It Begins: Wendy’s Installs Robots In 1,000 Stores To Counter Minimum Wage
By Matt Agorist
For the last several years, the Free Thought Project has been predicting what will happen as government continued to arbitrarily fix wages across the United States. As politicians deceive their constituents into thinking financial success can come through an act of legislation, employers will find a way to offset this cost. It will either come through higher prices or, in this most recent Wendy’s case — robots.
The automated kiosks serve two purposes: they give younger customers an ordering experience that they prefer, and they reduce labor costs.
“There is a huge amount of pull from (franchisees) in order to get them,” David Trimm, Wendy’s chief information officer, said last week during the company’s investors’ day.
“With the demand we are seeing … we can absolutely see our way to having 1,000 or more restaurants live with kiosks by the end of the year.”
According to Dispatch.com:
A typical store would get three kiosks for about $15,000. Trimm estimated the payback on those machines would be less than two years, thanks to labor savings and increased sales. Customers still could order at the counter.
Kiosks are where the industry is headed, but Wendy’s is ahead of the curve, said Darren Tristano, vice president with Technomic, a food-service research and consulting firm.
“They are looking to improve their automation and their labor costs, and this is a good way to do it,” Tristano said. “They are also trying to enhance the customer experience. Younger customers prefer to use a kiosk.”
While Wendy’s is ahead of the curve as far as outsourcing labor to robots goes, other fast food restaurants are not far behind.
Last month, the Free Thought Project reported on McDonald’s latest attempt to stave off minimum wage hikes. However, unlike Wendy’s kiosks that simply take your order, the McDonald’s machines do it all — including spitting out a piping hot, 563 calorie, Big Mac.
While automation in the labor market is inevitable as technology increases, laws that dictate minimum wages only serve to speed up this automation. Sadly, many people will read this article and immediately assume that it’s somefascist right wing rant that ignores the plight of the working class. However, that assessment couldn’t be further from the truth.
Raising the minimum wage does nothing to protect the working class. In fact, as we see with these Wendy’s robots, a mandatory minimum wage destroys the working class.
As Nobelist Milton Friedman correctly quipped, “A minimum wage law is, in reality, a law that makes it illegal for an employer to hire a person with limited skills.”
If the economic effects of a minimum wage aren’t convincing enough, perhaps consider the racist background of such laws. As Andrew Syrios points out, most Americans have no clue about the racist intentions and subsequent effects of the original minimum wage.
When Apartheid was collapsing in South Africa, the economist Walter Williams did a study of South African labor markets and found that many white unions were seeking to increase the minimum wage. He quotes one such union leader as saying “… I support the rate for the job (minimum wages) as the second best way of protecting white artisans.” By pricing out less educated black laborers with a minimum wage, white unions were able to insulate themselves from competition.
Indeed, the Davis-Bacon Act, which demands that private employers pay “prevailing wages” for any government contracts, was explicitly passed as a Jim Crow law in order to protect white jobs from cheaper black competitors. And while the minimum wage is supported with much more pleasant rhetoric these days, the effects on black employment, particularly black teenage employment, have been devastating. As Thomas Sowell observes,
In 1948 … the unemployment rate among black 16-year-olds and 17-year-olds was 9.4 percent, slightly lower than that for white kids the same ages, which was 10.2 percent. Over the decades since then, we have gotten used to unemployment rates among black teenagers being over 30 percent, 40 percent or in some years even 50 percent.
It’s hard to imagine that black unemployment was actually less than that of whites. But that is the effect minimum wage laws can have.
Ending poverty and giving people additional income are praiseworthy goals, but there are no free lunches in this world. And trying to force prosperity through a minimum wage simply creates a whole host of negative and unintended consequences especially for those who are the most vulnerable.
Matt Agorist is the co-founder of TheFreeThoughtProject.com, where this article first appeared. He is an honorably discharged veteran of the USMC and former intelligence operator directly tasked by the NSA. This prior experience gives him unique insight into the world of government corruption and the American police state. Agorist has been an independent journalist for over a decade and has been featured on mainstream networks around the world. . and now on Steemit
2 thoughts on “It Begins: Wendy’s Installs Robots In 1,000 Stores To Counter Minimum Wage”
It’s a self order ordering & payment gadget.
And it is cheaper to run than a real live person .. according to Bob Wright .. Wendy’s chief operating officer.
Which means that .. AFTER THE PURCHASE PRICE … no, no, no, .. okay then what ?
1. THE PURCHASE PRICE IS TAX DEDUCTIBLE
2. THE INSTALLATION COSTS ARE TAX DEDUCTIBLE
3. THE COST OF ELECTRICITY USAGE .. TO RUN THE MACHINE IS FREE .. TAX DEDUCTIBLE
4. REGULAR MAINTENANCE IS TAX DEDUCTIBLE
a) BECAUSE THIS SUCKER COST A LOT OF MONEY TO BUY
b) THIS SUCKER USES A LOT OF ELECTRICITY TO RUN .. WHICH TRANSLATED AS IN MONETARY COSTS .. IT COSTS A LOT OF MONEY TO RUN
c) IT REQUIRES REGULAR SERVICING .. DAILY
Wendy’s are saving 31 hours of payed employment .. WOW !
The outlay to run one of these gadgets could be 10 – 12 – 30 times the cost of the human element.
THE COST TO SUBSIDIES WENDY’S TO EMBRACE ROBOTICS IS COVERED BY / COMES FROM THE PUBLIC PURSE.
THE ROBOTICS INDUSTRY NEEDS THE BUSINESS.
Go sit in the supermarket for a while & look around & as you do ..
* wonder how much it costs to run the fridges & freezers 24 hours a day 7 days a week for 12 months in a year.
* wonder how much it costs to leave the lights on 24 hours a day 7 days a week for 12 months in a year.
* the self serve registers used to be switched on first thing in the morning .. now the wait an hour or 2 to save on the electricity bill .. wonder how much it costs to run the self serve registers per hour & multiply this by the hours that the supermarket is open .. realize that the self serve registers are not in use the whole time the supermarket is open .. the just sit there costing money.
HAS IT OCCURRED TO ANYONE THAT THE SUPER MARKETS ARE ACTUALLY SUBSIDIZED BY THE PUBLIC PURSE.
THEY ARE A BIG PART OF THE FOOD DELIVERY SYSTEM THE THE PEOPLE.
THE GOVERNMENT CANNOT AFFORD TO LET THEM SHUT DOWN.
IF THE SUPER MARKETS WERE TO SHUT DOWN IT WOULD CAUSE FOOD SHORTAGES.
So you see that no matter how badly a business or bank fails they must be subsidized or the system will fall apart.
There is no such thing as privatization . the public purse props up everything.
The Real Estate market is subsidized by us .. we help pay off the property’s for the HOT SHOT FILTHY RICH PROPERTY INVESTOR or he would go broke. At the same time he is extorting massive rent from us.
No matter how you look at it, we the people cop it in the neck every time.