Forum: Reeder uses minimum logic
February 7, 2014 6:10PM
Updated: February 9, 2014 2:14AM
It should be no surprise to anyone that columnist Scott Reeder opposes raising the minimum wage in Illinois and probably everywhere else. He uses the old saw that says raising the minimum wage will cost jobs.
This is an oft-stated maxim, made especially by Big Business and its conservative mouthpieces, such as the National Federation of Independent Business, which claims that it’s nonpartisan and promotes small businesses — a claim that’s hard to believe when some of its major funding sources are organizations controlled by the Koch brothers.
Reeder implies that most minimum-wage workers are teenagers, working for small businesses. But surveys show that teens make up about 20 percent of those earning the minimum wage, while two thirds work for companies that employ more than 100 workers, including such huge companies as McDonald’s and Wal-Mart.
There are many studies that have shown that increasing the minimum wage reduces job turnover and increases productivity. Mr. Reeder’s logic suggests that if we reduce the minimum wage to, say $1, we could have full employment, happy workers and even happier employers.