If I collect a little more in donations this week, the blegging can stop. My Paypal email is Darksydothemoon-at-aol-com. Please chip in if possible to your gentle, progressive atheist activist. Sadly, there’s just no career path and little in the way of tangible benefits doing what I do here at FTB. Speaking of benefits, guess what happens when the minimum wage is raised to something closer to livable and guess what economic ideology is being shown as dead wrong on that score?
Philly.com — The 13 U.S. states that raised their minimum wages at the beginning of this year are adding jobs at a faster pace than those that did not, providing some counter-intuitive fuel to the debate over what impact a higher minimum has on hiring trends.
Many business groups argue that raising the minimum wage discourages job growth by increasing the cost of hiring. A Congressional Budget Office report earlier this year lent some support for that view. It found that a minimum wage of $10.10 an hour, as President Obama supports, could cost 500,000 jobs nationwide.
But the state-by-state hiring data, released Friday by the Labor Department, provides ammunition to those who disagree. Economists who support a higher minimum say the figures are encouraging, though they acknowledge they don’t establish a cause and effect. There are many possible reasons hiring might accelerate in a particular state.
Well, duh. Maybe if you’re an uninformed layperson who accepts your wingnut boss’s boss’s mindless parroting of talking points as if they were revealed wisdom, this comes as a surprise. For anyone else with half a brain or a smidgen of experience actually trying to survive on eight or nine bucks an hour, its common sense. Give struggling workers a few extra bucks every month and they’re not going to stash the money in a tax-free offshore coffee can or run down to the local Merril Lynch office and open a wealth builder account. It’s going to be spent, as fast as its made, mostly on necessities, maybe there’ll be enough left over for an occasional super luxury, like a cappuccino or a new ringtone. Thus the economy blossoms up and prosperity flows more equitably, including to more rich people, instead of trickling down in dwindling droplets into a few lucky, outstretched hands.
Apologists for the richest point-zero-one percent have no problem understanding this basic economic fact, when it involves an increase in military spending, or tax cuts and corporate welfare for their pampered clients. But when it involves people who actually work for a living having more a tiny bit money to spend or save, Upton Sinclair is in full command: “It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends on his not understanding it.”