Minimum Wage

Shortage of Adult Workers Makes Teens Employable Again

Minimum wage laws priced young workers out of the market before the pandemic and may do so in the future.


My son recently underwent what was once a common rite of passage: his first job. He now balances the demands of schooling with cleaning toilets, stocking shelves, and bagging groceries at a local supermarket. While once a normal experience for teens, compensated employment became rarer in recent years as young, inexperienced workers were rendered uncompetitive by rising minimum wages. The pandemic-era labor shortage made teens employable again. That opportunity may fade when adults return to the workforce and offer experience and maturity in return for artificially hiked pay.

"Honestly, without them, we'd have to close our doors," the owner of several Texas smoothie shops told Marketplace about teen workers earlier this month. Like many other employers large and small, this businessman has trouble hiring adults, and so turns to teens despite their lack of experience and crowded schedules. The "why?" of the worker shortage is up for debate, but economists point to a combination many factors, including pandemic-era lifestyle adjustments that lowered cost of living for many people, resistance to perceived health risks and related mandates, and government economic handouts which made it easier for people to make ends meet without working.

"We know two things about human behavior: First, if people have more money, they work less," Hoover Institution economist John Cochrane observed last month. "Second, if the rewards of working are greater, people work more. Our current policies offer a double whammy: more money, but much of it will be taken away if one works."

Whatever the reason, there's a pressing shortage of willing workers. The civilian labor participation rate is down from 63.3 percent before the pandemic to 61.6 percent as of the latest figures, indicating larger numbers of Americans not seeking employment. An inability to hire workers "in some regions resulted in reduced operating hours and service modes at select restaurants as well as supply chain pressures," Restaurant Brands International (which owns Burger King, Tim Horton's, and Popeye's) announced at the end of October. A November CNBC survey found half of all workers saying their companies are understaffed. That puts greater pressure on those who are employed, helping spur "the Great Resignation" of people quitting their jobs, which makes the need for new employees even more acute. That creates an opening for teenagers to take jobs that had been in short supply for them in recent years.

Before the pandemic, teen employment had become scarce. "Teens and young adults are still struggling to gain traction in the labor market," Brookings Institution researchers noted in 2015. "Labor force participation and employment rates continue to trend downward, as do median annual earnings."

Economists argued over why teens had disappeared from the part-time gigs at fast-food restaurants, supermarkets, and retail stores that were once a mainstay of adolescence and early adulthood. What many of them kept returning to was that the push for higher minimum wages of recent years had priced inexperienced young workers out of the market.

"We find that higher minimum wages are the predominant factor explaining changes in the schooling and workforce behavior of those age 16–17 since 2000," researchers found in a 2018 paper. "Higher minimum wages have led both to fewer teens in school and employed at the same time, and to more teens in school but not employed, which is potentially consistent with a greater focus on schooling."

Worse, perhaps by delaying their entry into the job market, higher minimum wages seemed to hit young workers in the wallet years down the line.

"We find no evidence that higher minimum wages have led to greater human capital investment," the authors of the paper added. "If anything, the evidence points to adverse effects on longer-run earnings for those exposed to these higher minimum wages as teenagers."

So, the pandemic-era disappearance of many adults from the job market was a welcome opportunity for many teens who, in contrast to their elders, want to work. Teens are getting jobs in numbers not seen since the heyday of malt shops and drive-ins. "The last time the unemployment rate for teenagers was lower than 9.6 percent was in November 1953, when it was 8.6 percent," the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported in August. Since summer, teen unemployment rose a bit as school resumed and (some) adults returned to job-seeking. But opportunities still abound as openings go unfilled.

"Many businesses are tapping teenagers because they can't find adults," USA Today reported last week. "Job openings reached a record 10.4 million in September."

