Thomas Sowell

 For example: "Working one's way up the ladder is becoming harder, not easier." Evidence? Wage rates for people in the bottom 20 percent have not risen much over the past 30 years.

 The fallacy here is that it is not the same people in the bottom 20 percent over the past 30 years. Most people in the bottom 20 percent do not stay there even one decade, much less three. Young, inexperienced beginners do not remain young or inexperienced or beginners their whole lives.

 Some people, of course, never learn -- and never rise. Creating entitlements for them reduces any need to learn. But that is the way BusinessWeek urges us to go.

 They want higher minimum wages imposed, despite evidence that minimum wage laws reduce employment. Why would anyone think that making labor more costly would not affect employment, when higher prices reduce the amount of anything else that is bought?

 BusinessWeek wants "better day-care options" -- "especially for single moms." In other words, unmarried girls should have babies and expect the taxpayers to pick up the tab for taking care of them. And if we subsidize such irresponsible decisions, will that not have the same effects as subsidizing other things?

 Another liberal notion promoted by BusinessWeek is making it "easier to form unions." Workers can get unionized right now just by voting for a union in a government-supervised election. How much easier should it be?

 The problem is not a difficulty in forming unions. What has happened is that workers themselves increasingly vote against unions because they have learned the hard way that unions cost jobs, even if BusinessWeek is unwilling to learn that lesson.

Thomas Sowell

Thomas Sowell is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institute and author of The Housing Boom and Bust.

Creators Syndicate