Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Our Own Third World District

The DC city government just passed a law putting the minimum wage at $12.50 an hour for “big-box” stores. The city already has a high youth unemployment level. It has many underemployed adults. The level of unemployment is going to get worse. The Voice of Reason blog noted that someone in the city government said that the businesses needed them more than they need the businesses. Fantasy Island. WalMart immediately announced that it will not build three new stores. It may close the three already doing business.

I don’t know who else would be included in the “big box” designation, but there are a lot of stores who would be similar. Nor do I know if there is a president for such a special category. Hmmmm, I also don’t know if other retailers realize how anti-business the government in DC is. I jokingly call it a third-world country. That is the level of its thinking. Its only attraction is the Federal Government, which should give you a clue about it. What is sort of funny is that even the Federal Government is seeing a steady slip of jobs out of the city as agencies move. At times, it has been a lovely city. At times it has burned. It probably will again considering how poorly its economy will do.


  1. Wal-Mart's potential withdrawal from the District of Columbia will be even easier to achieve than this report lets on. Wal-Mart is far into the process of building its first group of stores in D.C., but not one has opened its doors. As stated above, it now wants to scuttle its plans for those at locations not yet approved.

    If DC council members think they are doing favors for DC's unemployed, that too is "Fantasy Island." Were Wal-Mart and the other 80,000-square-foot stores (Macy's is included in that) to operate with a $12.50 minimum wage, they would hire the experienced, currently-employed workers who would flock to fill out applications from a few miles away in the neighboring states of Maryland and Virginia, where the minimum wage of $7.25 didn't dissuade them from working for 42% less money.

    (I write this message as a D.C. resident.)

  2. Just to make sure my main point wasn't lost:

    What we have here is posturing by politicians. They say they are standing up for the poor, and they are either blind to -- or think their constituents won't notice that -- employers (potential or actual) will refuse to be treated as milch-cows, or that the flow of employment will shift to the best qualified rather than the politicians' choice of riff-raff.

    D.C. a "third-world country"? If so, it should recognize that it has a free-flowing border and neighbors too nearby for D.C. to rely on legislation that would depend on the fiefdom being insulated.