November 07, 2002
The minimum wage
Kevin Drum has a modest proposal for the minimum wage. I'd vote for it.
Posted by Charles Kuffner on November 07, 2002 to Other punditry
I have a counter-proposal to which I suspect you will either laugh or shake your head: repeal the minimum wage. England never had one until Blair came into office, and I never heard about the starving British wage slaves.
What problem are you attempting to solve by abolishing the minimum wage? I've always been told that unemployment would go up if the minimum wage did. Sure, maybe if the minimum wage were $30 an hour, but c'mon - is McDonald's going to fire half its staff instead of paying them another buck an hour? I don't think so.
The real issue is that people can't live on $5.25 an hour. The minimum wage hasn't come close to keeping up with inflation. This is actually a drag on the economy because people on the low end of the wage scale spend a very high proportion of their incomes on goods and services. More money in their pockets means more consumption, which as we know is what drives our economy.
Kevin's prior post goes into more detail. I agree with him 100%.