$15 an Hour for Fast Food Workers—Entitlement is Killing Us

Steve Maraboli said: “A sense of entitlement is a cancerous thought process that is void of gratitude and can be deadly to relationships, businesses, and even nations.” I’ll be the first to admit that when I hear people mention that their generation–the one that fought in WWII–is the best generation; I become annoyed. How can one generation be defined as “the greatest,” when compared to another? People are people; every generation has greats and not so greats within it. However, upon examination of my generation and those a bit older than I, I have come to the conclusion that my generation is lacking in some areas; specifically in terms of entitlement.

The following news story only serves to confirm what I have come to realize. According to NBC:

“On Thursday, fast-food workers staged walkouts at McDonald’s, Burger King, Taco Bell and other restaurants in New York City to call attention to their plight. Organizers scheduled the job actions to commemorate the day Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated 45 years ago in Memphis, where he was supporting a strike by sanitation workers…’It’s not enough,’ Elba Godoy, a crew member at a McDonald’s just a few blocks from Times Square, said of her $7.25-per-hour minimum wage, which helps support her extended family of seven. ‘They don’t like [that we're out here], but we have to do it. We cannot survive on $7.25’…Godoy and her colleagues are seeking a raise to $15 an hour and the right to form a union without retaliation. The walkout is part of a national movement by low-wage workers to raise wages and gain rights.”

At first reading, I actually laughed out loud, remarking to a friend about how ridiculous this “plight” is.

1. The effort to raise minimum wage has been moving forward for many years. However, raising the minimum wage raises difficult questions regarding supply and demand, and how much control the government has over businesses; specifically small businesses.

2. Low-wage jobs are low-wage because they require little skill. The more education or training that is required for a job, the more money that profession is worth. That is basic economics. Those who have poured thousands of dollars into an education have earned the salaries they are given. The more expertise that is required for particular professions serves to narrow the career field, because fewer people are available that posses those necessary skills. Not everyone is qualified to be a surgeon; and not everyone can be paid like one. This isn’t a magical utopia.

3. Raising minimum wage forces some businesses–specifically small businesses–to scale back production and growth, because they are not allowed to stay competitive. In short, government intervention prevents growth of industry. What a concept.

4. I’m sorry if it sounds callous, but $15 an hour for flipping patties is insane. Fast food work can be performed by just about anyone; which is why it is often performed by teenagers.

5. Finally, linking their strike with the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr. is a bit gratuitous.

Times are tough; I understand that; but this is ridiculous. There was a time when something like this strike would not have been indulged. We are living in a generation of entitled children. People believe that because they are trying, they deserve whatever they ask for. That is not the case; nor was it ever the case. This country is not about being handed everything you want, simply because you think you deserve it; it’s about striving to achieve, without unnecessary expectation of grand rewards.

Our country is dying because of our entitlement culture. The demand for more is dragging us down like an anchor to the bottom of the sea. In no time at all, we will drown in our own self-indulgence.







Comments

comments

Posted in Economy, Entitlements, Ethics, Jobs, Unions Tagged with: ,
  • Cliffystones

    “$15 an hour for flipping patties is insane”
    I can’t disagree with you there.  But it’s no more insane than $4 a gallon gas, $5 for a box of cold cereal or $1500 a month for a one-bedroom run-down apartment.  It’s not the numerical value of the desired wage, but the complete lack of worth of a Dollar and the fact that it no longer represents much in the way of actual productive work. Way too many people who do “work” think “productivity” means being a “middle-man” or a “consultant”. Getting one’s hands dirty is considered beneath way too many people who haven’t the skills to do much else.

    • Evermyrtle

      Cliffystones  I can remember making .75 per hour. That .75 would but what $10 dollars will buy today. Back the I could buy gasoline for .25 per gallon. I remember being hired to take someone on a 20 mile trip, one way and charged her .50 for the entire trip my, time and everything involved. She thought that was highway robbery.
      You can watch it every time ther is a pay scale raise, everything you buy will go up to match. I cannot understand why people cannot see this fact.

