Minimum Wage, A.D. 1968 and Now

01 Sep

[Courtesy Google Images]

[Courtesy Google Images]

Michael Snyder ( penned an article entitled “40 Percent Of U.S. Workers Make Less Than What A Full-Time Minimum Wage Worker Made In 1968”.

According to that article,

“American workers are not making as much [today] as they used to after you account for inflation.  Back in 1968, the minimum wage in the United States was $1.60 an hour. That sounds very small, but after you account for inflation a very different picture emerges.  Using the inflation calculator that the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) provides, $1.60 in 1968 is equivalent to $10.74 today.”

Today’s minimum wage is $7.25.

Thus, according to the BLS, today’s minimum wage provides only two-thirds the purchasing power of the minimum wage of A.D. 1968.

Michael Snyder continues:


“[O]fficial government inflation numbers have been heavily manipulated to make inflation look much lower than it actually is, so the number for today should actually be substantially higher than $10.74, but for purposes of this article we will use $10.74.

“If you were to work a full-time job at $10.74 an hour for a full year (with two weeks off for vacation), you would make about $21,480 for the year.  That isn’t a lot of money, but according to the Social Security Administration, 40.28% of all workers make less than $20,000 a year in America today.  So, that means that more than 40% of all U.S. workers actually make less today than what a full-time minimum-wage worker made back in 1968. That’s how far we’ve fallen.”


Mr. Snyder is right. In terms of national prosperity, American has fallen enormously in my lifetime.

Back in A.D. 1968—the last year that paper dollars were redeemable 1:1 for silver dollars—the minimum wage was $1.60/hour.  That equalled 1.6 silver dollars per hour.

Today’s silver is roughly $25/ounce.  I.6 ounces of silver = $40.

Thus, $1.60 in A.D. 1968—in terms or silver—was equal to about $40 today.  A minimum wage of 1.6 ounces of silver/hour today should be equivalent in purchasing power to an annual gross income measuring fiat currency of $70,000.   That level of real income and purchasing power might’ve been our minimum wage—if we’d kept gold or silver based monetary system.

Instead, today’s minimum wage is $7.25/hour which equals $14,500 gross annual income.

Thanks, in large measure, to allowing our government to impose a pure fiat currency (rather than maintain the “gold and silver coin” required at Article 1 Section 10 Clause 1 of the Constitution), Americans earning a minimum wage today are earning less than 20% of what minimum-wage workers earned in A.D. 1968—when the currency was still backed by silver.

How’d that happen?  Who acquired the “missing” 80% of the minimum wage that’s no longer being paid to workers?

Government.  Corporations.  Banks.  Special interests.  Perhaps even globalists.

But the truth is that over the past 45 years the average person has been robbed—with the complicity of his own government—of 80% of the purchasing power he might otherwise have expected to have earned—if we’d stayed with a constitutionally-required, gold or silver-based currency.

I’m sure that a lot of readers would say that’s crazy to suggest that the loss of gold or silver-based currency has cost the average worker 80% of his purchasing power.

Most Americans can’t even imagine that we might be living on just 20% of what our parents or grandparent lived on in A.D. 1968.

But, our parents didn’t live on credit, did they?  How deep in debut are you, ladies and gentlemen?  All of your credit (and resulting debt) is helping to conceal the fact that you’ve been robbed, big time, by your own government and government-approved special interests.

More evidence?

Three weeks ago I reported on a study conducted by two East-coast economists who calculated the costs of growing government regulations on the economy since A.D. 1949.  They concluded that if the level of regulation was the same today as in A.D. 1949, the median family income would be $330,000 rather than today’s $53,000.  According the researchers’ numbers, since A.D. 1949, government regulations have cut your purchasing power by 80%.

According to those economists, we’ve lost 80% of our purchasing power in 64 years based on government regulations.

According to my calculations, we’ve lost 80% in 45 years based on loss of gold and silver-based currency.

