Archive for minimum wage

This Labor Day, Let’s Talk About the Minimum Wage - President Obama


President Obama

From YouTube

In this week’s address, the President wished Americans a Happy Labor Day weekend, highlighted the important economic progress we’ve made, and reaffirmed his commitment to accelerate our progress and ensure that our growing economy fuels a strong middle class.


Great American Heroes



Alan Grayson at Sexy Liberal 12-10-11 copy

Nicole Sandler with Congressman Alan Grayson at the Sexy Liberal Comedy Tour in Ft. Lauderdale, December 2011

Our first Great American Hero today is Congressman Alan Grayson. Although he represents Florida's 9th District, he really represents us all! Even in the time of the greatest gridlock in DC, Congressman Grayson - a member of the minority party in the House - has written more legislation and had more amendments passed than any other member, for two years running!

He joined me on the show this morning to talk about some of the work he's done since we last spoke. A sampling of his accomplishments follows:

On the NSA/surveillance/privacy front:

  • He’s passed legislation to protect encryption standards from the NSA 
  • He passed an amendment to the Department of Defense Appropriations bill (H.R. 4870) to prohibit NSA from interfering or weakening encryption standards promulgated by NIST. Grayson called NSA’s subversion of NIST’s standards “extremely dangerous and noted that NSA’s efforts rendered everyone’s security vulnerable to exploitation. “It’s naïve to imagine that if you introduce a weakness into a system you will be the only one to use it. My amendment would address this issue by prohibiting the intelligence community [which includes NSA] from subverting or interfering with the integrity of any cryptographic standard,” he explained. The amendment passed unanimously and earned support from Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, the Sunlight Foundation, and others.
  • In a Science, Space, and Technology Committee markup he passed an amendment removing the statutory requirement for NIST to consult with NSA in developing encryption standards. The amendment allows NIST to continue to consult NSA when necessary. The Huffington Post called Grayson’s effort a “landmark amendment,” while ProPublica wrote that it“puts NSA on notice over encryption standards.” Access said the amendment would “help support data integrity by ensuring that the standards used to protect all internet users are not artificially weakened.” The Center for Democracy & Technology hailed it as a “positive step that will help to restore the credibility and scientific objectivity of NIST.”
  •   He’s pushing the FCC to protect the privacy of Americans’ phone calls, following a Newsweek report claiming that IMSI catchers, a relatively cheap device that impersonates cell phone towers, can intercept phone calls and text messages.
  • He’s been going after former NSA Director Keith Alexander, who stands to make millions off of his work in the cybersecurity sector. Read one of Grayson’s letters here. There’s been a good deal of coverage on this – for example here, here and here.

And in other areas:

Yes, I'd say "hero" is a perfect description. Find out more about Congressman Grayson and donate to help keep him working for us at


Stephanie Kelton on The Nicole Sandler Show at Netroots Nation Detroit, July 2014

Our second hero today followed Congressman Grayson immediately on the show. Stephanie Kelton, Ph.D. is Associate Professor and Chair of the Department of Economics at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. She is also Editor-in-Chief of the top-ranked blog New Economic Perspectives .  

Today we spoke about the new buzz-term and heinous practice known as Corporate Inversion Taxes, as well as a bit about Modern Monetary Theory, why the US should carry debt and how to fix the economic mess we're in.

After hearing what she had to say, I asked her to run for office. Stephanie Kelton is, indeed, a hero who would serve us well in public office!

In the second hour of the show, I spoke with our regular Thursday morning heroes:

Amy Simon of She's History told us about Lily Ledbetter and her fight for paycheck fairness.

And Stephen Goldstein, author of The Dictionary of American Political Bullshit returned with another "No More Bullshit Minute." Today, we exposed the bullshit phrase, "According to a Recent Poll."

Tomorrow, we'll wrap the week with Florida's Judge David Young, discussing the recent rulings in favor of marriage equality and how to figure out who to vote for in judicial races. And for Flashback Friday, my 1996 interview with -and performance by- Sting! Talk to you then, Radio or Not!


