Tigers, the minimum wage and like rip offs

23rd February 2014

Martin Phillipps of the Chills might be afforded some respect since  in his admitting that, having some 20 years ago written a song about the imminent disappearance of tigers from the planet and finding that, in fact, there are plenty of tigers still around, he feels rather “ripped off” (Radio NZ – Sunday Morning).

This is not unlike reading the US Congress latest analysis of the likely impacts of lifting the minimum wage law in the US to $10.00 (U.S.) an hour which in their analysis (bearing in mind they are charged with producing a non-partisan assessment) which shows that the increase would entail:

  • the loss of around 500,000 jobs
  • benefit some 19% of those on the US poverty line
  • that 29% of those benefiting have incomes three times the  poverty rate, and,
  • amongst the rest, those with jobs fall in between these levels.

Not being an exact science levels vary of course. Jobs lost could for instance vary – between 200,000 and 1,000,000 they note (see Mankiw and link).

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