While it may be difficult to imagine, there was once an era when the New York Times was concerned about the poor.
Consider, for example, a 1987 editorial they ran with the headline, “The Right Minimum Wage: $0.00.” As the editors noted at the time,
[Raising the minimum wage] would increase unemployment: Raise the legal minimum price of labor above the productivity of the least skilled workers and fewer will be hired.
If a higher minimum means fewer jobs, why does it remain on the agenda of some liberals? A higher minimum would undoubtedly raise the living standard of the majority of low-wage workers who could keep their jobs. That gain, it is argued, would justify the sacrifice of the minority who became unemployable. The argument isn’t convincing. Those at greatest risk from a higher minimum would be young, poor workers, who already face formidable barriers to getting and keeping jobs. Indeed, President Reagan has proposed a lower minimum wage just to improve their chances of finding work.
Back then the federal minimum wage was $3.35 ($7 in 2015 dollars) and the editors of the Times had a basic understanding of economics. Today, their editorial board is apparently comprised solely of those completely ignorant about economics, for they published an editorial last week calling for wage to be raised to $15 a hour.
Their reasoning? No real justification is given other than that the government must do something. In their conclusion they write: