“After Minimum Wage Hike, Labor Day Will Be Replaced by Cheaper, More Efficient, Robot Labor Day”

… Foremost on the front burner is an attempt by the Democrats to raise the federal minimum wage to $15 an hour. A fiscal review by the Senate Budget Committee, however, showed that doing so would make human labor costs so prohibitive that all human workers would quickly be replaced by AI software, self-serve kiosks, or those creepy headless Boston Dynamics robots. As companies could no longer afford to pay people $120 to not do a lick of work on the first Monday in September, “Labor Day” would have to be changed to “Robot Labor Day,” and the focus would switch to celebrating how our robot friends keep companies in business, rather than how minimum wages and unions almost destroyed them.

Read the entire post.

Satire, like skateboarding, is not a crime – yet.

37 thoughts on ““After Minimum Wage Hike, Labor Day Will Be Replaced by Cheaper, More Efficient, Robot Labor Day””

  1. So a living wage will break your countries ability to prosper, and make robots the new servant class? A good health care plan will have the same effect according to most of your right wing commentators.

    You might consider the purpose of a well run economy … nah, lets not be crazy. ;)

  2. It’s not so much that PenGun is wrong, as that his prescriptions are worse than the disease, even if he glimpses actual problems

    Destroying small entrepreneurial businesses, which cannot effort do pay more than people are worth, to the benefit of large businesses which can afford to replace low skill labor with machines, will simply make America into even more of a faceless corporate monstrosity than it already is.

    The real impetus behind these minimum wages hikes is unions which have wages set by multiples of the minimum wage. They are seeking gain at the expense of the unorganized, and it should not be tolerated.

    The way to create living wages is to have a high value workforce, which means among other things, getting rid of our idiotic and corrupt K-12-College-Grad School self-serving machine. We have had three or four generations badly damaged by it and that is more than enough.

    Another thing to do is lower the tax and regulatory burden on wealth creators and job creators so that labor is in demand and wages can rise.

    Yet another is to secure the border so that the incoming tide of low skill foreign labor does not devastate wages at the low end for American workers who are citizens and entitled to some consideration and protection.

    Insulating American workers from competition by foreign workforces which have none of the protections they enjoy, corporate America’s way of effectively repealing a century of health and safety regulation, would also be good. Let Chinese goods into the country when Chinese workers are not working in dirty, dangerous, unhealthy sweat shop conditions. If the Chinese cannot comply, they can sell their stuff to each other.

    But simply mandating higher wages won’t have the desired effect.

  3. What a brilliant idea! An increased minimum wage will destroy jobs and create more unemployed and/or desparate people who will be depening on Democrat/Progressive/Socialist/Corruptocrat “Gibs” handed out by the mayor/aldermen/ward-healer. Just like keeping the Amazon jobs out of New York City protected the lowest class for the “Party”, but with a built-in excuse for higher taxes on the “wealthy”.

    What could go wrong?

    You must realize that the low levels of minority unemployment by the Trump Admistration is a savage attack on the very core of the “Party”. There will be too many potential “clients” who realize that they don’t need the “Gibs” from “Hiz/Er Onor” to have a decent life.

  4. Pengun stops by with a small dose of Socialist realism. “Give me all your money and I will take care of you.”

    Just like the Indians get taken care of.

    A good health care plan will have the same effect according to most of your right wing commentators.

    VA Care for All!

    And what IS a living wage, pray tell? I’d like to live in Malibu, but can’t afford it. I welcome efforts to pay me a living wage to live there.

  5. The 25K in NYC weren’t going to be working in a warehouse for $15.00 an hour. They weren’t going to be doing anything that useful and certainly not for as little as $15.00 an hour, they were going to be paper shufflers.

    This brings up something I wondered at the time. How was it anything but a sign to get far, far away that management suddenly wakes up one morning and decides they need to add 50,000 employees to overhead? I always assume that when a business starts to spend a lot of money and effort on fancy campuses and such that they are on the way out.

    Apple, I talking about you. Boeing moved management away form the managed and look where they’re at. The whole Amazon episode, besides being the most craven example of rent seeking, is probably a sign that it is past its peak and on the way down.

