Friday, June 10, 2005

Please Explain the Benefits of the Minimum Wage

I'm wondering if I can get somebody to explain, in the comments or via email, what benefit the minimum wage gives, and to whom. Flipping through radio stations I heard Bill O'Reilly say he supported a $7 an hour minimum wage, but he gave no reason at all.

To me, it seems like most people support it because they don't really want to think about it. But why $7, or why any amount? Why not $100 and hour? If the market can't determine wages, should we trust it to determine prices?

The common thought, I imagine, is that getting rid of the minimum wage would hurt our lowest wage earners. I believe exactly the opposite, and this article describes better than I can why.

That doesn't mean I won't try, but I thought I'd see if I can get someone to defend it or at least give a rational reason for the minimum wage to exist.

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