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Low-wage employers are the real ‘welfare queens’

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The federal minimum wage of $7.25 is now worth 30 percent less than it was in the 1960s, after adjusting for inflation. It is quite literally a poverty wage — if you support a child, working full-time at the federal minimum will land you $650 below the federal poverty line; supporting two kids will put you more than $4,000 beneath it.

We’ve noted before that low-wage employers shift some of their labor costs onto the backs of taxpayers by encouraging their workers to apply for public benefits. These employers are the true “welfare queens,” their profits indirectly subsidized by the public, which allows them to keep prices artificially low. We’ve argued in the past that this is one of several reasons why conservatives who oppose spending on the social safety net should favor raising the minimum to a point where workers can get by on their own labor.

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A report released this week by the Economic Policy Institute quantifies just how much taxpayers would save by raising the minimum wage to $10.10 per hour, as Barack Obama has proposed. The full report can be downloaded at the Economic Policy Institute’s website. Here’s an infographic that summarizes its findings:

minimumwagesafetynet-infographic


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House Democrats: It’s time to include Trump’s shady Turkey deal in the impeachment inquiry

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Even by Donald Trump's basement-level standards, there's something bizarre about the president's behavior in deciding to allow a Turkish invasion of Syria aimed at pushing the Kurdish population out of the area — a move that is, for all intents and purposes, an act of ethnic cleansing. Less than two weeks ago, Trump, apparently spontaneously, acceded to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan's request that the U.S. pull a small number of troops out of the area to clear the way for what swiftly turned into a slaughter. Since then, Trump's attempts to justify this betrayal — not just of the Kurds, but of basic human decency — have been alarmingly erratic, well beyond his existing baseline of constant, impulsive dramatics.

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Vladimir Putin must be laughing out loud at the bungling Donald Trump’s crazy mess in Syria: Pulitzer-prize winning reporter

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Trump Created the Bloody Disaster in Northern Syria; We Should Make Sure He Owns It

Vladimir Putin must be smiling – even laughing out loud -- at the bungling Donald Trump’s crazy mess in Syria.

Putin is the clear winner in Trump’s blood-soaked disaster. By tweeting without telling the generals his signal for Turkey to invade Syria, Trump forced American troops to flee half-eaten meals so they could escape alive. His inept (to be kind) actions then required our Air Force to bomb America’s weapons storage base in Northern Syria.

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Mad dog Trump and his Bible-thumping kennel pals: White House theocrats may be the biggest danger of all

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“I have done nothing to harm these people but they are angered with me, so what do they do, doctor up some income tax, for which they have no case… to harass a peaceful man.”

You could be excused for thinking that Donald Trump spoke these words of self-pity. In fact, they’re from Robert de Niro, playing that other gangster, Al Capone, in the 1987 movie The Untouchables, written by David Mamet.

Like Trump, a would-be dictator madly claiming the overwhelming support of the populace, the real-life Capone insisted that his criminal acts satisfied “a public demand.” He declared, “I am just a businessman, giving the people what they want.” And a certain percentage of the civilian population—Capone’s “base,” if you will—thought he was just swell.

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