Military pay versus the Minimum Wage. Additional thoughts.


I posted recently that the low-level of military pay was not mentioned in The State Of The Union speech, but increasing the minimum wage was. If the minimum wage reaches $15 an hour, as proposed by the President, it would result in a minimum wage employee receiving $30,000 annually while a Private (E1) in the military makes $18,378 per year – 63% less than a minimum wage worker after the proposed increase.

For the moment let us forget the “minimum wage worker” and focus on the welfare recipient. The graph below shows the value of major welfare programs in pre-tax wage equivalent dollars.

Screen Shot 2015-08-17 at 8.21.36 AM

As you can see, the pay for a Private (E1) is lower than welfare benefits in the majority of states, and in some instances significantly less than half of the benefit.

A huge number of Americans use food stamps (45.7 million people – I blame Obama). Again, many are minimum wage workers in retail, food and service industry jobs. Others are non-working Americans or illegal immigrants (lowest estimate that I found was 4 million – other estimates are far higher). But there’s another group of working people turning to food stamps that might surprise you: active-duty military personnel and their families.

Every year the Department of Agriculture publishes data about where food stamp benefits are being spent. The categories range from grocery stores and super stores to convenience stores and farmers markets. Also on the list, surprisingly, are military commissaries — those stores on military bases that sell groceries to active duty military personnel and their families.

In 2014 more than $84 million-worth of food stamp benefits were spent at military commissaries. That’s just a fraction of a percent of all the food stamps spent in the U.S. last year. But the number is sobering when you think of who is doing this spending — people who are currently serving our country and are still having trouble making ends meet.

Apparently, “altruism” in the minds of “progressive/statists” only extends to those they believe are the “deserving few” – of course the number is not “so few” since Obama took over the reins of government. Those that wear our nation’s military uniforms never cross their minds.

Roy Filly

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About Roy Filly

Please read my first blog in which I describe myself and my goals.
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