      • Cliffystones

        Evermyrtle Cliffystones  My Mom would give us kids a dollar and we could go to the corner market and buy enough soda, ice cream and candy to make us sick for days.  She used to opine that when she was little (The depression) a nickel would buy the same.  Remember in “Back to the Future 2″ when Doc Brown gave Marty a $50 and told him to go in and buy a Pepsi?  I think we’re almost there!

        • Evermyrtle

          Cliffystones Evermyrtle  I can remember going to the doctor and being charged $3. In February I went to the doctor last month, with only a sore throat, and was charged $114. After all insurance was paid I was left with a $20 charge.

        • tin can navy

          I remember .05 cent pepsi and coke ,the coke was 6 oz and pepsi was 12 oz therefor I only drank pepsi still do today. I also remember .17 cent sonoco 260 high test blue gasoline in 1963 $12.00 dollars a week for my family’s food bill.$78.00 a month for the moetage on my three bedroom.home in 1962.
          THe good old days, maybe?

  • lizardmansc

    Historically speaking liberal progressive governments have given birth to this kind of insanity since Karl Marx slithered out from under his dead log. The proof is in unrevised history.

    • LeonardW Giddens Jr

      lizardmansc  I remember the movie well. I was still paying nine cent to get in the movies. I can see myself back then, peaking over the top of the front seat scared to death.

  • bobseeks

    $15/hour fast-food workers will mean the end of my trips to fast food joints.

  • smdares44

    Only fools eat and support Fast Food!
    ret expat MD

  • markinla

    Low-wage jobs are low-wage because they require little skill. The more education or training that is required for a job, the more money that profession is worth. That is basic economics. Those who have poured thousands of dollars into an education have earned the salaries they are given. The more expertise that is required for particular professions serves to narrow the career field, because fewer people are available that posses those necessary skills. Not everyone is qualified to be a surgeon; and not everyone can be paid like one. This isn’t a magical utopia.

    This may be the most stupid and elitist comment ever. It’s this kind of thinking that keeps the illegal immigration and guest worker spout open. There is also the fact that some jobs are dirty and dangerous. There are a number of reasons why some jobs pay more than others. If nobody wants to do a job then the pay needs to be raised to find enough people to do it regardless of their education or training. As long as you have an infinite number of illegals and their employers crying “they aren’t worth that much” then you will have this problem.

    • mytorpor

      markinla The stupid and elite part come from YOU.  The truth is that at one time American’s worked at any job that paid…period.  I have personally pulled tobacco in order to earn money help my mom put food on our table after my father died.  Can you imagine a teenage doing that today?  I think I earned fifty-sixty cents an hour.  I also took in ironing and clothing repair and did it after I had completed my homework in the evenings.  If our government would quit handing out money hand over fist to those who think they are too good to do these jobs, American’s would once again  regain their work ethic and either start doing any job that needs to be done for the wage it is worth OR think twice before they drop out of school or have children they know they cannot afford to support!

  • LeonardW Giddens Jr

    Why use MLK? Why $15.00? The world has gone crazy.

    • Brabado

      LeonardW Giddens Jr
      No,  Mr. Giddens, they are not crazy… Liberals, Socialists and  Progressives, don’t like to work for a living.  tht is why they become politicians, love to  play politics and give away as many entitlements as possible:  a/k/a buying Votes,  with other peoples’ money! 
      The world knows that Democrats, Liberal and Progressives are well knonw for supporting all a Welfare State, where everyone stays at home and wait for their Government Check, Food Stamps and Free Cellular Phones…  Other, have to work very hard earned their money” It is in their DNA. 
      Just review, if they have helped our Nation since taking the White House in 2008… and things will get must worst till 2016, if we ever get there.
      Stay well my friend.

      • orvilledwalker

        Brabado LeonardW Giddens Jr You were almost correct but you left out Communists, and Marxists,  which are the same as Liberals, Socialists, Progressives, and Democrats.  I have been voting since the early 60s, and have never knowingly voted for a Marxist.

      • LeonardW Giddens Jr

        Brabado LeonardW Giddens Jr  Mr? Bradado, point made sir. I hope his illegal rein is cut short. People are trying every hour to make that a reality and I am glad. If he is left there another year, the damage can not be reversed. This fraud is a traitor of the highest order, he puts illegals before American, putting our live in danger every time one crosses our border. Just a month or two ago, a couple was crossing the street when they were both run over and killed by an illegal that continued on his marry way to the auto parts store to get parts to repair the damage. This creep treated those people like road kill. The fraud does everything he can to protect everything and everyone else but the people that contribute to the country in many ways. I must stop, I am feeling ill.
        You and yours stay well as well, and never drop your guard.

