Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Labor Department Job Numbers Might As Well Come From A Lottery

Here is how the monthly employment figures should actually be done. 
“I’m Yolanda Vega. And June’s first number is 2. The next number is 8. The next number is 7…”
The Labor Department should get itself one of those Lotto cages with the white ping-pong balls inside. And then it should have Yolanda and her “draw team” colleagues pick the numbers randomly. 
That would be much more logical and cost efficient than how Labor — with its billion-dollar budget — now does its monthly employment survey. And it would probably produce a more accurate reading of what the economy.
Read more here:

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Obama’s Egregious Overtime Rules Attack Prosperity and Worker Rights

The Department of Labor’s new regulation regarding working hours ranks among the most outrageously destructive actions by the Obama administration in its two-term history. It is going to profoundly affect the lives of many millions of people, shattering dreams and smashing the human rights of workers to negotiate, produce, and achieve. 
By executive fiat, the Department has now said that time-and-a-half rules on worker pay apply to workers earning up to $47,476 per year (such specificity!) whereas they used to apply only up $23,660. The new rules apply to salaried as well as hourly workers. High-level executives (along with teachers and doctors) are exempt (how people will be classified is determined by a complicated test). 
An Obama administration spokesman said this is designed to address “both underpay and overwork.” Because a law alone cannot magically produce wealth, it will not address underpay. Employers do not have a secret closet stuffed with cash to which they have been denying workers access. Instead, workers will be cut back and/or reclassified by force of law. 
So yes, this edict will address overwork by forcing people to become poorer. This hits the white-collar job market hard and in ways that will upset the lives of millions of people. 
Want to work long hours to get ahead? Forget it. Your boss won’t let you for fear of violating the regulations. Your career opportunities are shut down. Or maybe you will get downgraded from salary to wages in order to make long hours possible. In either case, no accomplished American worker has had to account for his or her working hours for generations. It’s a freedom we enjoy as Americans. 
The National Retail Federation is right. These rules will affect every aspect of life for millions. It will destabilize family vacations because workers won’t be able to prepare by working extra. It will make salaried positions more elusive. It will thin the ranks of middle-level executives and impose strange record-keeping rules. It might result in millions of people taking a second job in order to pay the bills.

Saturday, April 30, 2016

The Cruelty and Carnage of the Minimum Wage: The Case of Tad

Via Foundation For Economic Education
"If your goal is to ruin the lives of young and marginalized population groups, raising the wage floor to $15 an hour is a good plan. Already, much of the current problem with youth unemployment is due to the high minimum wage increases we’ve seen over the last eight years. 
"After all, the original purpose of the minimum wage was to disemploy undesirables. Not having a job means not participating in the fullness of life. It’s a big deal. 
"A wage floor of any sort traps people in the economic basement. The higher the floor, the larger the basement. Today, millions are rattling around down there, unable to find their way out. Millions more will find themselves there once all this legislation goes through."
Article here:

Saturday, April 23, 2016

UC Berkeley Touts $15 Wage Law, Then Fires Hundreds After It Passes

Hundreds of employees at the University of California at Berkeley are getting schooled in basic economics, as the $15 minimum wage just cost them their jobs. Too bad liberal elites “fighting for $15” don’t get it.
A week after California Gov. Jerry Brown signed the state’s $15 minimum wage boost into law, UC Berkeley Chancellor Nicholas Dirks sent a memo to employees announcing that 500 jobs were getting cut.
Coincidence? Not really.
More to come in the private sector?  Absolutely.
Article here:

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

The Minimum Wage Makes Teens Unemployable, So Taxpayers Are Paying $5.5 Billion to Find Them Jobs | Foundation For Economic Education |

In February, the Obama administration proposed a "First Job" initiative. The main goal of the aptly titled initiative is to help unemployed young people obtain their first job by spending $5.5 billion on grants, training, and direct wages. Unfortunately – but unsurprisingly – the press release failed to acknowledge the most significant factor impeding employment in this age group: the minimum wage.
Everyone knows that a first job is a vital step in a young person’s development. Research has shown that work experience at a young age teaches positive work habits, time management, perseverance, and improves self-confidence. Increases in teenage employment also reduce the rate of violent crime. Yet despite these well-known benefits, the US maintains a minimum wage policy that makes it very difficult for all but the most productive teenagers to find a job.
When the minimum wage was discussed in the late 19th and early 20th century it was in the context of preventing the least skilled, most “undesirable” workers from finding a job, with the goal of eradicating the unemployable people. For the next 80-plus years it was common knowledge that a minimum wage would reduce employment among the least-skilled workers. The only debate was about whether such a reduction was desirable from society’s perspective, as many of the appalling eugenicists of the time contended.
As late as 1987, the New York Times editorial staff recommended a minimum wage of $0 because of its negative effects on employment. The Times argued that the minimum wage was an ineffective anti-poverty tool whose employment costs outweighed any benefits from higher wages.
Article here:

Monday, April 18, 2016

More Of The Same

"Now Ford is moving its engine and transmission plants to Mexico. This was decided before the presidential campaigns, although due to its timing it is more highly politicized.
“Today’s announcement…is a disappointment and very troubling,” UAW President Dennis Williams said in a statement. “For every investment in Mexico it means jobs that could have and should have been available right here in the USA.”
"The bottom line is the bottom line. Ford wants to make more profitable and affordable cars. Who can make that happen? UAW employees averaging about $60/hour in wages and benefits? Or Mexican employees averaging at about $8/hour? UAW President must be struggling with the math a little. It’s not job for job.
"It’s one thing to read about companies leaving the US. It’s another when companies KEEP leaving the US. People can point and scream at those corporations, calling them unpatriotic, but at the end of the day the United States has proven to be inhospitable to businesses. For that matter, given the growing rate of expatriation and citizenship renunciation year over year, it would appear that the United States is likewise proving to be inhospitable to the individual."
Article here:

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Who Are The Happiest People In The World?

March 20 is International Happiness Day, which means everyone will be talking about who the happiest people in the world are. Most will say citizens of Denmark or Switzerland are the happiest because of the famous World Happiness Report that the United Nations releases. Others, perhaps citing Gallup's new report on global emotions, will conclude that Latin Americans are the happiest people in the world. Who is right?
This answer depends on how you define happiness. If you think happiness is how you see your life or, in survey speak, how you rate your life today on a scale of zero to 10 (with zero being the worst possible life and 10 being the best possible life), then the Danes and Swiss are the happiest people in the world. If you think happiness is how you experience your life through laughing, smiling and enjoyment, then Latin Americans are the happiest.
If the difference is that simple, then why are there two measures in the first place? It's because the concepts measure two very different aspects of someone's life: how they see their life and how they live their life. For example, if you take two women in the U.S. -- one with a child and one without a child -- who rates her life better? Statistically, the woman with a child does. But which woman experiences more stress? Also the woman with the child. So, the woman with the child may see her life as being better than the woman without a child, but the woman with the child also lives with more stress.
The drivers of both elements are also very different. For example, the single biggest driver of life evaluation ratings is money. In fact, the more money you make, the higher you rate your life. But money doesn't have the same effect on how you live your life. For example, in the U.S., after reaching an annual income of $75,000, money makes almost no difference in how someone lives his or her life. Some of the biggest drivers of how you live your life include social support, generosity and freedom.
The article is here: