Charles Payne

Minimum Wage

The minimum wage debate has gone from irresponsible to obscene. Now, there is chatter out of California that they will hike their minimum wage to as much as $26 an hour. Rep. Barbara Lee says such a hike would not hurt small businesses, because she owned a 300-person company prior to coming to Congress. (I need to digress at this point. Carl Dickerson started the aforementioned company in 1965, long before the two were married, and she became an “owner”).

More importantly, Rep. Lee has a dubious background of militant activism. She was a staff member for socialist Ron Dellums, before succeeding him in Congress.

This is an economic and a moral issue. While it continues to be framed as “fairness” for those working for minimum wage, it is never framed in the context of those who have worked hard, made sacrifices, and avoided self-inflicted wounds to climb the ladder to higher wages. Ironically, when it is all said and done, it could actually be most unfair to those who could one day receive $26 an hour, despite the fact that their skill sets call for a much lower income. This goes to the notion that earning a living brings out the best in us, adding an intangible, but very critical element to our existence.
Here are the facts:

  • 49% of minimum wage workers are teenagers. On average, their household income is $70,600 since there is more than one person who works in these homes. Only 17% live in households where cumulative income is below the poverty line.
  • 51% of minimum wage workers are 25-years-old, or older, of which 21% is a spouse, or head of household.

We feel for the single woman with three children, but it is not the responsibility of a corporation to adjust employee pay, based on the number of children in a household. In the end, this is a dangerous slippery slope, where mediocrity and less personal efforts are rewarded at the expense of small businesses and fewer jobs. In the meantime, America continues to seek out competent workers for the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) industry, where some observers say millions of slots are currently available.
The higher minimum wage argument is folly and is designed to cover for a weak economy, anchored by poor policies, high taxes, and mountains of minimum wage workers.

Not The Solution...The Problem

Minimum Wage Facts

$80,000

Average household income

6%


Charles Payne

Charles V. Payne is a regular contributor to the Fox Business and Fox News Networks. He is also the Chief Executive Officer and Principle Analyst of Wall Street Strategies, Inc. (WSSI), founded in 1991 which provides subscription analytical services to both individual and institutional investors.
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