Thomas Gallatin / February 3, 2021

Bezos, Amazon, and the Dems’ $15 Minimum Wage Boondoggle

The world’s second-wealthiest man steps down while his company pushes bad policy.

The biggest headline hitting business news yesterday was the announcement that tech centibillionaire Jeff Bezos, founder and CEO of Amazon and one of the billionaire archenemies of Liberty, was stepping down from running the company he started out of his garage back in 1994. Bezos isn’t leaving Amazon entirely but is transitioning to the role of executive chairman. At age 57, the world’s second-wealthiest man with an estimated net worth topping $188 billion plans to spend more time focusing on his other ventures, which include a space exploration company called Blue Origin and The Washington Post, as well his philanthropic endeavors.

Meanwhile, Joe Biden and the Democrats are loudly pushing the boondoggle of a $15 per hour minimum wage as part of their larded-up $1.9 trillion COVID relief bill. What does this have to do with Bezos? Well, one of the biggest advocates of the $15 minimum wage has been Amazon. Ironically, Bezos only ensured that Amazon met that wage threshold with its nearly one million employees just two years ago.

The ugly truth is that Bezos’s motives are far from altruistic. Rather, they are the cold and greedy calculations of a massive power-hungry corporation seeking to squelch competition. The $15 minimum wage most impacts the small businesses that employ millions of low-income American workers, while Amazon’s biggest competitors like Walmart or Target will hardly be impacted. Bezos knows this, as he was once that little guy, starting a small book-selling business out of his garage.

However, with Amazon now worth over $1.6 trillion, Bezos touts the Democrats’ economy-chilling minimum wage, as it will only work to further secure his own elitist status. If Bezos was really so concerned about ensuring that American workers are fairly compensated with a “livable wage,” then why wasn’t he seeking to pay his own employees not merely the minimum wage but a maximum wage? Evidently, for Bezos and his ilk, it’s better to look or sound good than to be good.

Democrats, of course, are merely interested in votes. They’re the ones who want to pay workers more, not those stingy Republicans, you see. The dirty little secret is, again, that the real minimum wage is $0, which is what people without jobs will earn when small businesses can’t afford to hire them. And that doesn’t bother Democrats or Jeff Bezos in the slightest.

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