CA politicians have struck a deal to implement $15 minimum wage without a proposition

Richard Rider, Chairman, San Diego Tax Fighters Undesignated 42 Comments

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Hoh boy.

It appears that the California state legislature, the governor and the labor unions have “struck a deal” that will raise the state’s minimum wage to $15.  No stinkin’ proposition will be required to enact this requirement into law, with a simple (Democrat) legislative majority easily attainable.

The minimum wage (now $10 an hour) will rise in stages, hitting the cherished $15 mark in 2022, and rising to match inflation after that.  Very small businesses will have an extra year to comply.
http://www.sacbee.com/news/politics-government/capitol-alert/article68497532.html

Doubtless automation firms are wildly cheering this step towards the Workers’ Paradise so long sought by progressives.  State economic development departments around the nation will also be “popping the bubbly,” delighted with California’s relentless efforts to drive businesses out of the state. This $15 minimum wage pretty much ensures we will expand and deepen our permanent underclass of unemployed in California — with heightened effects on the low skilled and minorities of the state.

That “starter job” to get people on the employment ladder will simply be too high for a very significant part of our young population to reach. It will also encourage the underground economy, as more will seek (and employers offer) “illegal” wages to earn money and stay in business, respectively.  Naturally this will make the hiring of illegal aliens ever more attractive to business owners.

One point that needs emphasis in this minimum wage debate is that the two states leading the charge for a $15 minimum wage make their “tip” employees rich.  Well, richer than their job skills and status merit.

California and Washington are two of only seven states that mandate that “tip” workers receive the FULL minimum wage IN ADDITION TO any tips received. All other states have some offset of tips against the minimum wage requirement.

That’s why you find so many aging college grads waiting tables in the Golden State.  Now with the new $15 minimum wage (in such states), even a mediocre waiter or valet can rake in a total of $25-$40 an hour for semi-skilled work (with some of the tips “tax free”) — even more in the nicer eateries.

The $15 minimum wage obviously will be paid via higher restaurant prices. Then the tipping tradition calls for the hapless customer to tip at LEAST 15% on the inflated price of the meal.  This double whammy is great for those workers who still have a job, but not much if customers go out to eat less often, as doubtless will be the case.

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Comments 42

  1. As a retiree, my Doc wants me to eliminate fast food from my diet. With the price of it going up about 30-40% to cover wages looks like the state is helping me.

    Feel sorry for all the folks who are now going to lose their jobs from automation and the many small shops that will be forced to close.

    As always, the law of unintended consequences strikes again.

  2. Studies in other cities that have raised their wages show most low-wage earners will immediately spend the additional money they earn, putting it back into the local economy and benefitting the businesses that are worried about paying their employees more.

    And in high-cost cities like San Diego that require a large percentage of income go for the basics (rent/mortgage, water, transportation, utilities etc.) it will be a welcome boost to retailers and others if people have more money to spend on, say, going out to eat.

    Consider what the National Restaurant Association (not exactly a liberal think tank) found: Even with a 2014 increase in the minimum wage, the National Restaurant Association projects California restaurant sales will outpace all but only a handful of states in 2015. (from: http://www.dol.gov/featured/minimum-wage/mythbuster)

    As for “young entry level workers”- many people earning low wages are adults working multiple jobs, due to a lack of skills, who can’t afford to return to school or attend college. Give them more money, they may be able to get some additional training/education and move out of low wage dead end jobs.

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    Lori Saldana — People “can’t afford to attend college”? For two thirds of our community college attendees, there is NO net tuition! For over half the students attending the U-C universities, there is NO net tuition!

    We offer the most subsidized education in America. THAT’s not what is keeping people from getting jobs. It’s the economic climate of California that’s responsible for that problem — the result of ever-caring progressive policies.

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    Lori Saldana — The fact that the money is spent in the local economies is great. The same is true for mafia activity, street robberies and other confiscatory activities. Perhaps we need MORE gang activity to further stimulate the economy!

    Of course, the money from higher minimum wages that will now be “spent in the local economy” must first come from CONSUMERS in the local economy. No net gain.

