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'An Unstoppable Movement': Sanders Praises Grassroots After Target Announces $15 Minimum Wage

Originally published at http://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/06/17/unstoppable-movement-sanders-praises-grassroots-after-target-announces-15-minimum

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While a nice start, that’s all this is, a start.
$15 per hour when applied to to full time 40 hour per week worker equates to about 30 thousand dollars per year. After taxes that is about 24 thousand per year, or under the poverty rate for a household of 3 to 4 people.
One must also consider that retail or service based positions like these at Target offer few, if any, tangible affordable benefits. In short, these jobs are still a drain on local economies and underfunded local infrastructure.
One step forward, two steps back.

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If we’re going to have a movement for a ‘target’ minimum wage, how about $21 in '21? $21/hour in the year 2021.

$15 was worth a lot more when the Fight for $15 started 7 or 8 years ago. The movement should be advancing the demanded minimum every year.

But really we need to envision and demand much deeper structural change in the system of wealth and “the economy” that was built by European supremacy, colonization, and capitalism. It’s illegitimate.

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Guest workers live six to a room and eat communally, and some even find the money on their minimum wage engineer salaries to buy a house or two for rental income.

Im not kidding. What does that tell us?

1.) Their wages are not their only source of income
2.) They came here to do something besides work for so little.

Actually, the plan is to replace a lot of jobs with guest workers. because its so much cheaper. Thats logical, but its problematic for US workers because its going to displace the people who do those higher skilled jobs and they will be competing with lower skill workers for the jobs at Target, etc. the owners know this and maybe will hold out because they know that in a couple of years, if this obscenely evil agenda goes forward wages will fall a lot. Basically a huge three decades long dirty trick is being played on the entire nation, in order to funnel jobs to dictatorships and authoritarian countries, Back a few years ago everybody thought wages and labor standards would go up . But then the global equivalent of The Empire Strikes Back was planned, in Uruguay and this plan was cooked yup to help the dicttorships. US workers will be contributing their jobs.

See the problem? We’re badly out of the loop, to say the least.

We have to set much higher goals. Its important because trade deals may make it FTA illegal to raise minimum wages, because foreign companies may be required to pay the minimum wage whatever it is to their workers. A trade deal is often like a contact that locks in the situation when its signed, forever. Almost nobody wants this, not even most business owners. We have to demand betterpoliticians and demand truth. From web sites and media too.

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Does Target have 40 hr/wk workers? I thought standard policy among retail giants was to hire more workers than needed and give them each 16-20 hours so there’s no risk of having to pay overtime even if other workers jump ship.

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When your favorite progressive/left politician joins those reactionary ones at center/right it is high time (at least for this posting progressive here) to move farther to the left. Sounds too radical? How else can the radical right be fought…?

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It must really suck making so little, while being surrounded by all these products you cannot afford to buy.

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I know WalMart pays very little and makes no secret of the fact that it wants it’s workers to move on, get other jobs whatever, every few years so they won’t so obviously deserve higher wages. But the problem is, in many areas they have driven a lot of other employers out of business so they are the only employer, or close to it. Its owners are among the richest people in the world, but they pay such crappy wages.

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Exactly. “Full” time positions are rare in retail, as one of the cardinal sins of retail management is for someone to get overtime.
When someone says full time in retail they often mean 32 hours. Anything more and the worker would qualify for full time benefits, meager as those may be.

When I was a kid out of school, I had a friend who managed a McDonald’s. Their labor cost model called for 200% turnover per annum. That means basically that no one works their longer than three to six months. That way the employee is never off “training wages” that the company can write off as an expense.
Modern day sweatshops is all retail and fast food is.

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A lot of landlords in San Francisco want churn too. If you stay in an apartment more than two or three years they want you out badly, so they can raise the rent on the next tenant.

We all have been indoctrinated to perceive Socialism as “something evil” and as a system model that absolutely cannot work and will always fail. It is time that we free ourselves from this capitalist brainwashing and move into the direction of true freedom from greed, freedom from oppression and exploitation, and freedom from our own internalized human shortcomings. All this will take personal sacrifice, in more than one way. I am willing to try because when looking at Gene Deb’s writings today again I realize that nothing much has changed since he first wrote 'Capitalism vs. Socialism 'in 1912. Except that Capitalism has mutated into a beast that gets harder to tame as time goes by. I am old and probably won’t see the full impact of change. But I have faith that many more people now understand the horrible character of Capitalism and those who serve at it’s altar.

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Harry … where would I get a copy of ‘Capitalism vs. Socialism’ by Gene Deb? Thanks.

Hi mayapan, you can find it online Eugene Debs 'Capitalism vs. Socialism '. I tried to post a link here but CD wouldn’t let me.

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Tax corporations and the rich much more.
This must be very uncomfortable for the mid management people that are now getting $14.50 per hour.

Thanks. Got it! :+1:

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