Ellyn Fortino of Progress Illinois reports on how many people would be impacted by a raise in the federal minimum wage. An increase to $10.10 an hour would raise the wages of 25 million people in the U.S. While many critics claim that most of the people receiving minimum wage are teens who live at home, the majority of low wage workers are their family’s main source of income. Fortino also cites a 2014 study by Goldman Sachs that debunks the claim that raising the minimum wage is a job killer. Hopefully 2015 will be the year when the federal and state both see an increase in the minimum wage.
Buzzfeed reports on an interview between Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein and Andrew Ross Sorkin of the New York Times. The good news is that Blankfein recognizes the problem of inequality. The bad news is that he implies that it will get worse. He talks about a new economy that will employ labor in “new ways.” From capital’s perspective, that means the best return for investors, which has traditionally result in process improvements, automation, and offshoring. I’m not condemning Blankfein. As a leading investment banker, he is saying what he should. Working people and unions need to walk up to this reality, or the current good news on the job market will be temporary. We need a real workers’ bill of rights that provides realistic security for labor as well as capital.
Run a big bank. Buzzfeed reports that James Gorman, head of Morgan Stanley, has been given an 85% pay increase, upping his income to $18 million. To put things in perspective, Gorman is credited with turning the company around, and he still makes less than Goldman Sach’s chief Lloyd Blankfein, whose annual compensation is $23 million. Still, in a time when most Americans consider a 3% annual raise to be normal, an 85% pay increase sounds like some people play a different game. That’s because they do. Momma, don’t let your babies grow up to be cowboys. Send them to a great MBA program that feeds investment banks. It seems that’s the only way to get ahead in 21st century America.
Mark Gongloff of Huffington Post reports that Lloyd Blankfein, head of Goldman Sachs, is getting a 75% raise. Normally, I would try to make snarky comments here. However, I cannot match Gongloff’s skill in putting this news in its proper context. I urge you to read his article and enjoy his skill at describing the absurd.