Minimum Wage Foolishness

Once again local liberal op-ed writers are pushing for increases in government mandated wages. According to the latest misguided screed, workers cannot live on fast food minimum wages, fast food chains make buckets of money, the workers are poorly treated and there is a lot of turnover. Solution; the government should force restaurants to pay more. After all 100 economists have signed a letter saying that $10.50 an hour would raise prices of a burger by only a nickel. But it is almost a certainty that none of those economists have worked in or managed a fast food restaurant.

There is so much wrong with the argument for minimum wages, especially a Federal minimum wage, that it is almost a waste of time to rehearse them here because the advocates will never be convinced and those who understand economics and free markets have no need to be reminded.

However, this latest offering contains a remarkable admission for a paper that has strongly supported the President’s policies. It says "The reality is that the economy has contracted so dramatically in recent years that downsized workers who would never have considered a job in fast food are now working there, many to raise families." And why has the economy been so stagnant even though the Federal Reserve has been running the most expansive monetary policy in history for over three years and the Federal government has run massive deficits to stimulate the economy?

In a nutshell, the answer is the administration’s onslaught of stifling regulations from the EPA, the NLRB, the limitations on drilling on Federal lands, and the granddaddy of job killers-Obamacare.

How interesting. Their solution to the damage done by intrusive and excessive government regulations that destroy job growth is more government intrusion and regulation. And when that kills even more jobs, the answer will be more stimulus, more regulation and more income redistribution. This is a movie we have seen too many times already but as long as the American people are easily led by government promises that their lives can be made better by adding more to the deficit, easy money and more constraints on the marketplace, the movie will keep playing.

What’s worse, the liberal media refuse to see the connection between the influx of low skill, illegal immigrants who depress market wages in low skill occupations. And they advocate a path to citizenship for those already here, guaranteeing more will come. So, to keep wages from falling, it will be necessary for the government to raise the minimum wage thereby destroying more jobs. A futile and counterproductive strategy if ever there was one.

Here’s an idea. How about an economy that promotes solid economic growth? That will require an end to crony capitalism, lowering taxes, sensible and reduced levels of regulations, pulling the plug on Obamacare and getting Federal spending under control. But none of this will happen as long the current state of politics prevails in the country.