Notably, teens are getting paid rather well as employers offer more but still have trouble enticing adults. That Texas smoothie entrepreneur pays $15 an hour in a state where that's more than double the statutory minimum. "More than two-thirds of his workers are high schoolers, putting in 10 to 20 hours a week," according to Marketplace. As he mops the floor and returns carts to a store where many unfilled jobs are listed on a sign by the front door, my son started at Arizona's minimum wage of $12.15 hour. Adjusted for inflation, that's over 20 percent more than I earned at my high-school job. Young workers are bringing home relatively generous paychecks because employers have to offer higher pay to attract workers and it's the kids who are willing to step up.

"Wages for teenagers working at small- to midsize retailers have risen from $9.40 in March to $10.33 in November," USA Today adds. "During that period, larger retailers, as well as warehouse and call-center companies, have boosted entry-level pay from a range of $10 to $12 to as much as $15 to $25."

The question, though, is what happens as the conditions keeping adults out of the labor market disappear and teens find themselves competing, once again, with workers who have more skill and experience under their belts. Teens will once again be relatively uncompetitive at wages artificially hiked by law. They may find themselves returned to their pre-pandemic status, once again priced out of a job market in which employers aren't allowed to pay the starting wages that young, beginning workers are worth.

For now, my son is happy for the work opportunity that has, perhaps only temporarily, again become part of teenage life. Hopefully, by the time adults are again snapping up open positions, he'll have earned the skills and trust to stay on the payroll. But that valuable experience will remain beyond the reach of many teens if the law prices them out of the job market.

NEXT: Turkmenistan's Record-Setting Repression

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  1. Minimum wage laws are also bad for Charles Koch, the billionaire who funds

    Indeed, Mr. Koch rose from humble beginnings to become one of the richest people on the planet largely because of one key insight: keep labor costs down. In practice this means importing foreign-born labor; Mr. Koch has discovered immigrants (especially Mexicans) are simply willing to work for much lower wages than US-born employees.

    Raising the minimum wage would therefore be disastrous for our benefactor's bottom line. And you'll notice Democrats — despite controlling the White House and Congress — haven't done it.


    1. Bless you, I was waiting for your comments as soon as I opened the article.

      Because we all know open borders are the key to a golden future for sophisticated people.

      1. If I could summarize Koch-funded libertarianism in a single hashtag, it would be #OpenBordersWillFixEverything.

        1. Plus, the road to prosperity is paved with higher taxes, (but not on rich people.)

          1. How about #KochNeedzMoarMeatWidgets?

            "Shortage of Adult Workers"

            I see that Reason is still a sewer of #FakeNews.

            Labor Force Participation Rate has been at an all time low since 2019.

            These people really are vermin.

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      3. AGolden Showers future more like it

        "Honestly, without them, we'd have to close our doors," the owner of several Texas smoothie shops"

        Worthless business. Start today, be a Manager in two weeks!

        Lord were screwed.

        Oh, yes, almot forgot. Fuck Joe Biden.

        Theres a " thing" in the South ( GA, FL) to put his stickers on gas pumps pointing at the high prices and proclaiming " I did that." Hilarious.

    2. The feds just indicted a cartel of immigrants who were using the farm worker visas as essentially slave labor. 10 cents a bucket. The group kept all of their visa paperwork forcing them to work on the farms and such. They raked in over 200 million from the scheme.

      Unlimited foreign labor can make anybody rich.

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    3. Breaking: Global lockdowns for new Kung flu Xi variant. (Except for border immigration).

      I assume this is being done to pass a wealth transfer that solely benefits the commie house districts because they know the BBB will tank.
      Obama words come back to haunt small business everywhere “you didn’t build that!

  2. Don't worry, the latest migrant caravan will put a stop to that.

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  3. I've always wondered why Unions like the SEIU were pushing for the $15 per hour minimum wage, but, wanted their members exempt from it?

    1. Because monopolies, that's why.

  4. This article makes the claim more than once that adults will eventually return to the labor force. No explanation as to why adults have left, no explanation on why these people will return to the labor market. And my youngest kid and his friends have no desire to work the traditional teenager job, they instead are investing in crypto, do resale stuff (shoes and clothing) on ebay type sites. Same for several grown friends/family. They are doing their own thing.

