March 17, 2006

MORE ON WAGES

I’ve gone several days without mentioning wages, so here goes. There is a movement in progress in the US House of Representatives to force a debate on the federal minimum wage. Congressman John Barrow, a Georgia Democrat, has introduced House Resolution 614 which would move the issue to the floor if a majority of lawmakers (218 out of 435) sign it.

The resolution, called a “discharge petition,” would force debate and possible action on 2429, which would raise the federal minimum in three steps to $7.25 an hour, i.e. to the same level approved by the WV Legislature for workers covered under HB 4023.

Meanwhile, here are some factoids on wage inequality:

*According to United for a Fair Economy, CEOs of major corporations now “earn” 431 times as much as average American workers.

*A Just Minimum Wage, written by Holly Sklar and Paul Sherry for the Let Justice Roll Living Wage Campaign (see link), reports that the same CEOs "earn" as much as 952 minimum wage workers.

*A New York Times editorial noted in Jan. 2006 that “If the minimum wage had advanced at the same rate as chief executive compensation since 1990, America’s bottom-of-the-barrel working poor would be enjoying salad days, with legal wages at $23.03 an hour instead of $5.15.”

COMING WEEKEND ATTRACTIONS: You guessed it--more gratuitous animal pictures.

GOAT ROPE ADVISORY LEVEL: ELEVATED

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