Just after I graduated high school, while in my first year of college, I worked at a day care. I thought, at the time, I wanted to be an elementary school teacher, so the day care was a good idea. Plus I was 18 and this left my nights and weekends free. :-)
I made $3.35 an hour.
I netted (if I remember correctly) about $113 a week.
I was living at home. The only bill I had was a car payment, but I was considering moving into an apartment across town with a friend. 2 BR/ 1 BA. $220 a month. I would have been stretched pretty thin, my friend got engaged, we decided against it.
Several years ago Floridians voted on whether or not to raise the state minimum wage from the federal level of $5.15. My brother and I had words over it. Of course I voted to raise it. He said, out loud, "It was only $3.35 when I graduated; it's gone up since then. Why are people complaining?"
Of course he doesn't make minimum wage and he can't make ends meet. But, according to him (and others), raising the state or federal minimum wage just causes the prices of everything else to be raised, therefore making the raises null and void and causing the rest of us (who make more than minimum wage) to lose spending power.
I am not an economist. But I think my brother is full of shit.*
Because prices have continually risen over the last 24 years since I graduated high school. The price of gas, bread, milk, green beans, cars and houses (to name a very few) has skyrocketed in the last 10 years alone.
Here is a cute little website showing the average cost of things in 1985 when I graduated and minimum wage was $3.35.
Here is the same website updated for 2001, the last year the cost of living is available when minimum wage was $5.15.
Prices had gone up tremoundously, minimum wage not so much.
There are also many who say raising the wage will put some people out of jobs, because smaller businesses can't afford it. Maybe, but the truth is that there are many businesses who CAN afford to pay their employees more than minimum wage, who can even afford to pay their employees a living wage and they don't. Why? Because the company owners may only be able to afford two trips to Europe this year, the poor babies.
If people were paid fairly by those who can afford to pay them, we would not need a law. But people are hateful, horrible and greedy and must be FORCED to pay.
And we wonder why our country is sinking to quickly into the toilet!
*My brother isn't an economist either, he is a dipshit.