    1. In fairness to TooSilly, he does lightly brush on the idea that maybe, maybe giving people a bunch of free money and closing their jobs had an impact.

      Also people are just going crazy, which changes how decisions are made.

      1. This is true salted nuts...

      2. "...people are just going crazy..."

        Especially kids. Weird how little attention this is getting.

        1. And when it is recognized, nothing is done.

          Latest one to take the top of my head off was an Oregon Middle School closing for in-person classes... because remote learning had left all the students unable to socialize decently. Then they sent the kids right the hell back to online courses because teachers complained. Madness.

          1. been to Oregon? Go once, youll understand.

            Fruits AND Nuts

    2. Yep. Having a job sucks. People who have found ways to avoid it won't be returning to employment.

      1. I love my job and hate not having work to do.

          1. I own my own business in a field I enjoy.

            1. Then you don't have a job.

              1. Not just A job, but several hats to wear. All underpaid too.

                1. Not a job. Being in business is not being an employee.

                  1. How is this not a job?

                    It may not be what YOU are used to as a job but it 100% is what I do as a business owner, and it's a job.

    3. Well, thank goodness Joe Bidet has a plan to make sure he gets his fair share of anything they might make.

      1. Fuck Joe Biden

    4. Maybe, but I doubt scaling up pure currency speculation and garage sales will support national economies, even with techy interfaces. And these are not the kind of enterprises that changed the world from peasant-agrarian to middle-class modern.

      1. Agreed. Financialization decoupled from the material economy is not a recipe for durable prosperity. At some point these things need to have a tangible benefit for the people building and growing things.

        Something I'd like to study more: the impact that the explosion of crypto has on global and US inflation. The CW seems to be that they function as an inflation hedge like gold, but as cash substitutes it may make sense to view them as unaccounted expansions of the money supply.

        1. false meme. there is no inflation.

          A Lie
          Same lie as in 2012 to cover for Obamanomics and skyrocketing prices when INFLATION was at a record LOW.

          0.8 %.

    5. Actually, the article does offer several possible explanations for why adults left (and might return). See the paragraph that includes:

      "The "why?" of the worker shortage is up for debate, but economists point to a combination many factors, including pandemic-era lifestyle adjustments that lowered cost of living for many people, resistance to perceived health risks and related mandates, and government economic handouts which made it easier for people to make ends meet without working."

      So to recap -
      - When the government give out free money, some people will sit at home rather than work. They will (presumably) go back to work when the free money runs out.
      - When the government and/or media terrorize people about disease risks, some people will stay "safe" at home. They will (again, presumably) go back to work when they either overcome their fear or the baseless terrorizing stops.
      - When the government makes it unnecessarily hard to go out, some people will stay home. They will presumably go back when the mandates are lifted.
      - Some people got used to living on less and learned that it's not so bad. Those people may not go back.

      Crypto-investing is just like traditional investing. To be reliably successful over time takes a lot of research and hard work. Some people will do little work and get lucky. Many more people will do little work and lose their shirts. The existence of the lucky few does not make crypto-investing a replacement for traditional employment. Gig work, on the other hand, is a replacement for traditional employment - and one that, again, requires actual work for long-term success.

      1. The future climate mandates have something to do with it. I want a new vehicle, a nice SUV perhaps. The planned obsolescence of fossil fuels, refrigerants and any product associated with them(pretty much everything) creates disinvestment from and inflation shockwaves. Making what used to be an easy purchase or investment, such as the SUV or real estate rentals in cities, has much higher risk associated. Mandates, Bans and price controls make economic activity stop. The crime anarchy chaos in cities and air travel is another topic.

      2. > Gig work, on the other hand, is a replacement for traditional employment

        Not if you value human dignity.

        1. "Not if you value human dignity."

          Fuck off and die, asshole.

        2. Full ignorance on display here, Gib.

          Working when you want, for who you want, for as long/short as you want or don't want is a level of personal freedom that you obviously don't understand.

