When Washington residents voted in 1998 to raise the state’s minimum wage and link it to the cost of living, opponents warned the measure would be a job-killer. The prediction hasn’t been borne out.
In the 15 years that followed, the state’s minimum wage climbed to $9.32 -- the highest in the country. Meanwhile job growth continued at an average 0.8 percent annual pace, 0.3 percentage point above the national rate. Payrolls at Washington’s restaurants and bars, portrayed as particularly vulnerable to higher wage costs, expanded by 21 percent. Poverty has trailed the U.S. level for at least seven years.
It didn’t take long after my departure from The Stranger for my former colleagues to start going McGinn all over Kshama Sawant in a half-hearted attempt to, I dunno, look all serious and independent at her expense? Or something.
Coincidence? Feel free to speculate all you want.
The post could use a thorough fisking, but suffice it to say that Dom’s thesis is silly. Refusing to answer a question is not the same thing as saying “no.” Besides, to imply that Sawant’s steadfast support for $15 now somehow equates to a refusal to compromise would be like saying that I oppose Obamacare because I passionately support a single-payer system. What we want in life and what we ultimately accept are often two different things. How we get there is the game that’s currently afoot, and by refusing to compromise early, Sawant is playing the game a helluva lot better than Democrats did on health care reform.
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