Fvx Nation Is ON The Presidential Lack of Feck - even early of a Saturday


They were abuzz with where to fixate blame first … on Obama's Leading From Behind, sanz feck, in the conservative-appropriated Israel and Gaza, or the situation in the Eastern Ukraine that has Hannity et al frothing at the mouth and getting John McCain, Grampy McBombBombs, to share his 'wisdom'; as we reported earlier, yesterday, and in past months, link here for the gamut.

Earlier today, at an ungodly hour, Huckabee expounded on Obama's lack of leadership and had the whole Ick Couch backing him up in a chorale of deck-bemoaning tut-tutting and pooh-poohing.

Poster courtesy our friend Mel Neuhaus, @acehanna54 on the Twitterz

Poster courtesy our friend Mel Neuhaus, @acehanna54 on the Twitterz. Click to enlarge.

Fvx is reporting that Obama is too busy getting manscaped with Putin to be interested, no feck in sight ... so the only debates are about whether he is failing worse in the Mideast or Eastern Ukraine.

 I just don't completely understand when liberals allowed Fox Nation to appropriate Israel -- was there a memo I missed? My blood family is too dull to be Jewish, but adult family/friends have filled in ... when did defending Israel become Fox Noise's and Limpbaugh's job?? Assisted by boobs like these:

You have to be sympathetic to the people of Gaza, the regional tragedy ... it's heartbreaking, but the politics in the U.S. have given it such obscurifying and odious undertones, I struggle with knowing how to report on it.
I suspect it all goes to the creepy religionist appropriation of Their Holy Lands for either the Rapture, salacious future ownership or rights to the mythical lands beloved of Their God or could hypothetically contain some location where Jesus slept? It's going to be touristy, if they get their sick Final Days wishes. Shudder.

The Curvy Couch of Ick was fully loaded.

Hasselbeck, Tucker Carlson, The Goodly Governor Huckabee of the evening Fox Noise lineup for failed neo-con GOPpers rescued by Murdoch or Ailes.

Here's the audio, apologies for Fvxing you early.


'Poking bears' was actually used by Huckabee in what he pitiably felt was a modern analogy.

When they added a Fvx Nation expert, Max Boot, it didn't improve.

For sanity purposes, allow me to add some Melissa Harris-Perry takes on the events that will bring your head back around to the front … and salve some understandable phobias.

And a more global look.



Pastor on Fox Noise Freaks Out About Free Medical Marijuana in Berkeley



It's [the Evil Weed] going to cause Berkeley to make the poverty rate and the income rate to move down over generations …

This is Fvx's new favorite irrational hate target:  The city of Berkeley and their 'free weed' giveaways to the low income population for healthcare' purposes. You won't believe it until you see it, so find those Fox Noise Nausea Meds and I'll meet you on the other side.

stfu wheel of fortune wall

They had former addict and practicing Religionist Bishop Ron Allen on to opine. Twas his erudite quote, above. Gag.

"Why don't Berkeley give 'em free pipes n' papers, also?!?" … This is going to go through generations, and be a really bad deal," summated Fvx's Bishop.

Oh My Christian God … The Good Bishop actually said pot makes you lazy and tripled down on Paul Boy Non-Wonder Ryan's 'generations of unemployed' meme.

Asshat of The Day Award, won.



Fvx Nation Turns Their Hysteria Periscope To The United Nations


It's a pretty good deal to work at the U.N., isn't it?!" brayed Tucker Carlson to Fvx guest 'expert' Michael Warren (from The Devil Bill Kristol's, slime-site 'The Daily Standard')) on Fvx and Friends this fine Saturday morning ... and not in regard to a Wall Street High Roller, either.

"We are sending billion$ to groups of people that hate us!!" was The Tuck's next hyper-ruption. [Can anyone Believe Carlson used to be on prime time messnbc?]

