In the comments section, Libertarian Robert Taylor continues to humor us with fact-free tidbits from the Libertarian faith-based community, this time about the Libertarians’ favorite bogeyman and font of evil, the minimum wage:
Robert, don’t you see who it is you are actually benefiting?? If you raise the minimum wage, you only hurt poor people and small businesses! Why do you think companies like Walmart in the US back the hiking of minimum wage? Because they can handle the hike, but they know that their small mom and pop competitors can’t. You ultimately favor big business that’s in bed with the government.
As for your claims that hiking minimum wage creates inflation, you are wrong. While it may raise demand of goods in the short term, raising prices, it ultimately results in job losses in the long term. Inflation can only occur under the power of a central bank/federal reserve that can print money.
I’m amazed that Walmart backs the hiking of the minimum wage.
Hey, if Walmart pays people better than Mom and Pop Ripoff Mart, all the power to em.
Unfortunately, there is no correlation whatsoever between rises in the minimum wage and the destruction of small businesses in favor of large businesses, the formation of monopolies, or consolidation in industries. These are normal trends in capitalism. And the monopolists and large firms tend to pay their workers worse and treat them worse than small businesses.
Many very small businesses treat their workers very well for some reason. I think it is because they are part of the community – you know, the corner store – and everyone goes there, and they want to be on good terms with the community, so they treat workers quite well. There are a lot of very small businesses around here, and my observation was that they tended to treat their workers quite well. As businesses get larger, my observation is that they don’t treat workers so great anymore. I guess they don’t have to?
Europe has high minimum wages, and there are small businesses swarming all over the continent. Even in Sweden. Go to Sweden sometime. So many small business it would make your socks fall off. The 3rd World is full of small businesses, and there is no minimum wage there. There doesn’t seem to be any correlation between the number of small businesses and the presence of absence of a minimum wage, nor its height within reason.
Rising wages don’t cause inflation? This is some Libertarian revisionism, right? I thought that this is a pretty clear trend in Economics, and there’s a good, solid theory to back it up, too.
As unemployment drops, the labor market tightens up, and workers start getting more choosy about jobs. They refuse to work at crap jobs with lousy pay and terrible conditions. Firms start raising pay and bettering conditions to attract workers, increasing the costs of business. In addition, workers at firms start getting bolder, demanding raises and better working conditions on threat of strike or leaving. The reserve army of labor that keeps labor meek and mild is gone, and the working man is standing up. Firms start to raise wages and better conditions in response to strikes and workers threatening to take off, raising the costs of doing business. Firms pass on rising costs to consumers in the form of higher prices.
It’s simply incredible that neoclassical idiots don’t believe in this most basic of economic concepts.
Appealing to small businesses is a great way to tug at your heartstrings, but Libertarians like Taylor are promoting the philosophy of the Rich and Big Capital, not the philosophy of small business. Every time big business goes up against small businesses, Libertarians, neoliberals and the Republican Party always back big business versus small business. This is a philosophy of the rentier classes, not Mom and Pop’s Struggling Whatevermart.
So when Libertarians, the enemies of small business, try to sell their ideas to us by appealing to the interests of small business, we need to listen hard. Why would the enemies of small business promote a theory supposedly to better small business?
They would not.
Taylor also tries to stand up for the poor here. The Libertarians and neoliberals hate the poor. There’s probably no one they hate more than poor people, except maybe Leftwingers. Libertarian theory is a theory of the rentier classes whose ancestors were the landed gentry and monarchists of Europe. These are the “natural rulers of mankind.” They’ve been pissed off at progress since the Enlightenment, and Libertarianism is their way of fighting back. Why would the enemies of the poor try to sell us their theory on the grounds that it benefits the poor?
Surely they would not.
A commenter earlier quoted an article on LewRockwell.com, an extremely racist anti-Black website associated with Ron Paul, saying that if we got rid of the minimum wage, we could put all these unemployed inner city Blacks to work at $4-5/hour. Hell, why not $1/hour? So much more “efficient.” Interesting argument that seems to make intuitive sense, however, inner city Blacks won’t work for $4-5/hour. Neither will I. Neither will just about anyone. They will tell the owner to fuck off and walk away. Who will work that low? Illegal aliens, maybe?
The minimum wage is great for poor people, as long as you don’t raise it too high. If you raise it too high, it’s true that you can cause some job loss. It puts a lot more money in the hands of the poorest working people, and they spend every nickel of it and then some.