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Wage debate
by Joseph Branco


April 07, 2005

I have been doing some real research into the minimum wage debate, and found, like in most cases of hot debate, the basis for arguments on all sides are subject to several assumptions both correct and incorrect. After speaking with several professors of economics and business personally, I have concluded that I am both right and wrong. Certainly my value system and my idealistic view of American economics in this case are evident in my letters. I was happy to find that from an economic standpoint, my arguments are accurate; however those points are validated only in a system of capitalism in which perfect competition exists. Since perfect competition can never exist in any true market (it is used mostly as model to comprehend economic principles), my simplistic view of the minimum wage impact on American economics is just that: too simplistic. I will not bore you with the details of my other research, but I have decided that the minimum wage, even at the current level, is basically irrelevant and not worthy of much attention. The battle between making minimum wage a living wage and who defines living wage is another battle altogether - a battle I will not be a part of.

You see, unlike many of my very vocal challengers, I research for the truth - not just look for things to support my biased view. My arguments are substantiated in fact and economic reason, not simply emotion and anti-business rhetoric. I am happy to know that, though I am passionate about my view on American opportunity, business rights, and the advantage of capitalism over socialism, I cannot use my feelings to override the truth in regards to an economic impact of a concept like the minimum wage.

Keeping an open mind does not mean abandoning your principles. However, you cannot allow your principles to cloud reality, common sense, or the truth. I am still the same person with the same beliefs and the same missing soul. :) That was a joke.

I was warned not to write this letter because I was told that Sitnews readers would only view this as me wimping out and saying everyone else was correct. I decided that would not be the case. Sitnews readers understand that I can actually learn more about a topic I am arguing and that any truly wise person should be open minded. I very clearly disagree with most of my challengers and the tangents they have taken in this particular economic debate, especially the anti-business mentality so often expressed. But I am a man of honor who believes that to gain intelligence requires active participation. I kept waiting for someone to hand me free intelligence, but it turns out you have to go and get that on your own too! Thank you all for your views on this subject -believe it or not - your observations both accurate and inaccurate forced me to look closer at my particular stance on the issue. I don't know about you - but I'm ready to move onto the next issue. :) I love America!

Joseph Branco
Ketchikan, AK - USA



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