Later On

A blog written for those whose interests more or less match mine.

Even strong support (and praise) for the McDonald’s budget

with 2 comments

Kevin Drum (and Tim Lee) convinced me, for sure. Read Kevin’s now. (I already blogged Tim Lee’s response earlier.)

Written by Leisureguy

16 July 2013 at 4:16 pm

Posted in Daily life

2 Responses

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  1. Mark me down in the “Beg to differ” column; I think Drum and Lee are carrying water for the wrong folks on this one.

    It looks as if they both agree that in the McDonalds budget, two people are working. (In other words, their view is that if one person works at McDonalds, a second person also has to have a job in order to make ends meet at all. My view is that the McDonalds budget sheet is not really assuming a second worker. The second income is even less than the McDonalds job is assumed to bring in, and it is called out as a second job, not a second worker. But never mind that.)

    It also looks as though they believe that the $20 a month allocated to health insurance can be glossed over, and that the $600 a month is buying or rents living space for a family. (Which may include children.) By glossed over, I mean that Drum admits that there’s no money allocated to childcare and that the $20 a month going to health insurance is “laughably low” — but “lots of people live on $25,000 a year.”

    That is certainly true (and doesn’t it sound better as “lots of people”!)

    What Drum really means, of course, is “lots of FAMILIES” have to live on $25,000 a year — but by saying “lots of people” instead, he can hope that you’ll lose sight of that (along with the mythical $20 insurance plan) and are thinking instead about “lots of people,” each one living on $25,000 … the money looks like it goes a lot farther if Drum gets you to morph the family he created earlier back into one individual again.

    Whether we’re talking about an individual or a family — I think the question that most people would ask is, should “lots of people” (or families) have to live on $25,000 a year and spend their free time searching for that $20 a month health plan? Or would it be better if jobs at McDonalds, for example, paid enough to shrink the number of families who, despite having two people working — presumably full-time, and good luck to them both — still end up among the 20% worst-off in the country, praying every night that they don’t get sick tomorrow?

    But Drum just thinks we should all cheer McDonalds for teaching budgeting.

    Well, yay.



    17 July 2013 at 12:55 pm

  2. I assumed the two salaries were because the budget was figured for one person working two jobs. Certainly a significant portion of Americans live on $25,000/year and below. Those who have to do that are helped by creating some sort of budget, I would think. But however the budget is flexed, their annual salary remains what it is.



    17 July 2013 at 8:37 pm

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