About the author

Jim Newell is Wonkette's beloved Capitol Hill Typing Demon. He joined Wonkette.com in 2007, left for some other dumb job in 2010, and proudly returned in 2012 as our "Senior Editor at Large." He lives in Washington and also writes for things such as The Guardian, the Manchester paper of liberals.

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Hola wonkerados.

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119 comments

  1. memzilla

    If there had been television in the 1790s, this would have been Louis XVI’s Official Channel.

    Greta Sustern / Marie Antoinette = Separated at Birth?

  2. Lascauxcaveman

    As a small business operator, I can say *definitely* that lowering the minimum wage is good for my workers.

    You see, that way the small business community can afford to to offer the average $6/hr worker two shitty jobs, instead of just one. And McD’s gets their burgers flipped, I get my hotel rooms cleaned, everybody wins!

  3. Gopherit

    [re=477534]yargisbargis[/re]: Hey, can you think of a better motivator for the proles?

    Now, bankers, well, they motivate better with million dollar bonuses.

  4. Bowdoin

    Brother Dave Gardner: When a man is down, kick him! If he survives, he has an opportunity to rise above it.

    Baudelaire said something like this also. As did Herbert Spencer and his clones, including Ayn Rand.

  5. Lascauxcaveman

    [re=477538]Lascauxcaveman[/re]: (For the record, my hotel maids actually start at $10/hr, which is significantly higher than the socialist State of Washington minimum wage; at $8.55 – the highest in the nation).

  6. mamandesfilles

    What happened to the workhouses, Ebenezer? Who can we expect to pound our rocks and shred our ropes?

  7. SayItWithWookies

    Workers don’t mind, since they derive satisfaction from a task well done, the simple pleasures of good craftsmanship and good honest sweat on their brow. Also misery and starvation. Then they give us blues songs that rich people steal from them and make millions off of — so it’s a win-win: First the rich win, and then they win again.

  8. ph7

    Is that Maggie’s brother?

    Well, he hands you a nickel,
    He hands you a dime,
    He asks you with a grin
    If you’re havin’ a good time,

  9. Snarkalicious

    I mean, shit, the Mexicans work for less money over a grerater number of hours. What with the liberals being all about equality, and the conservatives being all about undercutting the lowest common denominator, I smell a chance for some real bipartisanship on this issue.

    I’m gonna go build a shack for my indentured servants to huddle in right away!

  10. petehammer

    One of my economics classes was taught by a very conservative dude who always argued for lowering the minimum wage. That way, goes the argument, McDonalds can hire more people (paying each less). Therefore, an unemployed worker who can’t compete with those who would normally get a $7/hour job can get a $3/hour job. So, you have greater employment (hypothetically) by paying people much, much less.

    This argument fails to account for just about everything, but there it is. A worker who is currently unemployed could undercut a higher paid worker if he could just be paid less than minimum wage. Ta-da!

  11. Prommie

    Whats wrong with this? Everyone knows that the very worst thing you can ever do to anyone is to help him. Help is like crack, one time, you help someone one time, and they become hopelessly addicted to help and they will never work again.

    Look at the plight of the black people in america, poor, emprisoned, generations existing on assistance, and all the fault of the libtards and their war on poverty.

    Nope, what people need is tough love, like Jesus said.

    Fucking libtards, don’t understand what motivates people. Remember back when there were no millionaires, no entrepenuers, and no industry in the US, because the top tax bracket was 80%? Everyone just quit trying to earn money.

  12. earnestcivilservant

    Of course it’s better! If the minimum wage is lower, business will hire more workers! More workers who don’t earn enough to make their mortgage payments! More foreclosures, but at least they have a job! And more foreclosures means more banker bonuses! Everybody wins!

  13. user-of-owls

    “To answer the question I posed regarding lowering the minimum wage, we now turn to Irish parliamentarian Paul Gogarty. Deputy Gogarty, we only have a few seconds left in our segment so please reply succinctly.”

  14. ManchuCandidate

    Don’t Contards want the best workers for the job? They argue that bajillion dollar bonuses and payouts for banker psychos is because they need to attract the best. By that lojik that should apply to mechanics, maids, factory workers et al, too… Right?

  15. Prommie

    [re=477554]Snarkalicious[/re]: I see you’ve never hired an illegal. Work for less money, what are you kidding me? Mexicans won’t take minimum wage, they know what they are worth. They show up on time, every day, work like dogs, and they don’t spend all day whining and bitching and taking cigarrette breaks. Illegals start at $10.00 an hour around here, a nice round figure, the only people who make minimum are the lazy-ass slacker white boys

  16. Nigerian Business Executive

    Sugar! It might actually be GOOD for diabetics! Find out how!

    (Seriously, find out how. I’m diabetic and I’m craving a chocolate bar).

