Low pay and welfare

The American consumer campaigner Ralph Nader believe that there are issues that can unite different people against the state big business alliance. He believes that low pay is such issue. One might think that state intervention to deal with low pay might be an issue that free market people would reject. But in our present situation with unequal power relations it is an issue that should unite both left and right.

The left might reject low pay because of issues of social justice. But low pay means that the low paid employees relay on the state for welfare to live. That means that extra taxes are needed to subsidise some employers. For the state to interfere with the market to to insure that employers pay employees below the survival rates. In the medium term other solutions might be needed to address this issue. In the short term min wage rate laws and other workers rights measures are needed to make work pay. Making work pay reduces the welfare bill and their could be room for tax cuts as well.

 

John O Brien

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Author: irishfabian

I am a member of the Irish Labour Party in Cork East.

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