Who Hijacked Our Country

Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Economic Meltdown Caused by Overpaid Waitresses and Bartenders

Tom Emmer, Republican candidate for governor of Minnesota, wants to reduce the minimum wage for service workers who receive tips. He says some of these overpaid pampered bartenders and waiters make over $100,000 a year when their tips are included.

First Michele Bachmann, and now this dickwad. I thought Minnesota was a blue state. Where the fuck are all these inbreds coming from?

Meanwhile in California, tens of thousands of state employees are “temporarily” reduced to the minimum wage. I might be in favor of austerity measures like this, IF the higher-ups were willing to make a sacrifice themselves. I’ve gone over this linked article closely, but I can seem to find the part where Schwarzenegger and the California legislature are taking a pay cut. I’ll look again…

What do you call a highly paid elected official who thinks somebody else is making too much money? We all have plenty of names for people who are champing at the bit for America to go to war, as long as they themselves don't have to go — chicken hawks, keyboard warriors, the chairborne division, and a few less printable names.

So what do you call an elected official who gets a huge salary — courtesy of YOUR tax dollars — and wants somebody else to get a pay cut?

And speaking of overpaid legislators: Keep Congress in session this August. Yes I know, August is their chance to go home, put their ear to the ground, get back in touch with their constituents lobbyists, corporate donors; and go on those crucial fact-finding missions to Ibiza and Monte Carlo.

In this article, Robert Shrum says working through August would be a good campaign plan for the Democrats. They can highlight their differences with Republicans on, well, you name it.

As Robert Shrum says: “Keep Congress there in a drama that plays out on center stage — in front of the cameras — with the president calling a special session of Congress to deal with too-long delayed issues of urgent national necessity.”

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Blogger J. Marquis said...

Yeah, apparently the unemployed who collect unemployment checks are the new bad guys. Guess pretty soon the GOP will demand they be rounded up and sent back to...oh, that's right, they're Americans...

July 7, 2010 at 5:39 PM  
Anonymous kate said...

It would be a bold and welcome move if elected assholes would lead the way by taking significant pay cuts. Why, oh why, do we allow these leaches to continue sucking us dry, while coming up with amazingly ignorant and arrogant plans for the very people who employ them?

great post.

July 7, 2010 at 6:02 PM  
Anonymous S.W. Anderson said...

Pols recommending cuts in other people's pay, especially people working at the low end, is stupid and arrogant.

A much better idea for raising revenues and reducing deficits, is to boost taxes on those who've spent the past 25 or 30 years doing better and better by jiggering things so that most others do worse and worse. And yes, that includes politicians, who tend to be much better off than the average citizen. The Senate, for example, has quite a number of millionaires.

Keeping Congress in session through August just might be a good idea for the reasons stated in your post, Tom. I'm sure not seeing Democrats doing much of what they need to do to keep from being rolled over in November. They ought to be all over TV, radio, print media, YouTube -- everywhere -- raising proper hell about the cutoff of funds for the longterm unemployed. Instead, I hear an occasional discouraging word or two.

Fercryinoutloud, can it be these Democrats never got so riled up about anything that they ate ten-penny nails, spit bullets and made like a volcano?

Washington, D.C., in August is about as hot and muggy as hot and muggy gets. Maybe the discomfort will help Democrats exhibit an appropriate level of outrage.

July 7, 2010 at 11:45 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The way Emmer sounds the service staff at his Local Denny's are earning living in mansions and driving Porsche's.

He could be a real Hero if he would outlaw tipping as it is too much of a given and doesn't insure better service in the least.

As for California, we voters approved a measure that would cut the Legislators salary if they didn't pass a budget on time NOT the workers.


July 8, 2010 at 12:32 AM  
Anonymous Carlos said...

Emmer should now get an official taster to check his food for loogies,boogers, and other Easter eggs an angry waiter/waitress might drop in his din din next time he goes out to eat. What an ass.

