Minimum Wage

Minimum Wage An increase now will boost income for the poorest workers without the danger of creating more unemployment., states the New York Times in September 1999. Is this statement about an increase in minimum wage really true? There are two sides to the debate about minimum wage that both hold valid points. The minimum wage is a major issue in the world of economics and politics. Political figures often prey on the publics general ignorance of economics and promise to increase the minimum wage. Economists ,on the other hand, view the long term effects and see the damage it can cause.

David Card and Alan Kruegur, two economists at Princeton University conducted a study in April 1992 on New Jerseys 18% minimum wage increase while Pennsylvanias minimum wage remained the same. They measured the change in employment in the states fast food restaurants between February and December that year. Card and Kruegur found that the number of jobs grew in restaurants where pay had to rise, compared with those already paying more than minimum was and compared with joints in neighboring Pennsylvania, where the minimum did not change. The study also found no difference between high- and low- wage states. Most people would be delighted to here the above.

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They would receive more money and their standard of living would increase. But most people do not take into account the negative side effects of increasing the minimum wage. The survey taken by Card and Kruegur was done over the telephone. Fellow economists charge that the questions were vague and errors crept into the numbers. Another study was done using the businesses payrolls found that New Jersey fared far worse than Pennsylvania. Positive effects of the minimum wage can be the obvious; more money for people. They would have more money to spend , the economy would boom and everyone would be happy.

Not so; in fact, this would only encourage inflation and increase prices. Money become lesser in value and producers would have no choice but to raise prices in order to make profit. Another negative aspect of raising the minimum wage is unemployment rising. Supply of workers would exceed the demand for workers. Employers would only be able to hire a lesser number of workers. It may also influence teenagers to leave school for a high paying job and make it more difficult for teenagers looking for work to find jobs.

Low skilled workers would be left without jobs, seeing as how it only make sense to hire the higher skilled worker verses the lower skilled worker. The minimum wage debate is a touchy issue among many economists and political figures. While there are some positives aspects, the negative far out away the positives.

Minimum Wage

The Effects of Minimum Wage on Leisure and Free Time: The Cons
Leisure is something that I feel is important in everyone’s lives today, although not everyone is accessible to certain types of leisure.I feel in some way leisure has an effect on everyone’s lives in America, from those in poverty to the Bill Gates of the world.For some people leisure might be going to the park to picnic or just play basketball, but to others it is taking an exotic trip to another country.Whatever form of leisure each individual enjoys or can afford this leisure is most likely having a positive effect on their lives and is almost a necessity to them.
This is not just my opinion it is also said by Kelly(1990) that, “Some indications have been presented that leisure is increasingly important in the value schemes and schedule of modern western adults”(p.11).Kelly states some of the benefits of leisure are:
“Self expression, companionship, integration of mind and body or
Physical health, a needed contrast or rhythm in the work constrained schedule, rest and relaxation, a chance to try something new and to
meet new people, to build relationships to consolidate the family, toget in touch with nature, to test oneself in risk or competition, to meet the expectations of people who are important to them, and
to just feel good without analyzing why”(p.12).
I agree with Kelly and feel that these are some of the main reasons as to why leisure is an eccentric part in each individuals lives and that each member that contributes to society in some positive way should have a chance to participate in some form of leisure.Yet this is where the individuals economic status comes into play.Not everyone is able to pursue desired leisure activities but many struggle to experience the “normal” types of leisure, such as watching television or listening to music.Many politicians argue that raising the minimum wage will help the lower class and give them greater opportunities in society, but I beg to differ.I believe that the minimum wage should not be raised because it is in actuality not helping the economically lower class but hurting them.
The minimum wage was established in 1928 at a wage rate of 25 cents.The minimum wage is a price that is imposed by the federal government on the labor market.The central aim of establishing a minimum wage was to increase the standard of living among low skill wage earners.Since its introduction the minimum wage has been raised sixteen times in an effort to try and keep up with inflation.In 1989, President Bush signed an increase in the minimum wage from $3.35 to $4.25.In 1995 President Clinton and his economic advisers decided the minimum wage should be raise to $4.75 by July 1995, and to $5.15 by July 1996. (In formation provided by American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research 1996.)It is now being argued again by Clinton and his advisers that the minimum wage should be raised beyond its current level of $5.15.They claim they are looking out for today’s poor working men and women, however increasing the minimum wage is a misguided and wrongheaded policy that will do far more to hurt the poor then help them.
First of all when you look at American families there are a few different aspects to examine when looking at their wages. As stated by the National Center for Political Analysis (June 9, 1998), first of all about ten percent of families have less than $10,000 income and about thirty two percent of families have incomes of $50,000 or more, but surprisingly only fifteen percent of low wage workers are in the lowest income families.This means that most of the low wageworkers or those making minimum wage are either teenagers or se…


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