For generations the keys to economic improvement were hard work and education. Minimum wage jobs didn’t pay much but they allowed someone without marketable skills an entrée to the workplace. Now some believe that the combination of a high minimum wage and cradle to grave government programs should allow for a middle class lifestyle without hard work or education.
It takes someone smarter than me to determine where the minimum wage should be set. I do believe that the current federal rate is too low but that $15 is too high. Proponents say that raising the minimum wage doesn’t cost jobs. If that’s true, why not make it $100 an hour? It is a basic fact of economics that businesses increase hiring when they pay less than value that new employees create. They will have little incentive to pay a 16 year dropout with no skills $30,000 a year.
The only reason the unemployment rate is so low is because millions have left the workforce. I fear that a high minimum wage will result in more and more people never getting jobs. Rather than pricing them out of the market we should give them training so that they have marketable skills that allow them to receive higher wages.