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Last Updated on July 10, 2019, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 338

The Need for a Higher Minimum Wage

Elizabeth Warren discusses how the low federal minimum wage must essentially be subsidized by the government, because people can't afford to live in America with the rock-bottom wages they're paid. Therefore, the government has to provide relief and various types of welfare even to people who work full-time. She says that raising the minimum wage is one way to fix that problem; employers could pay their workers enough to live on and still make a profit in many cases. She cites retailers like Walmart and fast food restaurants. She says that America has to pay over 150 billion dollars per year to subsidize their low wages, and with that money, we could do other, better things to help the country.

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Competition as the Foundation of the Free Market

Warren says that competition is what makes a free market system work. With it, there are different businesses battling to win consumers and having to offer better products and lower prices to do it. As America's landscape is increasingly dominated by large corporations with no real competition, the system doesn't work. People are being forced to pay large sums for products and services because competitors are kept out of the market. Warren says that the right thing to do is enforce antitrust laws again; she believes the government should encourage competition anytime it can.

The Necessity of Financial Reform

Warren is passionate about financial reform. One major case she cites is that of Wells Fargo manipulating its accounts to look like it was opening more accounts than it was. She explains that those people are the same people who crashed the economy in 2008 and who were then treated with kid gloves. She says that they expected the same treatment until the Senate Banking Committee held a hearing on the misleading of their shareholders. The hearing led to Wells Fargo's CEO giving up his position and bonus. Overall, she believes financial institutions need more oversight and harsher penalties and that laws protecting consumers should be passed and enforced.

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