          Maybe freedom isn't your thing. If so, STFU and piss off.

      3. AND...DONT FORGET!#!

        PPP loans. Small businesd bailouts for popsicle and coffee stands to stay in business and repo/ eviction moratoriums.

        Kicking the Can down the Road means its in much worse shape than before, in fact, useless.

    6. Adults left their jobs because government shut their jobs down in the face of pandemic panic. And the ripple effects from that spreads like a turd in a punchbowl.

  5. Why work? We are all rich now, thanks to SleepyJoe.

    1. Well, we will be rich once we tax all the rich people.

      1. Because the cities in the states that “tax the rich” are lovely civilized societies…,Haha
        The moron Governor of New Jersey actually said it..”If you don’t like taxes, New Jersey’s not for you”.

        1. Gov-Guns =/= Wealth. Never has; never will.

  6. More navel-gazing to avoid the culpability of bad voting propoganda...

    Built By Brandon.

    1. Fuck Joe Biden

      1. Yes! An anthem heard round the world. . . Well maybe not the world but at NASCAR races.

        1. And football games.

    2. I'm sorry but Trump would have presided over the same shitshow. Or do you subscribe to the fantasy that the office of the Presidency has turned into a do-nothing job and all of the important questions have already been decided well beforehand by the Deep State & Organized Capital.

      1. hasn't* turned into a do-nothing job

      2. I believe that Trump would have vetoed the COVID bailout that was passed in March (after the economy was already starting to recover). I also do not believe that Trump would have attempted to create a national vaccine mandate. He also would not have made oil/gas exploration and transportation more difficult.

        It is also more speculative, but I do wonder if the Fed would have felt compelled to keep its QE going for as long under Trump as it has under Biden (the knowledge that Trump would badmouth the taper would make them feel more tempted to do it). Finally, I note that all the new vaccines were authorized while Trump was in office or shortly thereafter. Perhaps the issue with AstraZeneca and NovaVax were insurmountable for any administration. However, it is certainly possible to wonder whether the administration that took apart the successful Project Warpspeed, believes that bringing in any former pharma executive to run things is a conflict of interest, and been advocating for the revocation of vaccine IP might not have the best handle on how to bring new vaccines to market.

      3. he did. and he did something about it

        Youre a pathetic TDS addled dipshit

      4. TDS is an ugly thing... I lay the blame for forcibly closing the economy and throwing away money hand over fist to have people not work at the feet of those in power; Brandon and the Dims.

      5. "I'm sorry but Trump would have presided over the same shitshow..."

        You're not sorry; you're a TDS-addled piece of lefty shit.
        Fuck off and die, asshole.

    3. Fuck Joe Biden

      1. that NEVER gets old !

  7. "That opportunity may fade when adults return to the workforce and offer experience and maturity in return for artificially hiked pay."

    Why would anyone assume that the average couch-surfing twenty-something, or even thirty-something, has more to offer an employer than the average teen? I would rather hire a younger person with less experience than some "adult" with delusional expectations and poor life habits.

    1. This is exactly my thinking when hiring entry level positions.

    2. Me too. I’d rather hire a young person who entered the workforce voluntarily than an experienced asshole who is reentering only because his welfare ran out.

  8. "We know two things about human behavior: First, if people have more money, they work less," Hoover Institution economist John Cochrane observed last month. "Second, if the rewards of working are greater, people work more. Our current policies offer a double whammy: more money, but much of it will be taken away if one works."

    We also know that many people will vote for politicians that promise them free stuff, and consider democracy as a substitute for work.

    1. Yep. Democracies last as long as it takes people to realize they can vote for their own raises. Republics take a bit longer.

    2. ^THIS Exactly...

  9. Free markets are simply broken when it comes to workers. Teens and the usually call to increase immigration and worker visas - ie H1-B - are on order as you will see again. Wage charts over the last few 35 years shows rising wages are the last resort IF AT ALL.

