New Wheels for the Rich or Foolish

Minimum wage laws make it so that very few people whose labor is worth less than the set price will have jobs, right? Right. The poor suffer. It’s not a complicated argument.

Similarly, what happens when lots of low cost cars are purchased by the government and then destroyed? The supply is diminished, demand remains the same (or rises), and people, the poorer among us, who need cheap cars are hurt with less to choose from and (often therefore) higher prices. The government incentivized this by trading cash for clunkers. Who would turn in these clunkers? People who either have jobs and money and can afford to buy a new car or people who are irresponsible and can’t afford it but buy on credit anyway. Either way, the government subsidizes wealthy or foolish. Sound familiar? It’s just like nearly everything the government and its regulation does. The sting of unintended consequences.

We can only hope that people will see the same thing coming with nationalized health care.

3 Comments New Wheels for the Rich or Foolish

  1. Rachel

    In Europe minimum wages were invented to protect the poor and to make sure employers would not take advantage of them. In an ideal world this should not be necessary, but the nature of man is corrupt and we in Europe have a history that shows people – so employers too – tend to be greedy.

    The hight of the minimum wage is decided by the people through the democratic process. We as a people decide what we think an employer should at least pay for a certain amount of labor. Based on that there is no labor that is worth less than the set price.

    I guess you are more for the free market deciding what the price of labor should be. It sounds very nice in theory, but I have heard the stories of my ancestors who suffered in the days when there were no minimum wages.

    I don’t know the exact situation in the USA so I can’t judge it, but the mere statement minimum wages are supposed to make the poor suffer is a very strange one and not at all as simple and straight forward as you make it out to be.

    We don’t have nationalised healthcare like the UK, but we are somewhere in between you guys in the USA and the UK. All residents are obliged to take out a basic health insurance. It is not perfect of course, but it does mean that everyone gets the medical care he or she needs when he or she needs it. Compared with the stories we often hear from the USA – again I am not sure how true they are – I am very thankful for this system.

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