Opinion on Raising the Minimum Wage
From a personal viewpoint, increasing the minimum wage is great for the continued protection of workers against unduly low pay. However, this plan works best if the salary floor is set based on supply and demand for labor as opposed to other factors such as the protection of employees. Continued study of economic reasons for increasing the minimum wage has dramatically shaped my opinion on the issue. Standard economic theories postulate that government-imposed salary floors may lead to the loss of jobs since there are employers who are only willing to hire personnel at a wage below minimum. Still, some employees are eager to take engagement in organizations for lower pay below the set salary floor. This essay provides insight into the plea to raise the minimum wage in the U.S. based on the arguments of Adams and Manning.
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Adam’s Arguments Against and Supporting Raising of the Minimum Wage
First, Adams (2017) postulates that a mandatory salary floor displaces unskilled jobs. This trend negatively affects employment as elasticity between wage increases and the available job opportunities worsens. Adams (2017) also negates the move to raise the minimum wage by claiming that the decision does not account for the variety of situations that confront most families in the real world.
Adam’s first argument supports the minimum wage for growth reasons. He asserts that increasing the salary floor will serve as a driver of economic development and help low-income earners during downturns in the business cycle (Adams, 2017). The other claim for increasing the salary floor is to create equity. The majority of people believe that raising the minimum wage will restore basic fairness in the workplace.
Minimum Wage Versus a “Living Wage” – Adam’s View
Adams (2017) describes the minimum wage as a mandatory salary floor that is governed by the law to allow workers sufficient income to cross the poverty line, whereas the living wage is determined by the daily or average living costs. In line with these definitions, it may be appropriate to impose a minimum payment on the job market. Still, the implications for both current employees and organizations are severe, especially in cases where businesses need to leverage profits and operational costs.
Adams (2017) concludes that “there is a continued need to increase the federal minimum wage and index future adjustments to inflation” (p. 631). However, he stresses that decisions on setting the salary floor should be free from Federal influence to avoid politicizing the problems of society. I agree with this opinion because the government tends to tie the fate of low-income earners to political ideologies (Adams, 2017). This approach cannot create a permanent solution for this challenge because policies change with each new regime. Adams (2017) also concludes that minimum wage changes have moderate to minimal effects on assuaging poverty among low-skilled workers. This assertion is correct since the salary floor does not account for diverse factors such as demographic variations and undesirability of skills, among others.
Pros and Cons of Raising the Minimum Wage – Manning’s View
Increasing the minimum wage has both beneficial and disadvantageous implications for employees, organizations, and the economy. According to Manning (2018), raising the salary floor can allow for higher incomes among workers, improving their living standards. On the other hand, the author asserts that setting a higher minimum wage can result in job loss and inflate the price of consumer goods. According to Manning (2018), the concept of the minimum wage leads to the loss of jobs as some employers prefer hiring workers who are still willing to work below the salary floor.
Manning (2018) concludes that increasing the minimum wage has various pros and cons, but the approach cannot provide an enduring solution to sustainable economic development across the United States. I agree with this conclusion because the raising of the salary floor does not account for demographic variations in different parts of the country; hence, it may result in labor inequity among low-skilled workers.
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Effect of the Minimum Wage on Social Problems in the U.S.
Based on the two articles, while minimum wages do not have direct effects on low-income families, they play an essential role in influencing the lives of people living in poor or low-income households. Given this inclination, raising the minimum wage is only a temporary solution for income inequality and poverty in the U.S. Political influence and control by special interest groups is a significant challenge for the implementation of a workable salary floor. Change of policy in the next regime may lead to further loss of jobs and destabilization of the economy as employees and organizations adjust to new salary scales (Manning, 2018). The approach to implementing a better minimum wage can be changed by avoiding Federal intervention in the process. Without political influence, policymakers can cover a broader scope to integrate other factors such as changes in demographics and low-skilled cohorts.
Opinion after Reading the Articles and Conclusion
My opinion on the minimum wage has not changed because it still protects the low-income society regardless of its perceived disadvantages. Nonetheless, the approach to implementing a permanent solution to poverty is not feasible owing to its unpredictability shortly. Backing the implementation of living wages will also have severe effects on low-income cohorts because most companies focus on cutting labor costs to increase profits. Therefore, raising the minimum wage is still vital for reducing poverty, ensuring increased investment, and counterbalancing the effect of monopsony among employers.
Adams, R. (2017). Standard of living as a right, not a privilege: Is it time to change the dialogue from minimum wage to living wage? Business & Society Review, 122(4), 613-639.
Manning, A. (2018). The truth about the minimum wage: Neither job killer nor cure-all. Foreign Affairs, 97(1), 126-135.