“Another California town rejected a similar initiative to raise the local pay floor. Voters in Eureka provided the only defeat for a minimum wage ballot initiative on Tuesday night.”
– Think Progress
Common wisdom seems to be that the well deserved raise was too much too soon. Too bad, because we in Eureka had a chance to lead the curve instead of continually being behind.
There are many reasons why a $12 could have invigorated our local economy – one of them being good national and international press. Unfortunately, we decided to trust John Fullerton, Matthew of the “Middle”, Fred Sundquist, Pacific Choice, et. al. instead of economic realities. Emotions like fear and as not so clearly disguised disdain over good, sound, necessary policy.
One “whopper” as the video demonstrates is this isn’t about teenagers as JF and No On R wanted to make you believe – its about people who pay rent, have families and need a living wage for their hard work. The video, if you can make it past the BP commercial, will tell you 80% of minimum wage workers nation wide are 20 or older.
Here was another chance we had to shine in national and international news. Our local powers that be (looking at you corporate owned and now Reporter – leaning T-S) chose to pass on protecting those both Party’s rhetoric would lead the voter to believe are deserving of protections – those that work hard. Right now most earning between $8 and $12 can’t earn a living, but that wasn’t a topic of discussion during No On R’s expensive and anonymously funded advertising campaign, nor the T-S’s editorial.
Remember, both Natalie who won overwhelmingly and Kim who either will win or come within a hair’s breath of winning supported R. Eureka’s electorate was amenable to accepting R as part of a deal they generally favored. I think what has to change is the narrative. This is not about good v bad. We are all good, we all deserve a chance to succeed with our hard work. From Fred Sunquist to every single one of his 50+ non-teenage non-temporary employees. I think if the media and our local community leaders looked more like the national and international reporting in both the NBC and DK stories, Eureka would have passed R and we would have been a shining example for the rest of the state on what is possible, instead of being the odd community out. But fear will do that. It prevents progress and No On Rers and the T-S knew that.
Resources: (now with bonus commentary)
Think Progress: Even In Deep Red States, The Minimum Wage Won Big Last Night
DK (Danish Broadcasting Corporation): Midtvejsvalg får middelklassens lave lønninger frem i lyset. Now with more Sarah Torres!
Rumble in the Redwoods. The Chronicle’s take on the Reporter v the Times Standard from back in the day. (“The Eureka Distorter” tee-hee-hee – I hadn’t heard that)
DHF! post number crunching wages vs potential public assistance eligibility.
The sad, sad Times Standard editorial against R. Their argument admits people have to work 3 jobs to survive, the only problem being the Measure wasn’t County-wide. Why not support it then support our supervisors in a County-wide measure before the “time bomb” *sigh* goes off. Look forward to you pushing John F, Matthew in the Middle, Charlie Bean, the former soldier air mechanic in the ad, Jaison Chand, and all the others who cried foul at the Republican Party and conservatives that minimum wages are not only essential, but should be higher – county wide. I’m looking forward for this broad support of a County increase in minimum wage significantly above and beyond Our Nation’s and California’s.