"Many men," The New York Times reports today, "have decided that low-wage work will not improve their lives, in part because deep changes in American society have made it easier for them to live without working."
And it is true, the percentage of working age men (aged 25 to 54) not working has tripled since the 1960s. The Times then goes on to identify "the availability of disability benefits," the decline of marriage, and "the rise of the internet" as the cause of these "deep changes." No mention is made, however, of how Obama's biggest accomplishment, Obamacare, and the rest of his existing agenda, increasing the minimum wage and giving amnesty to millions of illegal immigrants, will only make these "deep changes" far far worse.
Obamacare's Anti-Work Incentives
In February 2014, The Congressional Budget Office released an updated score of Obamacare that found the law would decrease "the number of full-time-equivalent workers of about 2.0 million in 2017, rising to about 2.5 million in 2024." Republicans immediately jumped on the report, claiming that Obamacare would kill 2.5 million jobs. But the CBO then released a document saying that is not quite right.
America will lose 2.5 million full-time-equivalent workers, the CBO explained, "almost entirely because workers will choose to supply less labor" (emphasis added). "The reason for the reduction in the supply of labor," the CBO continued, "is that the provisions of the ACA reduce the incentive to work for certain subsets of the population."
In other words, Obamacare created "deep changes in American society" that made it easier for Americans "to live without working."
Raising the Minimum Wage
Obama wants to raise the federal minimum wage from $7.25 to $10.10 an hour, which sounds like it should cause more Americans to work, right? Wrong. A new study comparing states that raised their minimum wage to states that didn't, found that these minimum wage increases killed 1.4 million jobs.
The study concluded that raising the minimum wage "had significant, negative effects on the employment and income growth of targeted workers." Not only did minimum wage hikes cost lower-skilled workers jobs, but some lost pay as employers switched over to internship programs, and others lost future wage growth as they lost work experience.
Amnesty for Millions of Illegal Immigrants
Obama has already granted executive amnesty to more than 5 million illegal immigrants. His first executive amnesty program, DACA, caused a surge of illegal immigration last summer and his new DAPA program is expected to cause another surge this spring.
Worse, if Republicans cave and pass a legislative amnesty next year, an additional 16 million immigrants will come to the United States by 2023, 8.3 million of them illegally.
While immigrants do make the U.S. economy bigger, almost all the gains go to the immigrants themselves. According to Harvard economist George Borjas 97.8 percent of all GDP gains from immigration go directly to the immigrants themselves. The employers who employ immigrants also gain economically, but lower-skilled Americans suffer. Specifically, Borjas found that a 10 percent increase in the number of low-skill immigrants "reduces the wage of native-born men in that group by 3.7 percent and the wage of all native-born workers by 2.5 percent."
Lower wages, fewer jobs, and more welfare spending that makes not-working easier; every single item on Obama's agenda, which is the exact same as Hillary Clinton's, will cause the percentage of working age men not working to go up.