Skip to main content

See also:

Liberals vs. libertarians: Minimum wage increases

It seems there is continual discussion surrounding the minimum wage should be raised. Even after it is raised those that do not think the raise was sufficient enough start lobbying for another.

 Protesters rally outside of a Wendy's in support of raising fast food wages from $7.25 per hour to $15.00 per hour on December 5, 2013 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City.
Photo by Andrew Burton/Getty Images

Liberals want to enact legislation to increase employee pay. Their chief argument is that every job should pay a living wage.

According to Merriam-Webster, part of Encyclopedia Britannica, a living wage is a wage sufficient to provide the necessities and comforts essential to an acceptable standard of living.

By this definition the wage would not be hourly as regardless of the hours worked in order to qualify as a living wage the pay would be sufficient. Therefore if one were to assume a single job must pay a living wage, that job must pay more to part time employees than full time employees per hour as they have fewer hours to be able to purchase their necessities and comforts.

The liberals always seeking to increase the minimum wage rate would be correct in their drive. This is because every time the minimum wage is raised a cost of living increase follows by approximately two to three months, according to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics.

States also add to the raising of the minimum wage. In Michigan the states has historically set the minimum wage five to ten percent higher than the federal wage. Michigan’s law requires all Michigan companies to observe the state’s wage and also apples the wage standard to interstate companies with at least two employees. (Click here to see the state minimum wage for all states)

Therefore what liberals really want is to increase the minimum wage to always track with the cost of living. This would be a perpetual upward spiral.

Libertarians on the other hand tend to favor the free market setting wages. Instead of raising the minimum wages they feel the government’s role would be to repeal any legislation impacting the cost of doing business to reduce the cost of living.

That is right, libertarians would prefer to see the cost of living reduced.

From the libertarian perspective wages would remain where they are while the cost of doing business would go down. This would not hurt the competitiveness of American products for exports.

Although their names are similar their views on many issues are quite different. Liberals and libertarians may start with the same sounds but opinions differ greatly on many issues important to voters. This series is an attempt by your examiner to clarify those views.

This is part of a series of Detroit’s political views is taken by permission from the “Political Cultures” section of the educational website with locally relevant additions by your Detroit political buzz examiner.

© Max Impact, used with permission.

Recommended reading