    Actually a net LOSS, as unemployment and underemployment will rise. The REAL economic stimulus is the incentive this anti-employer law creates for businesses to flee California.

    This madness is the perpetual motion/perpetual wealth machine always so valued by the left. Of course, it it worked, a $50 minimum wage would make far more sense.

    Even liberals can sense the folly in such a plan. Well, one would hope.

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    All this “stimulus” must be paid for with rising prices. Gee, I thought the left cared about our seniors.

    First the federal government drops the interest rate on seniors’ earnings to near zero, and then inflates prices with artificially high wage requirements. Unless our seniors go back to work (good luck finding a job in such a $5 wage scenario), they are screwed.

  6. Richard- My community college students struggle to afford the basics- I know this from daily experience.

    Moreover- I have taught and/or studied at UCSD, SDSU, and the San Diego Community College district for nearly 35 years, and I have never heard the odd term “net tuition.”

    What exactly is “net tuition” for in-state students, and how is it calculated?

    I do recall: Community Colleges used to be free- they now charge about $25 per unit of classes, plus parking, plus various other fees.

    SDSU cost me $140/semester for a full time schedule, when I was a graduate student 30 years ago. I suspect it’s increased a bit now.

    And don’t get me started on the increases in UC tuition, fees, and parking at $80/month. My sister went to Cal, and I recall her quarterly tuition was remarkably low. Not so these days.

    So…. what is “net tuition” and what are the actual costs for students at UC, SDSU and SDCCD? In my experience: these costs have far outpaced income levels, including hourly wages.

  7. Lori- I think Richard raises a thoughtful question. You appear to justify the increase with a remark that most low wage earners will spend their increase in the local economy.

    Why is spending in the “local” economy priority to you? Would you propose we purchase California goods only? San Diego only? Chula Vista only? Help me understand your thinking here. What is your objective?

    If you feel it moral and just to take from ‘A’ to give to ‘B’ why not make the increase larger?

    Why does it matter whether “A” buys a taco from the local vendor or “B” makes that same purchase?

    Couldn’t the dollar spent by the employee in the local economy have also been spent by the employer at the local taco shop?

    One other question. If the minimum wage is raised won’t that increase the cost of goods and services for the poor?

  8. I have never meet a liberal who understood economics.
    As always, the ones who will get hurt the most are the ones who can least afford it.

    Now that the government is setting wages, when will they start setting prices?
    Full on socialism.

  9. I am a small business owner, and I cannot express how stupid of an idea this is and how it raises the barriers to entry for entrepreneurs looking to start a business.

    First of all, In shipping, which is the life blood of commerce. There are many positions that pay less than $15 an hour. Package handlers, drivers, logistical support and managers make less than $15 an hour on varying levels. Raising the minimum wage artificially will increase the cost of shipping which will inevitably be passed on to the consumer. That cost will be used by the corporate big wigs to justify that rising cost of consumer goods that people inevitably need to survive. Maybe even raising their own salaries. They tend to like to do that after massive layoffs.

    Big government is artificially raising the costs of doing business to a point where many cannot do business because they don’t have the overhead that a WALMART does, nor do they have the availability of banks that can lend them massive amounts of money to finance compensatory strategies. Such as automation. If workers cost to much to employ, replace them with things that don’t.

    For example. Amazon is looking to deliver packages by drones. In industry, robots are replacing humans as fast as the demand calls for them. Small businesses do not operate at the scale where automation or employee replacing stations, such as touch screen ordering at fast food places and self checkout stations at supermarkets that can maintained from a 1 cashier per 4 stations rather than 1 cashier per one station.

    Engineering products for diverse sole proprietorships is far more risky and less lucrative for technology companies than to engineer products tailor made for corporation that order en mass.

    Second, Large corporations have not been impacted by minimum wage increases. For example, Starbucks simply raised the price on coffee. This will benefit people making less than the new wage for an initial short term, until the cost of consumer goods rise to compensate. Losers are small business owners who will have smaller margins and many will go under unlike entities like Starbucks with revenue coming from licensing. Who knows, its pretty hard to believe the left didn’t consider this when they concocted this idea. Its doubtful Jerry Brown thinks the raising death and exodus rate of California small business is a bad thing. Otherwise he’d try to stop it. Maybe that is part of “the plan” Californian small businesses are expendable.

