthemiddle

Pete... keep an eye on the Norfolk Southern and how long it takes to fill the jobs... I'm pretty sure ALL transportation workers are subject to random drug testing.

A friend owns a business..... once applicants hear that there is a pre-employment drug test they either leave or never show up at the hospital. This is true of about half.

Pete

We started putting "Drug Free Work Place" right on the sheet we send out when hiring. But there are still applicants that seem shocked when we tell them there's a pi$$ test.

To hell with a better wage or providing for your family. It's someone else's fault they'd have to put the bong away.

AJ Oliver

Interesting point about economic reporting - all the national broadcast media (except for one show on MSNBC) have a news blackout on the TPP, as well as the new trade deal with the EU. Fox is totally silent on them, which is to be expected. The propaganda here is so effective as to make a old-time Pravda editor blush with envy.

Pete

Only people with less than 10% brain function get their news from any of the cable channels. Normal people consult multiple print and online sources for information.

grumpy

What news blackout?

http://www.google.com/webhp?hl=e...

http://www.google.com/webhp?hl=e...

Because it is not in local papers does not make it a blackout. But then if you get all your information from TV... You miss out on all the news about the negotions and deals before the agreements are announced. Suggest you do more than watch TV. It greatly limits what information you are exposed to.

AJ Oliver

I wrote that there is a BROADCAST NEWS blackout on the TPP & EU deals. I stand by that. Fox "news" is hoping you won't notice.
As to the minimum wage, I've spent time recently in two countries that treat low wage workers MUCH more fairly - paid sick days, health care, vacations, wages. Guess what, without the "mean people" running things, they are quite a bit more pleasant places to live.

downthemiddle

How much does a Big Mac cost and how are the taxes in those countries?

Contango

Re: "a BROADCAST NEWS blackout on the TPP & EU deals,"

lol

Hell, viewer ship of network news has been dying for decades.

Most Gen-Xers and Millennials are more interested in pop culture and couldn't even tell you in what decade WWII occurred.

-----------------

Re: "they are quite a bit more pleasant places to live,"

Can you name these two countries?

So when are you leaving one percenter?

downthemiddle

Doe anybody REALLY believe that in other countries there are KBI's which pay too much and prop up the price of Big Macs?

AJ Oliver

Hey, they missed you righties in DC with all the other nut jobs - you know, where millions of you were going to take over the government. What a joke. Contagion - they are countries you claim are totalitarian. Another joke !@!

Contango

Re: "Contagion - they are countries you claim are totalitarian."

A smarmy and misconstrued response.

“If you are harsh and impolite to a person on an anonymous blog, chances are you are not a particularly brave person.”

- AJ Oliver, 05/09/2014

Hypocritical?

Tell me that you don't have a financial net worth in excess of $1M. :)

Contango

@ AJO:

"Retired military leaders fret kids will be ‘too fat to fight’":

"The Army says more than three-fourths of 17- to 24-year-olds today are not eligible to join the military because they aren't fit enough or don't meet other basic requirements, such as having a high school diploma or being able to read or write properly."

http://www.cnbc.com/id/101656954

Hey!

Instead of raising the workers' wages, maybe some of those fast food places need to go out of business for the good of America, eh?

Regarding the lack of literacy obviously speaks to the heavily unionized Democrat party cronies who rule the U.S. school system.

KURTje

From some one who never served. Like what you told your child. "Work harder." Why should younger people respect most over 60? So much greed, they think they are living forever.

Contango

Re: "So much greed"

“Thanks for my government check/military.”

- kURtje,10/23/2013

And you 'deserve' this why?

grumpy

Are you claiming that the retired military, who were quoted in the article are lying?
Quote from article:

THE ARMY says more than three-fourths of 17- to 24-year-olds today are not eligible to join the military because they aren't fit enough or don't meet other basic requirements, such as having a high school diploma or being able to read or write properly.

That's got some of the nation's HIGHEST-RANKING RETIRED MILITARY OFFICIALS advocating a radical way to improve national security—improve the lives of children.

