Argument against a minimum wage

Most people think that the minimum wage is a good thing. To set a minimum standard of living so that people working are not left in poverty.

People are well meaning by thinking this, but they are missing two key points.

First, that argument does not look at the productivity of the employee. You cannot force an employer to pay someone more than the work they are doing is worth.

This is a form of wage and price controls and it has never worked throughout history.

The business will have to find a cheaper alternative or go out of business.

If you raised the minimum wage to  $100/hour only brain surgeons would create enough value to justify their job and all other jobs and businesses would disappear.

Increasing minimum wage eliminates certain jobs entirely from the economy.

We used to have people who would pump your gas for you. Lots of different positions have been eliminated because of the minimum wage.

Second, it takes away people’s freedom to work for less and along with it the bottom rung for advancement.

Have you seen job ads asking for years of experience? How do you get the experience if your labor is currently worth less than minimum wage?

I have wanted to work for free before to do an internship. But it is illegal unless I pay thousands in tuition! How about instead I say I just want $5/hour so I can eat and I will work my butt off for you if you teach me your trade. Nope, illegal.

The kid who has no experience and no money is disadvantaged the most by minimum wage. They simply can’t get a start.

The people who do benefit are trade groups that do not have to face competition from people willing to work for less.

Man made laws can’t change laws of math. Even though people have the best intentions with the minimum wage, it should be $0.

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