    DECADEs of rampant corporate wage suppression which has killed the motivation to skill up and enter many occupations, the resulting pipelines of skilled workers are running dry. Its been decades since USA REWARDED hard work .. the CODDLED investor-class walks away with the vast share of wealth.

    1. At many companies, the money available for salaries has been eaten up by increased benefits and other employee payments that are mostly invisible to the employee. Just like with government, the benefit ratchet usually goes in one direction - more, more, more.

      1. And all those hidden benefits are mandated by government and demanded by unions, both of whom are the first to bitch and complain about the result.

        1. ...that they caused.....

    2. DECADEs of rampant corporate wage suppression

      You say this like wages are just supposed to go up. Rather than, as one might expect with increasing population and automation, producing more shit per person or at the same wages, making everything more affordable at the same wage.

    3. > CODDLED investor-class

      thank you for mentioning this. a lot of crypto-investors, NFT doofuses and others haunt the Reason dot com comments section, pretending like they offer value to anyone or generate anything fucking valuable.

      1. A lot of TDA-addled piles of lefty shit like this asshole show up from time to time.
        Fuck off and die, asshole.

    4. "Free markets are simply broken when it comes to workers..."

      You're a steaming pile of lying lefty shit.
      Fuck off and die, asshole.

    5. And where do you think "CODDLED investor-class" came from??? Or motivation to skill-up went....

      I'd say the Federal Reserve ('fiat' games), Commie-Education and Oppressive Employment Regulation where 100% responsible.

      And your explanation is Corporate Wage Suppression?? That doesn't even make sense.... If you don't like the wage there isn't a SINGLE FORCE making you be there. Go start a Corporation; Nothing is stopping you.... (oh; wait, except Oppressive Regulation).

      1. +1

        All these whinging crybabies that can't command a decent salary think running a business is all about squeezing work out of employees and keeping the fruit of their labor yet none of them ever try to run their own business.

        Mayhap they couldn't get beyond the first paragraph of the IRS paperwork to even get started on one.

  10. Interesting. Never thought about it but pre-pandemic the person at the drive thru was some spinster, and over the last year or two I've been seeing more teenagers.

    1. Oldsters will be taking these jobs instead of retiring.

      "Flipping burgers? Hell, I drove a truck for fifty years, I can flip burgers standing on my head!"

      1. Maybe you can flip burgers standing on your head, but you're going to be surrounded by idiots that make the Reason trolls look intelligent and thoughtful.

        1. This is true. I used to flip burger, pour the drinks, and expedite orders. Being on the consumer side they are idiots. I'm the only person in the joint, five people working behind the counter, and it still takes me fifteen minutes to get my order.


    So James Comey’s daughter who was also involved in lost video of Epstein in jail is prosecuting Ghislaine Maxwell’s case where the Judge was an Obama appointee and was just nominated to a court right under SCOTUS by Biden after Schumer backed her. No funny business here! [Link]

  12. cleaning toilets, stocking shelves, and bagging groceries at a local supermarket.

    I hope he's not doing it in that order.

  13. Except now they just want to play video games and trade crypto and meme stocks.

    And get off my lawn.

  14. How many American teens are actually employable?

    1. HAHAHAHA aJoker...

  15. For the longest time, college grads acted like they didn't want to work. During this pandemic they all dropped out and refused to go back to work. Must be nice being the kid of an affluent coastal liberal elite.

    So the fast food places around me are staffed by older immigrants. No one younger than thirty. It's crazy.

    What scares the shit out of me is that the screaming for more and more minimum wage hikes comes at the same time the screaming has started for a basic minimum income. We get both and we're screwed. I know owners of some small shops who are barely keeping it together with help from their kids and nephews and nieces, but then 'tards with degrees saying that they need to pay more. THEY'RE ALREADY PAYING WELL OVER THE MINIMUM YOU FUCKS DEMANDED!

    Twenty bucks an hour. Get that up to twenty five (just a couple of years down the road) and I'll take a second part time job for the extra income. Kids (including college educated kids) can't compete with us boomers with experience. We'll soon see all the stores staffed by retirees and kids complaining that there are no jobs for them. It's what happens when you let the kids run everything.