  10. Harold,

    I may not be an expert on economic theory, but I do know this fact: according to Wikipedia’s list of median family income by state, 11 of the top 12 states (2014 numbers) voted Democrat in the 2012 Presidential election. Conversely, 10 of the bottom 11 voted Republican.

  11. Michael – Leading the county’s most influential 2A group and you quote Quixote? Darn.

  12. Chris:

    “Package handlers, drivers, logistical support and managers make less than $15 an hour…”

    Yes, but is that “faaaaair”?

  13. Is it fair that small business owners don’t pay themselves and voluntarily take pay cuts because sometimes crisis occur that require immediate capital expenditures? When the money in the bank runs dry, layoffs occur. How many small business owners who are reading this have taken pay cuts before issuing them to their employees?

    Unlike Sacramento we can’t vote ourselves arbitrary pay raises. Our pay is based on the profits of our businesses. With most of that going into reinvestment of our companies because we like to see our businesses grow. We like to hire more people and pay good employees more to retain them. What dictates wages? Well it’s the economy stupid.

    What would be fair would be if the state legislature adopted a more market based pay structure. Such that politicians get paid based on their performance at making the state efficient, manageable and operable without going over budget. That would include bonuses for attracting business to California and raising subsequent tax revenue.

    It’s doubtful that the left is ignorant to the consequences of business moving to places that the cost of doing business is far less such as Nevada, Arizona, as well as India and Mexico.

    The Rams seem to be the only major company to move to California from a state with a less hostile business climate. Maybe Jerry Brown thinks Stan Kronke will hire every laid off Californian that comes from this asinine idea.

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    Lori, I’m glad to brief you on these topics. Thanks for asking!

    “Net tuition” is the OUT OF POCKET tuition the student must pay. If the student gets a GRANT for college (a Pell Grant, for instance), that usually pays for all or much of the tuition. If a student takes out a LOAN, that does NOT reduce the “out of pocket” cost to the student.

    Here’s a bit more on the topic, from my “CA vs. the Other States” fact sheet:
    California, a destitute state, still gives away community college education at fire sale prices. Our CC tuition and fees are the lowest in the nation.
    How low? Nationwide, the average community college tuition and fees are more than double our California CC’s.
    http://trends.collegeboard.org/college-pricing/figures-tables/tuition-and-fees-sector-and-state-over-time

    This ridiculously low tuition devalues education to students – often resulting in a 25+% drop rate for class completion. In addition, because of grants and tax credits, up to 2/3 of California CC students pay no net tuition at all!
    http://tinyurl.com/ygqz9ls

    Complaints about increased UC student fees too often ignore key point — all poor and many middle class CA students don’t pay the UC “fees” (our state’s euphemism for tuition). There are no fees for most California families with under $80K income. 55% of all undergraduate CA UC students pay zero tuition, and another 14% pay only partial tuition.
    http://www.universityofcalifornia.edu/blueandgold/
    and
    http://tinyurl.com/UC-zero

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  16. Richard,

    I did mention that my source was Wikipedia, didn’t I? That shouldn’t have been too hard to find. Anyway, here is the URL:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_U.S._states_by_income

    As for your oft repeated citation of COL-Adjusted Income, cost of living measures the necessities of life. By that measurement alone, the adjusted median income in Somalia might be higher than that in California.

    Some of us like living in an area with beautiful weather and natural amenities not found in much of the country. Some of us also like to be able to use our higher blue-state income to purchase non-essentials or to travel. The last time I checked, no airline or hotel was giving a discount just because the buyer lived in Mississippi.

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    HQ, are you saying that homes in the other states equate to Somalia? Seriously?

    The median Texas home costs literally ONE-THIRD the cost of the median California home. And we know that the taxes, utility costs, gasoline and just about everything else are a LOT lower in Texas than California.

    I’m sure you picture the typical Texas home as some broken down hovel found beside some dirt road. You might want to visit outside of the state once in a while to discover America.

    But step back, HQ. You’re not comparing CA with the other states. Your claim is the top and bottom TEN states reflect how good the Democrat states are. You’re asserting that high cost NJ is a better place to live than 40 other states?

