Free market wages

English: Monthly minimum wages in EU Member St...

English: Monthly minimum wages in EU Member States, Turkey and the USA in 2008, in national euros and purchasing power standards Français : Salaire minimum mensuel dans les Etats membres de l’UE, la Turquie et les Etats-Unis en 2008, en euro et en parités de pouvoir d’achat (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Some in Congress want to repeal the minimum wage and let wages be set by the market. That is a very bad idea. Additionally, Congress sets its own wages by law and they receive a generous package of benefits for very little work. They have the time to write books and engage in lucrative speaking engagements if they wish to supplement their taxpayer guaranteed wages. The rest of us struggle to pay our bills with full-time work if we can find it.

In the recent past, society decided the acceptable salary range for various jobs and professions, and regulations or other mechanisms enforced our collective judgment. With the movement to deregulation and market based wages, we have witnessed a growing disparity between what the lowest paid workers are paid and what CEOs pay themselves. Repealing the minimum wage will make the situation worse. Jack London documented in The People of the Abyss how free market wages lead to a downward spiral that ends in misery and an early death for many.