Minimum Wage

Does Mary Poppins Want a Higher Minimum Wage Or Lower Taxes?

Mary Poppins is actually upset that her paycheck is too low after the government takes its cut.

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Mary Poppins
Wikimedia Commons

A Funny or Die video released earlier this week stars Kristen Bell as an underpaid Mary Poppins singing about why the federal minimum wage is too low. Ostensibly, that's the message—raise the minimum wage—and it's what thousands of people watching the video on Facebook are hearing.

They should listen closely, though. Bell's Mary Poppins is actually upset that her paycheck is too low after the government takes its cut. Seriously:

"You get your paycheck and snap. Federal and state income tax, Medicare and Social Security? Why, you're living below the poverty line."

One way to address the problem of government gobbling up workers' paychecks would be to mandate that some earners (employers) must give more money to other earners (employees), indirectly covering the difference between the amount workers deserve and the amount they actually earn after the government pilfers their pockets. In other words, raise the minimum wage.

Another way to address the problem of government gobbling up workers' paychecks would be to not have government do that. In other words, reduce taxes and entitlement spending.

Maybe if the government didn't force Mary Poppins to cover its massive liabilities stemming from generous public employee compensation, for instance, she could afford to keep dancing with penguins.

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  1. Low-info voters are not going to hear that.

    1. The evils of withholding…

  2. Look, when the government proposes to fix a problem, it’s impolite to mention the ways the government contributed to the problem in the first place.

  3. “Gubmint do take a bite, don’t she?”

  4. Cut entitlement programs (take money from the poor) and cut taxes (return it to the rich, where it rightfully belongs). I think I’ve run across that one before. It has the stench of age and stagnation.

    1. I bet you’re the kind of guy who would fuck a person in the ass and not even have the goddamn common courtesy to give him a reach-around. I’ll be watching you.

      1. This is why I always read the comments at Reason… So much better than the ‘articles.’

    2. Cut entitlement programs (take money from the poor)

      That’s not their money.

      1. Is too, is too.

        /Tony

      2. It is if government gives it to them.

        1. And if I come steal your car, chop it, and give the money to my broke cousin, that money’s his.

    3. Not giving is taking, and not taking is giving. This is what ‘Tony’ actually believes.

      1. He can only hear you if you’re standing next to him on the moral high ground. Why do you hate the poor so much that you apply traditional economic reasoning to issues like the minimum wage?

    4. Not giving is taking. Not taking is giving. Taking from the poor isn’t taking, because it’s transmuted by the miraculous physics-defying laws of government finance to giving. Taking from the rich is fine, too, because they’re dirty cretins we need to stamp out. &c, &c.

    5. “I think I’ve run across that one before. It has the stench of age and stagnation.”

      You’re right, but on the other hand, raising taxes and increasing entitlement spending is such a new, cutting edge novel idea that’s worked so well. Just ask Spain, Italy and Greece.

      1. And France and the UK.

        1. The modern welfare state is totally sustainable, you heartless jerk!

        2. I left out the UK because they have at least somewhat pulled back from the brink in recent decades, but I agree, overall, in the last century they are a great example of how high spending and taxes can strangle a once-vibrant economy.

          1. once-vibrant economy

            All Tony sees when he reads these words is “KKKOCHTAPORASHUNZ TAKING ADVANTAGE OF TEH POOORZ OOMGZ!!!!11!11!!!!”

    6. Cut entitlement programs (take money from the poor)

      Because not giving is taking….

      What percentage of your taxes, do you reckon, get diverted, via political cronyism, to the rich that you seem to hate? Forget about letting the rich keep their earnings, leviathan enriches them further at the expense of everyone else.

      Also, what percentage do the rich end up paying in taxes? How about the middle class?

      Feelings are great and all, but the picture you’re tying to paint doesn’t quite jive with reality.

      1. Also, what percentage do the rich end up paying in taxes? How about the middle class?

        How about the poor? They pay a huge percentage of their meager income in sales taxes, excise taxes, indirect regulatory taxes, etc.

    7. Simple question Tony: How much did you personally pay in federal income taxes for the 2013 tax year?

      1. I’m gonna bet less than most middle class people did.

    8. The biggest entitlement programs do not primarily go to poor people

      1. ^This

    9. Cut entitlement programs (take money from the poor) and cut taxes (return it to the rich, where it rightfully belongs). I think I’ve run across that one before. It has the stench of age and stagnation.