  6. You idiots pay far more for health care than anyone else in the first world. That a socialistic approach works better that your strange ‘devil take the hindmost’ approach, must gall a bit.

  7. MCS,

    Amazon never had any plans to open an HQ in NYC. It was all a giant scam. If they really had plans to open a second HQ why have they not announced a replacement site for NYC? What is wrong with the #2 site on the list? Nope, they will never open a 2nd HQ

    Amazon announced that they were going to open a new HQ and 250 cities, representing probably 75-85% of the US population fell all over themselves giving them data about their cities and citizens and outlying areas. Much of it public, but a lot of it private that Amazon normally could not have gotten. Amazon paid nothing to collect the data. Since they gave the cities a specific format for how they wanted it, Amazon didn’t even have to collect it.

    The problem was that once they got the data, they had to “cool the mark” as they say in long cons so the mark would not complain.

    This is pure speculation on my part but I would not be surprised if Amazon did not have a hidden hand in electing AOC. AOC saved their bacon by killing the project.

    So no second HQ in NYC. No second HQ anywhere, and Amazon has acquired, pretty much for free, information and databases worth billion$.

    John Henry

  8. Jay,

    Have you ever been in a VA hospital or other medical facility?

    The quality varies between them but many are excellent. I suspect that a lot of the bad rap is PR to keep vets from going and overloading the system.

    I was always leery of the VA and never even thought of using it until 10-15 years ago when my son convinced me to sign up. So I went and registered. I have no service disability, am not retired so I didn’t even think I qualified. They asked me for financial data to see if I qualified as low income and I refused to give it to them.

    So I am a paying customer. I pay $50 per visit regardless of what they do. I have a routine doctor’s visit twice a year, it’s $50. My first visit they sent me for a full workup. Buncha x-rays, cardio exam, labs and a couple other things. I was there all day, not much of the time waiting. $50.

    Prescriptions are $8/month.

    It used to be a real pain in the neck to go to the VA hospital in San Juan. About 5 years back they opened an outpatient clinic in the next town over from me where I get my labs and routine visits. I pointed out a suspicious mole so they sent me to a dermatologist. Now I do that twice a year. I complained about shortness of breath and that brought on a day in getting stress tests, breath tests and so on.

    They call to make sure I am taking my meds (I’m not. I don’t think I need them and don’t like medication on principle) I wind up with 4-5 visits per year. I tell my son that it sometimes feels like it verges on harassmant.

    My brother in law got a knee replaced by the VA. Not service related, not retired, it cost him a couple hundred dollars out of pocket. Another BIL had a stroke about 20 years ago. He’s home but they’ve been taking care of him ever since.

    In short, I could not be happier with my treatment by VA. Unlike most doctors in PR, when I have an appointment, they are always punctual. Very little waiting.

    I talk to other vets around the US and some have similar experiences. Others have the experiences you hear about on the news.

    John Henry

    In other words, the quality of care I am get

  9. Pengun,

    All business is based on buying a commodity at a price, adding value to it, then reselling it for more. If the business can’t sell it for more, they will shortly go out of business.

    Labor, at all points on the skill spectrum, is just another commodity that a business buys, adds value to and resells at a profit.

    If the cost of the labor is higher than what it can be resold for, the business can’t afford it and will find an alternative. Perhaps higher skilled labor and less of it, perhaps automation or perhaps stop doing business.

    So if a person’s labor is not worth $15, how can any business in its right mind may $15?

    And actually, the rule of thumb is to add 50% to the stated wage to cover marginal benefits (SS, Unemployment, Workers Comp, healthcare, uniforms and the myriad of other things that a worker gets). So that $15/hour wage that the employee gets actually costs the employer $22.50.

    John Henry

  10. Also, Pengun

    What do you tell the worker whose labor is not worth $15+/hr but might be worth $10+/hour?

    Sorry, you can’t work. Sorry you have to starve or be a public charge all your life. Tell me “John Henry you have to hire 10 people at $15+/hr” (Not gonna happen. It is one of the reasons I have had no employees for the past 25 years or so.)