July 8, 2010 at 2:29 AM  
Anonymous Jess said...

Those service people don't do enough hard work, they now need to know what it is like to do it with less money. I believe doing a job like that is the American dream or something. OMG, I just threw up in my own mouth, trying to make myself think like a bagger.

This California State employee (moi) got laid off. I only worked 3 days a week, so it is no biggie for me. For a few others it will be though. Wait, I thought the elected officials were all for the "little" people. I would fit right in in Crazy eyes Bachmann's district. Why are you picking on all these people better than us Tom, it is so sad to see them all making the hard decisions, to put the boot on the neck of the "little" person. Maybe I can start a group, to take donations for them after the end of my job at the end of the month. Maybe I won't though.

I am all for them not coming home and staying ther to get things done. If the reps aren't there they can bring things to a vote finally and get things moving in the senate right?

July 8, 2010 at 6:35 AM  
Blogger Randal Graves said...

As much as I loathe dealing with other humans, if I could pull down 100k faux smiling and waiting on tables, au revoir bibliothèque.

July 8, 2010 at 7:30 AM  
Blogger Tom Harper said...

J: Hell Yeah! Them unemployed drug-addled parasites are un-American :)

Kate: Very well said. Thank you.

SW: "...boost taxes on those who've spent the past 25 or 30 years doing better and better by jiggering things so that most others do worse and worse." Works for me.

I too wonder why the Democrats can't seem to "get so riled up about anything that they ate ten-penny nails, spit bullets and made like a volcano?" Republican spinmeisters are brilliant at connecting with people on a primal emotional level. Democrats can't seem to get the hang of it.

Erik: If Emmer gets elected, he'll probably outlaw tipping AND keep their wages down. And then he'll probably fine them for not being successful enough.

Carlos: LOL. That's exactly what should happen to him every time he goes to a bar or restaurant.

Jess: Sorry to hear that you've gotten laid off. But it was YOUR inflated salary that was crippling California's budget. Now that you're no longer siphoning off all those tax dollars, the economy should come roaring back :)


Yes I'm sure it's an excruciating decision when powerful politicians have to put their boots on little people's necks. We should be saluting them for their bravery.

Randal: For 100K a year, I think I could (just barely!) manage all the fake smiles and phony exuberance.

July 8, 2010 at 12:41 PM  
Blogger Beekeepers Apprentice said...

It's another OJ glove, really. First it was "those union UPS drivers make $18 an hour!! They're rich!" (that from my idiot redneck-wannabe(I know) republican sister-in-law). Then, suddenly, it was "those goddamned AIG execs are getting BONUSES?? GEt the pitchforks!!" and now suddenly, it's becoming "It's the little guy's fault. Those drug addicts on unemployment (Hatch) and those millionaire waitresses at the local Outback! Get the pitchforks!"

A lot of asshats learned a lesson from the OJ glove. Hell, they started a whole war not 10 years ago based on it.

July 8, 2010 at 5:14 PM  
Blogger libhom said...

You should publicize Emmer's comments to waitresses and bartenders.

July 8, 2010 at 6:31 PM  
Anonymous Tim said...

Here's the thing that gives me the red ass...
I don't know many in the service industry that vote. Yes even waitresses and bartenders. How can I say that....I used to own a Bar.
Most didn't even know or care what was going on in the world. If and when these people get pissed perhaps things will change.

July 8, 2010 at 6:49 PM  
Blogger Lew Scannon said...

Too much disposable income in the hands of working people, yeah, THAT'S what caused our economic crisis.

July 8, 2010 at 7:08 PM  
Blogger Tom Harper said...

Bee: Damn right, those unemployed potheads and millionaire waitresses will ruin this great nation.

Libhom: I sure hope every bar and restaurant that asshole goes to, all employees will know who he is and what he said, and act accordingly.

