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> You're confusing poorly paid contractors with highly paid and sought contractors.

there's no difference. If your skillset is sought after, you get more money (by exercising your market demand).

The fact that there are many poorly paid people is not a problem of the companies paying them poorly, but of society not creating equal opportunities for those people (e.g., for education) to skill up.

Yes, everyone should have the opportunity for education, but if no one can live on the pay of an uber driver so everyone skills up to get a better paying job, who will drive the ubers?

I think everyone working fulltime should have a liveable wage.

No one would, uber would be forced to either pay higher or go out of business due to a lack of supply in drivers. As it stands though, supply of drivers way outweighs demand for drivers, so they get paid less.

A "liveable wage", whatever that is, isn't a workable solution for a lot of businesses, simply because the actual value of their work may be lower than the liveable wage. Now instead of getting some money for food to eat or a place to stay, they now get nothing because it just isn't viable to pay the liveable wage for the value they supply.

Everybody knows how offer and demand works if left unchecked. That's why it's almost never left unchecked... I mean this is what the whole discussion about gigging is: why should we allow such crappy working conditions?

"simply because the actual value of their work may be lower than the liveable wage."

That is not a job then and the entity assigning such tasks is not a company. A company has a responsibility to offer its workers certain benefits in return for having access to the legal and social frames that are allowing it to operate.

I am in agreeance that if they can't sustain their business without VC or underpaid workers then it isn't a viable business model and the market should let them go bankrupt. I kind of hope they do so that a more reasonable business can fill the void.

I argument that if a business can't provide a livable wage to its full time employees, then the business isn't viable.

I don't agree with you, but let's assume I do. What next? All of those business fail and... Low skill workers now make zero instead of something >= minimum wage. How is that better?

A healthy society will offer a safety net to people without jobs and also the ability to retrain, find another job, etc.

You're assuming an unhealthy society, which unfortunately matches the US, but also many other so-called well-off countries: social protection diminished or outright removed combined with job uncertainty and social inequality.

Having one or two Ubers allows you merely to pretend longer that the situation's not dire. The political turn to the right in Europe right now and the election results in the US can be at least partly explained by the fact that people are sick of it.

Only if you're enforcing the "livable" wage. Those people who would be working for under your "livable" wage would still be out of that money though.

for these sorts of low-value jobs, something has to give - either employees don't get a livable wage and the business survives, or the business doesn't survive due to too high wage cost. The option where the business survives, but also pays a livable wage, can't exist. If it could, then a competitor could also out-compete them by just not paying a livable wage!

What does that say about all of the money losing startups that are living on VC funding?

So if my 17 year old son making Pizza were working full time, how much should he be making?

What about the franchise owner? An article was posted here a few weeks back saying the average yearly take home pay of a 7-11 owner was less than $40K a year and he was working 60+ hours per week.

Then the next argument is usually if they can’t pay a livable wage and be profitable that they shouldn’t be in business. Which is really a great argument on a site where many people work for money losing tech companies who are only in business because of VC funding.

“Everyone working full time should have a loveable wage”. It’s a useful thought experiment to see where does this break down for you. Does every startup deserve funding if the founder promises to commit full time? Does every aspiring artist or actor get a liveable wage if they promise to engage full time regardless of their skill? Does every researcher get paid even if their focus is on playing video games? At some point “value created”, and “skill”, and “demand”, and “competition” are reasonable measuring heuristics without invoking “late stage capitalism” tropes.

It's just a sentence, not a detailed essay of my thoughts covering all the bases. I was thinking along the lines of everyone working fulltime for a single employer. Uber drivers are contractors apparently, but if uber lets them work 40ish hours a week, I personally include them. Basically, the response to all of your questions is if a single employer is paying them either hourly or per task and wants/needs/allows them to work full time, then they should get a liveable wage. If they suck they should be let go. I'm sure there are exceptions.

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