American Enterprise Institute: Opinion: Michael R. Strain: A $4 Dollar an Hour Minimum Wage Can Get People Back to Work
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Sure, you could pay someone $4.00 an hour and that would encourage companies to start hiring again and they would probably hire a lot more people again, people who haven't finished high school and are not even old enough to drive or vote. And I'm sure adults would take some of these jobs too, but not if they have bills to pay and this $4.00 hour job was their only source of income, because that wouldn't pay the bills for them in most areas in the United States.
If people haven't eaten in a while for whatever the reasons, you could give them cat food and as much cat food as they could eat for an indefinite amount of time. And if they were able to keep all of that cat food in their bodies and not cabinets for their cats and didn't vomit the cat food, you could prevent them from starving as well. If someone needed to get to work and didn't have a way of getting there by automobile, bus, or taxi and, let's say, they live 10 miles from work, you could tell that person to wake up really early every morning and walk the whole way to work so they were able to get to work every day and not miss any work.
My whole point here is that there are good ways to solve problems, there are bad ways to solve problems, and, as in this column from the AEI today, there are ways to solve problems that may solve the intended problem but create new problems as well. The idea is to solve the problem without creating new ones, and when you are talking about creating jobs for the long-term unemployed, you want them to have jobs that pay their bills so they no longer need public assistance and not jobs that pay a little more than half the minimum wage so that they are not only in a low-income job but are also collecting a hell of a lot of public assistance and private charity just to survive.