Tim: Unfortunately, that makes perfect sense. I saw a news item about a year ago, that most people who don't have health insurance aren't even registered to vote. This totally sucks.

Lew: That's right, America was better off before that commie minimum wage came along and sapped everybody's work ethic.

July 8, 2010 at 8:31 PM  
Anonymous Jess said...

Tom if it was my salary doing all that, then they may have way bigger issues than budgets. just saying. Not to worry, I'm sure my vacay in the sun and sandy beaches of Baja next week, will make me feel all better :)

July 9, 2010 at 6:14 AM  
Anonymous James said...

Being an ex-server and bartender, I can tell you that we tend to view the hourly pay as a "bonus", as if the weekly paycheck is an afterthought. Why? Because our tips are usually over 3 to 4 times what we make per hour in wages.

For instance, if one is slinging drinks Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday nights, the usual take is $400 to $600 or more. The hourly pay at minimum wage for the same period (based on 8 hour shifts..) is about $220 - gravy on the meat and potatoes of tips earned.

When I was working in that industry, the minimum wage went up twice. I was the only to complain about it, too. Why? Because that meant at least one of us will eventually have to be let go. And yes, they did let some people go. The establishment could not afford to keep as many people on with an increasing mandatory minimum pay rate.

Also, about 15 years ago, I was working as a cook in Denver. Even though my pay per hour was well above minimum wage, the servers were being paid, as Tom Emmer suggested, half the going minimum rate. Hardly any complained then about it, and you'd be hard pressed to find one today that does simply because of what I mentioned early - servers and bartenders rely on the tips, and view paychecks as bonuses.

In a bartender's view, the way to earn more money is to pick up shifts, not increased hourly wages. On the other hand, the loss of coworkers due to an increase in minimum wage would be a benefit due to the lack of competition for prime shifts (less bartending jobs overall...).

I think Tom Emmer knows what he's talking about. Smaller per hour wages means more serving and bartending jobs, jobs which would result in more opportunities for these people to earn more in "real income" - their tips.

July 9, 2010 at 11:39 PM  
Blogger lisa said...

Wow Tom I am surprised you published James' comment.

Even though it is hard work you can make some good money waiting tables. I did it 20 years ago and would walk out sometimes with 300.00 and on a bad night 150.00 for less than an 8 hour shift plus 1.65 per hour.
Someone I know works at Cheesecake factory and makes abut 1,000.00 per week and putting herself through law school without the help of the government.

July 13, 2010 at 6:52 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Waitstaff are usually prissy overpaid wannabe republicans... wah i only make minimum wage as they complain they "only got" $200 that night :(

The only ones who can truly complain are the back-of-house workers who should get a cut of those overpaid tips; all helped out to give the customer a good time, but some waitress gets to walk away with all the money and not even THINK to share????

A total microcosm of the usa, where the rich complain even though they make WAY more than the real workers.

A waiter is not "low-end". $30-50/hr is way more than the $8-10/hr. in the kitchen where all the product is produced. Prancing around in slacks should not always be paid more than the LABOR. Sales vs. Labor, sigh.

And the "generous" guy we've all heard of who 'hooks up' the poor waitress with a huge tip... Save it perv, try giving that to the UNSUNG HEROES of the restaurant... the dishwashers, the prep=cooks, the BUST ASS workers who never get a dime!!

July 7, 2011 at 1:25 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The republicans of the restaurant industry (waiters) are learning that being short with the poor to worship/appease the rich doesn't bestow on them instant acceptance!

It should be only tip money for waiters and the accrued wages should be added to the woefully underpaid back-of-house. In California waiters got greedy and lost their case! Section 351 means they have to tip out others! Your support staff (bussers/cooks/dishwashers) sets you up for success... only selfishness woukld make a waiter not "get" this.

Yes. Wages plus tips = little fortunes for waiters. But let's run up on Wall Street ceo pay and bonuses before we get stupid.

July 7, 2011 at 1:35 AM  

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