The New York Times' "Room for Debate" online feature is grappling with the news that Sushi Yasada Yasuda—where lunch bills seem to run in the triple figures—has implemented a no-tipping policy, because it pays its staff full salary and benefits, as is the "custom in Japan."

What about our American customs, though? Is it fair to deny the wait staff its traditional opportunity to indirectly negotiate for a living wage by putting on a show of diligence and subservience to the diners? Should diners be deprived of the power to unilaterally decide how much the restaurant workers get paid, if anything? Without making each day's compensation the sum of a series of unrelated arbitrary judgments, how can anyone be sure that workers can be trusted to do their jobs? If you go under 20 percent, are you a creep or a vital contributor to an important feedback process? Share your thoughts in the comments, please.

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