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Inflation: Gas prices, minimum wage, and inflation from 1938 - 2008
Posted by Douglas, May 18, 2008. 3624 views. ID = 1314


Posted by Douglas, May 18, 2008. 3624 views. ID = 1314
This post was written in 22 minutes.
This post has been awarded 44 stars by 11 readers.

"A penny for your thoughts?"

Dave, who had been staring dreamily at nothing, snapped out of his musings and glared at me. "You have no respect for me whatsoever," he said.

"What?" I exclaimed, astonished by this remarkable statement. I have a great deal of respect for Dave.

"Do you know what the minimum wage was in 1938?" he demanded.

"Uh, no."

"25 cents per hour."

"I see," I said politely, not really seeing anything, and still wondering why Dave said I was disrespecting him.

"This year it's going to be $6.55."

I shrugged. "So?"

"So that's an increase of about 2500% over seventy years!"

"That's amazing," I said, thinking about what it must have been like to live on twenty-five cents per hour.

"Do you know what gas prices were in 1938?"

"No. But I bet you're going to tell me."

"Ten cents per gallon. Compare that to about $4.00 per gallon today, and you've got about a 4000% increase over seventy years."

"Astonishing," I said, envying those people from long ago.

"Yes," he agreed. "So, at those inflation rates, if you want my thoughts, it's going to cost you forty cents, and it's insulting for you to offer me just a penny. Except, of course, I have an IQ of about 150, which means that my thoughts ought to be worth more than the average thoughts by approximately 50%, plus I have a college degree, and when you consider the statistics on wage comparisons between those who have college degrees and those who don't..."

I let him ramble on for about forty-five minutes, and then tossed him a dollar, saying, "Keep the change."

The great thing is that he never realized: at minimum wage, a forty-five minute thought should have cost $4.91. Which just goes to show that a high IQ and a college education don't necessarily count for much when it comes to thinking.

Copyright 2008 Douglas. All rights reserved. has been granted non-exclusive rights to display this work. For permission to reprint this item, please contact the author.

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This post has been awarded 44 stars by 11 readers.
This post is part of a writing prompt: A Penny For Your Thoughts...
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May 22, 2008
Darn inflation =)
   ~Posted by Isaac, May 22, 2008

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