Raise the minimum wage: NO! (& here's why)
Self-serving cynicism that overrides economic common sense drives congressional Democrats who want to push the minimum wage above $10 an hour — and President Obama, who proposed making it $9 an hour in his State of the Union address — to misrepresent both the inevitable job-killing effects and who (and how they) would be affected.
Economists Walter Williams and Donald J. Boudreaux have lately reminded on these pages that the law of supply and demand dictates that when labor costs more, employers will use less of it. Yet that law's ignored by Democrats spouting myths that Heritage Foundation labor expert James Sherk debunks.
Just 2.9 percent of U.S. workers — mostly students working part-time, not their families' primary earners — make minimum wage, he notes. Most of the poor simply don't work, so few are “working poor.” Just 4 percent are single parents working full-time. And two-thirds of minimum-wage workers earn raises within a year.
Also, the Democrat notion of a higher minimum wage as “stimulus” is nonsense because, as National Federation for Independent Business chief economist William Dunkelberg says, every dollar that such workers get comes from the pockets of business owners or customers.
Minimum-wage jobs are and should be entry-level jobs. Raise the minimum wage, and there will be fewer such jobs and more young workers on the path to the government dependency Democrats cultivate — not to self-sufficiency and career success.
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments â either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.