Half a Loaf Buffet

Warren Buffet’s got an interesting op ed in the Wall Street Journal this morning about using the earned income tax credit to lift folks out of poverty.

But, he went only part way.

Businesses will normally pay whatever they think an employee is worth to secure his or her services. That might not be a living wage if there’s a family of four.

The minimum wage is a Democratic concoction that would guarantee an entry level wage to everyone who wants to work. Some one’s got to hire you, though. A livable wage is a lot different in Omaha Nebraska than it is in New York or Chicago.

And, while we’re at it, why not require everyone who is able to work to have a job if they’re on welfare? President Clinton tried it back in the nineties, and it worked well. Somewhere along the line, it got repealed. If one can’t work, say for medical reasons, then an exemption is granted, and the earned income tax credit sorts it all out.

This is the other half of the Buffet loaf: workfare, not welfare. OK if it’s not enough to live on….at least there’s the nobleness of work. This situation is where the earned income tax credit comes in, and it would seem to us that it should be adjusted for the area one lives in.

OK, Warren, what do you think?


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