    Sorry, HQ, you’re losing it here. The top ten states are NOT the paradise you claim. And the MIGRATION patterns verify that.
    https://www.census.gov/dataviz/visualizations/051/
    and
    http://www.businessinsider.com/census-county-domestic-migration-map-2015-3
    and
    https://www.census.gov/hhes/migration/data/acs/state-to-state.html

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  19. Hypocrisy – What conclusion are you drawing? Speaking for myself, I am not finding anything helpful in that statistic.

  20. Eric,

    I was responding to Harold’s assertion that he “never met a liberal who understood economics” by pointing out that the states that are the most liberal are also the states with the highest median incomes. Now maybe all those states’ liberal policies fly in the face of good economic theory, but they have resulted in economic success, at least on average, for their residents.

  21. To Eric: you ask “Why is spending in the “local” economy priority to you?”

    Several reasons:

    It’s often more cost effective to buy products made locally (within 100 miles more or less) to conserve transportation costs and impacts of moving items around- assuming those savings are passed on to the consumer.

    Why pay for an ocean cruise or cross country trip for something, if a local manufacturer offers a comparable item?

    In San Diego that includes products made in Mexico as well as agriculture produced in Imperial Valley- we have a rich binational region to support with our local dollars (and pesos). And when it comes to food: San Diego County is the 2nd biggest agricultural producer in the state. Baja also provides a lot of produce to the US.

    However, in terms of what manufactured items we have to choose from: remarkably few “things” are produced in our region (agriculture is an exception). So- mostly we buy services.

    In that regard, I enjoy spending my dollars to support people I often know personally vs. people I may never meet- so there is a social benefit to purchasing services from local companies.

    Related: I just inherited shares of a local (privately held) company, with local HQ, and joined the ranks of “partner” so- surprise!- I am now an official capitalist.

    I often go to the business (I won’t give the name here) and bring friends. I introduce myself and encourage other guests to spend freely when visiting- it’s a new feeling to know I’m making money while spending money, all at the same time.

  22. To Eric and others: I have tried to post replies to some of your questions, and must be having computer glitches. The comments disappear when I click “submit.”

    It’s late, so I will try again tomorrow to answer some of the questions posted for me.

    One note re:buy local: I recently inherited shares in a local, privately held company, and attended my first partner’s meeting earlier this year. I encourage people to do business there, and I take guests there often (it’s in restaurant/hospitality industry)-so I suppose I’m now an official, local-based capitalist.

    One reason I’m not opposed to higher min wage: this company already pays many employees more than min wage, and realizes it ensures better staff retention as a result. Recruiting, training and retaining skilled employees is a big expense for many businesses.

    When you pay people more, you often literally “get what you pay for”- more dedicated employees, less turnover, less training costs.

  23. Lori:

    Our spam filter works “overtime” at times. Otherwise we’d have hundreds of auto-generated (and unwanted) ads/comments posted, many of them not family friendly. Although some of your comments may end up in a review queue temporarily, they do get posted as we see them

    That said, thanks for your willingness to engage here on Rostra. It is appreciated and says a lot about you and your openness to discussion of the issues, whether we all agree or not.

    Thanks!

  24. Lori

    Back to normal. I disagree with you, and I agree with Richard Rider. but sincerely appreciate you debating here. ideas need to be challenged, discussed and compromises can be reached where everybody can get something they want. Rather than this winner take all and screw 1/2 of Americans.

    Anyway Richard Rider makes a very compelling point about the gap between public perception of profit margins of companies and actual profit margins. The hard bottom line is what we small business owners use to determine wage increases. For many of us, we can’t afford this increase in our costs to do business. I have many friends who own retail, and small commercial establishments that are scared, frustrated and white hot angry about this. Our margins are considerably smaller than what the public perception is. THIS WILL PUT MANY SOLE PROPRIETORSHIPS OUT OF BUSINESS.

