Dimes in the Mud

Has the reader ever had the experience while turning the vegetable garden in early spring when muck covers everything and sticks to shovels rendering them useless – and finds a dime in the mud? That’s how mariner perceives moments of progress in the nation’s culture.

֎ For example, after mariner blasted the human species in a couple of posts, news sources started mentioning a few dimes. The Economist cited statistics that said low wage workers, among all classes of workers, had the highest increase in wages in 2018-19. It is a dime found but not so shiny. The reason, says The Economist, is because many states have been increasing the minimum wage. If one’s income rises from $7.25 to $12.50, that’s a 38 percent increase. For higher wage groups, 38 percent would be astronomical; on a chart, then, as a percentage of income, the low wage track rises well above other tracks. It is a blessing for low wage workers to receive a nice boost in their income. The federal government remains at 7.25 percent.

In recent years some economists have begun to offer the idea that having too many poor people limits the growth potential for the nation’s economy. American society hasn’t dropped its belief that if one wants to have income, one must work harder but, on the other hand, if it constrains the income of other classes, let the poor have a few bucks.

Interestingly in the popular press and in the platform of Democratic candidate Andrew Yang, not only should minimum wage rise to $15, in addition every citizen should receive a $1,000 – $2,000 monthly disbursement from the government. Mariner advises readers not to hold their breath. Nevertheless, the idea is afloat.

֎ Another dime found is that the Earth’s output of Carbon Dioxide (CO2) did not increase from 2018 to 2019. The primary benefit came from industrial nations switching from coal to other sources, especially renewable power.

֎ Just as insurance companies were licking their lips by taking advantage of the possibility to collect genetic information with which to limit coverage and increase profit, the United States has a law called Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act – a dime for sure. One hopes that Donald doesn’t know about it.

֎ Here is a shiny dime: The US Federal Trade Commission announced they are requesting information from the data tech giants regarding the thousands of mergers and acquisitions that have occurred. Data tech giants (Google, Microsoft, Apple, communication corporations, Amazon, Facebook, etc.) already dominate the daily life of citizens and are creating virtual control over every citizen’s decisions in life. Most of the acquisitions were to buy niche tech companies before they became competitive – definitely antitrust activity. Along with big banks, big data needs to be divided.

֎ There is another democratic debate on Wednesday. Save your dime.

Ancient Mariner


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