A headline from the USA:
Skeptics Said $15 Minimum Wage Movement Was Unrealistic — 60 Million People Are Now Slated to Get It
Naturally the ‘liberals and progressives’, the Gay BLT lobby, pro – illegal imigration groups and all the usual suspects were ecstatic over this news. But as usual they have not thought it through.
from The Intercept:
THE PUNDITS said it would never happen. But both California and New York on Monday implemented legislation that moves them toward a tiered minimum wage of $15 an hour, covering 60 million Americans.
The hikes come as a direct result of organizing by thousands of people in the union-backed “Fight for 15” movement that kicked off in 2012 — organizing that was quickly decried by pundits and opponents as unrealistic and unlikely to ever succeed.
The Fight for 15 movement began when several hundred fast-food workers in New York City went on a brief strike to call for higher wages; by the next year, this movement had spread to dozens of cities, with workers going on miniature strikes and protest marches to call for a $15 an hour wage.
This innovative tactic — organizing workers with no union representation to go on flash strikes to call attention to their meager wages — raised eyebrows among many in the pundit class who attempted to downplay its power.
The Atlantic’s Derek Thompson wrote an article in 2013 titled “Why the Fast-Food Worker Strikes Are Doomed,” warning that “there are more people willing to do these jobs than there are people willing to strike. … It is hard for me to see how the higher-wage movement succeeds on the streets.”
Danny Vinik, today an assistant editor at Politico, said the strikes were “mistimed,” and cautioned that “we still have an unemployment problem and that means there are replacement workers available to firms. Fast-food workers have no leverage right now.”
“The $15 goal is ambitious, and probably unrealistic in the current job climate,” the Christian Science Monitor’s Mark Trumbull concluded.
Brookings Institution economist Gary Burtless told Fox Business that the minimum wage wouldn’t rise to $15 unless we saw large inflation. “When today’s purchasing power hits the point where $15 is worth what $10 is worth today, then yes, I think it will happen,” he told the network. “In truth, it’s hard for unorganized workers to achieve an increase in their relative wages.
So that’s 60 million more people working part time or on zero hours contracts then?
Actually this is one of the most economically illiterate articles I’ve ever seen. Just for starters, assuming around 60 million people live in NY and Calif, cut out the children and retired people, the professionals, managers and skilled staff earning considerably more that $15 an hour and the unemployed, and then factor in the people who will be paid the new rate but have their working hours reduced proportionately and the number who might benefit from this is considerably reduced.
I can imaging that New York investment bankers and Silicon Valley software developers will be thrilled at they news they can now earn up to $15 an hour.
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