On living in Ohio, minimum wage

ON YOUR MIND

Remember not too long ago that Ohio wanted to keep young people from leaving the state?

The following actions will lead to only more young people leaving, regardless of how many jobs are available:

  • Increases in the sales tax.
  • Elimination of much funding to local municipalities and schools, leading to additional levy requests from many property owners who cannot afford anymore.
  • The state legislature passing anti-abortion laws, attempting to ban gay marriage and not even recognizing same-sex civil unions. (Now I understand one legislator even wants to ban cohabitation between heterosexual couples.)

Many older people will also leave the state due to the future limitations on the Homestead Exemption.

I believe Ohio will not be considered a state to live in by many. JAMES WHITE, KETTERING

Logic on minimum wage is ‘flawed’

Re “Labor Day wish? Raise the minimum wage please,” Aug. 28: I found the printing of Robert Reich’s column nothing short of irresponsible. The flawed logic that minimum wage can be tied to productivity gains is another example of a false logic Reich and his types have brought forward on many topics — in order to advance the progressive agenda to misguide the less-educated.

Productivity gains, which create a very real economic value, do not come from those just starting to get their feet wet in the labor market. In other words, people get paid a wage based on the value they create. As they learn to create value, their standard of living rises. Artificially inflating that value only leads to a greater strain on the economy and decreases the global competitiveness of the U.S.

Reich’s thought that you can almost double wages in a fast-food restaurant — where labor costs usually are about 30 percent of revenues and margins run in the 8 to 10 percent range — and not impact the cost to consumers or the business is illogical at best. The fact that Reich calls himself an economist is laughable. He is a political hack and nothing better.

The real question Reich fails to answer, or even asked, is: why has the private sector seen 25 percent productivity gains, yet the public side has shown nothing but expanded costs to taxpayers? What is wrong with that picture and why does the media ignore the serious waste in government that is driving the economy off its rails in cities (Detroit, for example) and at federal and state levels?

To run such a flawed piece is tantamount to defrauding the public which, at one time, trusted the media to look out for the public interest. … CHRIS LOCKHART, BUTLER TWP.

Reich must be living in ‘fantasy land’

Re “Labor Day wish? Raise the minimum wage please,” Aug. 28: Robert Reich is at it again! The stupidity of his argument is stupefying. Raising minimum wage won’t be passed on to consumers? Really?

Reich says: “And don’t believe critics who say any wage gains these workers receive will be passed on to consumers in higher prices. Big-box retailers and fast-food chains have to compete intensely for consumers. They have no choice but to keep their prices low.” Well, Reich got it partly right. Retailers and fast-food chains already have prices cut to the bone “to compete intensely for consumers.”

To believe shareholders and company management will eat a minimum-wage increase is fantasy land. The last time a minimum-wage increase went into effect a few years ago, the local McDonald’s promptly raised its prices. For Reich and his ilk not to see cause and effect demonstrates the obtuseness of progressive thought. KEVIN SCHNABEL, CENTERVILLE

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