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April 26, 2014

A Good Explanation of Why We Need To Understand The Left's Arguments [CBD]

"Can, say, a Republican write a defense of the minimum wage that a reader of the Daily Kos would accept, or will it just come out sounding like a straw man? "


There is a substantial power imbalance between minimum wage workers and employers, such that employers are able to pay such workers far less than their labor is worth, and far less than they would be willing to pay if they had to. The minimum wage corrects this power imbalance and prevents employers from unfairly exploiting this power imbalance. It forces employers to pay employees something closer to a living wage, though at $7.25 an hour the minimum wage is still too low to be humane and needs to be raised. When companies pay below a living wage, they not only exploit workers but taxpayers as well, since they are accepting a form of corporate welfare when taxpayers (through food stamps and Medicare and the like) help sustain their underpaid workers.

Opponents of the minimum wage will sometimes argue that higher minimum wages reduce employment. However, since in most cases employers of low-skilled workers are paying workers less than they are willing and able to pay, raising the minimum wage has little effect on employment. Studies of the fast food industry by Card and Walker demonstrated that raising the minimum wage had little effect on employment levels. And any loss of employment from higher minimum wages would be more than offset by the Keynesian stimulative effect to the economy as a whole of increasing wages among lower income workers, who tend to consume nearly 100% of incremental income.

Read the rest of the post from Coyote Blog.....

Too often we just call them "commies" and mock their arguments. But it pays to understand the philosophical and economic underpinnings of their world view.


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posted by Open Blogger at 01:07 PM

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