Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Minimum Wage

The minimum wage is a frustrating topic for libertarians and conservatives, because it should be just about the easiest sell of any economic policy position they hold. Welfare payments, food stamps, etc., do in fact make the lives of the poor better, at least in a facile, short-term way. Safety regulations often do make products safer than if the safety procedures were not followed, even if the market would do a much better job. And roads are very useful to drive on, regardless of whether government is required to build them. But the minimum wage is just harmful to those it is intended to help. It has essentially no redeeming features, except for the benefit it provides for the very small number of people who see their wages go up without a corresponding decrease in hours, and those wealthier people who now decide that getting a job is better than whatever they were doing before. But for those people it’s intended to help—minorities, the young, and the poor—it’s unambiguously bad. And yet it seems impossible to convince people of this. If anyone actually manages it, please tell us how in the comments. Meanwhile, here are some hopefully-useful resources on the subject.

Milton Friedman - Minimum wage is the most anti-negro law - YouTube

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