15.12.16

RITES OF PASSAGE.

Town Hall's Kurt Schlichter does not deplore a fast-food guy becoming Secretary of Labor.
I don’t think Andy Puzder will be too upset with me when I say both that I didn’t particularly like my job at Carl’s , Jr., and that I am intensely grateful for the experience. First jobs aren’t supposed to be fun. They aren’t supposed to fulfill you. They are supposed to teach you how to work and put a few bucks in your pocket while allowing businesses to provide their products. I got paid minimum wage only because the government required it; I wasn’t worth $3.10 an hour, just as someone not being paid $15 an hour already isn’t worth $15 an hour. Puzder is right to oppose an artificially high minimum wage. Crummy first jobs are supposed to be just that – first jobs. If you are trying to feed a family on minimum wage, you frankly shouldn’t have a family yet because you can’t afford one yet.
He uses most of his column to take digs at the kind of entitled snowflake incapable of doing the work of a competent fry cook, yet expecting the compensation of a senior manager.  There's another dimension to his story, though, that of the "adults working" in fast food and the like, who might not have developed the human capital to move up to night manager.  That's a part of the entry-level job story that's incomplete, and Pajamas Media's John Ellis was thinking about it last spring.
Maybe more low-income workers would begin listening to conservatives if conservatives stopped telling them that they don’t “deserve” $15 an hour. Maybe more low-income workers would embrace economic principles that will actually help them if more conservatives would stop demonstrating a tone-deaf moralism in relation to the wages of low-income workers. As conservatives, we hold to an economic theory that allows for all to benefit from the growing wealth. That’s what conservatives should be compassionately preaching instead of lecturing fast food workers about how they’re not worth a certain amount of money.
It's all about the tradeoffs.  Perhaps people hire out at entry-level jobs being incapable of doing much.  But there are several ways to get proficient at doing more: perhaps school helps, perhaps demonstrating aptitude on the job helps, perhaps developing life-management skills helps.  But the social science of heads of households holding minimum wage jobs?  No lack of unanswered questions.

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