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The Nation’s Greatest Thieves

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monopoly-guy

While we rightfully focus on the collapse of American institutions in the face of an orange authoritarian strongman with an IQ of 54, the everyday horrors of American continue and are of course reinforced by said idiot king. Such as wage theft, perpetrated by the biggest thieves in American life: employers.

Ohio ranked second among large states for the share of workers whose employers failed to pay them minimum wage, according to a recently released report.

In Ohio, 5.5 percent of workers experienced this type of “wage theft,” according to the analysis released Wednesday by the left-leaning Economic Policy Institute in Washington, D.C. Ohio’s current minimum wage is $8.15 an hour.

In the 10 most-populous states that were the subject of EPI’s report, employers failed to pay the minimum wage to an average of 4.1 percent of workers. Florida ranked first with 7.3 percent and New York came in third at 5 percent.

“It doesn’t necessarily mean that on the pay stub it says you’re only getting $4 an hour,” said David Cooper, the senior economic analyst, who co-authored the report with research assistant Teresa Kroeger.

“It could be employers are paying them the legal minimum wage, but asking them to work more hours than they are paying them for, or denying them meal breaks they are entitled to or in the case of tipped workers, not making up the difference when their tips don’t bring them above the regular minimum wage,” he said. “All these things can lead to a person having an effective minimum wage that is below the legal minimum wage.

In Ohio, 217,000 workers fell into this category and 2.4 million in the 10 states, the report said. The lost earnings represented a substantial amount of these workers’ earnings.

“They should have been making $12,400 a year, but because employers are keeping $2,800, they are only ending up with $9,600 in a year,” Cooper said about Ohio.

Without unions or a robust enforcement mechanism, who will enforce these rules? No one. Certainly not John Kasich. And since American culture thinks these minimum wage jobs are not “real jobs” that deserve serious attention, fast food franchisers, temp agencies, and people who run cleaning and landscaping firms can fleece their employees at will, with just the slightest creativity to make the books look OK.

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