See a Problem, Solve a Problem

Category: Politics

I Said This From the Beginning

Reading Time: 3 minutes

As we approach the 1 year anniversary of the “2-week quarantine”, let’s talk about the pandemic. In March of 2020, we didn’t know what we were facing with COVID-19. As a result, our country shut down for 2 weeks to analyze and allow hospitals to prepare and not be overwhelmed. While we are a country of independent-minded people, the country, willingly or not, paused for what was supposed to be 2 weeks. During the lockdown, hospitals lost money and had to lay off staff which created a shortage when we needed them. Here we are a year later, with many states (mine included) still in a lockdown state resulting in economic and emotional depression.

Our country, though not perfect, is blessed to have been founded by individuals with great wisdom and insight to form a government with balanced power and anti-monarchical states. We are structured for balance within the federal government by three branches, and power is distributed to the states. These tiers of government, federal, state, and local, allow for the adoption of laws and policies uniquely beneficial to the regions they represent. What works in California may not work in Pennsylvania.

A $15 Minimum Wage is Short-sighted

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I can appreciate the spirit by which I believe the proposal for a $15/hour minimum wage is being made; however, I think it’s short-sighted. Increasing someone’s annual wages to be over $30,000 when they have a family with kids to support is a noble idea, but it’s missing the whole context of our economic system. Some may suggest that it’s the greed of a business owner that would put someone in opposition to this increase, but I would argue that keeping minimum wage reasonable helps all employees. I would not consider a flat $15/hour minimum wage across the country as appropriate for every location and industry.

Seasonal Work

Part-time jobs that are seasonal and require limited skill are excellent for high-schoolers or college kids looking to fill a gap or start earning money. These part-time jobs help a business fill the gap to support their business’s growth and provide more opportunities to hire full-time employees due to increased revenue. If a company had to increase their hourly rate for these seasonal workers, they would have to cut back on paying their full-time workers to make up the difference. The other option is to continue paying their full-time workers the same rate while increasing their seasonal workers’ pay. These solutions could result in closing the business, and now nobody has a job. By the government intervening to “help” one person, they potentially put everyone out of work (including the person they are trying to help).

Back to Work – Job Guarantee

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In a recent Gallup poll, 93% of Americans said they favor a national initiative that creates paid work and job training opportunities as a component of COVID-19 economic recovery efforts.

This past year has been devastating for many American businesses and families financially. With government-mandated lockdowns, unemployment has risen as businesses reduce their labor force or close completely. We can argue on whether or not the lockdown mandates were necessary, but no matter which side of the argument you are on, it doesn’t change the fact that the lockdowns contributed to the current economic crisis we are facing in America.

Last week the NY Times wrote an article titled, “Should the Fed Guarantee You a Job?”. This isn’t the first time this idea has been proposed, but it is becoming highlighted due to the mass amounts of jobs lost from the pandemic. The current proposal is that the federal government would provide tax-payer funded training for low-income or unemployed households. At the end of the training, participants would be guaranteed government jobs.

Our Next Governor

Sticky post
Reading Time: 4 minutes

Regardless of political affiliation, I think we can all agree the next governor of Pennsylvania has some work to do to restore our Commonwealth to its economic potential. Whether you think it was caused by the pandemic, poor leadership, or a combination of the two, arguing about why we are here doesn’t change the fact that we are here, and that changes are necessary for long-term sustainability and growth.

While we tend to follow the people who are good at getting our emotions stirred up, this type of person, in my opinion, is not who would be best as our next governor. Our next governor needs to be someone who provides stable leadership with humility and integrity, speaks truth graciously, and isn’t motivated by the position of power. They need to be willing to listen to Pennsylvanians all across the state and make difficult decisions that are for the betterment of the Commonwealth, not necessarily their political career.

See a Problem, Solve a Problem | © 2021 Bradley Halladay