Why does the Washington Post continue to publish the anti-social pontificating of George Will which has finally descended to a level where one cannot distinguish if it is truly George Will or a brilliant impersonator/satirist?
In this latest , George Will informs us that raising the minimum wage will not benefit the poor and actually will have "injurious effects". I am not making that up. Please, verify for yourselves -
Please note how George Will opens with a snarky reference to "Liberals love of recycling their ideas" while he then goes on to write an entire piece of poorly reasoned hogwash which is his own recycled arguments against raising the minimum wage.
Liberals’ love of recycling extends to their ideas, one of which illustrates the miniaturization of Barack Obama’s presidency. He fervently favors a minor measure that would have mostly small, mostly injurious effects on a small number of people. Nevertheless, raising the minimum hourly wage for the 23rd time since 1938, from today’s $7.25 to $10.10, is a nifty idea, if:He then makes a number of assertions which all stem from his opening premise that minimum wage only affects "a small number of people". One has to wonder that if raising minimum wage is such an insignificant nod to such an unsubstantial number of people, why George Will devotes even one nanosecond of his incredibly brilliant and persuasive self over it?
This meme of minimum wage being only the issue of teenagers and dilettantes who work mostly as a hobby is one that recurs throughout right wing think tanks and George Will pieces concerning the minimum wage which all revolve around not understanding the meaning of the word "minimum" as "the least".
Somehow these brilliant thinkers do not get that the minimum wage establishes a floor wage and that all other hourly wages basically exist relative to their relationship to the minimum wage. Or, perhaps they do understand this, despite their disingenuous protestations to the contrary.
If the minimum wage is increased, it stands to reason that it will cause a reflexive and reactive increase in other wages of workers and the 99% - exactly those people who have been left behind in the current economy.
Strangely enough, the MOTU in private enterprise understand this, as one of the greatest justifications for the outsized, rapacious, plundering salaries of the CEO class is peer salary benchmarking which results in an ever increasing upward spiral as one company after another accedes to executive demands to meet or beat the salary another CEO is making, all easily accessible through their financial reports.
This same principle however only seems to apply in reverse when it comes to the welfare of the working class: Hey! That company over there is raising the employee contribution to the health benefit - why don't we do the same? Hey! That company over there is going to all part-timers with no benefits, why don't we do the same? Etc. etc.
George Will frets that raising the minimum wage will increase unemployment and the high school drop-out rate. You see, he really only is worried about the plight of the poor. Oops! He does let that compassionate mask slip a bit, however, when he then asserts that the companies will put to "more stimulative use" the money in the spread between the existing minimum and a new minimum than the worker getting the increase will. Really George? I'm pretty sure the worker receiving the increase will plow it right back into the economy almost immediately.
If you want to know how truly and deeply out of touch George Will is and why he does not deserve space in any major newspaper please read this sentence:
But an increase in the minimum wage will cause some of these people to become unemployed and rely on welfare.George Will doesn't seem to know that " welfare" has been essentially dismantled since the Clinton era and that almost all assistance programs have a work requirement and a maximum duration. Also, because of "pull yourself up by your bootstraps" types like Will and other sado-conservatives who are never happier than when snatching food from the mouths of the hungry, other supplemental programs are being constantly gutted in order to sate their constant need for the punitive suffering of the poor.
And, just to cement this image of himself a a proud, unreformed modern Scrooge, Will advises those who would raise the minimum wage to take their "moral grandstanding" and establish a minimum of $10.00 to be given to panhandlers. "Beggars may not benefit" he sniffs, "but you will admire yourself."
Beggars?! There's that mid-Victorian Ebeneezer self emerging once again despite all the protestations about his concern for the poor. I have to tell Mr. Will that I am more comfortable with moral grandstanding than I am with amoral grandstanding such as he practices as a tool of the affluent.
At least this time around he doesn't advocate for a minimum wage of $0.00 as he did in this piece from 2007