What a $15 an hour minimum wage accomplishes | 🤑🤑🤑 Real answer, not much at all

I find the column quoted below fascinating. It’s not unique, many experts say similar things and it’s all balderdash.

Reduce income inequality? What nonsense, that is not only insignificant, but irrelevant. And assuredly meaningless to minimum wage workers. “Family to support?” Most minimum wage workers are not married and do not have families. The fact is only 1% of married hourly workers earn the minimum wage or less.

I have written about raising the minimum wage several times before, but the issues I have raised are consistently ignored in favor of the populist mantra.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not opposed to a higher minimum wage.

I am opposed to a false narrative regarding the results of doing so. In the end minimum wage workers will be no better off after the impact on inflation, salary compression, some job loss and possible loss of safety net benefits. In short, they will still be on the lowest income rung of the economic ladder.

So, what does the increase in the minimum wage accomplish? A reduction in income inequality and a move toward providing a living wage to the lowest-paid workers. These workers probably do not get employer provided health insurance or retirement benefits but could get government assistance such as income supplementation with the EITC and health insurance assistance with the Affordable Care Act. Life will not move to easy street but will get a bit more comfortable, especially if they have a family to support.

Murad Anti teaches finance at the Muma College of Business, University of South Florida.

Source: What a $15 an hour minimum wage accomplishes | Column

5 comments

  1. We have not had a raise in the federal minimum wage since 2010, but I hear retirees on this site complain every year that the Social Security COLA is too small. What is wrong with indexing minimum wage to inflation just like SS. That was done in Montana in 2008, by the voters. Before it was raised you had all these business owners crying on the news that it will cause business closures and job loss. None of that has happened since then In fact Montana has continued to have unemployment lower tan the national average. Also, Many new business has moved into Great Falls, MT. I have news for all of you prices have and will go up as that is what happens all the time and NOT because of minimum wage increases. As minimum wage goes up it pushes other wages up, that is the real reason business is against the minimum wage. IMHO – If we pay people more, especially lower income workers, their Social Security Benefit will be higher and they may actually be able to live better in retirement. And just maybe have some income left to save after they pay for rent, food and utilities. Why should the government have to supplement low income workers? If we had better wages for the lowest paid workers, there would be no need for the welfare state, or at least it could be greatly reduced, because no worker would qualify for benefits. That would be a much better outcome. As it is now the only ones who are greatly benefiting from the welfare state are all the local welfare office employees.

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    1. Basic economics indicates that putting a price floor (which is what minimum wage is) on something causes a surplus of that item (in this case, labor). All an increase does is make a job more unlikely for the unskilled, as the job they’re doing simply isn’t worth the price of their labor.

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  2. I think the graphic here explains the results of a higher minimum wage. “If you eliminate the bottom rung, you simply create a new bottom rung.” Nothing changes except that prices will go up and some will get laid off and replaced with self-serve stations or robots.

    The object is to climb the ladder, not to make it one step, because then you cannot reach anything.

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  3. The facts are irrelevant…if a higher minimum wage sounds and feels better then it must be the truth…and throwing a violent tantrum will prove its validity !

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    1. You’re right. $15 was picked because it sounded good “Fight for Fifteen.” I guess we’re lucky they didn’t pick “Fight for Fifty” instead!

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