It looks like the Ontario government wants to start dictating prices in addition to dictating wages.
Ontario’s Minister of Labour Kevin Flynn has an ‘interesting’ suggestion for Ontario businesses in the wake of the minimum wage increase.
As noted by BNN, despite research showing the problems price increases can cause for businesses, “Ontario Labour Minister Kevin Flynn seemed to be nudging businesses to at least consider price increases.
He said Monday that companies struggling to cope with the minimum wage legislation have many ways to handle cost constraints and “to pretend that maybe pricing isn’t a part of that, I think it would be unfair. I think any business having to make decisions would take a look at, is my pricing fair. Is this something where I can make a profit, but make sure that the people that I’m paying, the people that I’m employing, aren’t living in poverty?”
This is total incompetence.
The government ignored warnings before they imposed the wage changes, and then – when all those warnings come true – they tell business to raise prices.
It shows a total lack of even basic economic understanding by the Ontario Liberals.
Everybody who works is both a worker and consumer. So wage hikes get cancelled out if prices rise dramatically.
Even worse, since many workers make just above the minimum wage, they get no benefit from the wage increase, but still get hit by the price increase.
As if that wasn’t bad enough, with projections that tens of thousands of jobs will be lost in Ontario due to the wage changes, when we combine that with higher prices we will likely end up seeing more poverty and joblessness in the province.
As you’re already realizing, an economy where the government controls wages and dictates pricing is socialism, and the government of Ontario is heading in that direction.
Incompetence can quickly turn into dangerous levels of government control, because every time the government messes up, they demand more power to fix the problem they caused – and then make things even worse.
There are ways to increase wages in a way that doesn’t destroy jobs, particularly by reducing regulations to make businesses more competitive, and keeping immigration at reasonable levels to protect the leverage of individual workers, relative to the labour demands of companies.
Of course, the government elites don’t care about helping workers. They want control above all else, and they have no interest in giving workers real power.
This combination of incompetence and growing government control is a serious problem for our economy and our society, and it is leading us down a dangerous path.