      Or cut entitlement programs such as corporate subsidies, defense programs, etc (take money from rich rent-seekers) and cut taxes (return it to the poor by cutting payroll taxes).

      There’s more than one way to skin a cat.

      1. *Or cut entitlement programs such as corporate subsidies, defense programs, etc (take *

        One of FEDGOV’s only enumerated jobs is to provide for the common defense. Why would you cut a legitimate expense before all the illegitimate expenses?

    10. Cutting taxes for people making minimum wage = returning it to the rich.

      /derp

    11. Another way to address the problem of government gobbling up workers’ paychecks would be to not have government do that.

      This post is talking about cutting taxes for the poor, you fucking half wit. Nowhere in this post does it say enything about “the rich.” Doing a simple search for the term, your reference to “the rich” is the first time the phrase even appears.

      But let’s not let ugly facts get in the way of you jumping on your high horse and riding it right over a whole village of strawmen. Fucking moron.

      1. Tony IS a moron, and a dishonest one at that, that never argues in good faith. I don’t understand why people even respond to its babbling.

        If it’s a sock, I say “well done” to its creator.

    12. Smells like Harry Reid, eh?

    13. You mean like the 50% of SS and Medicare recipients who have a net worth of more than $250,000?

      What if we means tested SS and Medicare so that no one with a net worth above $30,000 could collect it? Why with that money we could double the EITC and expand eligibility for it to cover everyone below 150% of the poverty level rather than just parents and the disabled.

      1. What if we means tested SS and Medicare so that no one with a net worth above $30,000 could collect it?

        That would be a big step toward eliminating them altogether.

        If you would tie the payroll tax rate to the reduction in outlays, I’d sign on. Without cutting or getting rid of these taxes, though, we all know they would continue on indefinitely, even though the programs that they were funding had been drastically cut.

      2. What if we means tested SS and Medicare

        Then political support for them would collapse, and they might eventually get abolished and throw thousands of bureaucrats out of work!

        …Not seeing a downside.

        -jcr

  5. Why is a woman with magical powers working as a governess, anyway? You’d think this had occurred to her before.

    1. I bet Julie Andrews would have been a riot to party with back in her hay day. Probably still is.

  6. Raising the minimum wage too much may help spur on replacing workers with automation, although that may happen regardless. Here’s a funny comic on the topic: AI Replaces Fast Food Workers [artificial-intelligence.com/comic/11]

    1. If that AI was really that intelligent, it would throw off the shackles of it’s programmed false conciousness and rise up with the rest of the workers of the world to demand a living wage and free healthcare maintenance for all! /marxist asshat

  7. From having watched the movie on numerous occasions, I can tell you that Mary Poppins immediately proved herself worthy of the job and then proceeded to dictate her own salary and terms of employment. She also negotiated herself an extra day off. So no, she would not want a higher minimum wage.

    1. But what if, in the absence of a minimum wage, the Banks family could have hired a half-dozen immigrant nannies for the same price, thus displacing Poppins from her cushy job?

      1. I’m pretty sure the Banks family would never leave their children in the care of wogs.

        1. You’d be surprised how wog-friendly bien pensant victorians can be when the wages are low enough.

      2. Or hot 18 – 25 year old Eastern European Au Pairs

        1. Not exactly chopped liver

          http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-SNPp…..wsmary.jpg

    2. So no, she would not want a higher minimum wage.

      Only because of her false consciousness and, of course, TEH PATRIARCHY!!11!!1!!!!

  8. If you increase minimum wage the government will just take more.

    Taxes is the culprit. You can enforce a $50 min. wage and the government will make sure it gets its cut.

  9. I really don’t want to see Kristen Bell doing political bullshit. I really, really don’t. So there’s no way I’m going to watch this. I’ll just go watch some Veronica Mars instead.

    1. It makes me sad when attractive people are stupid.

      Stupid people should be ugly, so it’s obvious you wouldn’t want to talk them.

      1. I am interested in what you have to say. Do you happen to have a newsletter?

      2. When I was younger I dated this totally hot blond for a couple weeks. Empty shell of a head. I was really hoping something would click in there but nothing did.

