You can't get any more liberal than Washington, DC and you can't get any more seriously stupid than their city council when it voted to require big box retailers whose retail space takes up more than 75,000 square feet in the District or has sales of more than $1 billion per year to pay a minimum "living wage" of $12.50 per hour. DC already has a city minimum wage at $8.25 an hour which is $1 higher than the federal minimum wage and this move to extort money from big retailers would raise their minimum wage by more than 50%.
Not only is this move blatantly unconstitutional by singling out a specific business and making them pay a wage 50% higher than anyone else, it shows how little liberals and especially the DC city council understands about economics. What liberals don't understand is that there is nothing wrong with having an entry level job such as stocking shelves at a retailer like Walmart, but jobs like this are not meant to be a career. They are either meant again, as entry level positions or for someone to work part time and fill in extra money they may need to make ends meet. Also, no one is forced to work at Walmart. If you don't like what Walmart pays, then go somewhere that will pay you more, or acquire the skills necessary to move up past an entry level position.
A quick lesson for liberals on the economic impact of increasing a minimum wage by more than 50% is that it will not be taken off the top of Walmart's profits. If you live in DC and shop at Walmart for toilet paper, Corn Flakes, a case of beer and your smokes, get prepared to be paying about 20% more for them if Walmart were to stay. But they aren't staying. They've decided to stop construction on at least 3 of their stores they were building and are considering abandoning plans for 3 additional stores in the area.
But undaunted by Walmart's decision, the intellectual midgets on the DC City Council went ahead with their jobs killing minimum wage extortion anyway and passed the legislation that still has to be signed by the Mayor of DC, Vincent C. Gray. Just to give you an indication of the mentality were dealing with here, the crack smoking former Mayor of DC, Marion Berry said, “I don’t believe Wal-Mart at this point, that they’re gonna’ leave the District, that’s a stickup. And we’re not gonna’ be stuck up.” I don't get it, non-economist Marion Berry votes to make Walmart increase their wages by 50% and then has the audacity to say what Walmart is doing is a "stick up." Someone call the mental institution, one of their patients escaped.
And then we have another unfit for public service winner, Councilmember Vincent Orange who said of the retail giant, “You’re not gonna’ put a gun to my head” and he later added that if Wal-Mart wants to leave the District of Columbia, “the city could put a sound stage or amusement park in its place.” Maybe professor Orange could tell us how much revenue and jobs that would generate compared to a FREAKING Walmart! Really, these people are city council members? Maybe the city should put in a treatment center for liberal politicians instead.
Hopefully, the mayor of Washington DC will have some sense and not sign a bill that will cause Walmart take thousands of jobs away from an economically depressed area that badly needs them.
Watch the video below to see what columnist Charles Krauthammer has to say about this legislation by the DC City Council: