Don’t oversimplify work and wages
The breadth and scope of misinformation in the Dec. 25 letter by Terry Adams takes my breath away.
For one thing, statistics simply don’t support the writer’s declaration that most minimum-wage workers are, by and large, entering the job market for the first time or are kids working part-time to help mom and dad.
Adams’ further insinuation that not being able to get better wages is the fault of the workers is a calloused insult to so many who are trying so hard to do just that. It’s the kind of oversimplification used in the Ronald Reagan years with, “Just say no.”
I urge all to expand research with a more open mind. Review all nonpartisan reports and statistics. Check the charts. Demonstrate that you are not just armchair-quarterbacking from bits and pieces of agenda-driven news.
Recognize that, to your credit, you did work hard and did well and that nobody’s trying to take that away from you. It’s just that the workforce is simply not level for all players.
Larry Leeds, Omaha
Note overall effects of wage increase
Those who advocate for an increase in the minimum wage do not understand or are misrepresenting the effect of the “minimum” wage on the economy.
Saying the proposed increase would mean a better quality of life for everyone is naive, since the economy reacts to market factors. If everyone’s pay were to rise, that would not elevate the base but would absorb middle-class members into the poor, since prices would adjust accordingly. Double the minimum wage, and prices of consumable goods would double to pay the people who produce them.
A recent letter to the Pulse used the comparison of wages paid to the CEO and the counter workers for McDonald’s. The letter states McDonald’s pays $8.25 an hour (already more than minimum wage) to the counter worker. There is criticism over the salary of the CEO, in relationship to the overall earnings of the company.
What is overlooked is that people with jobs are working for the wage they accepted. The results they provide are not equal and interchangeable in an economic sense. The person who sells a hamburger does not contribute the same financial gain to a company as someone who sells franchises and opens markets in new countries.
Opportunity exists for people to train or educate themselves, to start their own business or to enhance their skills and apply for advancement. That is America.
Marshall True, Omaha
I didn’t get my Christimas wish
I was a little disappointed in Christmas this year. I asked for a cougar to show up in Ernie Chambers’ backyard. Evidently, that didn’t happen or it’s being kept quiet.
Oh well. There’s always next year.
Val Black, Shenandoah, Iowa
Admit fault over unjust sentence
In 1987, the Justice Department persecuted a man who sought peace in our world. The man of whom I speak is Jonathan Pollard.
Pollard was a clerk in an intelligence agency and released to Israel, one of the longest-term U.S. allies, some unimportant data and was caught in the act. He was convicted and given a life sentence, far worse than other people who have done similar acts. Pollard has been in prison for more than 25 years, and his health is failing.
It is time for the president and Justice Department to admit that Pollard’s sentence was far in excess of standards for the crime of passing information to an American ally. They should grant some compassion by releasing him to life outside prison so he can live what life he has left in peace and quiet.
Alan Goodman, Omaha
Payne’s ‘Nebraska’ is not offensive
I enjoyed Alexander Payne’s film, “Nebraska,” immensely. I think some Pulse writers have a pretty thin skin and take offense much too easily.
I have known folks much like Payne’s characters, and I have shared meals that went much like the one in the movie. Most of the characters were just people; not good or bad, just flawed humans.
And the actors and actresses played their parts to perfection.
David Jaskierny, Glenwood, Iowa
Stop the senseless school shootings
Last year at Christmastime, for no apparent reason, 26 innocent people (including 20 children) were shot to death at a small school in Newtown, Conn.
A year later, this nation again mourns the loss of another student, this time in Colorado.
Events such as these are just plain tragic, and school administrators and staffs all over the country need to take the gloves off and meet this problem head-on.
Do you remember Eastside High School in Paterson, N.J.? Where is Joe Clark when we need him?
Charlie Aliano, Omaha