It’s called ‘minimum’ wage for a reason



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Everyone wants to make more money. It’s the reason why millions of people decide to invest their time, money and energy in higher education and specialized training.

Nobody wants to be at the bottom of the pay scale, and one could argue that minimum wage in and of itself is motivation for U.S. workers to aim higher and strive to achieve more than the earning $7.25 per hour ($7.75 in Alaska).

As cost of living increases nationwide, minimum wage should also be adjusted to reflect the change, but micro-managing and over-regulating the business sector isn’t good for private and small businesses.

What President Obama proposed in his State of the Union address last year — raising minimum wage to more than $10 an hour over the next few years — is a one-size-fits-all approach that will force every American business owner, big and small, to adapt to a government-induced spending plan. A cost of living increase is a good thing, but government meddling in private businesses’ affairs by guaranteeing wage increases for years to come goes too far.

Businesses and consumers alike know that you get what you pay for. Businesses that aren’t well managed and staffed struggle to stay competitive. On the flip side, if government forces businesses to pay under-skilled employees above market value for that skill set, business owners will have no choice but to hire fewer employees or raise prices, which in turn will change the quality and number of services offered.

Those factors have a negative impact on well-managed, local businesses that are trying to stay competitive. And let’s not forget about the federally mandated health care that businesses are now required to provide to employees. The term “free market” is becoming an oxymoron.

 

— Juneau Empire

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