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John Adams Blog

The blog of The Antient and Honourable John Adams Society, Minnesota's Conservative Debating Society www.johnadamssociety.org

Thursday, February 17, 2005

A living wage, now! Well, for everyone but our employees ....

David Horowitz's site "Discover the Network" has this amusing summary of how the rabidly left Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN) works assiduously for a living wage to be paid by all employers, except it, of course:

According to the Employment Policies Institute (EPI) report, “ACORN employees . . . are routinely forced to work alone at night in dangerous neighborhoods. Female ACORN employees report being sexually assaulted while attempting to work under these conditions. ACORN has refused requests from nighttime employees in dangerous neighborhoods to work in pairs” (Ibid.) Evidently, ACORN leaders do not wish to incur the expense of paying two workers where one will suffice – even in cases where physical safety demands it.

ACORN’s miserly treatment of employees sounds a discordant note in a group whose trademark issue is crusading for a “living wage” for all Americans. EPI notes that ACORN’s standard wage of $5.67 per hour ($18,000 per year for organizers working 54 hours per week) is “less than half the level demanded by many proposed `living wage’ ordinances that ACORN supports. In some states, such as California and Oregon, this level is below the state-mandated minimum wage.”(Ibid.)

ACORN actually sued California in 1995, attempting to argue in state court that California should exempt ACORN from its minimum wage laws. Why? Because “the more that ACORN must pay each individual outreach worker, . . . the fewer outreach workers it will be able to hire,” ACORN lawyers argued in a brief. (Ibid.)

That is indeed the problem with minimum-wage laws. They force businesses to lay off workers. Under ordinary circumstances, ACORN dismisses this argument as capitalist propaganda. But when faced with the prospect of having to pay its own workers a “living wage,” ACORN adopted the “capitalist” argument lickety-split. The presiding judge was unmoved. ACORN lost its case in California.

See the complete profile of ACORN at this link.

As shown above, the Discover the Network (a "Guide to the Political Left") site is really a worthwhile read for JAS Members.