The point is that stark ultimatums are a double-edged sword, not a no-brainer. A devoted horse-lover really could sensibly favor an option in between "good home" and "food." A friend of the workers really could sensibly oppose the minimum wage.But subtlety cannot be reduced to sound-bites, and elasticity analysis is hard (although the usual principles-level approach with a lot of rivet-counting over point or arc elasticity) doesn't help the novice develop the right analytical frame of mind.
THE PASTURE OR THE GLUE FACTORY?
Econ Log's Bryan Caplan, with an assist from the Simpsons, finds a metaphor for making sense of all-or-none mandates. "I just want the horse to have a good home or be food. If you want to take him, fine with me." In like manner, "I just want the worker to make $15 an hour or be unemployed." And so it goes. In the political economy of public policy, there are tradeoffs.