------------------------------------------------------------------------

I suggest next time you read where the quotes were from and who made them. In this case it was the Army and retired military leaders. Contango was simply quoting what they said. Seems you are making foolish comments about folks who DID serve.

Contango

@ grumpy:

Kind of ironic isn't it?

The progressive-socialists b*tch that McDonald's and other fast food chains are making Americans FAT.

So they try to sue them and institute fat taxes to punish them.

THEN, the progressive-socialists again b*tch that McDonald's and others aren't paying their workers enough money.

IOW: Reward workers for helping to make Americans fat.

That's crazy liberal logic for ya! :)

--------------

FYI: Yes, I 'jokingly' told my daughter to work harder.

With the 78M or so baby boomers retiring and having little to no savings, they'll have no choice but to live off Soc. Security (it's a pay-go system).

So I told her that the thieves in DC will probably need to steal about 85% of her income to pay for the seniors' publicly provided health and welfare plans.

"Retirement: A third have less than $1,000 put away":

http://www.usatoday.com/story/mo...

grumpy

"Retirement: A third have less than $1,000 put away":

My first year working I saved more than a thousand dollars... I was 9 years old.Anyone care to guess how many times I doubled that first $1000. What that first grand turned into with just compound interest and careful investing? My dad had me keep it separate so I would learn how compound interest really works. I still have that first grand, and all the interest in its own account. But taxes have not been paid on it yet. Too hard to keep that separate, before computers.Actually it was just over $1100 after I bought the one big item my parents allowed me to buy each year when I was a kid. I got a 3 speed bike.

downthemiddle

Good for you !! And good for your dad... mine was the same way... he took me to the bank and we deposited the money from my piggy bank. The first time interest was posted I began to understand what he meant.

Compound interest is a powerful thing... just be on the receiving end ! Some people are always on the other end.

grumpy

"Compound interest is a powerful thing... just be on the receiving end ! Some people are always on the other end."

I have taken out one loan when I bought a car when I was 18, I put half down and made two payments to establish a credit rating. Since I have only gotten loans for real estate. Never had a balance over 30 days on a credit card, never have been late on a payment for the real estate or credit cards.

My parents almost went bankrupt when I was born as dad sold a business and the guy reneged on the deal 3 months after signing the papers. It was a tough few years but they never missed a payment and got clear. My parents both paid attention to their money ever since and passed that along to my brothers and my self. I knew how to save and how to live within my means.

One of my brothers learned it well also but the other makes a ton, but spends a ton and a quarter. He is 65 and still HAS to work. I retired last year at 58 but work at one of my hobbies and get paid for doing my hobby. The last few years of working, my wife and I made more on interest on our investments than we did in our careers. Just moved into a new house in Idaho where we have owned property for 25 years, my wife got a job at another compounding pharmacy here and will be able to receive her retirement funds in a couple of years and will retire. We sold our Ohio house but share a condo with some snowbirds in the area.

downthemiddle

Wonderful!! That's how it's SUPPOSED to work, and it will work for anyone who tries on whatever scale they try.

Avoid debt by saving money from an early age and make good decisions in all areas. Pay off loans on time and early if possible.

'Happy for you. Thanks for sharing.. if even just one person will profit from reading your post...

Donegan

McDonalds is hiring. http://www.cnet.com/news/mcdonal...
They just hired 7000 new cashiers it seems.

downthemiddle

Coincidentally, Yesterday voters in Switzerland voted down a $25.00 minimum wage...

grumpy

I have not made only good decisions in all areas. But have either owned the mistakes, or made them as right as I could. Biggest thing is live within your means, hardest too sometimes/most times. Too easy to get a loan with "easy" payments... that turn out to be anything but. I dodged that bullet.

Contango

Wanna eliminate unemployment?

Eliminate the min. wage and allow workers and employers to contract with each other freely for wages.

Eventually, the mkt. will stabilize (reversion to the mean) and the true value of labor will be established.