    It is extremely reckless to put further economic burden on the ambitious small business owner, who should be spend his and her time thinking about expansion rather than cutting costs and potential layoffs to compensate for this artificial, not market driven state mandate. I have illustrated some of the consequences on earlier posts to this thread especially in regards to automation. I do not have time right now to further illustrate in detail how flawed this is when it comes down to where the rubber meets the road. I will do so later. After all I have a business to run.

  25. Thanks for the explanation. That helps- sorry for duplicating some of my statements when I reposted, after the first didn’t appear.

    I’ve always been willing to engage “across the aisle.” It was often the consultants who managed my campaigns who were uncomfortable with me reaching out to diverse communities.

    And for those who don’t already know: I’ve left the Dem “win at any cost” fold, and I am now a “No party preference” registered voter. I’m running as an independent, in the non-partisan Mayor’s race. Which, apparently, is upsetting to BOTH parties.

    Thanks again Thor.

  26. Richard- re “net” tuition. Would you apply this same calculation to other services, or just public education?

    What about products? Is the “net” cost of, say, a car less after you deduct tax credits or rebates- but MORE when you factor in insurance, DMV fees, drivers licenses & permits etc?

    I’m just trying to understand if you apply this “net” concept to all aspects of consumer affairs.

    Private schools often have massive endowments (e.g., Harvard), and make it possible for students of every income level to attend if they are accepted. So I can understand the calculation in regard to private schools.

    But for public colleges and universities in California, the original goal was free education. We have wandered far off that path.

  27. Lori: Let me echo Chris’s appreciation of your participation in this discussion. I concur with his explanation of the impact on small business owners, the businesses who provide a majority of jobs.

    This morning, I ran the minimum wage by 2 restaurant business owners in Downtown San Diego who are personal friends of mine. They both told me “it will be bad for their business”. They will need to cut their workers and ask the others to do more work.

    Let me add another angle. When I ran for Kevin’s vacant D2 City Council seat in 2014, I visited Councilwoman Myrtle Cole at her office in the Tubman Chavez Community Center, to discuss issues facing her constituents.

    One of the major issues for her constituents was the lack of jobs in the area in which they live. She was appreciative of the new CVS that had just opened in this depressed area because it provided the jobs that young people in school needed.

    She and I agreed that any increase in the minimum wage under discussion then, would at most, need to be very mild, maybe a dollar, so it would not impact employment. We agreed that job opportunities for young people were much more important than the money paid.

    Low paid jobs such as the jobs at CVS, were never meant to be full time employment for the main wage earner. These jobs are designed to be jobs as a second income for a family, part time jobs for young people in school, and retirement jobs for seniors.

    A direct impact of this expensive minimum wage will be to cut employment for the people who need it most. Is this what you want Lorl?

  28. Thanks for the welcome Dan-

    I would be willing to consider establishing an age-based min wage for teenagers, and/or full-time students who live at home, and/or are attending college and working part time.

    And perhaps also at the other end of the age spectrum: retirees on Social Security, who want to work PT to keep active, and do not rely on min wage for their full income.

    But for adults who have completed their education, and are working at jobs with a career path in mind: we need a better wage for workers who are supporting themselves independently.

    Unfortunately, as much as I’d like to see some nuance to this discussion- it is difficult to have that in major legislation in California. Our state (despite the naysayers) remains one of the world’s top 10 economies, with good job creation. And the capitol halls remain full of well-paid lobbying professionals, creating potholes and roadblocks along the way of many good bills.

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    Lori, perhaps you’ll better under stand “net tuition” if you think if it is OUT OF POCKET tuition. IF the taxpayer pays your tuition, or if someone (not your parents) gives you the money for your tuition, you are not “out of pocket.”

    Since parents usually pay the tuition not paid by others (or, more commonly, tuition not even charged), I count that as “out of pocket,” as it comes from the family.

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    Lori, “free” college education was (and is) a TERRIBLE idea, as the students and their families have “no skin in the game.”

    I’ve spoken to literally hundreds of college classes over 30+ years. When I spoke in the 80’s (free tuition at community colleges), I had but one requirement — that I speak in the first six weeks of the class. That’s because by the end of the course, an average 40% of the students had “dropped” the class. Even when we started charging modest tuition, the drop rate was still almost 30%.

