(This article originally appeared on The Minuteman Facebook page on January 12, 2017.)
Some politicians just cannot seem to resist the urge to use the hand of government to dictate to private businesses what they can and cannot do. A current example of this is embodied in North Dakota’s House Bill No. 1263, which has been submitted to committee by former Democratic Gubernatorial candidate Marvin Nelson and proposes to raise the state’s minimum wage from $7.25/hr. to $9.25/hr.
While on the surface, this sounds benevolent and kind, we must not forget that not only is this not necessary, it is ill-advised. If we — as citizens — do not have the right to tell our neighbor how much he will pay us or others to work for him, then how can we rightfully empower the government to do such a thing? In a Constitutional government where we delegate powers to the government, we shouldn’t. Why? Because we cannot delegate a power which we do not have ourselves. Or at least we shouldn’t.
Most would never dream of supporting price fixing by the government. Suppose we thought the prices just weren’t right at the local grocery store. Would we implore the government to change those prices to something we deemed more “fair”? Most people would not demand such a thing. So, why would we support the same type of thing when it comes to wages?
Does the increase in wages not cause increased expenses for the employer, which they often pass on to the consumer? Thus resulting in higher prices for all of us.
Instead of raising the minimum wage, we should be eliminating it. No person or legislature should be telling private businesses what they will and will not pay to their employers. This is something the Free Market is more than qualified to resolve.
Hopefully the legislature will do the right thing and kill this bill.