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Leo Gura

Libertarian Caller Hates Minimum Wage

22 posts in this topic

This video gives a peak into the mind of a libertarian. I find it both hilarious and educational. It shows how naive people are about government.

 


"Be melting snow. Wash yourself of yourself." -- Rumi

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There's a political streamer named Destiny who used to be popular among the left-wing community. He debated a lot of pretty far-right people and even I honestly got a lot of entertainment from those videos.

Nowadays, the lefty community hates him because he spends a lot of his current videos ranting about communism and socialism especially since it's quite clear that he doesn't have a very good understanding of the current anti-capitalism culture.

Before that, he was pretty vocal about calling minimum wage "stupid". I guess that was a shape of things to come.

Edited by Extreme Z7

Always Be Hardcore

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I think minimum-wage would follow the principals behind the Laffer Curve, even though it pertains to taxation. Raise it (minimum wage) too much, employment is going to tank and you'll destroy businesses -- lower it too much and people will be unwilling to work. I think Libertarians think that the free market will adequately decide where that rate is, regionally. I think that a flat out minimum wage across a country is far too crude, as it does not address regional issues. A minimum wage has to be highly sensitive to local market dynamics within the region, because if it falls within the extremes of the laffer curve, the effect could be disastrous in particular regions. 

220px-LafferCurve.svg.png

Edited by StephenK

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@Extreme Z7 Destiny is solid. He’s still a lefty, but he just has a decent understanding of economics and understands that central planning and full blown socialism doesn’t actually work

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@Joel3102 The guy only understands communism as its terrible Stage Blue incarnations and somewhat denies the systemic workplace oppression of capitalism.

He's more of a left-leaning centrist imo.

Edited by Extreme Z7

Always Be Hardcore

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5 hours ago, Extreme Z7 said:

There's a political streamer named Destiny who used to be popular among the left-wing community. He debated a lot of pretty far-right people and even I honestly got a lot of entertainment from those videos.

Nowadays, the lefty community hates him because he spends a lot of his current videos ranting about communism and socialism especially since it's quite clear that he doesn't have a very good understanding of the current anti-capitalism culture.

Before that, he was pretty vocal about calling minimum wage "stupid". I guess that was a shape of things to come.

I like Destiny, he is intellectually honest and will change his position if he views the other side as more reasonable. I wouldn't say lefties hate him, it is more of the socialist/communist part of the left that dislikes him. To be fair though, he does reveal how a lot of them do not really have any viable solutions to capitalism. I think he agrees with the critiques of capitalism, but was not yet compelled of an alternative which would realistically solve any of the problems we are facing without creating an entirely new set of probably even more devastating problems. He is more of a Soc-Dem than anything else.

When he is against a specific policy it is usually because of data that would imply that the policy is more harmful than productive. He does not argue from a position of morality. He would not say  "minimum wage is bad because people don't deserve it" but rather "Every economist I read says it's a bad idea".

 

I think what one could criticize him for is that he is not willing to do research into socialism himself, rather he would want someone to come along and convince him why it is a meaningful solution in our current environment. He is not just "ranting" against communism and socialism, he actually invites any socialist to come on his stream and debate him on the topic, and so far it really does not look good for the socialists. They basically have a problem with capitalism, which he will agree with, but then suggest a vague idea of a socialist system which could not possibly be implemented right now and would basically require a world-wide revolution to function. It seems to be the case that there is a viable critique of capitalism, which was obvious for a long time now, but no  solutions other than social democracy, which is what we are going towards anyways.

 

Where do you think is his understanding lacking specifically? I am not well read on socialism.

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@Scholar  Admittedly, yes he doesn't really rant about socialism and communism. I should have phrased it better.

I do hold the opinion that advocating a lofty ideal of a socialist society is still better than defending contemporary capitalism. That's just mostly why I don't side with Destiny on this issue. Capitalism just deserves more critique nowadays than socialist idealism does.
 


Always Be Hardcore

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10 minutes ago, Extreme Z7 said:

@Scholar  Admittedly, yes he doesn't really rant about socialism and communism. I should have phrased it better.

I do hold the opinion that advocating a lofty ideal of a socialist society is still better than defending contemporary capitalism. That's just mostly why I don't side with Destiny on this issue. Capitalism just deserves more critique nowadays than socialist idealism does.
 

I think Destiny's position is that these socialist ideas will not be effective as a way of advocacy for change. In his view we should do it step by step, focus on specific policy issues that everyone can agree on to have gradual change towards progression.

He doesn't see a lot of value in idealistic socialist utopia's because to him they are more of a distraction, especially when you have socialists who focus only on that and not on actual policy that can be effected today.

 

 

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That libertarian was pretty dumb.

I'm not libertarian but I don't think raising the minimum wage is how you deal with this problem. The problem with politics and these binary political parties is that you have "consensus" solutions like raising the minimum wage. It's not even controversial at all among progressives. It's just assumed this is the correct solution.

What you have is a societal problem, and you're offloading it onto ALL businesses. This means small businesses are highly impacted from raising minimum wage. Leftists seem to only think about some evil rich billionaire with big box stores like Walmart.

If you wanted a more nuanced way to handle this inequality, you could raise corporate taxes at the highest level and close some of these loopholes, then feed it back into the social safety net programs out there. What you shouldn't do is just arbitrarily set someone's value as an employee regardless of location or context. This is so lazy.

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10 hours ago, StephenK said:

I think minimum-wage would follow the principals behind the Laffer Curve, even though it pertains to taxation. Raise it (minimum wage) too much, employment is going to tank and you'll destroy businesses -- lower it too much and people will be unwilling to work. I think Libertarians think that the free market will adequately decide where that rate is, regionally. I think that a flat out minimum wage across a country is far too crude, as it does not address regional issues. A minimum wage has to be highly sensitive to local market dynamics within the region, because if it falls within the extremes of the laffer curve, the effect could be disastrous in particular regions. 

220px-LafferCurve.svg.png

I think your direction is right but there's a hole in your argument. "lower it too much and people will be unwilling to work". Imagine for a sec no minimum wage at all. If a businesses lowered the salary too much then people would be unwilling to work in that business anyway and it would be forced to offer higher salary or go bankrupt. In that sense minimum wage only eliminates jobs from the economy that would have had willing people working in them.

Economic growth can't be an argument for minimum wage because it can only hinder it. The major problem with capitalism is that it restricts people from living fulfilling lives, this should be the argument driving this debate. If people get abysmally low salary, live paycheck to paycheck with just the essentials barely covered, they are going to be miserable. Living a fulfilling life, at minimum, requires free time and spendable money after the essentials.

UBI could essentially replace minimum wage because then people wouldn't be forced to take very low compensated jobs and businesses would have to adjust the wages. But if the UBI is too big it will restrict economic productivity, there's probably a sweet spot similar to Laffer's curve. Maybe UBI for just lower and middle class.

Edit: now that I thought about it for a second I can't see how UBI could be beneficial to economic growth. It really is economic growth vs welfare of citizens.

Edit2: on the other hand strong economic growth / strong economy reduces poverty more effectively than whatever government programs. So there's actually a strong case for the libertarians. This problem is more complex than it appeared at first.

Edited by crab12

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@crab12 I'm not committed to particular position on the issue, just thinking out loud. Your response is interesting and has given me a new perspective on the matter.

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1 hour ago, crab12 said:

I think your direction is right but there's a hole in your argument. "lower it too much and people will be unwilling to work". Imagine for a sec no minimum wage at all. If a businesses lowered the salary too much then people would be unwilling to work in that business anyway and it would be forced to offer higher salary or go bankrupt. In that sense minimum wage only eliminates jobs from the economy that would have had willing people working in them.

Economic growth can't be an argument for minimum wage because it can only hinder it. The major problem with capitalism is that it restricts people from living fulfilling lives, this should be the argument driving this debate. If people get abysmally low salary, live paycheck to paycheck with just the essentials barely covered, they are going to be miserable. Living a fulfilling life, at minimum, requires free time and spendable money after the essentials.

UBI could essentially replace minimum wage because then people wouldn't be forced to take very low compensated jobs and businesses would have to adjust the wages. But if the UBI is too big it will restrict economic productivity, there's probably a sweet spot similar to Laffer's curve. Maybe UBI for just lower and middle class.

Edit: now that I thought about it for a second I can't see how UBI could be beneficial to economic growth. It really is economic growth vs welfare of citizens.

Edit2: on the other hand strong economic growth / strong economy reduces poverty more effectively than whatever government programs. So there's actually a strong case for the libertarians. This problem is more complex than it appeared at first.

I agree with most of your points. Yeah, the effects of UBI would be fairly complex - though I'm a proponent for trying it. It could definitely help. Much of the UBI funds are going to go right back into the economy, which would stimulate business. The downside is a sort of inflationary reaction. With rising prices as well as rising wages because of the dynamic you've described. 

I think above all we need smarter corporate tax systems in place. If your annual revenue is in the billions, you simply CAN'T be allowed to pay nothing. We need to force multi billion dollar corporations to pay taxes. 

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I like the comment in the video "How would you design a society if you did not know your place within that society?". If someone can truly surrender into this, it is a great frame to reveal personal dynamics. 

Imagine designing this society. . . be careful, you don't know if you will be a gun advocate or a victim of a mass shooting. You don't know if you are an insecure hyper-masculine male or an LBTQ that has suffered stigmatization and attempted suicides. You don't know if you are a criminal, a victim of crime or a police officer. Whether you are black or white. . . The hard part is fully surrendering one's identity. For example, a privileged white person may say "OK, I can imagine that. . . I don't know what person I will be in the society. I will design a society with "equality and justice for all" that way, whoever I am, I will have equality and justice". Yet what this person doesn't realize is that "equality and justice for all" is going through a privileged white filter. "Equality and Justice for all" will appear very differently through an LGBTQ, female, POC filter. That is the second level of realization.

