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Minimum Wage Impact on Restaurant (especially FF) Prices

What robots? I still see people opening the bags of food in the back area. Machines probably filled those bags, and if people were involved, they were moving tons of ingredients, but it's not totally automated.

I predict that people won't want to go to a FF restaurant that's fully automated. They'll want to order the food from a person. Even better is if the food is brought to them, like at Carl's Jr... but having someone holler your name through a window is okay, too.

There will also be a premium when you have places like Subway and Chipotle where the assembly of the food is part of the experience.

BTW, calling the workers in fast food "semi-literate" is really rude.

Sep 17, 2014
wildgift in Not About Food

Minimum Wage Impact on Restaurant (especially FF) Prices

The disparities are huge. If the minimum wage were $8.50, and the middle class made $17 an hour, and "rich" were $34 an hour that would be one thing. If the rich made $51, it still wouldn't be that big a deal, but the start of "rich" here is around $300k, or $150 an hour. And the really rich make a lot more than that.

BTW, have you looked at fast food lately? I see 30 year olds.

Sep 16, 2014
wildgift in Not About Food

Minimum Wage Impact on Restaurant (especially FF) Prices

People go to fast food restaurants because they want something to eat in a somewhat social environment where there's a place to sit and eat. Secondarily, they want something relatively freshly made, even if it's from a bag of frozen food. If this weren't the case, we'd all eat from vending machines, and get packaged food at the supermarket.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FmXLq...

Sep 13, 2014
wildgift in Not About Food

Gentrification of Los Angeles Chinatown Continues--Little Jewel

Oh, I only wish.

Sep 12, 2014
wildgift in Los Angeles Area

Gentrification of Los Angeles Chinatown Continues--Little Jewel

The trains connect with each other at Union Station and the 7th St. Station. So you could start on the red, and then transfer to expo at 7th.

The 720 during the evening rush hour sucks, but in the morning and during the day, it's okay. It starts at 5th and Main and ends near the parking lot south of the 3rd St. Promenade.

Every other bus goes all the way through East LA to the City of Commerce. This is why a lot of the workforce uses it. It was actually supposed to be replaced by the original red line, but the funding for it was blocked.

Sep 12, 2014
wildgift in Los Angeles Area

White Chocolate Ramen Bark

what a waste of perfectly good ramen

Sep 10, 2014
wildgift in Recipes
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Gentrification of Los Angeles Chinatown Continues--Little Jewel

if there were, i imagine he'd have learned to like it

Sep 10, 2014
wildgift in Los Angeles Area

Gentrification of Los Angeles Chinatown Continues--Little Jewel

The 720 bus already goes crosstown. It's not that slow compared to driving. It's just a bouncy ride.

Sep 10, 2014
wildgift in Los Angeles Area
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Am I the only one who lives in a magic house? A lighthearted look at ourselves & food safety

You can keep rice in the cooker if it's plugged in and warm. The heat kills the bacteria. Otherwise, it'll be bad in a day.

Sep 10, 2014
wildgift in Not About Food

Gentrification of Los Angeles Chinatown Continues--Little Jewel

ok ok. you're a picky foodie. technically, isn't a sack of bean sprouts categorically fresher than edible fruit?

Sep 10, 2014
wildgift in Los Angeles Area

Best of Downtown Chinatown

OK, this is three years late, but for anyone else staying near Union Station, the main bus from that area is the MTA 70, which starts at Union Station, runs through City Terrace and eventually onto Garvey Blvd. Get off at Garvey and Atlantic, and there are decent eating options all around within walking distance - just look on Yelp.

Farther down that line are a few more spots, but I don't know the names right now. They changed. However, the quality isn't really that high along Garvey, generally speaking.

So, the short version of this - yes, there is a bus that gets you to the SGV, without transfers.

Chinese restaurants in downtown LA's chinatown? Anything good there, since i notice Chinese restaurants after a post-prandial stroll from Little Jewel

I like Mayflower not so much for the food (which is too salty for me) but because they have this wall of Manny Pacquiao stuff. It's a Chinese HK style restaurant that sells mainly to the Pilipino American community. The hybridity is interesting.

Sep 10, 2014
wildgift in Los Angeles Area

Gentrification of Los Angeles Chinatown Continues--Little Jewel

>An awkward sweet sometimes coupled with intense heat. A dull preparation of shrimp. Nothing fresh.

WTH? There's bean sprouts and onion, chives, lime, tofu. That's fresh. And it's only sweet if they use that weird orange sauce. If they use tamarind pulp, it's a different flavor.

And a good B&C burrito is awesome.

Sep 10, 2014
wildgift in Los Angeles Area

Pizza Dough?

Thanks for the tip. I didn't know that.

Sep 10, 2014
wildgift in Los Angeles Area

Pizza Dough?