The researchers’ numbers and my own aren’t identical, but they’re sufficiently similar to support the argument that, one way or another, with the complicity of our own government, the American workers’ standard of living has fallen by 80% in my lifetime.  Maybe that loss is due to over-regulation.  Maybe it’s due to the loss of gold- and silver-based currency.  Maybe its due to lowered tariffs and global free trade.  Maybe it’s due to all of the above.

But in every case, the vast majority of that loss can be traced back to our own government.

Those losses will continue until Americans decide to 1) get smart; and 2) get tough.

You need to find both the smarts and the courage to recognize your true enemies.  Then, you must become sufficiently tough to throw the treasonous whores out of public office.

If you won’t get smart and won’t get tough, you’ll see your purchasing power cut even more as compared to what Americans could earn when I was a young man.

How do you get tough?  How do you get smart?  Start pushing government to restore a gold- and/or silver-based dollar.  As long as you consent to be paid in a fiat currency, I guarantee you will continue to be robbed.  As long as you agree to store your savings in any form of a fiat currency, I guarantee you will continue to be robbed.

If you want to preserve your wealth, get gold.

If you want to preserve your purchasing power and your children’s futures, force your government to restore a gold- or silver-based monetary system.

Or, if you prefer, you can sit on your hands, go with the flow, and wonder whatever happened to the American Dream and the once-great United States of America.

It doesn’t take brains to see the truth.  It takes balls.


Posted by on September 1, 2013 in Fiat Currency, Gold & Silver Coin, Lies, Money, Values


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10 responses to “Minimum Wage, A.D. 1968 and Now

  1. palani

    September 1, 2013 at 4:44 PM

    My father told the story of returning from WWI (phase deuce) to work as a millwright at a tractor factory. He was making $.90 an hour working alongside an older guy who had worked there at the start of the great depression. The older guy reportedly told my father that he was making $.90 a day then and thought he had better buying power during the depression than at his current wage.

    • Jetlag

      September 1, 2013 at 7:42 PM

      Linked below is a revealing chart of the dollar’s worth in the 20th century, based on historical data. The steady decline that started in the early 1930s is plain to see.

  2. Yartap

    September 1, 2013 at 7:12 PM


    I see how gov-co. has made things worst for everyone with setting a minimum wage. But I feel, that the worst thing is this indoctrination in our public schools of teaching: “When you get a JOB.” We do not teach: “When you start your own BUSINESS.” This is part of the dumbing down of our society. We teach, “Don’t have any dreams and you don’t need any initiative for yourself, a JOB will be waiting for you. Compound this with single female parent homes, who are over protective of their children and initiative is totally lost.

    Yes, government regulations make it harder today for anyone to start a business, plus allowing outside plantation-corporations to enter each small economy has weakened those who wish to start on their own business.

  3. Felipe

    September 1, 2013 at 9:43 PM

    Why is this surprising when the Globalist agenda has been clear?

    The want people to now drop dead, they have stolen the world fair and square and now they want you off their planet or in the compost bin.

  4. Michael

    September 2, 2013 at 8:39 AM

    THE Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse.

    When you know the future, you know what is to come upon all and where you are in the times, but so many know so little, and understand too late.

    When the Lamb opened the third seal, I heard the third living creature say, “Come and see!” I looked, and there before me was a black horse! Its rider was holding a pair of scales in his hand. Then I heard what sounded like a voice among the four living creatures, saying, “A quart of wheat for a day’s wages, and three quarts of barley for a day’s wages, and do not damage the oil and the wine!”

    If study more you will be amassed to what you find, if you choose to seek the truth, you will find it and will be given the understanding of it. If you sit back then all you will have is your ignorance to console you and death will be your comforter.

  5. johannabernays

    September 2, 2013 at 9:27 AM

    I am not nit-pickingg, but the Minimun Wage was not $1.60 in 1968. I was 18 in 1968, I was working at age 16, to wit: 1966. I remember very well being “Clued In” how to fill out W3 Income Tax forms, so at $1.25 an Hour, Claim myself as a Dependant, my Took Home was $50.00 a Week. Life was Geared to THOSE WAGES.In Arkansas a seconded Handed Car was $35.00. I bought a 1953 Ford , $35.00, paid $20 down and $15 next Pay Day. That is for a 13 Year Old Car.
    in 1969 I was doing PIECE WORK at a Brass Iron Foundry in Racine WI, making Tonnes of Money. I bought a 1955 Buick Special, $100.00. It was a GREAT CAR! Heater was HOT, always started in Sub ZEro temps. but MIN. WAGE was not $1.60, moe like $1.35. hour.