    BTW, this tendency was especially true in the liberal arts courses, where the kids often took what amounted to what we considered high school-level courses in “my time” (the 1960’s).

  31. Richard- again, thanks for clarification.

    I get your point, but wonder how you also take into account all the other costs associated with a college education that have increased, and are not off-set by the government subsidies.

    Can we agree wages have been stagnant? So how do students pay for text books, transportation, housing, food, etc?

    And since many students are older (e.g., veterans) and their families (if they are lucky to have that support) don’t have the cash to pay up front/ “out of pocket,” we have a generation of young people (and sometimes their parents) financing their education over time.

    They then wind up deeper in debt than ever before- at exorbitant interest rates.

    So even when these students graduate and leave college, they cannot fully participate in the “adult” economy: buy a home, start a business, etc. Instead: they are paying down student loan debt.

    And if they work at a low wage job, trying to pay for housing/food etc. AND make those loan payments- they are suddenly in a very different economic situation. Certainly different than students in my generation, who often graduated with little or no debt from SDSU and other public schools and could immediately afford housing, cars etc. upon graduation with a moderate income job.

    This is a relatively new and generational problem: academic poverty. You used to leave school with MORE opportunities. Now, students often leave with FEWER due to hi-interest rate debt.

    (Which is a big reason why I’m honored to be able to teach many non-traditional students, including homeless students, veterans, students w/disabilities, injured workers who are retraining for new jobs etc. in our FREE workforce training programs in the community college district’s computer labs.)

  32. Lori: Two things to address, one the college discussion and two, further explanation from a small business owner on the direct impact to his business and employees.

    On the college issue, I graduated from Bassett High School in La Puente, CA, a high crime, gang area. I put myself through CSUF working 30 hours a week in a pizza parlor and student loans. I finally paid off my $30,000 in student loans for my BA and MBA when I was 38.

    If I could do this, anyone can. You just have to want it bad enough , not feel sorry for yourself, and not make excuses.

    When I went to get lunch, I talked at length to my friend Hector, a Mexican gentleman who owns Old Gallery, a small coffee shop/restaurant in downtown San Diego.

    I told him the argument about being able to improve a person’s quality of life, support a family, and spend the extra money in the local economy. He quickly shot that down. He said he will be forced to raise his prices, cut employee hours, and cut employees. He has no choice but to do all 3 of these things to stay in business. He says the extra income received by employees will quickly be spent on increased prices for good and services. He says there is nothing good that will come from this minimum wage law.

    This is the law of unintended consequences.

  33. Call me crazy. But if we the state have invested billions of dollars into education. Should the net result be each succeeding graduating class be smarter than the last. thereby being more desirable for employers and not outsource jobs overseas.

    Would that rise in the overall public intelligence as a result of steady improvements in California education system from billions of dollars spent translate to a more robust workforce rather than the millennial generation being talked about as inferior to the greatest generation.

    I’m not seeing an economically stronger California than it was in the past. Isn’t that the intention of taxpayer financed educational subsidies?

  34. Winners

    Unions which gained even more power.

    Higher Unemployment, as that’s what’s going to happen when business owners layoff employees because of the rise in expenses and the decline in revenue.

    The underground economy and illegal immigrants, as businesses pay employers less than minimum wage in cash and/or hire illegal immigrants who will work for less than minimum wage.

    Losers – The state of California, it’s citizens, workers, and business owners.

  35. Chris- I think our graduating students are just as smart and talented, and certainly more diverse, as ever- though they graduate with very different skill sets today vs a generation ago.

    Much of what we teach now, and many of the skills we expect people to have before entering the workforce and earning more than minimum wage (especially in technology jobs), simply did not exist 20 years ago.

    So how do we define a “more robust workforce” in the 21st century? Jobs that require more technical skills? Advanced degrees?

    A big change many people don’t consider: more and more students graduate with skills to provide services, since manufacturing jobs have been off-shored. Many actual “hands on” skills have been undervalued or are disappearing. And the value we place on those “hands on” jobs hasn’t kept pace with cost of living.