    You have to work on the black market for what your labor is actually worth?

    What is your proposal for these folks whose labor is not worth $15+?

    Perhaps, as PDJT is doing, relaxing some of the restrictions on apprenticeship programs will help by making people’s labor worth more.

    Perhaps if we had schools and universities that taught useful skills people would be able to earn $15+ or more.

    John Henry

  11. One point of Canadian health care is to have the poorest treated as well as the richest. Its an actual goal, to deny the rich better health care.

    It is not hard to understand business. That its not a good way to do everything that way, may be difficult for you to understand. ;)

  12. You idiots pay far more for health care than anyone else in the first world.

    We idiots pay more for health care than anyone else in the First World for several reasons:

    1. We pay for drug R&D. The American pharmaceutical is larger than that of the rest of the world combined, which is why in negotiations pharma companies fight for it, and throw in other countries as bargaining chips.

    You free riders get the benefit by buying drugs through national health services on a cost-plus basis. That’s pretty much equivalent to copying the DVD of a movie. Of course it’s cheap; the major costs were paid by someone else.

    2. Malpractice lawsuits. The Left resists any and all attempts to deal with this problem. Why? Because the American Trial Lawyers Association (i.e., the ambulance chasers) is one of the top donors to the Democrat Party. (Recall that ambulance chaser par excellence, John Edwards, made his pile of money in bogus malpractice lawsuits before becoming a Democrat Senator and VP candidate before blotting his copy book.)

    3. We idiots also pay for your defense. The New York city police department (45,000) is almost twice the size of the Canadian Army (23,000). If Canada and all the other free riders paid their fair share, we’d have more money for health care here.

  13. Oh my. Your people are flocking to Canada to buy insulin, something we came up with and somehow don’t need to rob the diabetics blind for. You really should be ashamed. Penicillin etc, we haul our part of the load in this department.

    You do not pay for our defence. We take care of ourselves. That we are in various agreements over continental defence does not make us dependant. We employ more civilians than the 23,000 number and the actual strength is 126,500. We don’t need your defence, in fact I will not vote this next time as they all want to stay up your ass. If this were not the case we would have good relations with China and Russia. Following you idiots is stupid, dangerous and useless for our development.

  14. Jay,

    Two corrections to your excellent comment. Or perhaps elaborations more than corrections.

    1) Canada buys drugs on a variable cost plus, not cost plus as you stated. Cost plus implies that they pay for a portion of the fixed costs like R&D, facilities, regulatory compliance. The variable cost on a drug with a total cost of say $20/dose may be less than $1

    Variable costs, or direct costs, of drugs are mostly materials. Some would include labor which may or may not be a direct cost depending on several factors.

    2) The reason drug companies sell to Canada at Variable cost plus is not out of the goodness of their hearts. It is extortion. Canada tells Pfizer, J&J or whoever this is what we are going to pay or we will make it ourselves and pay you a 4% royalty. Canadian law permits this extortion.

    Even this would not be so bad except that the fear is that Canadians would flood the US market with their cheap, unapproved and unregulated by the US, drugs.

    John Henry

  15. Pengun,

    Yes, Canadians did invent insulin. But, like the Brits with Penicillin, they could not product (not a typo) it. It was a laboratory curiosity doing nobody any good until Eli Lilly & Co of Indianapolis figured out how to produce it in usable form, quantity and price. (“Product” it into a usable product)

    As for cost of insulin, it is still pretty low in the US. The higher costs are for new, genetically engineered insulin which may be more convenient (once vs twice a day) than the older kind that Canada sold the patent for. Or for snazzier injection pens rather than syringes. It may not be therapeutically any better.

    $24.88 for 10ml That’s the price 100 day supply for a patient taking 10 units per day. (25 cents per day for the math challenged)

    John Henry

  16. Apparently a link with Walmart in it will not post. If you want to see the page for $24.88 insulin search Novolin-ReliOn-Insulin-N/167672445

    The link to the Sharyl Atkisson story keeps the comment from posting as well. To find it Bing


    John Henry

  17. [i]You do not pay for our defence. We take care of ourselves. [/i]

    Great. Then you’re on your own from now on.

