The economically ignorant have been demanding the minimum wage be set at $15.00 per hour. If you understand basic economics you know that minimum wage laws don’t guarantee a living wage but merely make it illegal to hire entire swaths of people. Nobody is going to hire a teenager with no skills if they have to pay them $15.00 per hour. And a minimum wage of $15.00 per hour makes no sense for a teenager because they usually live at home, are fed by their parents, and have few bills. They live for a lot less money than an adult raising three kids. And if a business owner does decide to hire them for less then $15.00 per hour they will get a visit from the gang in blue who will either issue a fine or kidnap the owner.
But my biggest criticisms of people advocating for the minimum wage to be raised is their lack of belief. Why only $15.00 per hour? Why not jack it up to $20.00 per hour or even $100.00 per hour? Thankfully the Freedom Socialist Party (an oxymoron if there ever was one) has stepped up to the plate and is demanding minimum wage be raised to $20.00 per hour:
But Doug Barnes, the party’s national secretary, told The Huffington Post on Saturday that the group relies heavily on donations from low-wage workers and could not afford to pay much to an inexperienced designer.
“We’re practicing what we’re preaching in terms of continuing to fight for the minimum wage,” Barnes said, making his first public comment on the controversy. “But we can’t pay a lot more than $13.”
He said the party’s revenues would increase if the minimum wage were raised to $20 — and he’d even prefer $22, at least in Seattle. The city will begin phasing in a $15 minimum wage in April.
“Our donor base would all be affected, and the low-wage workers who support us with $5 to $6 a month would be able to give more,” he said. “That would affect our ability to pay higher wages as well.”
I love his reasoning. Raising the minimum wage will result in more money for the Freedom Socialist Party. How capitalistic of him!
But I do give him credit for at least believing in what he preaches to the extent of demanding an even more absurd minimum wage. Maybe he could kick start the minimum wage inflation movement where minimum wage will be set to inflate by at least two percent every year! That way we could render almost everybody unemployable and the underground economy would flourish.
As an agorist the best feature of minimum wage laws is that they push people into the underground economy. People aren’t going to stand by and starve simply because it’s illegal for anybody to hire them. They’re going to offer their services illegally. That means they won’t pay taxes on their income and will starve the state of some resources. Anybody partaking in illegal services isn’t going to pay sales tax, obtain permits, or do anything else that might tip the authorities off. Part of the reason I want to see minimum wage jacked up is because it will cause the underground economy to expand at a rapid pace. Socialists may have funny economic ideas but that doesn’t mean their ideas are without merit.