    Case in point: I worked as a union carpenter 30+ years ago, shortly after I graduated with my BA in education from SDSU. (My last job: building the PB Post Office on the site of the old Roxy Theater on Cass Street/Emerald) Since there were no teaching jobs, I chose to enter carpentry to earn nearly $10/hour in 1983- a lot more than I could have earned waiting tables etc.

    After a few years, I was earning $25/hr., most of which I saved, and used to return to graduate school to earn my MA at SDSU. My hourly wage as a college professor is now considerably higher, but the kicker is: union carpenters today earn not much more per hour than I was earning then.

    Same for many other building trades. And those are skilled jobs: we don’t want homes and office buildings collapsing due to structural problems.

    But aside from construction, fewer and fewer things are actually “made in the USA.”

    OTOH, services have skyrocketed: healthcare treatment, legal assistance, counseling, architecture/design, financial advising, software design….all important services.

    But- no one pays taxes when they receive services.

    We live in a service economy, and services are not taxed in the way buying actual objects are. So- more services provided (untaxed) means less funding into the state coffers to pay for all those things Californians want and need: quality and free public schools, toll-free highways & bridges, etc.

    Smart graduates? Check.
    Robust economy? Check.
    Good tax base to pay for infrastructure etc.? No.

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    Lori — One canard widely heard is that our poor veterans can’t afford to go to college. Actually, they can.

    The government pays the tuition AND fees of such veterans. And sometimes a housing allowance.
    http://www.benefits.va.gov/GIBILL/resources/benefits_resources/rates/ch33/ch33rates080115.asp

    I have NO problem with government paying reasonable college costs for such veterans (it’s a benefit they contract for upon recruitment). But the image of destitute veterans digging deep to pay their education costs is simply not true.

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    Lori — I’m puzzled when you assert that services are not taxed. If the service is from a corporation, the corporation pays all kinds of taxes. If the service is directly contracted with an individual, the individual providing the service pays all kinds of taxes.

    The only tax that “services” currently avoids is the sales tax — as has always been the case. But California state and local governments are AWASH in funds from all our high taxes now that the recession has largely subsided, so it’s hardly a problem.

    More to the point: Do you support a sales tax on services, as has been proposed in the CA state legislature?

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    One of California’s major exports is educated people. Our colleges are doing a fine job preparing many in our population for jobs in other states — preparing them largely at taxpayer expense.

    Consider California’s net domestic migration (migration between states). From 1992 through 2014, California lost a NET 3.7 million people to other states. Net departures slowed in 2008 only because people couldn’t sell their homes.

    But more people still leave each year — in 2014 we lost 79,340. Again, note that these are NET losses. Sadly, our policies have split up many California families.
    https://twitter.com/SenTedCruz/status/464827967747526656/photo/1
    and
    http://riderrants.blogspot.com/2015/04/were-california-real-estate-prices.html

    It’s likely that it’s not the welfare kings and queens departing. They are primarily the young, the educated, the productive, the entrepreneurial, the ambitious, the wealthy (such as Tiger Woods) – and retirees seeking to make their nest-eggs provide more bang for the buck.

    It’s reasonable to assume that our $15 minimum wage and our “must pay temps even when they aren’t needed” law will further encourage our employers to relocate to another states. But then, California is widely recognized as the engine of prosperity — for the OTHER 49 states.

  39. Not sure how this Min Wage discussion got off base, but…I would argue that exporting educated people from California is a net gain. It encourages trade with us.You can’t force smart people to stay here.

    I have met people in Japan, Azerbaijan, Hong Kong etc, working in the ports, government and elsewhere, who were educated in CA and are the best ambassadors we could ever want for promoting trade and commerce with our state. Families from around the world send their children to CA for a quality, relatively inexpensive education.

    So- we have lots of people coming here who have received primary/secondary education paid for by others, in other countries- and who work hard on our behalf once they arrive. That’s a net gain also.

    The immigrants coming here are the ambitious, productive etc. people from around the world. I see them in my college classes every day: studying English in the AM, and computer skills in the PM.

    They are a bargain: their childhood years have been managed and paid for by others. We receive them as literate, ready-to-work adults.

  40. Not sure where to post this bit of info, but…

    a tip re:2018 Gov race- I know Antonio Villaraigosa, and he is running. He will do a formal announcement soon.

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