  17. Hopey dont play that game

    The best deal for workers is a one-time payment from employers. After that, the worker has been compensated and there is no need for ongoing payroll. This model was used with great success in the South for many years before it was ended by another Big Government program known as the Emancipation Proclamation.

  18. Suds McKenzie

    I cant get the video to run, this flies in the face of “Answers at Work”?

    Help me Campbell Brown, Help Me

  19. WadISay

    Coming: Is it time to rethink the old taboo against eating the poor? Next week…on a very special…Fox News.

  20. V572625694

    [re=477571]Hopey dont play that game[/re]: [re=477551]SayItWithWookies[/re]: Plus, yes: Just listen to those happy darkies out there in the fields, singing their spirituals as they pick the cotton! Life is the way God intended it to be! Slavery: it’s in the Bible! Which is un-errant!

  21. Hooray For Anything

    Somewhere, a 55 year old man who works as a WalMart greeter for minimum wage is going “Yeah! Gosh darn those gosh darn Socliasts in government forcing employers to pay us more money. I’m going to become a Tea Bagger and protest!”

  22. SayItWithWookies

    [re=477561]Skwerl Nutz[/re]: Give a worker oxygen and he can breathe for a day. Give a worker carbon monoxide and he can breathe for the rest of his life.

  23. snideinplainsight

    You see, the relationship of minimum wage to total real work is captured quite succinctly in a Laffer curve. We can assume that at a minimum wage of zero dollars per hour, no workers would choose to work, and the height of the curve, the real value created by minimum wage workers, would be zero at that point. If instead the minimum wage were a million billion dollars per hour, no employer would choose to pay minimum wage workers, and the curve of value would also be zero. Between these two points, the curve must be non-negative and describe a continuous, smoothly-transitioning curve.

  24. mamandesfilles

    [re=477557]Prommie[/re]: Where exactly does Jesus espouse tough love for the poor? I know that I am Catholic and we are told what is in the Bible rather than reading it ourselves, but I have no memory of that quotation. I will need chapter and verse. Thank you.

  25. edgydrifter

    Hell, why pussyfoot around with half-measures? Employers should make those slobs PAY $5 an hour for the privilege of scrubbing toilets and flipping burgers. Total victory for the poors!

  26. betterDeadThanRed

    Sure it’s good for the workers. If their income is lower they can get more Food Stamps, get health care through Medicade and take advantage of the other socialist social assistance programs. These programs keep the workers alive so that they can keep working for minimum wage! The new American dream: Laissez-faire capitalism for the workers more socialism for large businesses.

  27. Georgia Burning

    [re=477584]snideinplainsight[/re]: Problem is that the people who can understand this pass their math courses but the ones who don’t flunk out of sciences and go to business or law school.

  28. Joshua Norton

    That’s the only way the mega-richers can afford to have the large staffs that are needed to run their McMansions. How the hell do you think the Vanderbilts et. al could afford to keep up their 60 room houses during the Gilded Age? They paid their servants $2 a week – and they were damned grateful to make it, too.

    Too bad that the blue collar repiggie yahoos whining about the “high tax rate” have less marketable skills than some kid in an overseas sneaker factory earning 0.12 a day.

  29. Terry

    [re=477582]Hooray For Anything[/re]:

    A 55 year old greeter at Wal-Mart making minimum wage and with no health care.

  30. Humpback

    I ws poor nd now they’ve made it worse! They’ve gone nd tken the letter “ “ from my lphbet! Ssholes!

  31. OReillysVibrator

    [re=477537]memzilla[/re]: Separated? Wrong: Greta looks like an UNREMOVED boil on a 250-year-old woman’s ass.

  32. Lascauxcaveman

    [re=477564]ManchuCandidate[/re]: [re=477565]Prommie[/re]: Ha ha! It’s funny ’cause it’s true.

    When I hire hotel maids at $10/hr, I sit them down and say, “I’m paying 20% more than the hotels down the street, and frankly, I expect you to work fast and meticulously. If not, I don’t cut wage back to minimum, I fire you and hire some other kid. That’s how it works here.”

    I’ve never had to fire a maid. Most of em’ get nice bonuses at the end of the summer.

  33. Extemporanus

    If lowering the minimum wage is better for workers, then eliminating wages altogether must be the best!

  34. Come here a minute

    [re=477584]snideinplainsight[/re]: That’s pretty complicated, but I think you’re saying the minimum wage should be five hundred thousand billion dollars per hour. Sounds reasonable.

  35. mumblyjoe

    [re=477588]betterDeadThanRed[/re]: I’m pretty sure that the “logic” Fox News has in mind also makes getting rid of food stamps and all health insurance, anywhere, is “good for workers”. Or should I say, “good for workers?”.

