Can You Live on the Minimum Wage?

Can You Live on the Minimum Wage?Synopsis: the website is a calculator tool, where you enter your monthly bills and your state, and it calculates your budget based on the minimum wage. Any spending you have on top of that is put into a debt category. How much debt would you be in if you had to try and live on a minimum wage salary?

People’s efforts to try and fit their lives into this budget look exactly like the “social problems” that wealthy people so often lament…

People try to save money on rent by finding cheaper (often sketchy and unstable) living arrangements. People go without healthcare, or they go without car insurance. Though we judge them as “irresponsible” for not paying these costs, maybe the choice they have to choose from is to keep their job, which often requires having a car, and also, EATING every day, or paying expensive insurance premiums and starving…

And some just say FUCK IT, it’s not worth jumping through all those hoops and playing all those balancing acts… I’d rather be homeless and free. It’s a shitty option, but for many, even though being homeless often puts you in the status of being an illegal non-person, it is a better option than the slavery grind of trying to play the minimum-wage game of scraping by. This may lead to other “problem behaviours”, as a person attempts to cope with the oppression of being an illegal person – breaking the law, violent behaviour, drug use – these behaviours, more than a choice, are symptoms of trauma, symptoms of ailments like depression, hopelessness, symptoms of the experience of ongoing systemic oppression.

It seems like the minimum wage should be high enough for everyone earning it to live a reasonably stable life, have access to whatever services and “insurances” we consider necessary for the common good, and be able to feed themselves nourishing food.


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