A half step might be image you have to design an alien society of the "paltik", "smethod" and "rifblin" beings. Since we don't identify as "paltik", "smethod" and "rifblin" beings, we would start off without identifying with any of the groups. They all start off equal. The challenge is to maintain this non-bias as we begin to learn more about each group - as we learn about each group, the personal/human tendency is to start identifying with one group. For example, the paltiks may have black hodflets, while the rifblins have white hodflets. This would introduce the first opportunity for identification/bias toward one group. 

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9 minutes ago, Serotoninluv said:

A like the comment in the video "How would you design a society if you did not know your place within that society?". If someone can truly surrender into this, it is a great frame to reveal personal dynamics.

It's called the Veil of Ignorance.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Veil_of_ignorance

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14 hours ago, Extreme Z7 said:

There's a political streamer named Destiny who used to be popular among the left-wing community. He debated a lot of pretty far-right people and even I honestly got a lot of entertainment from those videos.

Nowadays, the lefty community hates him because he spends a lot of his current videos ranting about communism and socialism especially since it's quite clear that he doesn't have a very good understanding of the current anti-capitalism culture.

Before that, he was pretty vocal about calling minimum wage "stupid". I guess that was a shape of things to come.

 

He tries to say that because communism failed in other countries, that we shouldn't implement democratic socialism in the US which is idiotic, and other distractions that pretend Bernie is wrong etc.

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What would the best minimum wage be?  I think having a Federal minimum wage is futile.  Sure, $15/hr is great in northern Michigan, but very little in Seattle or New York.  The difference in the cost of living within a State can also be substantial.

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5 hours ago, hundreth said:

What you have is a societal problem, and you're offloading it onto ALL businesses. This means small businesses are highly impacted from raising minimum wage. Leftists seem to only think about some evil rich billionaire with big box stores like Walmart.

1) Business's whole strategy is to strong arm and use enormous leverage to manipulate wages. An average person has little chance to negotiate for a fair wage. They are forced to take whatever offered, which usually undervalues their work. This is the core reason why a minimum wage is needed. To not address this point is to be naive about how business negotiation works. He with the most leverage takes the cake.

2) The idea that a living wage would hurt small biz is silly. A living wage could eaily be a requirement only above a certain number of empolyees. For example, all companies worth over $100 million or employing more than 100 people.

The whole point of using the "this will kill small biz" excuse is to conflate giant multi-national business with small mom and pop shops so that the giant multi-national can squeeze their employees dry.

A company like Walmart or McDonalds should be paying a living wage. This doesn't need to affect tiny businesses.

Living wage can easily be adjustable to cost of living per state and county. So in LA it could be $25/hr while in Alabama it could be $10/hr.

People make all sorts of bad arguments aboug minimum wage simply because they have an ideological position against it and no understanding of how corporations use leverage in negotiations.


"Be melting snow. Wash yourself of yourself." -- Rumi

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6 minutes ago, Leo Gura said:

1) Business's whole strategy is to strong arm and use enormous leverage to manipulate wages. An average person has little chance to negotiate for a fair wage. They are forced to take whatever offered, which usually undervalues their work. This is the core reason why a minimum wage is needed. To not address this point is to be naive about how business negotiation works. He with the most leverage takes the cake.

If this were true across the board, every employee in the U.S. would feel their pay is not "fair." Yet, in many lucrative fields there are employees who are very happy with their salaries. They feel fairly compensated. What is "fair"? The reason someone living in poverty feels their wage isn't "fair" is because they're living in poverty and having a hard time keeping up with their expenses. That doesn't mean the wage isn't fair, it means there is a bigger societal issue at play here. Not everyone can earn a livable wage through the job market alone. To me this points to other social welfare programs needing to be expanded. If people weren't so reliant on these minimum wage jobs, what happens to all of that leverage you point to? It starts to shift and wages will rise for those jobs as there are less inclined to take those positions. What makes a wage fair is simply that someone else is willing to do the same work for the same compensation. You've created a new definition of fair to mean "living wage" - but what you've done is put a monkey wrench in a system not designed to handle social issues at large.

As you say, there are many ways to improve minimum wage - though it doesn't negate there are better solutions. You've countered the small business argument with theoretical models of minimum wage which no one in your political party is talking about. They just unanimously parrot $15 / hr. In the proposed solution, small businesses WOULD be hurt. We both agree large corporations should bear a larger burden, but disagree about how to get there. As I said in my previous post, I'm for raising corporate taxes at the highest levels and expanding other social welfare programs.

You make the valid point that businesses are designed to maximize profit. Yes! That's what they do. Minimum wage is like trying to remove the stripes from a Zebra. Let businesses do what they do best, and find other avenues.

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Another issue to consider with minimum wage is, how will this scale with the future? As automation becomes more prominent and other job markets are cleared out, where will minimum wage come into play? Minimum wage will only accelerate large corporations investing in automation. 

You sign it now, and then in a few years the rate is obsolete, and you have a long winded battle to once again establish a new minimum wage as pay lags behind for years.

It's a bad idea now, and it's even a worse idea going forward. 

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