Minimum Wage War

A fair wage is whatever you can get for whatever work you can get. That sounds harsh, and it is, so welcome to the working world.  The only thing worse than busting your hide for a little scratch is sitting home with nothing.  Idleness isn’t as fun as it sounds, especially once the cable company shuts off service.

The most important skill to learn at any job is negotiation.  Know what you can do and how much you should get for it.  Those who never bother are going to be very sad once they realize a promised higher minimum rate is out of reach for the resentful.  The pay for not working is zero, so we should obviously make unemployment illegal.  As with bread lines where you got to know hungry neighbors, the Soviets were on to something.

Now’s a good time to get self-righteous about the value of starting work, what with the government strangling the economy so it can breathe better.  Workers on the lowest rung deserve more, according to people who don’t know how to run a business and resent those who do.  The register magically fills, which is why it’s righteous to resent wealth and confiscate it on the proletariat’s behalf.

All that profit would be impossible without those manning counters speaking a few dozen English words.  Yes, many minimum wage workers are courteous individuals who can correctly generate change, even if it often seems to only happen by chance. But such work pays what it does for a good reason.  People really appreciate being given something they don’t deserve, which the People’s Republics of New York and California are about to find out in a rather crushing way.  The remaining residents can sit at the booths of their choosing at any remaining fast food outlets whose windows aren’t covered with boards.

Don’t you want everyone to be a millionaire? Highly-paid new hires will have more to spend.  That will help other businesses, which will in tun hire more comrades.  Before you know it, prosperity will spiral exponentially so quickly that we’ll get bored with counting money. Then, we drink beer that burns calories in our cotton candy fortresses.

The magic growth spiral theory is pimped by the same ones who think the government multiplies what it takes from you, and creates the same precisely opposite results.  Let’s never notice patterns, as that would mean we’re management material and thus put us on the fat cats’ diabolical side.

The state’s chief role is to make sure people have enough money to spend. Head to the nearest capitol building and ask to see the constitution’s back for details.  At least the delusional and arbitrary declaration that anyone working full-time should be able to support a family causes tremendous financial harm.  Everyone’s rich! As usual, the sanctimonious never check the river’s source before damning.  Overpaying for simple work leaves businesses dry.  But commercial Luddites never asked who funds federal spending, so why start now?  To them, that’s federalism in action.

Fans of preposterously high minimum wages forget to perform every step of calculations.  It may be because they don’t know what math is. Presuming those seeking slots will still get hired after a mandatory starting bump is the same as thinking the government that gets nothing for trillions would make insurance affordable.  The next scheme will break the streak.

Why ponder what might result from telling companies what they must offer? A higher wage means more cash, silly.  Perhaps this sack full of cash will push the notion of mass layoffs out of mind.  Sure, it may be harder to receive currency from an employer once order-takers are replaced with more personable touch screens. And those humans who remain will have to do much more work.  But at least there will be fewer customers due to skyrocketing prices.  Never thinking out consequences is a common interest among patty-flippers who think they’re about to hit it big when they’re about to become obsolete.

You can earn a raise.  I believe in you, if that helps your confidence. Your boss isn’t as scary as it seems.  Many hourly employees and their condescendingly counterproductive purported advocates figure owners are greedy bastards sitting upon thrones of bill stacks.  As with their work tasks, they are wholly unfamiliar with how thin profit margins are, or what a profit margin is, for that matter. Those who have pummeled the economy into submission promise to do more for their victims.  They could start by ending lame promises about the preposterously high amount trainees should make starting on their first days.

Remove the floor if you’d like to move upstairs.  Forget not stretching for 15 bucks per hour by law: people would be amazed at what’d happen without a minimum wage.  No, workers wouldn’t be getting 35 cents per day. That’s unless there was only one company left, and we’re not talking about the government here.  Competition for labor would result in potential employees discover just how much they can get for their labor.  Instead, we’re stuck with the pricey guarantee.

You can’t do any better, according to those who make things worse.  Those in menial jobs should feel so insulted by the notion that they can’t get a good deal, much less get ahead.  Life offers no more potential than sweeping a floor to those who’ve concluded the first job is the one at which you’ll retire.  Such negative thinking makes it harder to get a sweeping job.  The unemployed have ample time to contemplate irony.

Both employer and employee are in trouble if that particular skill isn’t worth a buck every four minutes.  Hiking the minimum is an act of sheer preening.  The moral failure causes practical harm, as well. At least you never have to be nervous about how to spend riches.

Anthony Bialy is a writer and “Red Eye” conservative in New York City. Follow him at Download a free ebook of his 2015 columns at


One comment

  1. Chris Lindsay · May 12, 2016

    Great quote: ” Life offers no more potential than sweeping a floor to those who’ve concluded the first job is the one at which you’ll retire.”

    Minimum wage laws create winners and losers, and do more harm than overall good. The best way to achieve full employment is to have no minimum wage law.

    I wrote a short essay (600 words) called “Why Raising the Minimum Wage Can Result in a Lower Unemployment Rate.” If you would like to read it, I am open to any feedback:

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