Reduce poverty, or raise unemployment?

Opinion by Jay Douglas

President Joe Biden

The Advocate's 2/9/2021 headline on the Associated Press story read, "Report: $15 wage would reduce poverty." The New York Post headline re the same Congressional Budget Office (CBO) report said, "Biden’s $15 minimum wage would cost 1.4 million jobs: CBO."

After six paragraphs of what essentially amounts to praise for the idea of raising the minimun wage, even the AP story gets around to admitting the bad news. The CBO report points out that although the minimum wage would possibly lift 900,000 out of poverty by 2025, it would likely cost 1.4 million people their existing minimum wage jobs, putting their employment income at zero. Now that's poverty!

To its credit, the New York Post story also reports the collateral damage of the "Raise the Wage Act." It mentions that the cost of goods and services would increase as employers try to pass on the burden of higher wages to consumers. “[T]hose higher prices, in turn, would lead consumers to purchase fewer goods and services. Employers would consequently produce fewer goods and services, and as a result, they would tend to reduce their employment of workers at all wage levels.”

So which headline is more accurate and appropriate? C'mon, Man!

© 2024 - J. Douglas,