    No get off my lawn!

    1. They also seem to think that all workers take public transportation, and no one (customers or workers alike) needs a parking spot or desires a single family home.

      1. Desire the single family home all you want, but living in the Peninsula, there just ain't no more room for houses with front and back lawns that are affordable to anyone less than the upper classes. People demanding wages to buy/rent a single family house need to stop bogarting whatever it is they're smoking. Time to settle for an apartment.

        1. I definitely want to share a party wall agreement or Condo association with the feds or mandatory section 8.

        2. Now I get why Sevo trolls you. You’re too stupid to live anywhere but California

          1. The reason Brandyshit gets called on his constant bullshit is his self-righteous claim of political purity and his adolescent focus on personality; he's not about to tolerate Trump, since Trump isn't an L party member and poor little Brandyshit wants a daddy-figure in the office of POTUS and to put him to bed each night.
            Fuck him, sarc and the rest of the ignoramuses who can't see any difference between the NSDAP and the SPD (with Tony's dick).

  16. To be fair, it's not just the kids. Unions doing the same thing. Unions bosses are safe, the union workers get the shaft, but they've been brainwashed into thinking they have to do what union bosses tell them to.

    The time for unions is past, but like a decapitated dinosaur, it takes a while for the tail to get the message.

    Now get off my lawn!

  17. if they can't conduct their work without stupid phones in their hands they're useless anyway.

  18. On an unrelated note: Imagine if Wapo, NYT or CNN had covered Rittenhouse the same way they’ve been covering the Waukesea Massacre. Gun fires in self defense after being chased…Rifle claims self defense from aggressive mob… Video shows peaceful hunting rifle scrubbing graffiti and putting out fires before mob attacks. We can dream I suppose.

  19. I think the worker shortage has shown that the argument against minimum wage laws are pretty bogus

    Somehow the Waltons would go broke if they paid employees $15 an hour instead of $11. But now suddenly Walmart can pay $17 an hour and the Waltons aren't suffering

    Prices have gone up, yes, but not 50%

    1. The argument isn't about the Waltons going broke. It is about them employeeing fewer people. And, yes, the economy is employeeing many fewer people than it did before the pandemic.

    2. of course, its Fundamental Marxism.

    3. "I think the worker shortage has shown that the argument against minimum wage laws are pretty bogus"

      I think you need to take a course in "logic"; you are seemingly lacking in that knowledge.

  20. One cause not mentioned enough for the worker shortage is demographics. Experts keep saying that everyone will have to work longer but baby boomers seem to keep retiring in their early 60's like the generation before them. This has long been predicted but the pandemic probably sped up retirement for a lot of people who knew they were among the most vulnerable to Covid and didn't trust their employers to take any precautions. The only solutions are increased immigration (hopefully targeted) or increased automation, likely both.

  21. This is mostly a fact-adjacent article (keep citing that one Mercatus paper and I'll notice), but there is a fundamental disconnect between the goals of the libertarian movement and its rhetoric.

    The goals of course involve maximizing profits for certain specific sociopathic corporate interests. The rhetoric is about freedom.

    Of course work is the opposite of freedom, and requiring children to work because it's "good for them" is social engineering.

    When the offspring of aristocrats and zillionaires work at Taco Bell for the benefits to their soul, I'll start listening to this crap.

    1. This steaming pile of lefty shit epitomizes Bonhoeffer's contention that stupidity is more dangerous that evil:
      sarc, jeff, Mike and the lot are run of-of-the-mill stupid; the ones you simply ignore.
      Shitstain here is stupid to the level that you'd walk out the door when he walks in.

    2. When corporate maximizes profits for certain specific sociopathic interests all profits come from individuals conscious choice.

      When the Nazi-Regime (GOV) maximizes profits for certain specific coporate sociopathic interests (?Green-Energy?) all profits come from the threats of Gov-Guns.

      Seems your theology there is nothing but buyers remorse for your obsessive push for more National Socialism while pure ignorance takes over to the fact National Socialism is the buyers remorse itself.