Just imagine the Fox Noise Muckety Mucks pondering the Pro column of their next Red Meat Scapegrace  … with graphics.

Fvx Nation is on the case.

Fvx Nation is on the case.

So. Obama is exiting fairly cleanly, he did (technically probably) take care of Bin Laden, our machination of the Idjit Tea Party effectively put an Out Of Order sign on Congress ... and we could not actually prove that the imposter-president did indeed have the IRS concoct Benghazi.

We need us a new vintage conspiracy theory that dovetails seamlessly with old school tin-foil hat conspiracy memes. Enter Fvx, with a segment block entitled: Money pit: How much of your money is going to the United Nations?



It's a tad early to aim the heavy artillery at Hillary Rodham Clinton [did Morris the Dick go on sabbatical?] ... But of course! The U.N. By very definition it's not about U.S. !It's the Perfect Cluster Phuque of a Fox Fantasy non-news story.

Creak, creak creak, they crank the Fvx Periscope wheel to set their sights on New York Cit-ay and beyond. Cue the hysteria and xenohobic self-serving claptrap.

OH NOes! The Obama administration in 2010 stopped publishing the [assuredly horrific] pay details from what the U.S. contributes in 2010!!!???!!! Get out your lighter fluid and a Patriotic Bic, time for some coiffures to go up in flame.


The U.N. workers apparently make as much as the Koch Bros., have an out of control benefits and pension package, and are sucking Our Amurika dry.

The self-proclaimed Math Whiz, Daily Standard Dude, said it was even more of a salacious scandale than American Taxpayers feared: 30% of U.N. Workers are considered 'high paid' [let us just assume that means slightly more than USD minimum wage). They're going be buying their own individual Special Ops helicopters by 2016.

How on our-God's own green earth do we REGULATE this, in other words.

Agan, hate to give you Fvx, at any hour, but you have to hear it t'believe it. Audio with Siri's help, below, video hopefully to come if it doesn't arrive at Fvx Online by 'publish minute'.

Fox Sheeple, you have your early morning marching orders, retrain those crosshairs onto the ole' Winger Bugaboo, the U.N. ... you have been slacking there, to be quite honest.




Ikea likes "happier co-workers, customers," boosts average minimum wage to $10.76



"I am Laffy and I am an Ikea -oholic."

"Hi Laffy!"

Recently, Mr. Laffy and I spent 2 afternoons assembling four Ikea cabinets. They turned out beautiful, and are functional and less expensive than buying them from some fancy schmancy furniture store. We've shopped at Ikea for decades, buying everything from kitchen supplies to indoor and outdoor furniture to unique decor items. They have really cool stuff. We have, however, avoided their meatballs, but that's another story for another time.

Now we have even more reason to support Ikea. They're into making their employees and customers "happier," as well as creating a positive "shopping experience." How? By raising their minimum hourly wage to $10.76, which is 66 cents more than President Obama was shooting for. Works for us.

As we speak, the federal minimum wage is still $7.25 an hour and hasn't changed since 2009. Personally, I'd like to see wages kicked up to at least $15 an hour, but what do I know? I'm just a dumb lefty socialist Marxist commie who wants to see our country fail and our first black president become the Dictator O' the Whole Wide World.

Via the Los Angeles Times:

Ikea US will boost the average minimum hourly wage across its 38 retail locations to $10.76 beginning Jan. 1, 2015. That's a 17% bump from its current $9.17-an-hour starting wage, and $3.51 above the federal minimum.

"The happier the co-worker, the happier the customer and the better the overall shopping experience," said Ikea's acting U.S. president, Rob Olson. "We wanted to be less concerned about the competition and more concerned about offering our co-workers a better everyday life." [...]

[H]igher wages would also likely spur more spending by workers, potentially giving businesses more revenues to pay their staffs.

What? Someone who disagrees with the GOP, yet is busting his rumpa to comply with the the United States Declaration of Independence's "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness"? What does he think he is... a patriot?

