Fox News' Sandra Smith and "economist" Art Laffer had a little powwow about the minimum wage on Tuesday night so that everyone out there can feel unworthy of a living wage.
Yes, that's right. You students, you poor folks, you single moms are simply "not worth" the 15 dollar per hour wage. Let the robots rule, you knaves! Which is what Smith was arguing at the beginning of this clip when she outlined how McDonald's was using artificial intelligence and robots to take orders and getting them right 80 percent of the time! Pity the employee who maybe erred 2% -- those robots are coming for her.
"Yeah, for those people, Sandra, who are coming into the labor force brand fresh -- not old-timers who’ve been around for awhile – the poor, the minorities, the disenfranchised, those with less education, young people who haven’t had the job experience. These people aren’t worth $15 an hour in most cases," Art Laffer the "economist" agreed.
I would very much like him to explain how the poor, the minorities, those with less education and young people are: a) unworthy of a living wage; and b) somehow different from anyone else taking orders at a Mickey D's. Who does he think works at these places? Ivy Leaguers with some time to spare on the weekends?
Is a job at McD's for the rich, white, experienced man?
But wait, there's more!
"And so therefore when you have a $15 an hour minimum wage, they don’t get that first job, they don’t get requisite the skills to earn above the minimum wage," Laffer explained. "And after a few years they become unemployable. And after becoming unemployable, they become hostile, and that what you’ll find is happening is this technology has created an underclass of people who are really just bid out of the labor market and will remain out of the labor market for most of their lives."
So...let me get this right. McD's will invest millions into AI and robots for order taking in order to avoid paying those "worthless" (his words, not mine) people $15 per hour. But if they were able to pay those same people $7.25 per hour -- the minimum wage which is not anywhere close to a living wage -- they wouldn't make that investment?
Bull. Of course they would, because really, they want fewer workers, not cheaper ones.
Fox News is never afraid to amplify the "poors are worthless drains on society" theme, so let's not pretend anyone gives a damn about automating jobs at McDonald's.