McDonald’s Labor Fight Shows Why $15 Minimum Wage Doesn’t Work

Anytime Elizabeth Warren chimes in on an issue I must first start my deep breathing exercises, try not to stare into her fake-Indian eyes, and convince myself that her presence on the political stage is just a dream, or perhaps the proverbial nightmare. In an attempt to make this attack on her non-personal, I just have to say that I was told that women, the kinder and gentler of the sexes, would be a voice of reason and peace as they come to grasp some of the highest political positions in the land.

One would be hard pressed to find an image of this senate woman that depicts a countenance of not having a mean faced, clipped haired appearance of one who wipes lithium-induced spittle from the edge of her mouth before a photo op. Too harsh?

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There is a method to this madness. The typical back and forth between management and labor (the word labor brings up connotations of the Communist Manifesto) with one side yelling sabotage and the other wailing about ethical concerns. Who cares? It’s all about minimum wage and in this case a $15 minimum wage for fast food workers.

Don’t get me wrong. I have no beef with fast food workers. I was once one. The difference being mine was a way to get through high school, and today’s worker is attempting to support a family of four. In a Bloomberg piece, Warren was quoted as saying, “It’s the board’s job (National Labor Relations Board) to give workers a fair shake and these two members can’t do that.” Warren, a Democrat from Massachusetts supports “Fight for $15.”

It’s unfortunate that those fighting for a higher minimum wage hold their hopes in increased government regulation, which in a Trump administration is not likely to happen. One must also remember that as survival is the basic tenant of life, it is also the bottom line of a for-profit business. I know profit can be a dirty word for those in the labor camp, but I wonder if they understand that their expense (wages) are deducted from sales before they hit the bottom line.

If a business does not make a profit, there will be no business, hence no minimum wage jobs. But then there is, of course, the welfare safety net. Regardless of all the efforts by the do-gooders, most of whom have never run a hotdog stand, but are somehow experts in entrepreneurship, there appears to be a disconnect in raising wages and actual take-home pay. Take the glorious city of Seattle as an example.

As companies look for ways to cut costs, Seattle’s $15 minimum wage law may be hurting hourly workers instead of helping them, according to a new report. The minimum wage increased from $9.47 to $11 per hour in 2015, and to $13 in 2016, according to the report. Referencing the USA Today, the study, which was funded in part by the city of Seattle, found that workers clocked 9% fewer hours on average, and earned $125 less each month after the most recent increase. That is a significant hit if you are a fast food worker. Government and politicos only care on the surface, while businessmen and woman care wholeheartedly. This is why they will not lose this fight. Despite the survey’s results, the Alice in Wonderland Mayor of Seattle, Ed Murray, said he stands behind the $15 minimum wage law, Reuters reported. Of course he does.

About John Thomas

John Patrick Thomas is a four-time cancer survivor who lives with his family in South Florida. John attended Gettysburg College and The American University before embarking on an entrepreneurial career on Wall Street. He turned to the teaching profession after his life-threatening bout with bone cancer. John has recently written a #1 Amazon Cancer Bestselling book entitled, “A Call to Faith, the Journey of a Cancer Survivor.” He has appeared in publications such as The New York Times, The Wall St. Journal, The Washington Post, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center publications, and was featured in new DayStar network series, “Impact with Pastor Dave.” He has traveled as a missionary and may be one of the few people that tell you cancer was the best thing to ever happen to him. You’ll have to ask him why.


  1. Somehow I doubt that Ed Murray or Elizabeth Warren are not worried to much about their hours being cut or not having a job. John Gruber once again has been proven correct. as democratic voters do appear to be to stupid to realized that the Demonuts don’t care about their welfare, it is all about getting your vote and they keep right on voting for them!

  2. Can you include a link to your cited source? As far as Seattle goes, you mentioned the most recent increase — what about the prior ones? As well, this is biased toward a supposed entrepreneurship that is not necessarily the case, since the larger companies are often managed by employees. Ray Kroc is long gone, and Mickey D’s is not even run by his descendants anymore. Why does one set of employees want to pay another set less? And who decides which employees determine the pay grade? There is a lot of incompleteness to this article.

  3. I guess that if you LOWERED the minimum wage they’d work more hours they’d make more money, buy a house on $5.50 hr?

    • That’s a stupid remark. It’s not that a small raise in the minimum wage hasn’t been shown to be beneficial for ALL, overall, including employers but that going from $9 per hour to $15 per hour is pretty draconian and such an increase has never been tried nor studied. This makes it a social experiment with real people based on biases by people who aren’t likely to be affected by the outcome directly. Also, minimum wage is meant to be an ENTRY LEVEL pay scale and no one ought to expect to be able to buy a house with an entry level job — unless he/she are working two jobs or there are two household incomes. The minimum wage, allowing for inflation, from the mid-60’s is around a tad over $11 per hour. No one expected to be able to buy a home in the 60s on a minimum wage job unless they lived in an area that had abundant land and housing — and that dynamic has changed dramatically since then based on a rising population with static land availability and zoning laws (etc) that have allowed the amount of housing built to be less than the population growth.

      • “. . . a social experiment with real people based on biases by people who aren’t likely to be affected by the outcome directly.”
        This is important to remember.

  4. Yes the 15 dollar minimum wage sounds great. But lets look at the future. The now employee making 15 will have to make 21 dollars and hour and pay raise for everyone. So what happens? All food, merchandise ext. goes up and above to compensate. I’m not a noble prize writer, political figure, just what I think common seance person. I can remember gas 25 cents cigs 20 cents, burgers 25 cents, new cars 2,500 dollar ext. I made 3 dollars an hour and could afford more then than I can now making 30 dollars and hour. We have as a country just over inflated so much that the average person can only see what they can make but forget what they purchase goes up. A few years back I got a 1.10 dollar and hour raise. WOW after taxes, insurance, dues ext. going up I made 15 dollars less than before the raise. SO GO FIGURE!

  5. I’m not in disagreement with your comments … some corrections and additions .. Murray is NO LONGER MAYOR having resigned in disgrace from a scandal in which he was accused numerous times of sexual predation (mostly disbelieved or “discredited” until his own foster son came forth, too). It is interesting also that Murray is considered slightly “right wing” in Seattle whereas he is considered pretty far Left everywhere else. The current Mayor is slightly more favorable to some business interests but each candidate for the mayoral election generally ran on “who was Left enough for Seattle.” The Seattle City Council or the Mayor’s office commissioned that study noted in this story AND it was performed by the University of Washington — hardly a Right Wing bastion — but the City didn’t like its conclusions (which were very well defended from an academic viewpoint) and was planning on commissioning another study (presumably until their biases were confirmed). In fairness, it IS a little early but it is also a little specious because Seattle is in a prosperous boom with less than 4% unemployment, which will push up most salaries on market dynamics alone, let alone the raise of the minimum wage. Hansen, a local billionaire, has been fighting to make the $15 minimum STATE wide which would clearly damage the eastern part of the state, which has to compete with Idaho businesses. Even so, it is pretty clear SO FAR that overtime is being cut back or some businesses are hiring part time workers rather than paying for overtime with established employees. The upshot is that many are paid more for their usual hours but their overall take home $$ is less due to less work being offered. I know a number of immigrant workers who come from places where there is NO OPPORTUNITY to earn reasonable money no matter how hard they are willing to work. Most like getting paid more for their hours but prefer getting paid less per hour but having the opportunity to work more hours to actually earn more money overall as they are happy to work more than 40 hours per week — something most Americans somehow feel is beneath their dignity.