Monday, March 11, 2019

Just A Coincidence, I'm Sure

As more and more cities and other jurisdictions are implementing a $15 minimum wages, more and more jobs are getting wiped out.  Hours are being cut back.  More and more people are getting hurt.

Reporting on Liberty Unyielding, Hans Bader updates with some numbers out of Illinois.
The Daily Gazette and Sauk Valley Media provide the example of Hopper’s Poppers:
After a little more than 2 years downtown, Hopper’s Poppers – the business, and the building it’s in – are being put up for sale, the owner said. Ryan Hopper also closed his Sycamore shop this week, citing Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s approval of a statewide $15 minimum wage increase. Three months ago, he and his wife Stephanie were considering adding a third location in Roscoe, which would have brought him closer to his five-location goal. But he said the the minimum wage hike and Illinois’s notoriously high property taxes solidified the decision for his family to continue their business ventures outside Illinois.
I'm sure there's no cause and effect relationship between raising the minimum wage and minimum wage jobs going away, just as I'm sure it has nothing to do with the same things happening in New York City, as we reported on Feb. 22 or Boston as we reported on January 11 or Seattle before them.  That's just Hatey McHaterson talking.  Like Jon Miltimore of the Foundation for Economic Education who noted about New York:
Restaurants tend to operate on famously low profit margins, typically 2 to 6 percent. So a 40 percent mandatory wage increase over a two-year period is not trivial.

In response to the minimum wage hikes, New York City restaurants did what businesses tend to do when labor costs rise: they increased prices and reduced labor staff and hours.
New York had the worst decline in restaurant jobs since 9/11 as their increased minimum wage laws hit.  Several other states have passed or are in the process of enacting a $15 pay floor. New Jersey recently enacted a $15 minimum wage — the increase will be phased in over several years — joining California, Massachusetts, and New York. The Maryland House of Delegates passed a $15 minimum wage on February 27. The District of Columbia and some cities, such as Minneapolis and, as mentioned, Seattle also have $15 minimum wage laws.

As I've said at least a dozen times, I really hate this argument, for a variety of reasons.  The biggest reason is that we keep telling the people demanding the raise that jobs will go away or hours will go down so that they might well end up making less than they are now if they're the ones still working, and they'll face higher prices for everything they buy: and then we're right and they ask for the bad thing to happen again.

It's like warning a kid not to stick that butter knife into the wall outlet because they'll get hurt, watch them do it, get knocked backwards and hurt, then go wobbling back to the wall outlet to shove that butter knife in it again. 
Politicians have admitted that these radical increases in the minimum wage make no economic sense, even if they make for a moralistic political soundbite. In signing California’s $15 minimum wage into law, California’s Jerry Brown said that, “Economically, minimum wages may not make sense. But morally, socially, and politically they make every sense.”
Key word: politically.  It will keep his people in power.  Back in 2016, a poll of Californians said that they knew the $15 min wage law would hurt them personally and hurt the state's economy, but they wanted it anyway.  FN.  How does something that hurts everyone it purports to help get to be "wanted anyway"?  Virtue signalling. 
The Los Angeles Times reported that “Californians strongly back the state’s minimum wage increase to $15,” even “though they believe the wage hike will hurt their pocketbooks and the state’s economy,” and “high percentages of those surveyed expected negative consequences, including layoffs and business relocations to states with lower minimum wages. Almost 90% of respondents believed that prices for consumers would rise because of the wage hike.”
Over 70% of economists said the $15 wage was a bad idea.  More than that said it would increase unemployment.  Moody's estimated that 160,000 jobs would be lost - in California's manufacturing sector alone. 

I see a lot of human suffering here.  In the name of supposedly getting people closer to a living wage, we're going to cost some of them their jobs and ruin their lives.  For everyone who struggled, went to night school or special training to get a job well above the min wage, like $12 or $13/hr,  we're going to drag them into a compressed band just above min wage, negating what they've done to better themselves in life.  We're going to cost the entrepreneurs their livelihood and their future plans.  We're going to disrupt everyone's lives.  All for political virtue signaling. 


  1. There is a cause and effect. Minimum wage was designed to be ENTRY LEVEL. Most people can demand more if they're worth more. Add skill sets, and look for another job if this one sucks. The communists/socialists want a guaranteed income whether people work or not, paid by the people who work. And then death panels for old people in need of medical care who worked, but no longer can. It's a delightful philosophy, isn't it?

    1. Guy's like me with 40 years of experience are not being compensated at anything near these basic wage increase rates.
      Our wages have been stagnant for years and years.

      Their virtue signaling and subsequent irresponsible economic actions are going to be disastrous in the long run.
      Some people just have to learn the hard way though.
      Apparently they don't teach kids anymore that you can't divide by zero.

  2. I was just reading the other day that restaurants are adding surcharges to bill "To cover the increased cost of doing business due to state mandates".

    Customers aren't happy, but at least they're being told why their bill is higher.

  3. The politicians are telling you why they are doing it: “The most important thing is the concentration of capital and it means that we seek and prioritize profit and the accumulation of money above all else and we seek it at any human and environmental cost. That is what that means. To me that ideology is not sustainable and cannot be redeemed. What we are reckoning with are the consequences of putting profit above everything else in society.” Ocasio Cortez

    They are doing it to destroy this nation's economy.

    1. One of the tools they are using to implement the Cloward-Piven strategy.

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  4. You can't fix stupid. The morons shall be with us, always.

    We don't yet have the political will to fight the evil people who keep doing this to us. When you see politicians and public school teachers being tarred and feathered, you'll know we're finally making progress.

  5. "All for political virtue signaling."

    This means votes which means power. This appeals mostly to ignorant youth (sorry for the redundancy).
    I have no problem with raising the age of firearm ownership to 21 as long as the minimum age to vote, sit on juries and hold public office is raised to 25 (the scientifically proven age that the human brain develops the capacity for critical decision making). Float that idea with a politician at the next Town Hall and listen to the whir of pedals going in reverse concerning "unchallengeable" science.

  6. Socialism sucks, and then you die. Poor, but not alone: you will be surrounded by a pile of like-minded victims, huddled together with you for warmth.

    People sometimes just have to get what they vote for, never knowing why.

  7. Thankfully the unemployed are all equal. And will vote for policies that made them unemployed . . .