    I Know there are lots of places where “ocuments” state different, I WAS WORKING, I WAS JUST MARRIED (Jan. 1969) I can even remember being AWED at the VAST AMOUNTS of CASH I HAD after paying rent every week…RENT was $8.00 a Week. 1558 Packard Street, Old John Mikkelsen’s Rooming House!

    I Bought lots of WW2 Ham Radio Gear. National, Hallicrafters, a 1969 BMW R-60s Motorcycle for $1,450.00 (With Tax $1,508.00) BRAND NEW! That was BEING RICH! A 19 Year Old HIll Belly from Benton Arkansas.

    No Working Folks had Bank Accounts. A FARM Could be bought for $18,000, a Working Farm, 80-160 Acres.

    a “Piece of Land” I bought in Clayton Lake area OKLAHOMA for $1,800 was 20 Acres, with a Cabin, Well, and Lake Frontage—in 1971.

    CREDIT and BANKS & INSURANCE BROKERAGES “Conspired” to make “PAYMENT IN CASH” for Land. Autos, Etc became OUTLAWED.

    • Joe R. B.

      September 5, 2013 at 6:31 AM

      You could be right about the minimum wage. I was 16 in ’71 and was making $1.60 per hour.
      Working for Manpower in Dallas. I must have went with a friend, since I didn’t have a car at the time.

      • john bernays

        October 24, 2017 at 12:36 AM

        I Worked from Manpower in Dallas, sold Plasma, also Manpower was always hiring, up until about 1980. I remember clearly in 1964 (i think) I got Neighbourhood Youth Core ? A Jub at minimum wage only 32 Hours a week. I worked with people that had 8 hour day Job, cleared $10.00 a day, then Hauled Billits (Pulk Wood) after work. Owned property and fed 12 14 childrens…however they had WW2 G I Bill Vterins Home Loans. I am talking about 1960’s, before ZONING Poor People and calling peoples property (often paid in full) by …golly, I am listening to Eric Claption on the Short Wave Radio, WBCQ, the Planet, 40 Meters band. I cant remember the NEW frequency, the ORIGINAL Frequency was 7.415 I actually Talked to the Station , to TIM TRON, on my Yaesu FTDX500 from Arkansas, later I had 2 Heathkit DX 100 AM Trandmitters, one with the 3x 6146 Power Tbes mod.
        I am smoking some good medicine…jees

  6. Vincent

    September 4, 2013 at 9:48 AM

    Not trying to be anal here, but $1.60 at that time was closer to 1.24 oz of silver or just under $31 today using the $25/oz rate you have. The points of your article are great. We have allowed ourselves to be robbed for far too long and it will continue unless we make a stand and refuse debt based payments. There is a reason God told us to not deal in unjust weights and balances and to stay away from usury. Usury had a penalty of death. That is how big of a deal it is. Just because we are so familiar and comfortable with it as a society today, it is no more acceptable to God then it has been since the beginning of time.

  7. Sapone

    September 6, 2013 at 11:39 PM

    I entered the workforce at age 19 in June 1970. My first full-time job was as a shipping clerk for the minimum wage of $1.65/hour at the Pickwick Bookstore in Montclair Plaza, Montclair, Calif. I took home $54.40 a week. Gas was between $0.25 to $0.40 a gallon depending on the grade and brand. Eggs were $0.45 a dozen; a half-gallon of milk was $0.55. Tuition at Chaffey College, a local junior college, was a flat $50 a semester for a full load of 12 units or more. In 1970 I transferred to UCLA, which cost $118 a quarter for a full load. The price of textbooks was as onerous then as now. I don’t think it would be possible to work one’s way through college as I did forty-odd years ago. The wages just aren’t there.


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