      • markinla

        Brabado LeonardW Giddens Jr  You also left out Republicans who don’t want corporations to pay any taxes and businesses to be able to continue to hire illegal aliens.

        • tin can navy

          Yet it’s dems who want more and more hispanic illeagls to be brought into this country why? Answer that lib..

        • markinla

          tin can navy They want their votes, what have the Republicans done to stop it? Who is holding up E-verify in the House? Calling everybody smarter and more knowledgeable than you about the issues a liberal is getting old and silly.

        • Cliffystones

          markinla Brabado LeonardW Giddens Jr This common refrain of people not paying taxes, or their “fair share” begs this question.  Why is it better for anyone to hand their money over to a bloated, inefficient, centralized government so it can be squandered? What corporations, businesses and all of us pay combined with the money borrowed should place us all somewhere between a Tropical Paradise and Nirvana. I vote we let the corporations keep more of that money and pay it out as dividends. Then at least it would benefit someone instead of disappearing into a black hole.

        • markinla

          Cliffystones markinla Brabado LeonardW Giddens Jr  Are you even aware of how little taxes multinational corporations pay using offshore tax scams? Why should you pay more in taxes than GE especially when as far as the government is concerned GE is a “person”. Everybody needs to pay something – the street don’t get maintained for free.

      • mark precious

        Brabado LeonardW Giddens Jr  lol

  • orvilledwalker

    If fast food workers are paid $15.00/hour, most fast food restaurants will go bankrupt, and they won’t be making anything/hour.  It will be cheaper to eat in a sit-down restaurant than it will be to eat hamburgers.

    • tin can navy

      It is now cheaper to eat in a sit down joint, and you get better food!

    • sideng58

      orvilledwalker Checked the prices lately?  It’s ALREADY about as cheap to eat in a sit-down restaurant.  Most burger joints around here get $6 for a burger ala carte, but I can still find a good dinner in town for less than $10.

    • whisperatnight

      orvilledwalker OH PLEASE, THESE PLACES ARE INTERNATIONAL AND CAN AFFORD TO PAY A LIVING WAGE.  WE ARE NOT TALKING ABOUT A MON POPS PLACE.

  • Long Driver

    If they want to make $15 an hour, go find another job that pays $7.75 an hour.

  • http://TheTruthHurts.com/ FireStorm

    Are you sure $15.00/hr can pay the rent, electric, phone, transportation, auto insurance, medical BILLS & feed you ???
    TRY IT,,, Calculate your bills with your income & see if you can AFFORD being homeless.
    Figure out WHY FAMILIES ARE LOSING THEIR HOMES FOR BANK FORECLOSURE TO ONLY END UP HOMELESS after FOUR generations farming the same land & living in the same home.
    The days of a man feeding his family with his sweat is over.The Banks run your life, therefore, what EVER you make goes straight to the banks, instead of your to family.
    Welcome to the real world !!!

    • pete0097

      Yes and in the real world, fast food places employ kids between 16 and 21 that are living at home with their parents.  Also in the real world, once they get out of college, get some experience, they start making more money when they change jobs.  If you are working for others, the only way to get ahead is to change companies.  As an engineer, that is how I have gotten ahead.

      • markinla

        pete0097 Yes, in the old days before government let business flood the country with illegals. Now those businesses would rather hire an illegal who can’t complain versus teenagers and their immaturity.

        • mytorpor

          markinla pete0097 So quit voting for liberals who refuse to enforce the laws we already have on the books in order to guarantee their own job!  Stand up and let them know that it is time to enforce our laws and end ALL support of illegal aliens.

        • markinla

          mytorpor markinla pete0097 Reagan and the Bushes never enforced the law. Maybe if you had a brain you would realize the Republicans are no different.

      • http://TheTruthHurts.com/ FireStorm

        pete0097
        ARE YOU SURE, YOU LIVE IN THESE PLANET,,,???
        Have you EVER asked yourself WHY people are losing their homes for foreclosures, after a life time gainfull employment???
        Let me Guess,,, You never had anything to lose after a lifetime of hard work & gainful employment.

