Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Jobs, Jobs, Jobs

The N&O has been pushing for an increase in the minimum wage recently, but when they run an article on teenagers who work during the summer (Life 1A today), they make no mention of the connection between teen jobs and the minimum wage.

For the editors of the N&O not steeped in economics, the connection is that as the minimum wage goes up, the availability of jobs at the lower end of the wage scale goes down. Liberals tend to ignore teens in this argument as they want to focus our attention on the single mother of 4 who works, but the small businesses who hire teens, and who give them the valuable work experience that pays off later, watch their costs closely.

The owner may be able to hire 5 teens for the summer at $5.15 an hour, but at $7 an hour the owner may decide the extra hand is not worth the cost and may only hire 4. Then of course the N&O would run an article decrying high teen unemployment, but again never link the effect with the cause of a mandated higher wage.