Morning in Arizona

Arizona: Open for Business

Click on the Title to read the full post.

AP Writes Over 1300 Words on the Loss Of Summer Jobs for Teens, Never Mentions Minimum Wage

Posted by on | June 25, 2017 | Comments Off

If one is curious why the public is economically illiterate, look no further than our media.  The AP’s Paul Wiseman managed to write 1300 words on the loss of teenage summer jobs, and even lists a series of what he considers to be the causes, without ever once mentioning the minimum wage or the substantial restrictions on teen employment in place in many states.  I do not know Paul Wiseman and so I will not guess at his motivations – whether ignorance or intentional obfuscation – but it is impossible to believe that this trend isn’t in part due to the minimum wage.  As I wrote in the comments on the AZ Republic:

How is it possible to write over 1300 words on the disapearance of teenage summer jobs without once mentioning the minimum wage?

Two of the most substantial criticisms of the minimum wage are 1. it prices low-skilled workers out of the market (and there is no one more unskilled than an inexperienced teenager) and 2. it put 100% emphasis on pay as the only reward for work, while giving no credit for things like gaining valuable experience and skills. We clearly see both at work here, and it is likely no coincidence that we are seeing this article in the same year minimum wages went up by 25% in AZ, as they have in many other states.

By the way, in addition to the minimum wage, AZ (as has many other states) has established all sorts of laws to “protect” underrage workers by adding all sorts of special work rules and tracking requirements. In our business, which is a summer recreation business, we used to hire a lot of teenagers. Now we have a policy banning the hiring of them — they are too expensive, they create too much liability, and the rules for their employment are too restrictive.

Without evidence, he treats it entirely as a supply problem, ie that teens are busy and are not looking for work. But the data do not support this.  The teen unemployment rate, defined as employment by teens actively looking for work, is up.  The workforce participation rate for teens is down, but the author has nothing but anecdotal evidence that this is a supply rather than a demand issue.  It could be because teens are busier or buried in their cell phones or whatever or it could be because they have given up looking for work.

 AP Writes Over 1300 Words on the Loss Of Summer Jobs for Teens, Never Mentions Minimum Wage  AP Writes Over 1300 Words on the Loss Of Summer Jobs for Teens, Never Mentions Minimum Wage  AP Writes Over 1300 Words on the Loss Of Summer Jobs for Teens, Never Mentions Minimum Wage

 AP Writes Over 1300 Words on the Loss Of Summer Jobs for Teens, Never Mentions Minimum Wage

share save 171 16 AP Writes Over 1300 Words on the Loss Of Summer Jobs for Teens, Never Mentions Minimum Wage

Comments

Comments are closed.