    • http://TheTruthHurts.com/ FireStorm

      Little did you know,,, the STUDENT FAMILIES already lost their homes for FORECLOSURES,,, now the students have to pay the bills of their families.WELCOME TO THE REAL NEW WORLD,,, :-))))))) Your Engineering Degree would NOT even buy you a home to live in, after paying your $100,000 student loans to get a degree.Your days of DECEPTION & FAKE TRIP has been exposed by the Bank Foreclosures for the whole world to see.

  • Karinavkcloq2jx
  • Public_Citizen

    4. I’m sorry if it sounds callous, but $15 an hour for flipping patties
    is insane. Fast food work can be performed by just about anyone; which
    is why it is often performed by teenagers.
    This  is also why the fast food industry is developing more and more automation.  It won’t be very long before the touch screen terminal where you place and pay for an order is linked to a machine that processes your order, packages it and serves it too you, eliminating a lot of the minimum wage ~labor~ costs and all of the regulatory burden and overhead and support costs that go with having employees.
    If a small businessman can reduce his labor to one person per shift instead of 3 to 12 people this is a major savings, particularly with the burden of cost and reporting associated with Obamacare.
    In addition, machinery is a depreciable expense which is a major consideration for any business.  The costs to maintain and update an automated system are usually less than the ongoing hiring and training costs associated with high turnover minimum wage jobs making automation even more attractive when employees start making unreasonable and economically unjustifiable demands

  • CharlesHigley

    I teach college-bound students AP Chem and AP Physics and do not come close to making $15/hour. I wish.

  • Richard Gibbard

    The restaurant managers probably don’t get $15 per hour.

  • sideng58

    High unemployment (which will NEVER go away) has caused business to get greedy, socking away BIG profits while workers are desperate to accept any job they can get.  Wages over the years simply have not kept up to inflation or profits.  Compare what a meal at McDonalds cost only a few years ago compared to what it costs today, then compare the wages, see what I mean?  I also heard a rumor that McDonalds was going to start requiring a bachelor’s degree to work at the register, the one with the little pictures, so our kids will now have to go $100,000 in debt to get that $8.00/hr job.

  • mark precious

    I assume his reference to MLK day referred to predominant display of black people, he went on to rephrase the issue as a scourge and a plight. I would like to ask him if his profession has a union? What is the food industry PAC if it is not a defacto union for Wendy’s/McDonalds to lobby the people who make the rules. So what is OK for one group is not OK for another, particularly as he references ‘his generation’ so much,we can assume he’s not had too much exposure to our multi cultural society. Also how does he know what it takes to flip burgers, 8 hours of work deserves a decent pay rate, if he had worked a week at a fast food joint i might have viewed this article differently but his generation would never really know. Apart from that the PAC lobbies a group of people who have advanced their salary $26,000 in the past 15 years in which they have held the minimum wage where it is, oh yeah, that’s fair isn’t it.

  • mark precious

    I find seudo religious of his generation so able to remove themselves of any empathy for others, so unlike Jesus, yet they align themselves with Christ. This guys got no idea of reflecting on his priveleged upbringing, how the hell can you get to be a surgeon on $7.25 an hour. “There was a time when something like this strike would never have been indulged”…..what the hell, what would have happened to these folk in your generation, come on, tell us, this scourge, this plight, this fungus on society………you Sir are a racist. “We will drown in our own self indulgence”….these poor folk working hard, day in day out, self indulgent society of entitlement, oh, like the bankers? Your system just brought itself to its knees because of self indulgence, these people can’t get a little more money to put food on their tables…………..oh and seven famly members, you just had to mention that, your generation never had seven did they?

  • mark precious

    Check out sciencefriday.com and reference the Bonobo monkey, it has been shown that even animals have reasoning and empathy and a sense of fairness, check out the video, you Sir are less than this ‘primate’ in that you have reached a stage where you can proclaim from above without any type of self reflecting or experience of anothers situation, its beyond primate apparently, some very unusual characters from history had this ability, when their head hit the pillow they could not care less about their deeds. Brainwashed maybe, braindead yes, dangerous definitely.