  36. Servo

    Slavery is really good for the bottom line, too. These jackasses are un-fuckin’-believable. No morals. It’s all ME ME ME. They can certainly seize on opportunity. In this case, using the weak dollar as a justifiable means to push for cheaper labor (sweatshops), thereby creating the illusion of more jobs. We’re on to your dastardly scheme, assholes!

    [re=477556]petehammer[/re]:
    Obviously your economics teacher had supply-side blindness. Expendable income makes no sense to them. Good thing my micro/macro teacher wasn’t like that or I would have thrown my boot at him.

  37. snideinplainsight

    [re=477584]snideinplainsight[/re]: No dimension of the curve measures any of the effects on actual workers. Somehow that never shows up in the analysis.

  38. gurukalehuru

    Very much in the same way that bombing the shit out of poor, defenseless 3rd world countries prevents war, lots of people owning guns prevents gun violence, torture defeats terrorism, and watching Fox News makes you better informed.

  39. Redhead

    Wait, the poor work in minimum wage jobs?
    I thought the poor were the unemployed, living off $75/week unemployment checks and paying $150/week CBRA health insurance. Doesn’t the upper-middle class hold all the minimum wage jobs these days?

  40. petehammer

    [re=477603]Servo[/re]: It was only one of my professors for one class. I avoided him for my other economics classes since his concepts, like many supply-side or Ayn Rand ideas, were only interesting until you spent about three minutes thinking it through.

    We shouldn’t stop sweatshops because otherwise those people would be out of work! Yeah!

  41. PrairiePossum

    Raising taxes on the rich is really good for rich people. If rich people have money, they buy bad mortgage debt and eventually have to ask the government for a bailout because they become too big to fail. If we stop rich people from becoming too big to fail, we no longer need government bailouts.

  42. Prommie

    [re=477584]snideinplainsight[/re]: I am buying the validity of the two points, but by what logic do they get to assume that the curve is smooth? “Tipping points” unknown to Laffer?

    And, ya know, here is something I’d like an answer to.

    My contention is, extremely high taxes encourage entrepenuerialism. The rich need losses more than ever. When taxes are at 80%, if they invest and lose a dollar, its pre-tax, so its like they really only lost 20 cents. I am serious here. I believe that lower taxes discourage risky investments (and entrepenuerial investment is the riskiest) and encourage safe investing (stealing, that would seem to be the safest, stealing through the legal means used by Wall Street firms such as Goldman Sachs.)

    Sooooo, how about that, huh? Anyone ever investigated that?

  43. mardam422

    [re=477598]Come here a minute[/re]: Like those bankers who are always telling us how wonderful they are and how we should be thankful that they get such high pay, because, you know, they are providing us with so much, like destroying the economic base of the world and all.

  44. Hart88

    The really twisted thing is that Fox can convince these minimum wage workers that cutting their hourly rate is a good idea.

  45. mardam422

    [re=477632]PrairiePossum[/re]: Now we’re thinking. Seems as intuitive as cutting wages to help poor people.

    Honestly, where do those guys come from?

  46. user-of-owls

    [re=477603]Servo[/re]: I would have thrown my boot at him. Statues are the new boots.

    [re=477620]Prommie[/re]: Isn’t that the one with the bit where Jesus tells the leprous poors, “Quit thy lamentations already. Thou art begging for a smiting.”

  47. Manos: Hands of Fate

    What the hell do they even need wages for in the first place? Imagine how competitive American capitalism will be after the reintroduction of feudalism.

  48. user-of-owls

    [re=477556]petehammer[/re]: [re=477603]Servo[/re]: [re=477584]snideinplainsight[/re]: Yo, more laff, less laffer, you filthy homoskedastics.

  49. Manos: Hands of Fate

    To really point fingers, the Fox folks were probably talking about Post editor (and Stephen Glass nemesis) Charles Lane’s idiotic editorial in today’s paper about how our minimum wage is too high and is driving away jobs. I thought I picked up the Examiner by accident.

  50. Servo

    [re=477639]Hart88[/re]:
    As much as I’d love to see the shock on the faces of Repugnant minimum wage earners upon discovering that the labor savings were pocketed, I’d also hate to see them predictably turn their rage toward their favorite scapegoat, Obama.

  51. Hooray For Anything

    [re=477586]mamandesfilles[/re]: If you read that brand new Conservative version of the Bible, you will see that Jesus clearly calls for the elimination of the capital gains tax at the Sermon on the Mount, that when he went to the Temple he actually chased out the regulators and not the money-lenders, and that he was crucified at the behest of High Priests Nancy Pelosi, Barney Frankus,and Rosie Chadonnel.

  52. user-of-owls

    [re=477646]Manos: Hands of Fate[/re]: So THAT’S why the kid at Burger King asked me, “How may I serf you?”

