The first lesson of economics is scarcity: There is never enough to satisfy all those who want it. The first lesson of politics is to disregard the first lesson of economics.

Thomas Sowell, economist, author, and commentator

The fast-food workers demanding that companies pay them $15/hour are also disregarding the first lesson of economics. They are also forgetting that they cannot dictate value. If the worker is not producing $15/hr worth of work, then the company will do one if three things:

  1. Lower the workforce until each worker is producing the value of being paid $15/hr. This may include bringing in higher levels of automation. Like touchscreen kiosks.

  2. Lower the quality of the product to make up for additional labor costs (which might work for some low end products, but not in the cutthroat competition of fast food).

  3. Go out of business. And for those of you who might gloat that big corporations would go bankrupt, they won’t. The small franchisee, on the other hand, will. People who have sunk their life savings into a couple of stores and who do their good works in their local communities.

You want to make $15/hr, then provide the company more than $15/hr worth of value. That might mean stepping up into management, or bringing in some unique skill. It also might mean taking a chance on a new job. If you think you’re worth the money, then prove it.