Free Minds & Free Markets

The Government's War on Interns

Regulations are protecting interns right out of the job market

It's intern season, but many aspiring students aren't able to get internships—because a lot of them are illegal. Federal law restricts companies from hiring unpaid interns if they're performing actual useful duties, which means it's harder for workers to get a foot in the door. In the latest Mostly Weekly Andrew Heaton proposes that consenting adults should be able to do whatever they want with and to each other, including unpaid internships. Legislation meant to stamp out exploitation is really just gutting opportunities because they fall short of a perceived ideal.

Hosted by Andrew Heaton.

Written by Sarah Rose Siskind with writing assistance from Andrew Heaton and David Fried.

Edited by Austin Bragg and Sarah Rose Siskind.

Produced by Meredith and Austin Bragg.

Theme Song: Frozen by Surfer Blood.

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  • Scarecrow Repair & Chippering||

    You mean Congress, I reckon.

  • Rich||

    Q: Why don't congressmen use bookmarks?

    A: The just bend the pages down in the corners.

  • Eman||

    That took me a second, but I get it!

  • BYODB||

    Every intern that goes unpaid is yet another young person who is selfishly insisting that they don't want to carry the Baby Boomers healthcare upon their shoulders. Or, in other words, every unpaid intern is literally killing people.


  • ||

    Or, in other words, every unpaid intern is literally killing people.

    Right. Interns freely interring people at internment camps. Is this not the English language?

  • trudybeauty||

    Yeah, and every person who pays for automobile insurance is carrying all those bad, old, and unlicensed drivers.
    Same goes for house insurance.

  • Crusty Juggler - Double Great||

    One more button and we'll get a nipple slip.

    Give the people what they want, Heaton.

  • sarcasmic||

    Unpaid internships aren't fair because only richest 1% can afford to take them. The other 99% needs to actually earn money over the summer to pay their bills because they don't rich mommy and daddy's credit card. So these internships are really a handout to the super rich. As usual, libertarians apologize for the rich. Because the rich. Rich. And rich.

  • Scarecrow Repair & Chippering||

    +10000000000 Little Richie Rich the Rich Kid

  • Pro Libertate||

    I assume that the DOL war on interns will end soon. I can't see this administration continuing this absurd trend.

  • Elias Fakaname||

    Interns are a great receptacle for a congressmana's lust.

  • Robert||

    Of course not. Wasn't Trump the m.c. of The Apprentice?

  • Crusty Juggler - Double Great||

    Pros: Sweet accents and sweet choice of Scotch.

    Cons: Clint - that guy's a dick.

  • AD-RtR/OS!||

    I guess it takes a long time to actually end slavery.

  • Daily Beatings||

    Why can't Andrew get a his own cable show? He was the only bright spot on the Independents.

  • bobdylan||

    every unpaid intern is literally killing people
    javascript obfuscator

  • Glide||

    I don't like unpaid internships. I think you get what you pay for, and that by offering one you're preemptively weeding out some pretty good workers based on whether they can afford to earn no money for a summer/semester.

    However, it's still none of the government's business to regulate employment contracts between two consenting people or groups.

  • trudybeauty||

    Yeah, we should go all the way back to serfdom. That way government is truly out of the business of regulating employment contracts between two consenting people or groups.

  • sharmota4zeb||

    Exchanging money changes how Americans view a relationship very much. It's technically legal to run a brothel if all the workers there are unpaid interns over the age of 18 that have no possibility of becoming paid employees.

  • BlueStarDragon||

    Makes me wonder when the government is going to attack martial arts schools, Where you pay to teach your instructors students how to punch and kick. A normal way that American martial arts Instructors gain both experience and knowledge to run a school.

  • Eman||

    Its incredibly irritating when being a legal employee is what stops me from getting hours I want. Like what do I have to do to get paid through the linen company or whatever?

  • trudybeauty||

    Ah, the usual data-free, context-free, history-free nonsense.

    An unpaid internship in any city in 'Murrkah requires the economic ability to pay for all your living expenses yourself.
    Now, let me think. Yes, the oligopoly does route most of these internship to their own spawn who are well-taken care of, living expense-wise.

    However, there are the few non-well-endowed members of 'Murrkah's youths that have a shot at these jobs but can't take them because.... ok, go on, I'll count to 5 to see if you can guess...

    Couldn't guess? Oh! Well, they can't afford to PAY FOR THE EXPENSES.

    And since I love hearing from "Libertarians" about the solutions to these problems... WHAT IS YOURS?

  • Roger Wilco||

    get a job?

  • Roger Wilco||

    "You're not my dad!"

    I was an intern that rotated semesters with another intern. One semester, the new intern coming in brought his dad on the first day of work.

  • swampwiz||

    I would have no problem with there being unpaid internships so long as there were Guaranteed Income so that folks wouldn't be forced into the nasty, brutish system of unpaid labor just to have a chance of getting paid work.


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