Minimum Wage Machine dispenses free money at the simple turn of a crank

Originally published at:


That is art that both educates and entertains!


I used to work at minimum wage when it was $3.25 an hour. And I had some jobs that because of “training” exceptions, they paid LESS than minimum wage. Imagine trying to keep up an apartment, feed yourself, pay for car insurance, all that guff, for $2.95 an hour. BEFORE taxes.


This is pretty cool, but also very, very old.

Is there any particular reason we’re talking about it today? Some via link?


Where I live they still pay waitstaff ~$3.50/hr because they “get tips”. Typically the jobs that do that end up averaging out but it is still a pretty shady practice.

My state is $7.25/hr minimum wage while average rent in the town for a 2 bedroom townhouse is over $1k/month.


Eh, I’ve made less money doing more tedious things than that.


And pays!


Well, it’s easy to say when you’re not forced to be at the receiving end, but: Work has no obligation to feel satisfying, make you happy, that kinda thing.
If it did, we’d call it ‘fun time’ and not ‘work’

Edit: But I do tell people the cautionary tales of working in fast food: that shit gets old, and boring, and tedious as heck real quick.

To the capitalist, every luxury of the worker seems to be reprehensible, and everything that goes beyond the most abstract need – be it in the realm of passive enjoyment, or a manifestation of activity – seems to him a luxury.

Karl Marx - Human Requirements and Division of Labour Under the Rule of Private Property


When it is high school/college kids or young single people performing these jobs, I have no problem with the minimum wage being what it is. I made $7 an hour in college working for Best Buy - while married! - and we made things work.

The main problem is when adults with families get stuck in these positions. They aren’t intended to be a “living wage” for families. Even $15 an hour isn’t much when you have other mouths at home to feed.


Or, a 2 bedroom townhouse costs 100% of a minimum wage worker’s wages.

But besides that… the average rent for a 2 bedroom townhouse is $1k/month?!? Where the hell do you live? Around these parts, rents are comparable, but instead of $1k/month it’s $2k/month, and instead of a 2 bedroom townhouse it’s a studio apartment that already has two jazz performance students livingfucking in it.

I once got a one-day gig assembling these little ball-bearing widgets for $50. That’s comparable to turning a crank for $7.50/hour. However, this was back in 19somethingsomething, so it was worth it.

Collecting shopping carts in the rain for about half that wage, on the other hand, wasn’t.

Technically correct, but employers also have no obligation to squeeze out productivity from employees like blood from a turnip, even if it does save a few cents here and there (on paper).


Indeed. I’ve taken jobs because they were boring, to leave plenty of mental energy for real life when I go home.


LOL, college kids don’t do that kind of work because “their job is being a student”, and most of the high school kids and young single people doing that kind of work are those who will literally be working those jobs until they die. College-bound kids apparently don’t do that work because it takes time that could otherwise be used on something that would look good to the college admissions boards. College costs being what they are, more and more parents are willing to pay for their kids’ shit during high school because it will save money in the long run if they get a scholarship. Also, wealth inequality being what it is, more and more parents are willing to pay for even more of their kids’ shit during college because it will save money in the long run when their kids aren’t dependent on them to keep them out of poverty.

The “character building” McJob thing is a myth that may have been true in the mid 20th century, if then, but no longer even pretends to be a thing. I was on the tail end of the high school kids working McJobs fad, and even then it wasn’t fucking worth it. If I were raising kids today, even if I were to steer them towards work, I would steer them the fuck away from the McJobs track.


To be realistic you should be limited to only turning it 34 hours per week and have to buy your own Penny Crank uniform and flair. Maybe add a supervisor to stop by and occasionally scream “You’re doing it wrong!” just for good measure.


The average college student in my town is a single mom working 2 jobs (according to a recent speech by the college president).


My life experience is very different from yours. I worked at a Pizza Hut briefly, then at a candy store in high school in the mid-90’s making $4.25 an hour. In college I worked at Subway while attending classes ($5.50 an hour) then at a movie theater ($6.50 an hour) and Best Buy at the turn of the century.

Those jobs were stop-gap jobs until I started my career. I went into them with that mindset, worked in those positions as hard as I could to rise through the ranks, and moved out of that kind of job once I got my degree.

The same is true for most of my peers. This was in Kansas and Oklahoma, so maybe the mentality was just different where you grew up.


Tch! Don’t be silly. They have an obligation to those mysterious shareholders. /s

But if you are unavailable for any of those 34 hours you have to supply a replacement to operate the crank, or get sacked.


October 18, 1976 minimum wage went from $2.00 an hour to $2.50 an hour, so after 40 hour work week I got $65.00 US dollars in my hand after taxes. My rent was $25.00 a month, a case of beer was like $5.00 for low wage brew. A crappy pizza was $3.00 to $4.00, a shot and a brew [dirt bag special at a low life bar] was around $1.00. Starting to see why any so and so could leave home and actually have a life. You could live on $260.00 a month, not extravagant, but a life worth living until you hit the big time.

P.S. How a kid can move out now in 2020? I haven’t the bloodiest fu#king idea…


Our rent has gone up by five times that amount in two years.