Unskilled Workers Should Be Paid Less: Egalitarian Fallacy

Unskilled Workers Should Be Paid Less: Egalitarian Fallacy

Former Ohio State Senator and Senior Fellow at “Race Power Policy Institute” Nina Turner claims that “unskilled labor” is simply a myth invented by the “ruling class” to justify paying employees less. 

She asserts that “all” labor requires skill and that everyone should receive a “livable wage”. This is a dangerous idea. All labor is not skillful. Picking fruit, flipping burgers, slamming parts on an assembly line… all important jobs to be sure, but almost anyone has the basic knowledge required to do these jobs upon existing in society, or could learn extremely quickly. 

These are just a few examples, and therein lies the fault in the egalitarian worldview which assumes that all people, and all professions are made equal; they are not. 

Humans are different, with different skills, natural attributes, and characteristics and levels of intelligence. Being able to pick fruit is not a rare skill, as we’ve established, a chimpanzee could be trained to do such a job. Rare skills are undoubtedly worth more than common ones. But the left does not see it this way. 

Jobs that require skills so common that anyone and everyone in society are capable of performing them should not be careers, and employers should not be required to pay people a “livable” wage. Instead they should be allowed to take the lowest bidder - via consensual employment - the same as any other job. 

Because the folks with rare skills bare more value in the jobs they perform they are able to demand higher pay, and the employer often won’t have a choice but to grant it. 

The rarer the skill, and the fewer people able to perform that service, the more value is held in someone capable of doing it and thus higher pay is justified for the employer. 

Instituting minimum pay for certain jobs or all jobs almost always disrupts the job market and drives prices up, causing those long term unskilled workers with common professions to be left worse off afterward than they were before while short term unskilled workers like highschool students may receive some short term benefits but are ultimately left in the same boat.