Back in October, we called your attention that Seattle decided that it had the right to take from business owners to give to the workers. And they were JOYOUS about it. The outright socialist city council member, Kshama Sawant, put it this way:
“We forced the city establishment to lift the wages of 100,000 low wage workers in Seattle – to transfer $3 billion from business to workers at the bottom of the wage scale over the next 10 years. We did this. Workers did this.
And now we are going to see how Kshama Sawant’s economic experiment is going to fair; it is starting to show exactly what they have done to themselves:
The city of Seattle is providing the nation the economic-planning equivalent of a Funniest Home Video face-plant compilation movie. And it promises to be a doozy. Except for in this case, the face-plant is occurring to an entire city’s population and there’s no hope for a big cash prize at the end for those getting hurt. In fact, just the opposite is waiting for them. Unfortunately, the impact has already happened to some.
…The first face-plant scene in the compilation occurred in February, when a recreational gear manufacturer announced it was moving some operations to Nevada. The owners specifically stated that the new wage law was the sole reason for the change. As an aside and mentioning it may be unnecessary, it is probably not accidental that the relocation occurred in a state without an income tax.
Multiple additional sequences of the compilation were announced this week. A number of restaurants across the city have recently closed their doors, according to Shift Washington, a local political action group. They quote Seattle Magazine in attributing the wage hike as a “major factor” in the decision to cease operation.
A spokesman for the Washington Restaurant Association described the situation eatery owners are facing like this:
“Every [restaurant] operator I’m talking to is in panic mode, trying to figure out what the new world will look like.”
And Prof Thomas Sowell (Economics) spells out even more at Real Clear Politics:
…A recent story in a San Francisco newspaper says that some restaurants and grocery stores in Oakland’s Chinatown have closed after the city’s minimum wage was raised. Other small businesses there are not sure they are going to survive, since many depend on a thin profit margin and a high volume of sales.
At an angry meeting between local small business owners and city officials, the local organization that had campaigned for the higher minimum wage was absent. They were probably some place congratulating themselves on having passed a humane “living wage” law. The group most affected was also absent — inexperienced and unskilled young people, who need a job to get some experience, even more than they need the money.
It is not a breakthrough on the frontiers of knowledge that minimum wage laws reduce employment opportunities for the young and the unskilled of any age. It has been happening around the world, for generation after generation, and in the most diverse countries.
And then the “bomb” of history from the good Dr.:
Whether it is the current issue or a back issue doesn’t matter. Spain, Greece and South Africa will be easy to locate in the table near the back, which lists data for various countries. Just look down the unemployment column for countries with unemployment rates around 25 percent. Spain, Greece and South Africa are always there, whether or not there is a recession. Why? Because they have very generous minimum wage laws.
While you are there, you can look up the unemployment rate for Switzerland, which has no minimum wage law at all. Over the years, I have never seen the unemployment rate in Switzerland reach as high as 4 percent. Back in 2003, “The Economist” magazine reported: “Switzerland’s unemployment neared a five-year high of 3.9% in February.”
In the United States, back in what liberals think of as the bad old days before there was a federal minimum wage law, the annual unemployment rate during Calvin Coolidge’s last four years as president ranged from a high of 4.2 percent to a low of 1.8 percent. Low-income minorities are often hardest hit by the unemployment that follows in the wake of minimum wage laws. The last year when the black unemployment rate was lower than the white unemployment rate was 1930, the last year before there was a federal minimum wage law.
Tight economy, demand has resisted Obama’s Trillion dollar stimulus (can you even remember what promises were made?), labor unemployment is hovering around 9-11% (“official” unemployment + the underemployed + “given up”) – and the Seattle Socialists decided that they, like all Socialists, can violate the Law of Supply and Demand on a whim because EMOTION! And never realizing that while part of economics is subjective emotion, there’s a whole lot of math in it too…
…and these self-abosorbed, self-gratifying fools don’t even realize it.
The problem is, the folks that they wanted to help (and probably right there with them believing the nonsense that govt could force private property owners (the biz owners) to relinquish part of their private property without a bad consequence. Now, they are staring at such up close and personal – and it is proving that for those that are kept, they MAY be getting that $15 but for many, their pay is coming from the unemployment line.
We still have the freedom to move – but given how close the Left wants to track to “Atlas Shrugged”, how much longer before we really are living it?