  • mark precious

    http://www.nationofchange.org/
    ….I don’t know, just the next article I read. BofA’s most productive office is in Mexico City, that office does their banking in the Caymans. You still worried about Wendy’s folk striking for a living wage?

  • whisperatnight

    YOU ARE BLOWING THE WAGES ISSUE WAY OUT OF PROPORTION. FOLKS WORKING IN CUSTOMER SERVICE POSITIONS ARE NOT ASKING TO BE PAID LIKE A SURGEON. BUT, EVEN COOKS NOW DAYS HAVE TO HAVE A STATE CERTIFICATE. A NONCOMMISSIONED SECURITY PERSON MUST HAVE A STATE CARD TO ALLOW THEM TO DO SECURITY WORK. SOME OF THESE REQUIRE HUNDREDS OF DOLLARS TO OBTAIN. YOU ARE OUT OF TOUCH AND HAVE NO IDEA WHAT IT TAKES TO HAVE AND KEEP A JOB ANY MORE. DO A LITTLE RESEARCH, WOULD YOU?

    • orvilledwalker

      whisperatnight I know exactly what it takes to have a GOOD job these days, EDUCATION.  Fast food jobs, for the most part, are part-time work, and are filled mostly with students.  I worked for over 40 years, and the only time I was “out of work” was while I returned to school, after retiring from the Navy, to get my MSN.  One thing good would happen if your pipe dream about pay would happen, most of the fast food joints would go out of business.  Oh, and, are you not smart enough to turn off your Caps-Lock!

      • http://TheTruthHurts.com/ FireStorm

        orvilledwalker whisperatnight
        “I know exactly what it takes to have a GOOD job these days, EDUCATION”,,,
        Sure,,,, Too bad,,, You had NO IDEA you need more  MONEY to have EDUCATION & by the time you graduated from 4yrs college, you are already in $100,000 Student loan debt to be paid,,, with out even having a job YET :-)

    • Cliffystones

      whisperatnight By contrast, my trade has no certification and/or licensing requirements.  There is a “certification”, but it’s voluntary (and a joke IMO).  When you go get your hair cut, you can rest assured that the Barber is licensed by the state.  But if you need open heart surgery, your anaesthesia system could have been serviced by some guy they picked up in front of Home Depot that morning. Not likely, but not illegal either.

  • http://[email protected] Laurence Almand

    An even $10.00 an hour would be a just wage for unskilled workers in this inflated day and age, but $15 is too much, especially for people who can scarcely read and write, and spend their extra cash on drugs.

    • http://TheTruthHurts.com/ FireStorm

      Laurence Almand
      ARE YOU SURE, YOU LIVE IN THESE PLANET,,,???
      Have you EVER asked yourself WHY people are losing their homes for foreclosures, after a life time gainfull employment???
      Do yuo mean the people who ;losing LIFETIME TREASURE & HOMES for “foreclosures” are “unskilled workers in this inflated day and age,  people who can scarcely read and write, and spend their extra cash on drugs” ???????????????
      Too bad,, YOUR FANTASY ISLAND has NOT hit your home yet :-)

  • gparra9

    I  totally agree with you, but the fact is he federal govt. can & will force “ALL” private businesses to raise their minimum wage to what ever they want because there is “NO ONE” to stop them !!!!!!!!!!

    • markinla

      gparra9 If that same government thanks to morons like Reagan hadn’t flooded the country with low skilled third worlders, there would be no need for minimum wages, the market would determine wages as there would be a shortage of people working for nothing.

  • mac7692at

    1. as long as people look to government as their Savior we will continue with problems.
    2. as long as we have to do with big business we will continue with problems
    3. as long as we allow big business big banks the insurance to intermingle with government we have big problems.
    4. nothing will get fixed as long as these three previous things continue.
    as long as we allow the businesses and government to separate the cost of living high inflation we will have problems. cost of living, 3 percent, inflation six percent,, pay reduction 3 percent.
    big business is nothing more than the tool used by government to control the populace, and the government used by big business to control the Populace. basic conservative principles this is known as socialism, this in particular is fascism, mussellini and Hitler style. not quite as bad as straight up communism, but close.