Quick Hit: Better Ideas than Raising the Minimum Wage
Here are some ways to separate people by motive, knowledge and creativity on the issue of the minimum wage:
- Offer to reduce or eliminate the 15.3 percent FICA taxes on every dollar of income earned by the working poor (no exemptions/no deductions like the “income tax” gets);
- Offer wage subsidies for low-paid heads of household instead;
- Offer to raise the Earned Income Tax Credit instead;
- Offer to raise the minimum wage for those who aren’t teenagers.
All of these do a better job of helping the targeted group, while lessening or eliminating the costs and damage of a higher minimum wage.
If they don’t go for these policy suggestions — or come up with really good reasons to avoid these policies — then you can know that: a) their motives are something other (e.g, to help unions or to harm business); b) their knowledge is lacking (although you’ve just helped them there, so . . . ); or c) their policy creativity is woeful (see also ability to assimilate knowledge).
The latter two remind me of Brian Regan on the kid who keeps using the same solar system for his science project: “The big yellow one is the sun. The big yellow one is the sun!”
— Eric Schansberg