Claro's market sells it, but they're not on the westside. San Gabriel and I think somewhere in OC.

They also sell premade sandwiches and pizza that are sloppy and delicious.

Sep 10, 2014
wildgift in Los Angeles Area

Minimum Wage Impact on Restaurant (especially FF) Prices

Probably more likely the rise in bacon and chicken prices.

Pollo Loco, a local chicken chain fast food, added beef to their menu. I don't have any proof, but I assumed it was because chicken got expensive.

Sep 10, 2014
wildgift in Not About Food
1

Gentrification of Los Angeles Chinatown Continues--Little Jewel

http://www.kinfolk.com/interview-andy...
Dude doesn't like natto or goat cheese.
smh

Sep 10, 2014
wildgift in Los Angeles Area

Gentrification of Los Angeles Chinatown Continues--Little Jewel

LOL, for me it's like "nobody goes there anymore; it's too crowded." I went to LT and the arts district a lot more when it wasn't so crowded and active. Now it's not so relaxing. Unless I am going to meet people there, it's a no-go zone now :(

I feel happy for the people who work there, though. There were times when businesses were closing left and right. That's always a bummer.

Sep 10, 2014
wildgift in Los Angeles Area
1

Gentrification of Los Angeles Chinatown Continues--Little Jewel

What about Mae Ploy? Too far? Halfway to Thai Town... food-wise as well.

Edit: I forgot about the big store next to Chinatown, LAX-C. There's a little restaurant in the complex, and it's so-so but acceptable. The food area inside the big store is good and spicy. I don't know the other vendors there.

Sep 09, 2014
wildgift in Los Angeles Area

Gentrification of Los Angeles Chinatown Continues--Little Jewel

Most have been Korean-owned for "quite some time"? No. I think it's still mostly Japanese American, though Korean-American ownership of real estate is a big thing there. The migration of the community out of the businesses didn't start happening until the 1990s. WW2 was a different thing - forced removal to concentration camps. People came back to LT afterward, living in the area, but redevelopment (and a prior wave of investment in the 70s) basically tore down what housing had been there, so people moved to other areas. The residents there were either moderate income or were seniors.

Also, there were JA communities all over the region, so it isn't as simple as a general movement from LT to other areas. LT's problem has always been to attract the far-flung residents to the downtown area to spend money.

Sep 08, 2014
wildgift in Los Angeles Area

Gentrification of Los Angeles Chinatown Continues--Little Jewel

@Jase - "broke" and "lower rent" mean different things when it's art-school graduates pricing apartments in immigrant communities. You're looking at artists who maybe got a scholarship, or paid, for a year of school, more than what most of the residents earn. That affects perspectives. (Example: Otis is $38k per year. Chinatown median household income, 2008, $22.7k. Even adjusting for the year - the art school is way more expensive. The CTown wages skew down due to seniors, I'm guessing.)

Sep 08, 2014
wildgift in Los Angeles Area
1

Gentrification of Los Angeles Chinatown Continues--Little Jewel

Johnny L - I meant residential rents. Wasn't thinking of commercial rents. I remember it used to be really cheap there, but when the galleries came in in the early 2000s, the rents went up. Some places were intended for hipsters, judging from the rent and remodel jobs.

Sep 08, 2014
wildgift in Los Angeles Area

Minimum Wage Impact on Restaurant (especially FF) Prices

I'm talking about where I'm at, where unemployment is already high. There will be job losses, and there will be job gains, but in a low income community, the odds are better that there will be gains simply because more money will be circulating in this local community.

Every week I see a few areas of the city where the economy is great. I see other areas where it's kind of okay. But at home, I don't see that. The money isn't getting here. It's almost like we're in different economies.

While I have sympathy for the middle class, being a middle class person myself, a better local economy will benefit me directly.

Sep 07, 2014
wildgift in Not About Food

Minimum Wage Impact on Restaurant (especially FF) Prices

Healthcare inflation was around 4% this past year, according to the government. That's low.

Sep 07, 2014
wildgift in Not About Food

Minimum Wage Impact on Restaurant (especially FF) Prices

It's not just the fast food workers getting the raise - the other workers at stores and warehouses are also getting raises. The money will allow them to afford to eat at the fast food restaurants, too.

(I didn't make the argument that all the money will come back to the restaurants. That's because it won't. I'm realistic about it. Your argument in the second-to-last paragraph, is totally silly.)

The main impact will be felt by the people who are middle class and won't see as large of a raise. They'll see the cost of the burger rise, and eat fewer of them. Yet, corporate fast food won't feel the brunt of the rise, because they are spreading the cost increase over many more sales. It's the smaller mom-and-pops that are going to have a rougher time.

