Fat Ted’s Fuzzy Math

So, Ted Kennedy has an issue with many Americans being below the poverty line. Well, most of us would like those people to live well, too. Some have had bad circumstances define their wealth potential. Some are just worthless and lazy parasites. But, all of them could suffer from Ted's fuzzy math:

"Americans believe that no one who works hard for a living should have to live in poverty. A job should lift you out of poverty, not keep you in it," said Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, D-Mass. He said a worker paid $5.15 an hour would earn $10,700 a year, "almost $6,000 below the poverty line for a family of three."

Ted is is correct in that first sentence. People should be rewarded for working hard, mostly. I have a tough time believing that a 15 year old flipping burgers should start at $7.25 an hour, unless that is the market price. But, notice the $6,000 figure.

It has been awhile since I had math, but let me work this out:

$7.25 – $5.15 x 40 hours x 50 weeks = $4,200

$4,200 < $6,000

$6,000 / 50 / 40 + $5.15 = $8.15

If Ted really cared, wouldn't he fight for a minimum wage of $8.15, bring those people up to the supposed poverty line? Or, perhaps he could pay his fair share of taxes, rather then hiding them offshore and in non-taxable trust funds?

Kennedy also said lawmakers' annual pay has risen by roughly $30,000 since the last increase in the minimum wage.

Ted, you and the rest of the Dems could give the money back, you know. Sure, it is a drop in the bucket. But, like your $2.10 minimum wage increase proposal, it would be symbolic.

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