    But I would like to liken this situation to PeeWee Herman saying he’ll take of himself, while standing next to a hulking bodyguard.

  18. We employ more civilians than the 23,000 number and the actual strength is 126,500.

    You appear not to understand the term “army.” Civilians are NOT in the army. Nor are passersby, people who’ve seen “Saving Private Ryan,” etc., which I presume you also would want to count, if they pass by slowly enough.

    In any case, accepting your point arguendo, the Canadian is – by some reckoning – larger than the NYC police force. I’m impressed.

    Following you idiots is stupid, dangerous and useless for our development.

    Great again. We’ll seal the border and stop trade. Then we’ll have Mexico north AND south of us.

  19. The reason drug companies sell to Canada at Variable cost plus is not out of the goodness of their hearts. It is extortion. Canada tells Pfizer, J&J or whoever this is what we are going to pay or we will make it ourselves and pay you a 4% royalty. Canadian law permits this extortion.

    Thank you, I oversimplified in the interests of brevity. Other countries do the same thing you described. India, for example, has repeatedly threatened to force licensure of patents to Indian companies (e.g., Dr. Reddy’s) on their own terms, or they will invalidate the patent entirely. It’s basically theft of intellectual property. Once someone knows what to make, and how to make it, actually doing so is straightforward – and cheap.

  20. “You appear not to understand the term “army.” Civilians are NOT in the army. Nor are passersby, people who’ve seen “Saving Private Ryan,” etc., which I presume you also would want to count, if they pass by slowly enough.”

    Our military employs more civilians than your number for the whole thing. Is that plain enough? That you need such a large police speaks to your lack of actual civilization. Did you know a lone woman is safe in any part of China?

    “Great again. We’ll seal the border and stop trade. Then we’ll have Mexico north AND south of us”

    I would be pleased. It would stop the futile attempts to get you to behave like a civilized country, and force us to look elsewhere. As you are on the way down and China is on the way up we would be foolish to tie our star to your failing country.

    “But I would like to liken this situation to PeeWee Herman saying he’ll take of himself, while standing next to a hulking bodyguard.”

    That would be you. Distance would be very good. As well Peewee never burned down your capital. ;)

  21. John Henry: I hadn’t thought of the data Amazon collected, just the free advertising had to be worth million/billions. I note that they have still spent a lot of money building things like the globes in Seattle.

    I’m glad your experience with the VA has been satisfactory, mine, more than 20 years ago with my father was decidedly mixed. I described the Dallas VA Hospital as not among the 20 best in Dallas.

    Back when I hired people, I hated it. I knew the people I passed over would never be a problem, and that the person I hired probably would and had to hope they would be worth it. I think that Wal-Mart and the rest of retail has spent the last 15-20 years driving away any employee that could possibly get a job anywhere else and now wonder why fewer and fewer people want to go in their stores.

    For a perspective on the drug business, I recommend:

    The problem with drugs is that the first pill probably costs 10 billion, the second and all the rest cost penneys. At the same time, drug costs account for about 10% of U.S. health care costs. No one has been willing to expend effort to police the free riders, that Trump seems willing to do more than deplore IP theft may be registering outside of China.

  22. There is finally, a sensible article about healthcare costs.

    Ignoring PenGun’s hostile trolling, the American system is satisfactory for the 85% covered by employer plans (and NOT switched to Obamacare) but it is too expensive.

    The first policy—price tags—is a necessary prerequisite for competition and efficiency. Under our current system, it’s nearly impossible for people with health insurance to find out in advance what anything covered by their insurance will end up costing. Patients have no way to comparison shop for procedures covered by insurance, and providers are under little pressure to lower costs.<

    Trump has begun this but it will require dismantling the insurance contracts system that make "wholesale" prices trade secrets.

    we will also see massively lower administrative costs. They are currently extremely high because once a doctor submits a bill to an insurance company, the insurance company works hard to deny or discount the claim. Thus begins a hideously costly and drawn-out negotiation that eventually yields the dollar amount that the doctor will get reimbursed. If you have price tags for every procedure and require that every patient be charged the same price, all of that bickering and chicanery goes away. As does the need for gargantuan bureaucracies to process claims.