  22. The problem with minimum wage is that it leaves too many workers depending on food stamps or other services provided by tax money - MY tax money.

    Do not tell me how wonderful the system is. As far as I can tell the system works because you are sticking other people with the bill

    Any system - no matter how stupid - will work as long as someone else gets the bill.

    As the person who is being stuck I have the right to say that the system sucks.

    1. "The problem with minimum wage is that it leaves too many workers depending on food stamps or other services provided by tax money - MY tax money..."

      You're full of shit.

    2. "The problem with minimum wage is that it leaves too many workers depending on food stamps or other services provided by tax money - MY tax money."

      Youre a poor Liar. Thats an old self pity meme but a lie nonetheless.

      YOU pay Billions in taxes? YOU personally pay their welfare?

      Liar, taxes dont come anywhere NEAR paying Gummit Debt, most of which is welfare of one kind or another, personal, corporate, Ibama- Biden Pallets of Cash to Muslim Terrorists...

      Stop your damned delusional Gas Lighting.

      1. It does not matter how much or how little I pay of the total. Still it comes out of my pocket to supplement wages of businesses I 1) quite often I do not shop and 2) where I do not own stock. That is places where I have no reason to send money to nor inclination.

        It does not matter if it is a penny It was a penny I did NOT want to spend that way. It is MY money.

        I feel the same way if I was asked to subsidize any other business cost. Why should I pay someone else's electric bill, or rent, or gas mileage unless I CHOOSE to?

        Last time I checked the idea was that MY money was MY money.

        1. You supplement wages because leftards used Gov-Guns and FORCED you to. End of story. You're trying to justify Nazism because of the curse of Nazism. You're chasing your tail.

  23. And to think once upon a time; People just agreed to exchange labor for money WITHOUT the Gov-Guns... The USA is sooooooooo off track; it's not even funny.

  24. Look at who has the most wealth in the country and anybody can see working for an employer is a sucker, Better to build real wealth even as a mediocre investor since the hard work route is impoverishing.

    The pandemic has brought an Antiwork realization and workers are finally shrugging with many starting their own business.

    1. Umm, starting your own business involves "hard work" and it is only impoverishing if you invest capital and do not produce a return.

      Any person in the "antiwork" mindset is not an entrepreneur by definition.

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  26. I support a $15 min wage for adults, but I would be OK with something lower ($10 or $12) for 16-17 year olds. Does that solve the problem?

    1. Who the F#@%$! do you think you are to tell me with Gov-Gun threats what WAGE my labor has to make?????????

      Tyranny runs wild.

  27. "I think the worker shortage has shown that the argument against minimum wage laws are pretty bogus"

    I think you need to take a course in "logic"; you are seemingly lacking in that knowledge.

  28. In the northeast, the defacto minimum wage is about $15, at least where I live. I hire teenage kids to do work around our non-working farm, stacking wood, yard work, weedeating, etc. $15 is what I had to pay to interest anyone in working. I think our Walmart is paying $17 or more to start and the local CVS warehouse is paying around $20.
    20 years ago, we could get teenagers for about $6 or $7.

  29. The "free money" ended months ago and many of the poorest people didn't qualify and had to continue working. Restaurant workers either decided to get different training or found jobs in other industries. Why would you want to work for "tips" at a restaurant when income will be down as many people still aren't comfortable eating out, but you still having higher risk of covid and asshole customers that treat you like shit. So restaurants might have to rethink compensation to make that job appealing again.

    There are many women that want to work, but if schools aren't fully open or child care and after school activities arent an option, many women had no choice but to quit their job and take care of their children.

    Some teenagers may have wanted to work and could not get hired, but most teens chose Summer Camps and other academic or athletic enrichment over paid work.

    The current minimum wage has little to do with it. In the expensive parts of the country pay exceeds the minimum wage because of the high cost of living.

    Finally there could be a "training wage" for full time students to ensure people can get some work experience at a young age.

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