…in exactly the same was as gun control addresses crime.
Not at all, but for the sinecure-mongering and virtue-trumpeting:
The study, led by the University of California, Irvine economist David Neumark and published by the business-backed Employment Policies Institute, finds that, over the course of decades, higher minimum wages don’t reduce poverty in disadvantaged neighborhoods. Rather, the analysis finds that a $1 increase in the minimum wage raises poverty rates and government dependency by about 3 percent.
The report also finds evidence that cash welfare fails to lower poverty.
To be fair, none of them were intended to do any such thing.
If you look at the effects of minimum wage hikes on communities of color and low income, you’d almost think they were intended to be racist.
Take, for instance, the minimum wage. The founding fathers of progressivism at the University of Wisconsin, but also such figures as Sidney Webb, saw the discriminatory aspects of the minimum wage as among its chief selling points. “Of all ways of dealing with these unfortunate parasites,” Webb said of the “unemployables,” “the most ruinous to the community is to allow them unrestrainedly to compete as wage earners.” E. A. Ross, the extremely influential progressive intellectual and author of the “race suicide” thesis (who was particularly bigoted against Chinese labor), explained the benefits of a minimum wage pithily: “The Coolie cannot outdo the American, but he can underlive him.” In other words, if you force employers to only pay a white man’s wages, he will only employ white men. Royal Meeker, a Princeton economist and adviser to Woodrow Wilson, explained: “Better that the state should support the inefficient wholly and prevent the multiplication of the breed than subsidize incompetence and unthrift, enabling them to bring forth more of their kind.”
Coates doesn’t mention the words “liberal” or “progressive” or “conservative. His indictment is aimed squarely at “America.” And as a collective matter, America surely deserves blame for the mistreatment of African Americans in the past. But it’s also worth noting that the more immediate authors of the “half-assed social contract” Coates rightly denounces are today counted as champions of the progressive movement.
As in all other things progressive – it’s better to appear to be doing good than to actually do good.