Las Vegas Sun

April 16, 2014

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Letter to the editor:

Raise wages as well as fast-food prices

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Low-wage fast-food workers rebel, says the opinion page. Good for them. They work hard and deserve more money.

How about a compromise to start with $12 per hour for all? Let the fast-food giants raise their price accordingly, all of them together at a fixed percentage.

Big boys happy, workers happy, customers happy knowing the workers are making a living wage and the fast-food giants look like heroes.

Nobody is going to quit buying fast food in this country. Everybody wins.

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Previous Discussion: 13 comments so far…

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  1. So, is bargain fast food really a bargain if others are paying a price? Or have we created a society that pays full-time fast food workers so little that they need food stamps to feed themselves and their families?

    We're all in this together and should remember the old saying: "There's no such thing as a free lunch".

  2. Come on, Williams & Weber. Put your money where your mouths are! Do as I did. Put your money at risk and operate a restaurant or two. Why don't you guys invest your own money, open a restaurant and see just how easy it is to make a buck doing so? And, while you're at it, pay your workers 12 bucks an hour and see how long you'll last. Neither of you have a clue as to what it takes and you have no idea as to what you're talking about. It's pure and simple Socialist apcray! You both live in fantasy land if you think you can pay all of your employees $12 an hour and survive as a business entrepeneur.

  3. McDonald's, which employs many youth and entry level persons in the work force, reported lower same store sales for the last 4 consecutive quarters. A first time for the chain in its history. Forecasts for future profits and growth are guarded too. The restaurant chain is increasing dollar menu items, eliminating high price foods like the angus burger line [due to lack of sales] and adding apples, salads, wraps and low fat milk. Other food chains are experiencing the same downside in this current economy. Increasing wages doesn't magically help if you lose it and get downsized out of a job. This is a last resort [layoffs] if the menu changes don't work.

    Carmine D

  4. Jim:

    Most volunteers in the U.S. military, especially if married, are eligible for several forms of government welfare. Many do collect welfare too in addition to their military pay. But they don't stay in these ranks forever. They get systematic promotions with time and experience. And rise in the ranks with increases in pay. Same is true with fast food chains and all other businesses.

    Carmine D

  5. Giving all fast food workers a standard $12.00 per hour wage would start a huge round of inflation for the food industry,not a good solution.If a person wants to earn more money they should go after the jobs that pay more,or further their education in order to do so.

  6. Jerry Fink and friends:

    Your restaurant would not automatically fail from higher wages if your competitors paid the same higher wages too. I would remind you that a great many restaurants closed during the Great Depression when hamburger was 10 cents a pound and people worked for a dollar a day.

    Working for Jerry must have been a real treat for his employees and I doubt $12 an hour would be adequate compensation for that. :-(

  7. As long as our country is controlled by the plutocracy, wages will always be low. We are so close to being a feudal/serfdom it isn't amusing or funny. The powerful live in their gated moats with their private armies and trash collectors. They pull the purse strings of our politicians, while common folk beat each other competing for scraps fallen from the table.

    How bad does it need to get before the ignorant and nay sayers react to the undermining of working class people?

  8. Vernos,Vidi, LastThroes,

    So sorry y'all ended up being poor cry-baby democratic supporters. You waited for the re-distribution handout that never came. At least you voted under your own free-will. Freedom is a good thing but money only buys you so much.

  9. Nonsense. This is wishful thinking on someones part. Everyone happy? Not likely as fast food is dangerously close in price to some sit down restaurants already. Why would I pay almost the same for a cereal and cheap meat burger, etc., when I can get a better meal from a sit down with service?

    McDs recently dropped their more expensive burgers for cheaper ones in order to be more competitive and stop eroding sales. Adding labor costs to the equation defeats the purpose. Do these folks think they know more about the fast food business than the big retailers? They don't care, their short sighted unreasoned ideas only serve to make their immediate feelings about their own wallet make sense to them.

    Artificially induced labor costs don't add value, they remove value and the value buyer that buys fast food will go where they see the best deal. Loyalty from the consuming public is as secure as a wallet dropped in a parking lot. Value buyers don't care a whit about the employees, the owners or anything but stretching a dollar, otherwise they'd be eating somewhere else to begin with. Add a dollar a day to the worker who buys his or her lunch every work day and you have done just the same as a pay decrease or a tax increase, they can't spend it on their kids, rent, mortgage, clothes or utilities.

    Pricing oneself out of the market is not a good strategy.

  10. No. Wage compression happens. All wages spiral upward. Then prices must be increased. Those are bad things. Sorry, but we can't pay 16 year olds $12 per hour. The negative impact on the economy would be devastating.

  11. Jim:

    Have you noticed the prices for beef in the U.S. are up over the last several years? Did you notice that some of the traditional Memorial Day cookouts substituted other meats like chicken and turkey for beef hamburgers because these alternatives are less expensive if you feeding 10 or more mouths? Did you know that costs for the food for running a restaurant is 60 percent or more of the overhead? If food prices are up, do you think an across the board wages increase is likely? Apparently the answer to all the questions is you do not not.

    Carmine D

  12. My employees were compensated based upon their experience, their value and their willingness to take good care of our patrons. No socialism practiced in a Fink-owned restaurant, that's for sure! Weber hasn't a clue as to what it takes and I'll bet a dollar to a doughnut Mr. Clueless never had the guts or initiative to risk his own money by starting a business from scratch. He is, in the parlance of Texans, "All hat and no cattle."

  13. Jerry:

    The nation's cattle herd shrunk by 2 percent at the end of 2012 from 2011 to under 90 million head. That's the lowest since 1952. Reason is the higher cost for cattle after droughts the last 2 years from higher feed costs.
    Carmine D