To the editor:
After reading Mr. Nickoless’ letter to the editor in a recent edition of The Link, I must point out why raising the minimum wage is not a long-lasting solution for those working for minimum wage. I am concerned that Mr. Nickoless apparently did not give any thought to the long-term consequences of raising the minimum wage. In addition, he seems to have forgotten to think about the reasons that our prices continue to spiral upward, thus making the minimum wage unable to buy what it used to buy.
Raising the minimum wage is inflationary because someone who worked hard and managed to get a merit raise, say $10 an hour, will lose his incentive to continue to work hard. In fact, if he had just done the minimal work required to earn his minimum wage, as many do, he would have gotten the raise anyway because politicians want to win re-election, in part by supporting raising the minimum wage to buy votes.
Raising the minimum wage will destroy this person’s incentive to excel and better himself. The proper way to get a raise and leave the minimum wage behind is to work hard and do more than is required by your employer. Not only does that lead to more money in your paycheck and a more responsible job, but it also gives the person a sense of pride in a job well done.
Raising the minimum wage in the long run means that every worker’s pay will have to be increased just to keep the status quo. When this happens, the minimum-wage worker will still be at the bottom of the earnings ladder. Again, the way to climb the earnings ladder is through hard work, attention to detail and doing more than is required.
The real reason that all wages are going down in buying power is that the Treasury Department’s Bureau of Engraving and Printing (our government) is printing money like there’s no tomorrow. Over the past six or so years, the Fed has printed trillions of dollars. Every dollar printed means that each dollar in your pocket is worth less.
This is the reason food prices and the price of everything is increasing. It is proportional to the amount of money in circulation, thereby reducing the value of each dollar. This is called inflation and it will not stop until the printing of money and raising the minimum wage stop.
The raising of the minimum wage is only a stopgap measure for the lowest wage earners. If our government continues to print money, the minimum wage will have to be increased again and again, if Mr. Nickoless’ reasoning continues in the future. Raising the minimum wage is inflationary because everyone else’s wage must also be increased proportionately and the cost of everything will continue to increase.
Our politicians start the discussion to raise the minimum wage to get re-elected and buy votes, plain and simple. All the while, those same politicians ignore the real reason for inflation and the American workers not being able to pay their bills and/or put food on the table. That problem does not want to be tackled, particularly now, because we are approaching another election year and solving the basic problem would not garner as many votes for those who want reelection or for either political party.