Chick-fil-A gives the left the ultimate smack-down, on wages
Chick-fil-A, the Christian-owned business assaulted and assailed and pariah-cized by the rabid left based on its owners' commitment to family values, has destroyed one of the left's most cherished myths. Instead of paying its workers minimum wage, as all evil businesses, especially Christian ones, supposedly do, it's paying its workers a premium, giving them more than a little extra in their paychecks in a stunning rebuke to left-wing tropes about worker solidarity and the need for unions.
John Tamny at RealClearMarkets has the scoop on this:
That [Chick-fil-A owner Eric] Mason is raising worker pay well beyond California's minimum wage is a reminder that pundits on the left are flying blind when they emote about stagnant wages. They could learn a lot from Mason. Mason sees very clearly what they don't: low-wage workers are incredibly expensive.
They are because they're not very productive. As is frequently said, you get what you pay for. Low-wage workers don't need to perform very well simply because they're not being compensated for it. Mason wants his business to boom, which means he wants his employees to feel well rewarded. Quoted in the Washington Post about his decision to boost employee compensation, Mason said "[W]hat that [pay well above the minimum wage] does for the business is provide consistency, someone that has relationships with our guests, and it's going to be building a long-term culture."
No wonder the place is so clean and friendly, the food is prepared so thoughtfully, and the staff are so nice. (Seriously, have you tried one of those chicken salads? Every leaf perfect, every veggie at peak freshness, no stems or cores. The extra dollar or so you pay is utterly worth it, because you are not spending your time sorting out leaves before you eat, and the thing tastes amazing.)
How this busts the lefty myth that only the left stands for worker values, and only communism, single-payer, universal guaranteed wages, and big labor unions are the guarantors of worker well-being.
No, they aren't. The Chick-fil-A guy understands that low-wage workers are expensive, as Tamny notes, and retaining and keeping workers means paying them more. Chick-fil-A's wage policy ensures that it gets the pick of the worker pool while its low-paying competitors go downhill with the weakest, least worthy workers, in a shrinking labor market with something like 4% unemployment in the Trump economy.
As for the workers, the higher paychecks pretty well slay the left with all its false promises of caring about workers. A higher paycheck means a lot more to workers than Big Labor's claims on representing the interests of workers as it finances left-wing politicians with their dues, or those Democrats' welfare handouts in their continuous dependency "program" offerings. The higher paychecks for the workers simply mean freedom – the freedom to go out and buy whatever you want instead of waiting for Democrats to dole it out to you, if and only if they think it's good for you, and the freedom to have your pick of jobs, not just the lonely one you can get and supposedly have to feel grateful for. Freedom of choice to spend, freedom of choice of where to work – that is worker freedom no leftist with all his smorgasbord of offerings can top.
The Chick-fil-A response is sui generis, but it's also a corollary of the booming Trump economy, the likes of which America has not seen since the Reagan era.
The left has already lost the Midwest, due to Hillary Clinton's still sniveling disdain for Midwesterners. Now it's lost a bigger share of the worker base with this Chick-fil-A example, which, as Tamny notes in his piece, is actually being copied elsewhere, at plumbing businesses and the like.
What is the left going to offer workers now? Weak foreign policy and apology tours? It doesn't seem to have anything.
Leave it to Chick-fil-A to slay the left, because it has delivered a knight's blow. Let's see how creative leftists can get in their inevitable criticism of this one.