Those with poor education and work habits will be paid for their services accordingly. Also unlike now, many will gain work experience which will allow them to attain or seek better pay and employment.

Those with higher education or better skill sets will also be paid accordingly.

I always enjoyed commissioned sales. The level of my income tended to be contingent only on my efforts.

The Big Dog's back

We tried that, it didn't work. That's what brought about unions.

downthemiddle

Well, It must be working again.. See uaw / VW...

Probably the best example of it.... and the entire ''transplant'' group is further proof.

Need more proof?

Contango

Re: "unions."

Reward mediocrity.

KURTje

Well Winnie you get to sleep safe because of US. And when the Marines or Army get called out to help with riots that's another reason too. Your age, selfishness & bitterness are a given. Coming down the home stretch of your life & you been a taker, never a helper....being you must be a miserable existence.

Contango

Re: "Well (snip)."

Off-topic drivel.

downthemiddle

@kurt. ....?

Here's a question.. how many of those serving next to you in the military are ultra libs? .. or even regular libs?

The Big Dog's back

A lot.

downthemiddle

Ahhh... dog is checking in from some barracks in uaw paradise...

looking around

I can tell you boots on the ground in the Vietnam era were mostly from democrat family's of low to middle income. If you weren't enrolled in college after high school you were 1A and wouldn't last long with the draft. Many of the republican family kids were of course in college or working in the family business were daddy could arrange a deferment.
The largest numbers in the infantry were either black or puerto rican depending on where you did your basic and advanced training. Being white in the infantry in Nam you were a minority. The lack of opportunity today attracts more college educated young people in the volunteer forces than ever before. Specialty fields offer great training that may help them even if they elect not to remain in the service. So to answer your question many democrats, lib's or left wingers as you may prefer to call them served the country courageously, so this Memorial Day why don't you thank a few of them for their service.

It always amazes me that the republican right wingers seem to think they are the only ones that are patriotic and have the right to wave the American flag, it just goes to show how pompous and arrogant they are.

I might ad that when in service to your country you follow orders and support the Commander n Chief's decisions regardless of your political persuasion!

Happy Memorial Day to all veterans and those in service to this great country, thank you one and all for your service! May God Bless.

Contango

Re: "Being white in the infantry in Nam you were a minority,"

Talk about WAY off topic. Following krazy kurtie's lead eh?

Got some stats on the above?

looking around

You obviously weren't there or you would know. And the comment I replied to was ignorant and everyone on this blog should receive an apology from the ignoramus down the middle.

downthemiddle

@look... I was drafted in 68 and was there.

Basic was about 1/5 ghetto black... the rest an assortment of f-ups, myself included.. college dropouts etc. A few of the others were from upper middle class backgrounds. They spoke and carried themselves well and had photos and letters to back that claim up.

My liberal democrat friends were safely in good colleges taking liberal arts and Poli Sci... and protesting, smoking dope and getting lai_. My Conservative friends were also in good colleges, but taking engineering and medicine, which they made careers from.

Fast forward to today... liberals are above doing the grunt work of serving... everything about it is opposite their beliefs.... starting with the gun.... nothing about the military "feels good"... actually, it is quite uncomfortable.

The draft cast a broad net...

looking around

Your description is vastly different than what many have experienced,perhaps it's your warped perceptions at work.

I'm glad I wasn't serving with you with your display of judgmental rhetoric. I can't think of a single instance when those I rubbed shoulders with cared if you were a democrat, republican, liberal or conservative and anyone of them would have carried your sorry azz out of harms way if they had to because they truly believe unlike you that no man shall be left behind. Everything in your response tells me that you are nothing but a bull$hiter of the worst kind.

My family are solid democrats going back four generations with most every male having served their country on many battle fronts and campaigns. A few are highly decorated. The youngest of the family is currently serving and has already served three tours abroad.

I find your rhetoric on the subject offensive and feel that you have insulted many who have read your rant as well.

Contango

Re: "You obviously weren't there or you would know."

Obfuscation.