Here's what the National Retail Federation said about the proposal: It's "an anti-job tax." That is SO Republican Tightwad Corporatists ago, NRF. Grow up.

In fact, take a gander at the Gap stores, naysayers. They're raising their minimum wage to $10 an hour by 2015, which would affect 65,000 of its 90,000 employees in the U.S.

scream fear

Gaaaaaa! Hide the kids! Better yet, hide your wallets! Prices will SKYROCKET! Jobs will be slashed!! We're all gonna DIE!!

Since the announcement, the San Francisco company said, job applications for positions at its namesake brand and its lower-priced Old Navy label saw a double-digit increase from the same period a year earlier. Interest from job seekers also swelled at Gap's Banana Republic and Athleta stores.

So how is Ikea's top guy responding to all the panic? Well, for one, he says Ikea will keep on keeping on with even lower prices to attract even more shoppers. Because, see, shoppers really really like cheaper stuff. File that under "Duh."

Plus, says he, paying his employees more will lead to more and better job applicants, less employee turnover, and better customer service. Why? Because workers will stay put at their Ikea jobs longer and feel even more loyalty.

Finally, he said, "Even though the margins might be lower, the bottom line ends up doing better."

And that, GOP, is the Swedish American way! Here's too many more slutspurts, Mr. Olson. *clink!*

the american way


"Think what Ballmer's play money could do to help farmers and their children."


it's all about the money 2

Let's talk money. Few people have enough. A very, very few are sitting on craploads of money, *coughKOCHS, ADELSONcough* but most of us aren't.

GOP Congress members block any Democratic bill that aims to rectify that. *coughMINIMUMWAGEcough* Without wage hikes, the "have-nots" can't spend money. Without that money going into the economy, our situation remains stagnant. And Americans continue to struggle.

But that's okay with Republicans. That way they can blame it all on the president and use his/the Dems' "failure" as a fundraising ploy to win elections while claiming they could do better. Never mind that they've come up with no plan of their own other than that proven catastrophe called austerity. *coughPAULRYANcough*

Billionaires and corporations continue to hoard their money, while the rest of us agonize over how to stay above water, feed and clothe our kids, and simply make it through another day.

And with that, here are a couple of Los Angeles Times letters to the editor, because our voices matter:

Thank you for Friday's compelling story about agricultural workers in the Central Valley ("Dreams die in drought"). I was moved by the plight of these families struggling to get by, and chagrined at the number of children they bring into the world and the stress that this adds.

If someone ever wondered about the differences between the haves and the have-nots, one need only read this story and the adjacent one about the obscene price Ballmer might pay for the Clippers ("NBA record $2 billion offered for Clippers," May 29) .

The fat cats sit game-side doodling on their cellphones while field laborers eke out an existence, or don't. Just think what Ballmer's play money could do to help these farmers and their children.

I only hope the Mormon missionaries in the moving Column One learn from the example of Jesus to not only feed the poor but also to fight for justice for the least of those among us.

Philip Spradling



Economist Brad Schiller cautions that President Obama's proposal to boost the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour would cost hundreds of thousands of jobs. He doesn't mention the multiplier effect of a wage increase. ("A higher minimum wage -- at what cost?," Opinion, May 27)

The multiplier effect is the single most powerful factor in growing an economy. It is to macroeconomics what compounding is to investing.

Schiller mentions the 500,000 jobs that "might" be lost (according to the Congressional Budget Officer report), but he conveniently omits the fact that the CBO also states that the wages of 16.1 million workers would go up. The positive multiplier effect on the 16.1 million workers would more than make up for the negative multiplier effect of the 500,000 who "might" lose their jobs by creating new jobs due to added demand.

In 1992, James Carville famously coined the phrase, "It's the economy, stupid." It's time for an update: "It's the multiplier effect, stupid."

Eric Geisterfer

San Pedro