Every religion is invoking responsible capitalism: “Look! The wages you failed to pay the workers who mowed your fields are crying out against you (New Testament).” You shall pay them their wages daily before sunset, because they are poor and their livelihood depends on them (Old Testament); “Give to the worker his wages before his sweat dries (Quran).” The other religions offer the same wisdom.
Let the worker “live his life,” take care of his family, be healthy and come back to work the next day motivated to work and be more productive. Investing in the health, prosperity of the worker ensures success of the business. You take care of him as he takes care of y0ur growth and both will prosper.
Continued : http://nabsites.net/demo/texas-faith-poor-will-always-be-wi/
Texas Faith: The poor will always be with you, but shouldn’t they get a raise?
Joel Thornton Email firstname.lastname@example.org
Published: March 3, 2015 8:32 am
Wal-Mart, long known for its low wages, is giving employees pay raises.
Wal-Mart, a company not known for its generosity, made headlines recently with its decision to give half a million employees pay raises above the minimum wage of $7.25 an hour. The company said all of its U.S.workers would earn at least $9 an hour by April and at least $10 by next February.
Even these planned raises fall short of what labor experts consider a “living wage.” Christine Owens, executive director of the National Employment Law Project, told The New York Times that the persistence of workers and supporters was what brought the higher pay.
Still, Owens said the changes aren’t good enough. “When compared to the $16 billion in profit that the company rakes in annually, Wal-Mart’s promise of $10 an hour — which even for a full-time worker is not enough to keep a family of four out of poverty — is meager,” she told The Times.
Prices and wages in our capitalist society are generally determined by market forces: You charge what shoppers will pay, and you pay what workers will accept. Many people of faith are concerned with the financial struggle of the lower middle class and have been pushing for higher pay for these workers.
The Bible and the Quran talk about paying wages promptly (before sundown in the Bible, before a “worker’s sweat has dried” in the Quran). There are also verses about usury and the laborer deserving his wages. But there aren’t many specifics about how much workers should be paid, of course.
Here’s a sampling of verses:
New Testament James 5:4 (New International Version)
“Look! The wages you failed to pay the workers who mowed your fields are crying out against you. The cries of the harvesters have reached the ears of the Lord Almighty.”
From the Quran:
“Give to the worker his wages before his sweat dries.”
“You shall not withhold the wages of poor and needy laborers, whether other Israelites or aliens who reside in your land in one of your towns. You shall pay them their wages daily before sunset, because they are poor and their livelihood depends on them; otherwise they might cry to the Lord against you, and you would incur guilt.”
Here’s a question in which our religious faith could collide with our belief in the capitalist system: Do you think employers are under any obligation to pay more than the minimum wage to ensure that employees have enough money to stay off welfare? Or is it good enough to pay the minimum required by law?
Our panelists consider this question on the jump:
Mike Ghouse, President, America Together Foundation (Foundation for Pluralism)
How much a worker should be paid is a function of the market forces, responsible capitalism to keep us within the moral bounds of the society, and growth wages for a sustainable economy. The emphasis is on responsibility and growth.
It is critical to understand that our economy is driven by our wants rather than our needs. If we strictly go by the needs, no one needs a new computer, a new i6 or Samsung, or new clothes and new suits, endless variety of makeup, and designer hand bags, nor do we need to employ people, as we can do it ourselves; raise our own cows, chicken, wheat, veggies, fruits and cotton.
Way back in 1983, I was a vice president of a fire protection company, and one day, the IBM folks descended on us trying to sell us computers. We did not need then — we managed everything the old-fashioned way, making accounting entries by hand. Thanks for the blue suits for being persistent, finally we wanted them and had them and grew the business with efficiency, accuracy and timely data.
Morality is a product of different people working, playing, marrying, eating and schooling together. Of course, religious wisdom is a major contributor to the morals of the society.
When the holy books advise; “Look! The wages you failed to pay the workers who mowed your fields are crying out against you (New Testament).” You shall pay them their wages daily before sunset, because they are poor and their livelihood depends on them (Old Testament); “Give to the worker his wages before his sweat dries (Quran).” The other religions offer the same wisdom.
Indeed, all of them are invoking responsible capitalism: Let the worker “live his life,” take care of his family, be healthy and come back to work the next day motivated to work and be more productive. Investing in the health, prosperity of the worker ensures success of the business. You take care of him as he takes care of y0ur growth and both will prosper.
Our economy would not have grown; we would not have enjoyed the quality of life on our own without the labor that produces it and capital that risks producing.
If we still had a $2.25 minimum wage, the employees could not afford to rent an apartment and be healthy, and that would have cut off the growing of apartment buildings and the jobs they create, the convenience stores would have not sprung up, new and better ways of living would not have happened. Every business you see, every luxury you have and every convenience you enjoy is a direct result of increased wages that stimulate the economy.
Religion has offered sound advice. You pay the wages for the worker to live a life that will add growth, and not merely get by. Wal-Mart will grow further if it raises its minimum wages to $10. It will not eat into its profit, but add more revenues paid through the incremental increase in price, a driving engine of growth.
To read the opinion of other panelists, please visit Dallas Morning News at
America Together Foundation
Mike Ghouse is a public speaker, thinker, writer
and a commentator on Pluralism, Islam, India, Israel-Palestine, Politics and other
issues of the day. He is a human rights activist, and his book standing up for
others will be out soon | He is producing a full feature film ” Sacred” to be released on 9/11
and a documentary “Americans
together” for a July 4 release. He is a frequent guest commentator on Fox
News and syndicated Talk Radio shows and a writer at major news papers including
Dallas Morning News and Huffington Post. All about him is listed in 63 links at
www.MikeGhouse.net and his writings are
at www.TheGhousediary.com – Mike is
committed to building cohesive societies and offers pluralistic solutions on
issues of the day.