"88.4% of the men who actually served in Vietnam were Caucasian; 10.6% (275,000) were black; 1% belonged to other races."

http://history-world.org/vietnam...

looking around

As I said "boots on the ground" ask anyone who served as recon. Your statistics take into consideration many who were not on the front line, many never saw combat or heard a shot fired. Like I said you obviously weren't there. There are lots of support jobs that even when shipped out are assigned to activity's on base and never go out on patrol. But I would expect ilk like yourself not taking that into consideration when trying to portray yourselves as some supreme group.

Contango

Re: "I can tell you boots on the ground in the Vietnam era were mostly from democrat family's of low to middle income"

Nice nonsensical revisionist history.

Good to know that you believe that Dems wholly supported a Democrat Pres.' illegal war.

So why did the Dems get trounced in '68 & '72?

To what political party did the millions of protesters belong?

"Hey, hey, LBJ,
How many kids did you kill today?"

The movie, "Born on the 4th of July" speaks volumes.

looking around

That's all you know about it is what you have seen in a movie.

Smcc Alum

I agree that minimum wage in most circumstances is not a living wage. However, raising it will just create more problems. If the Market dictates that these employees are worth $8.00 an hour, then they most certainly are.

Why would anyone want to pay incredibly simple labor higher $ while the government is shoulder deep in their pockets. Maybe if these companies had some room to breathe they would be less reluctant to pay their uneducated employees more.

Contango

Re: "raising it will just create more problems."

True.

See the economic phenomena of "Price-wage spiral."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pri...

Dr. Information

Starter jobs are not meant to raise a family off of. These jobs require no skills at all, were typically filled by either retired people or very young people and keeps the cost of the product down.

If you can't raise a family of 5 flipping burgers at McDonalds, then maybe its time to reevaluate your job situation.

grumpy

Switzerland just voted down a $25 an hour minimum wage. Their current minimum wage is $0 per hour

http://www.bbc.com/news/business...

Switzerland has the third highest median income in world. They have no minimum wage.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Med...

grumpy

Switzerland just voted down a $25 an hour minimum wage. Their current minimum wage is $0 per hour

http://www.bbc.com/news/business...

Switzerland has the third highest median income in world. They have no minimum wage.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Med...

KURTje

Thanks for noticing. Many did forget their past. Looking around is right. Also the reserve's meant non-combat (Vietnam) Fast fwd, Josh Mandel did the MacArthur move." Stayed in the rear with the gear." See I've been labeled many things yet last I knew the eagle needs 2wings to fly. Did you know most from 3/25th Marines/Ohio voted Obama? Reason? Unlike McCain he had a time line to get US out of Iraq.

downthemiddle

..and since the draft ended every single one was there voluntarily... they joined either for money/ benefits, sense of duty, a judge ordered them to, or to kill someone while it was legal.

Tell the rest of the story.

Contango

Re: "Josh Mandel"

Served two tours in Iraq. You?

"Mandel enlisted in the United States Marine Corps Reserve, where he served eight years.

His first tour was from February to November 2004, during which he was attached to a light armored reconnaissance battalion.

He left for his second tour in September 2007. Attached to an infantry battalion, Mandel served in the city of Haditha."

(Wiki)

Contango

Re: "Thanks for noticing."

Yes, lil' kurtie, I "noticed" your insane blather.

KURTje

Hello non-veteran. Looking around called you the same thing I call Mandel. Feel free to contact the editor of this paper. He was denied an interview regarding our involvement in the Iraq War. Josh Mandel holds no Combat Action Ribbons either. Just like you. Enjoy Memorial Day because we gave you a safe place to live. pdb.

Contango

Re: "Josh Mandel holds no Combat Action Ribbons,"

And you earned how many?

-------------------

Can't answer the question, but instead go off on your usual crazy hate-filled rant.

Again: Josh Mandel served two tours in Iraq.

How many tours did you do?

KURTje

Contact this paper like you were instructed old man. You'll get facts. "Figures don't lie but liars figure."