    That is at least 50% of US costs. And it will make HSAs work.

    While Indiana offers its workers a variety of health-care plans, the vast majority opt for the deductible security plan, under which the state covers the premium and then gifts $2,850 into each employee’s HSA every year.

    Since that amount is equal to the annual deductible, participants have money to pay for out-of-pocket expenses. But the annual gifts do more than ensure that participants are financially secure; they give people skin in the game. Participants spend prudently because they know that any unspent HSA balances are theirs to keep. The result? Massively lower health-care spending without any decrement to health outcomes.

    That is the solution to the cost issue.

  23. If you want to know where creatures like PenGun come from, This is where he comes from,.

    A single Canadian father has been accused of violating his province’s human rights act by questioning a prospective babysitter about his gender and age, according to court documents.

    The father-of-two, identified only as ‘Todd F.’, is being investigated by the Alberta Human Rights Commission after a complaint was filed against him in 2017 by the babysitter, James Crynowski.

    Todd posted an advertisement on Kijiji.com, a popular classified Canadian ad site, seeing a ‘babysitter wanted for evening Friday September 1’ for his two sons, then five and eight, as he was planning to meet a friend for dinner.

    According to legal documents, Todd received several responses to the posting and among them was Crynowski’s, who listed skills such as CPR, first aid, a clean criminal record and seven years experience of caring for children.

    These people are insane and I’m trying to avoid obscenity in referring to them.

    The days when Canada contributed significantly to their own defense have been gone for years.

  24. PenGun – yes, homogeneous societies where everyone looks like second-cousins can tolerate a fair bit of socialism. In America, we are trying to do something more noble, of people who are actually different living in freedom and not coincidentally, prospering. Insofar as Northern Europe and the Anglosphere are bringing in people of other cultures, they are finding it not so easy, as those cultures use more and contribute less. They are acquiring problems they thought only Americans were susceptible to over the last two decades, and they aren’t handling it well – and they are now objecting to paying for it.

    My son in Norway has Norskis come up and mutter things to him that they don’t dare say publicly, because he is an American and will understand. Or you can get my other originally Romanian son who now lives in Alaska to get started about natives there abusing services. A lot of our increased cost of medical services is in ER care that isn’t an emergency.

    It is a false comparison right out of the gate to compare America to other “first world” countries. Apples and oranges. They are white, white, white, but somehow are still considered paradises by liberals. Or maybe because of that, though they don’t even realise it.

  25. Mike K the straw man guy. ;) As I am alive because the Canadian Medical saved my life I have some affection for it. I might easily have died in America because I am poor and can take a lot of pain. Mike knows what a perforated ulcer can do untreated. This was generated by a serious flu and it was April 1st was when I was operated on. I was just blown away by how good our medical actually is.

    We are accepting more immigrants from the wars that you started in the middle east than almost anyone else. Vancouver especially is richly multicultural and has been for a long time. We are not especially white anymore.

    I am interested in the mumbling as I am pretty sure its bullshit. Of course if a person has no health care and has to use emergency that will impact your bottom line, I think I did call you idiots.

    China is gonna rip you a new one. Have fun with that.

  26. AVI, excellent point.

    Families are socialist, after all. But blood relation is a powerful motivator for altruism.

    The problem with a “diverse” society is that it has cleavage planes built into it intrinsically. Rather than a monolithic society (to extend the geological metaphor) it is an aggregate that under stress can naturally split between components of the aggregate.

    Now liberals will reflexively think of the dominant group “othering” other groups, but the converse is also a problem, viz., “why should we knock ourselves out, when the burden we impose will just fall on [fill in name of the dominant group]?”

    And rather than face opprobrium for imposing that burden (as they would in a family, among blood relations, or at least among people sharing common values), they experience approbation from other members of their group, who see their doing this as “sticking it to The Man.”

Comments are closed.