Friday, April 11, 2014

Miniumum Wage: Be Careful What You Wish For...You Just Might Get It

Democrats, led by President Obama, are trying to raise the federal minimum wage from $7.25 per hour up to $10.10 per hour. Many Republicans have come out against such an increase.

Efforts such as raising the minimum wage are attempted, not to help the poor or middle-class, but to wage (pun intended) a continuing political and ideological war within the United States of America. It's not about compassion. It's about power, plain and simple.

Democrats believe that their continued, traditional use of buzzwords and terms such as "living wage", "fairness", and "equity" will keep certain segments of the population voting their way in elections. They count on it to keep them in power. Their main carrot to garner and control these votes is the oldest in the book: they pay for them.

Many people want, and a surprising number of people even expect, something for nothing. They feel that government owes them something, including money, food, medicine, transportation, and much more, with nothing expected in return. This is the mentality behind the support for a raise in the minimum wage.

Now supporters of that effort will try to sell you that such an increase will help everyone. That minimum wage earners are helped by making more money. And other workers will then have their own wages also raised to keep them ahead of these entry-level and lesser-skilled workers.

Frankly, that is a farce. What does indeed happen when wages are artificially, forcibly increased is that companies cut back and/or raise prices. They hire fewer people, meaning less opportunity. They raise prices on their goods, meaning more money out of the pockets of those who just had their wages artificially raised.

No company is just going to accept any increase, be it in forced wage increases, greater taxes, or anything else, without eventually passing that increase on to it's customers. Forcing wages up artificially means that we will all pay more. Meanwhile, fewer jobs will be available for that lesser skilled workforce.

President Obama and his Dem cronies will try to tell you that the minimum wage needs to be raised to $10.10 per hour in order for Americans to meet their vision of a certain standard of living. They say that it will be good for everyone. But they ignore a fundamental flaw in their argument.

If $10.10 per hour is good for Americans, why not $11 per hour? Why not $15 per hour? Heck, why not a minimum wage of $25 per hour? If minimum wage workers earned much more, wouldn't they spend more, helping the economy more? Why is $10.10 just right?

They stop at $10.10 per hour because it is a figure at which their own studies have shown that business will take the increase with a minimum of job cutbacks. There will still be cutbacks, layoffs, and other ramifications. But they will be minimal when compared to the expected political gain of tens of millions flocking to the polls on the Dems behalf.

Meanwhile, back at the minimum wage worker home, many of those actual workers will be losing their jobs, rather than ever seeing that increase. Companies will simply make due with fewer employees. Sure, some workers pay will increase. But how does that help the individuals trying to get a start, or supplement an income, or pay for school books, who once had a $7 per hour job and now have none?

When Democrats pass programs that increase handouts, giveaways, and other "benefits", their supporters seem to think that it will be the "wealthy corporations", the "rich", the "well off", who will be paying. But what the Dem politicians, labor leaders, and others will never tell them is the truth.

The truth is that every time the government spends more money, something has to give, and that something will be a hit to every single consumer and American worker's pocketbook. Every time the government forces economic sanctions on the economy, something has to give, and that something is usually jobs.

Every family is hurt by increased prices, higher taxes, fewer jobs. Those are the ultimate prices of forcing changes on the American economy such as an increase in the minimum wage.

Now, am I against people making more money? Absolutely not. Stay in school. Don't waste your life. Be willing to work hard for minimal pay when young. Get more education, in a field where opportunities are expected to be available. Be flexible in life, willing to go where the opportunities are located. Do not depend longterm on a minimum wage job as the primary source of income for you and/or your family and expect to support cable TV, cellphones, and restaurants.

Minimum wage jobs were not created for, and have never been intended as, the primary lifetime career of the principle wage earner in a family. They were intended for young people just starting out in the work force, for retirees looking to supplement pensions, for management trainees looking to gain boots-on-the-ground experience.

If the federal minimum wage is raised, it will result in fewer jobs, greater unemployment. It will result in higher prices to those who do indeed get to keep their job with that increased wage. Those who want the minimum wage raised should be very, very careful. They just might get what they want. That is going to be very different than what they believe, and what they are being sold by lying politicians.

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