April ended with the failure of Democrats to pass legislation that would have eventually raised the Federal minimum wage to 15 dollars per hour. Although Democrats pledged to continue their fight for raising the minimum wage, it is a battle that cannot be won. More importantly, there are costs to simply raising minimum wage without retooling the underlying mechanisms of our economy.
The reason our economy has a poverty and wealth distribution problem is that the mechanisms of our economy are not driving capital into enough businesses and industries that could provide better wages while workers do not have enough leverage to negotiate better incomes when employers can provide better wages. Focusing simply on raising the minimum wage only squeezes the Middle Class as their incomes are also stagnating while accelerated inflation will only undermine any benefit derived from raising the minimum wage. Quite frankly, raising the minimum wage is not enough.
We need to focus on improving “Free Trade” agreements by narrowing their scope to maximize the benefits for American consumers and minimize the costs for American workers; just as other countries need to do the same for themselves. We also need to rework our tax system, so it does not favor the wealthiest Americans and companies or distorts our economy as the capital gains tax deduction likely does. We also need healthier regulations that are most effective and less cumbersome while we also need to strengthen the social safety net by turning it into a support network for personal and economic development.
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