The Oliver proposal or raising the minimum wage from $7.25 to $8.50 is a bad joke. For starters, most New Jersey employers pay more than the minimum wage and chances are that most people benefited by the increase would just see raises of $0,50 or less. Oliver is as out of touch as if she lived in outer-space.
Moreover, the proposal is insufficient to have any economic effect. It could truly lead to some layoffs or postpone hiring in some small businesses with marginal profits because the government is taking this step isolated. I have warned many times that the reforms to revitalize the New Jersey economy require a multifaceted approach. Throwing in one ingredient alone, just because it does not affect the political class, will not produce the desired results.
The principal elements missing here are that government must reduce its footprint in the form of eliminating entire subdivisions and all political patronage. Thus, Civil Service Law must be strengthened and teacher tenure must be maintained. The tax code must be drastically changed. Certain consolidations must happen.
The following all must be in: Education (for real; not the fake Christie/Cerf reform), infrastructure, and renewable energy as a growth industry.
That is the complex but apparently the only path to growth and prosperity. Complex problems are not solved with simple solutions.
The governor has graciously agreed to consider the idea of raising the minimum wage. No wonder; the legislature just opened most of the remaining rural areas of New Jersey to wanton development, regardless of any effects it may have on the state’s future in a number of vital factors, such as drinking water quality, infrastructure, and air pollution. He owes the democrats a brief cameo appearance in the theatrical stage of minimum wage increase.
The proposed increase is a political charade and it would be laughable if not because there are hundreds of thousands of New Jersians struggling out there. This irresponsible political gang has ruined the future of an entire generation of young people. I have sons and I can see. Oliver’s idea might have been provoked by my hammering on the self-evident economic law which says that without demand, we can not have growth. To bolster demand, wages must increase; a real increase.
Particulalrly in a depressed economy, demand determines supply; not the other way around.