  53. Prommie

    [re=477645]user-of-owls[/re]: Yes, but the most stirring verses are the Sermon at Cato:

    Tax not the wealthy, lest they become discouraged and choose to make less money, putting the workers who maketh yachts and moweth lawns out of work;

    Take no pity on the poors, nor the weak, sick, or stupid, for they are deficient and they have no right to draggeth down the superior man;

    Abominate and revile all government regulation, for it is of the devil and is accursed;

    Trust not in laws, but in the invisible hand, by which your unbridled avarice will be transformed into more wealth for you, which is of course the greatest good for all;

    Give charity only to those who need it not, and give mercy only to the innocent, for the needy and the guilty are pains in the ass.

  54. Joshua Norton

    [re=477625]petehammer[/re]: Those types make the same argument for child labor. They never change.

  55. betterDeadThanRed

    I don’t understand how any of this economics stuff any more. I took ECON in the 70s and my teachers were all New Dealers and Keynesian so I’ve been lost since the Carter administration.

    So for all I know the new experts are right. Lower Taxes! Lower Minimum Wage! Less Regulation! Less is more and more is less!

  56. depraved indifference engine

    Yes, but the Labor Supply Curve is double-valued; it posits two distinct wage rates for a given number of hours worked. Clearly all we need is a wormhole that bridges the discontinuity, and voila!

  57. BlueStateLibtard

    [re=477634]Prommie[/re]: You’re correct, higher marginal tax rates on the very top incomes encourage economic growth and activity. During the 1940-1950s when marginal tax rates on the top 10% of earners was highest, there was a huge economic boom. Simply because it didn’t make sense for companies to give their CEOs and top earners huge salaries, since 80 to 90 percent would go to the government. Instead they put that money (profit) not into ridiculous salaries, but into R&D and new businesses, hence lots of jobs.

  58. Snarkalicious

    [re=477565]Prommie[/re]: Som what you’re saying is…this dude wants to make illegal Messicans will be the new middle class?

  59. Snarkalicious

    [re=477586]mamandesfilles[/re]: I’ll check Conservapedia to see if the’ve spliced that into Luke yet.

  60. Justin Time

    The richies always argue that to increase government revenues, the capital gains tax must be cut. Following this “theory”, therefore, the optimal capital gains tax would be zero. And, the richies always argue that to increase employment, the minimum wage should be reduced. Therefore, the optimal minimum wage would be zero. There sure was full employment and economic growth when the minimum/maximum wage was zero for three hundred years during the slavery experiment. So the recipe for economic nirvana is simple enough for even Failin’ Palin to comprehend: abolish all taxes on the richies and bring back slavery! Too liberal for the teabagging ‘tards?

  61. Georgia Burning

    [re=477719]depraved indifference engine[/re]: By that model, there are corporate vice-presidents who are just as useful to the economy as the day laborers standing around Home Depot parking lots. Lots of evidence supporting that, so shouldn’t they all get the same health plan??

  62. engulfedinflames

    [re=477634]Prommie[/re]: It’s been investigated by Thom Hartman.

    Even a great huge asshole like Henry Ford understood that he couldn’t be successful until his workers could afford cars and therefor payed a premium wage.

  63. depraved indifference engine

    [re=478018]Georgia Burning[/re]: That’s what I’m sayin’. Depends on initial conditions, though, on which side of the critical point one ends up. Were Nobama as aggressive as, say, Lenin, an instant role-reversal could be arranged.

  64. zhubajie

    [re=477591]Terry[/re]: Well, I was a 47 year old parking lot attendant, working for minimum wage and no health care. Then I got a job teaching English in Chinese universities and have stayed. For a couple years I kept looking for appropriate work in the US, but couldn’t get anything. Now I’m a professor in China for life.

    It’s true I sort of work for sort of communists, but they are sort of afraid of the masses, so they do sort of share the wealth.

  65. zhubajie

    [re=477957]Justin Time[/re]: No, I’ve long defined “conservatives” as people who want to bring back slavery or at least Jim Crow.

  66. zhubajie

    [re=477619]Redhead[/re]: Those are the former upper-middle class. Now they are evil poor people, under the curse of G-d.

  67. zhubajie

    [re=477598]Come here a minute[/re]: Since the USA is headed for hyperinflation, that may be the payscale in a few years!

  68. zhubajie

    [re=477715]BlueStateLibtard[/re]:

    I doubt it’ll happen. Even if Americans were not to fat to rebel, they would fight each other, not their oligarchic masters. Poor whites, eg., always ID with rich whites, try to keep the coloreds down. The colored fight amongst themselves, too, on the principle “I may not amount sh*t, but I’m still better than a ….” Civil strife worse than the norm, or even a civil war, are not impossible, but it won’t be rich vs. poor. It’d be conservatives vs. liberals, christians vs. gays, muslims, pagans, and probably all plundering all. Look at recent Bosnia, Congo, Rwanda, for prototypes, not France, 1789.

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