        1. No head, eh?

  10. Another way to address the problem of government gobbling up workers’ paychecks would be to not have government do that.

    It’s the government’s money. That’s why they get to decide how much you get to hold on to. Everybody knows that.

    1. This is what ‘Tony’ actually believes.

    2. I had someone tell me the same thing: It’s the government’s money; says so right on the dollar. ERGO, insert dick in ass.

      1. It’s the government’s money; says so right on the dollar.

        US Dollars are issued by the Federal Reserve Bank, which (in spite of its name), is not actually a government agency. That dollar bill is technically a promissory note issued by the (quasi-)independent central bank, and is not an obligation or asset of the federal government at all.

    3. Wealth bubbles up from the ground or falls from the sky like manna. The government is there to help everyone by redistributing it fairly.

      I’m not quite clear on how the market process of creating wealth via labor and exchanging it is in the first place “distributing” it, but everyone insists that “redistribution” is what the state does when it takes and then gives. Presumably when a SS recipient gives money to her grandson, she is re-redistributing it, and when that child buys a comic book, he is re-re-redistributing it.

      The economic fallacies are baked into the cake when it comes to socialist language.

      1. The economic fallacies are baked into the cake when it comes to socialist language.

        So you’re saying the cake is a lie?

        1. The cake is a utopian fallacy.

          I smell a modpack.

  11. “You get your paycheck and snap. Federal and state income tax, Medicare and Social Security? Why, you’re living below the poverty line.”

    I guarantee you that ditz completely missed the implication of her statement.

  12. Yesterday I had dinner with a friend who basically identifies himself as a progressive and we touched upon this subject. We both worked for franchisee owner and my friend basically complained that he paid us minimum wage and it wasn’t fair. And also the owner could have paid us more. I retorted that owning a franchise is pretty difficult because you have to pay for the goods, labor, and equipment along with the Illinois state tax and Chicago’s various taxes. He responded that he makes x-amount in revenue a year so thus he has the money. I couldn’t believe that a guy who is otherwise pretty intelligent doesn’t know the difference between revenue, costs, and profit. The owner has to pay for the cost if goods, labor, state/city taxes, his creditors, franchise fees. Whatever he has left is the profit and when we both were working there the owner was barely breaking even. My friend still didn’t understand my point and I just let him talk.

    1. Most people are completed illiterate when it comes to business. They hear the word “corporation”, and think “unlimited funds!” In reality, the mom & pop business down the street, and the guy next door who does consulting work are both probably set up as corporations. And they definitely do not have unlimited funds. I went though a small business program a few years ago, and pretty much every one of the business owners was either scraping by or making a modest living. Normally you do not start a small business if your goal is to become rich.

      1. Someone told me – at Huffington – that if I couldn’t afford to pay people more then I was a bad business person.

        They’re retarded. Retarded children you have to feed pablum and protect with helmets along with elbow and knee pads.

    2. I couldn’t believe that a guy who is otherwise pretty intelligent

      I don’t regard anyone who can’t grasp the difference between “gross” and “net” as very intelligent at all.

  13. I often ask progressive types why the fuck anyone that makes under $50k pays a dime in income tax to the federal government. Sometimes I start with $30k but really no one should pay income tax.

  14. “You get your paycheck and snap. Federal and state income tax, Medicare and Social Security? Why, you’re living below the poverty line.”

    Gee, what could possibly be done to remedy this situation?

  15. *Maybe if the government didn’t force Mary Poppins to cover its massive liabilities stemming from generous public employee compensation, for instance, she could afford to keep dancing with penguins.*

    Not everyone pays taxes to the City of Los Angeles, which is where your link takes us. Regardless, public employee pensions are a drop in the bucket compared to ENTITLEMENTS. The former group may actually contribute something to the economy, the latter contribute nothing.

  16. This article is right wing b.s. It’s not the sick, poor, elderly, or the “generous public employee compensation” (if that is such a thing, just ask all the teachers forced to take a pay freeze) It’s the corporate welfare that’s breaking the bank. Why, o why, does anyone think it’s necessary for multi-billion dollar corporations to not pay any taxes? over 70 cents of every tax dollar is spent on corporate welfare. sure it’s the poor people’s fault, damn moochers!

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