By Chris Rossini
Have you noticed that as government raises the minimum wage, automation seems to appear more and more for those low-skilled jobs?
Coincidence? Not at all. The minimum wage incentivizes and accelerates automation. The minimum wage is an unemployment generator. It is purely destructive.
In other words, if the minimum wage is $20/hr, but you don’t have the necessary skills or productivity to earn that amount, no one will hire you. Sure, in a free country, you’d be able to offer your labor for less than $20/hr, but this is the new America. Government has decided that you’re better off collecting unemployment checks.
Just as you don’t like to overpay for anything that you buy, neither do other people. You’re not unique in that respect. No one likes to overpay, and if someone is forced to, they’ll only do so until they find a workaround.
Here’s the key – there’s always a workaround. The minimum wage incentivizes workarounds. It causes those who are entrepreneurial to get to work on creating workarounds.
No one overpays, no matter what the government says. People merely adjust. It’s during that adjustment that government’s laws always end up hurting those who were supposedly getting the “help”.
One way that employers adjust is with automation. A machine becomes so much more attractive when government comes around with its minimum wage mandates. A machine will always be on time, will always do the job right, and will not demand “healthcare” or “access” to contraceptives! A machine won’t steal, or get sick, or demand three months vacation.
How attractive do you think a robot becomes when government says that businesses must pay someone $20/hr when they’re not worth it? It becomes very attractive.
And so we watch as one low-skilled job after another gets turned into a computer screen. Kiosks, robotics, and various types of automation are the pushback against the bully government.
There is nothing inherently wrong with robots or automation. After all, they free up people to perform other tasks. However, people who are laid off need a free society so that they can quickly find other work. Options exist in a free society. You don’t have to jump through hoops, and neither do employers.
Sadly, America has shifted away from a once free society to one where the hiring process has become a nightmare. Not only does the minimum wage prevent people from finding new jobs quickly, but there are oceans of red tape and “regulations” that making hiring very cumbersome. Rarely can you walk into a place and get hired on the spot with just a handshake. Government has destroyed that.
Let us also not forget that government’s debasement of the currency (via the Federal Reserve) and the inflation that it creates are the reason that people are having a harder time making it on lower wages. The Federal Reserve is the source of “Always Higher Prices”.
So the next time you order fast food on a computer screen, or airline tickets, or any other job that people used to perform, thank the minimum wage.
It’s the law that forces the employment of robots over people.