Really? Only 'die-hard liberals?' Since you're the one that likes playing the 'label' game so much, maybe you should engage a few average Americans in a conversation about the minimum wage and whether it's too low or not. When they disagree with you, call them a 'die-hard liberal.' You better duck, though; some of them may try to hurt you.
In general, Americans' standards for restaurant service are pathetically low. In the South, in particular, what passes for good service would not muster a mediocre to poor rating in most of Europe and Asia.
Let's make sure we're comparing apples to apples here. You're not comparing a visit to the Golden Corral to a splurge while on vacation in Italy, I hope. In my experience, great restaurants provide great service anywhere, but more than likely, compensation — whether it is from wages, tips, or a balanced combination of both — ensures that is the case. But I have found that at your average pub or eatery in Europe and elsewhere offers less attentive and concerned wait staff than one here in the US.
Service in restaurants is poor precisely because of the entitlement mentality of the staff.
People are entitled to fair compensation. That's not an 'entitlement mentality.' That's just fair.
In the universe the rest of us live in, it has been bumped to 15% because liberals bark and whine about how much more the wait staff deserves a bigger tip. It's because liberals like you base rewards on merit and not on performance. It's because you and all your liberal ilk refuse to live in the real world with the rest of us.
As I mentioned before, I tip on performance. With a few differences in detail, we have agreed on that.
'The rest of us?' I think that if you looked behind you, you wouldn't see as many allies in your anti-minimum wage fight as you'd like. And by the way, 'the real world' is where all of us — even those waiters who are in an industry that, as you so eloquently explain, turns over employees like the 'crack whore business' — live and work for fair compensation. I'm paid fairly for my performance. I'm sure you are too. And we're both probably fine with that. I'm just saying that the restaurant owner should be in charge of keeping his staff coming to work each day, not you and me. A fair minimum wage requires restaurant owners to reach further down into their pockets, which is fair because they're the ones profiting from our patronage and their employees' good service practices.
But, hell — since they’re serving it to us, let them eat cake, right?