As someone who happens to live in a community where a rise in the MW will put hundreds of thousands (perhaps millions) of dollars into the community, I support a raise in the MW. It would be nice if the poor weren't so segregated from the middle class and rich, but that's how it is. I'm a partisan and I'm voting with my community.

I see nothing but good coming from a rise in the MW. I forsee shuttered stores opening again. I forsee small businesses re-opening. I expect people to be providing better, more expensive services on Craigslist. I see opportunity.

If things get worse, and they might, it's going to mean more social unrest. Ferguson wasn't just about cops - it was also about opportunities in life. If social unreset means that people are going to go to Beverly Hills to loot, maybe I'll have to support that.

Sep 07, 2014
wildgift in Not About Food
1

Minimum Wage Impact on Restaurant (especially FF) Prices

It depends on how you do the "reset". In the GD, we basically instituted a heavy amount of socialism (in the US) that created a foundation for a long prosperity when we got out of the GD and postwar recession. Except for Obamacare, which I think will help us in the future, we haven't really set up a foundation for future economic security.

We haven't really increased broadband speeds and deployment to what we need. We haven't pushed for more green(er) energy. We're letting secondary education get privatized, when what we really need is to extend school two more years, and focus on increasing the number of people going into healthcare. These are all things we could have done during the recession, as a kind of fiscal stimulus experiment.

Furthermore, because we haven't done this groundwork to put us in a safer, more prosperous direction, we don't feel the confidence to expand both Social Security and Medicare, which are so important to millions of people.

Minimum Wage Impact on Restaurant (especially FF) Prices

I'm not sure - but 90k to 250k+ is what I've heard here and there from non-employees.

Sep 07, 2014
wildgift in Not About Food

Minimum Wage Impact on Restaurant (especially FF) Prices

I'm for an increase in the minimum wage. I just don't go around pushing the talking points. Reality is pretty nasty right now, and I'd rather talk about that. I'm peripherally in tech, and working in labor, and also live in a poor community, so I see both sides.

Waiting for QE and trickle-down has failed, and a general redistribution of wealth downward to the bottom 25% of workers, and also to welfare recipients, would be a way to revitalize the economy from the bottom-up. I suspect it would work, and end up helping the middle class, but you don't know until you try.

What kind of restaurant has the highest profit margins?

(I know this is late.) Rock and Roll sushi. Cooked ingredients. Customers don't care. Prices are still high.

Sep 07, 2014
wildgift in Not About Food

Minimum Wage Impact on Restaurant (especially FF) Prices

The good jobs that were being eroded by the recession are still held by the people who had them before. If you were a handyperson making $30 an hour, you're now making $18 an hour (made up numbers here).

The situation I'm describing is very local. There's a ton of money being poured into specific areas of Los Angeles, mostly near where Google has an office. So that area is crowded, and flush with money, and hamburgers can cost $14. Houses sell for more than a million dollars for a small 2 bedroom SFR.

As you move eastward, the economy declines, and you see more effects from the recession.

As you get to the low-income communities of South Central and East LA, the economy feels like a depression sometimes. The upturn in the economy isn't being felt yet. The construction jobs are not back. People in the middle class aren't spending money. (And the fact that some working class areas are gentrifying makes the poverty that much more obvious.)

The effect is that the lower middle class and working class people who eat in the lower cost restaurants, where you can get a burger and fries or enchiladas for $7, served by a waitress, are seeing lean times. People are opting to eat at home, or get tacos from a truck, or get the massive $5 "combo B" at the Chinese fast food. The economy at the bottom end is more vigorous than at the level just above -- but that's it - there's not a good mix in the economy.

Another phenomenon is that a lot of businesses don't go out of business, but they just close up. The owners can't make enough money, so they get a regular job that pays better, or focus on other business in another part of town that isn't so depressed.

The reason why is because trickle-down economics doesn't happen. When the affluent Googlers (and other well-paid techies) spend money, it's absorbed by real estate agents, highly paid service workers (aka, foodie restaurant entrepreneurs), healthcare professionals, banks, private schools, landlords, etc. A big fraction is captured by people who also earn a fairly high salary. The remainder goes to the lower-paid people, who typically live in the community as well. They were present before the Googlers came in.

The poor community is a kind of export economy, where the workers travel to other areas - they export labor. Then they bring the money back and spend it locally. For this system to work, you need a large middle class that's spending money on things like yard care, construction, personal services, going out to eat, and anything else that employs the poor working class. The middle class aren't spending it, because their middle class salaries were eroded. Everyone's trying to save money.

Meanwhile, the poor spend money in businesses, and retail businesses generally tend to move money "upward" to the middle class and wealthy proprietors. Wages are the way that the poor (and the middle class) get their money, while profit margins on sales are the way the wealthy (and the middle class) get money.