Want to Stay Comfortable? Ask Government to Mandate Temperature Controls on Thermometers

by Don Boudreaux on January 11, 2016

in Hubris and humility, Myths and Fallacies, Reality Is Not Optional, Seen and Unseen, Work

In a brilliant parody, my former research assistant Mark Perry further exposes the counterproductive and economically untenable superstitions of people who fancy that minimum-wage legislation can improve the well-being of all low-skilled workers.  A slice:

In Defense of the Minimum Wage Law:

Unskilled and limited-experience workers are at the mercy of greedy, cold-hearted, ruthless, profit-seeking employers, and minimum wage workers getting paid just $7.25 an hour do not even earn enough to pay the bills, much less aspire to the American Dream. Without some kind of government intervention in the unskilled labor market, employers will ruthlessly exploit unskilled workers, and pay them unacceptably low wages that undermine our economy.

To counteract this injustice in the labor market for unskilled workers, our collective sense of fairness and justice demands legislation that will force employers to pay a minimum wage of $10.10 per hour following the passage of the Fair Minimum Wage Act (or to $15 an hour if the “Fight for 15” movement and its advocates like Bernie Sander and the NY Times editorial board are successful). Wages below that minimum are unconscionably low and are actually “immoral” according to one of bill’s original co-sponsors, and will be outlawed by the federal minimum wage legislation, with violations subject to penalties, fines and possible jail time for any employer paying hourly wages below the government-mandated minimum wage of $10.10.

In Defense of the Minimum Temperature Law (or Living Temperature Laws):

Even though this winter is relatively mild so far in the US, the thousands of cold weather-related deaths that take place annually in the UK, the US and elsewhere firmly establish that we are at the mercy of a very cruel, ruthless, merciless, cold-hearted, and uncaring force: Mother Nature.

Something must be done about this unacceptable situation. Without some kind of government intervention in the market for low temperature readings being registered on existing thermometers and thermostats, Mother Nature will continually and ruthlessly expose the elderly in the UK, America and other cold climate countries to harsh winter conditions of unconscionably low temperatures. Who among us wouldn’t agree that these excessively low winter temperatures are unfair, unreasonable, unjust and even immoral?

To counteract this inherent cold weather injustice and Mother Nature’s ongoing lack of concern for cold Brits and Americans, our collective sense of fairness and justice requires legislation that will force all thermostats and thermometers sold in the United Kingdom and the United States to have a minimum, reasonable and fair temperature reading of let’s say 0 degrees Fahrenheit. As part of a newly proposed “Fair Minimum Wage Temperature Act of 2016” for the US, all existing thermometers and thermostats in homes, offices, and businesses should be immediately replaced with new temperature-reading equipment with a minimum reading of 0 degrees Fahrenheit.

Any temperatures below that minimum (e.g. -10 degrees F. or -20 degrees F.) are considered to be unfair, immoral and unconscionably low, and will be illegal and outlawed by the Fair Minimum Temperature Act of 2016, with violations subject to penalties, fines and possible jail time for thermostat manufacturers continuing to sell thermostats with temperature readings below the government-mandated minimum temperature. Further, all news and weather reports, all TV and radio stations, and all newspapers and websites are immediately prohibited from quoting any temperatures below the federally mandated minimum of 0 degrees F.

If successful this winter, subsequent legislation for a “Fair Maximum Temperature Act of 2016” should be considered for summer months, e.g. a maximum allowable temperature reading of 85 degrees Fahrenheit on all thermostats to control Mother Nature’s unfair “temperature gouging” and “temperature scalping” during the hot summer months, frequently leading to weather-related deaths. Let’s all rally around “Living Temperature Laws” to promote more comfortable living in America.

Bottom Line: If the proposed Minimum/Maximum Temperature Laws seem ridiculous, that’s because they are totally ridiculous. And so is the Minimum Wage Law.Unfair Government Mandate Preventing Thousands of Unskilled Workers from Finding a Job.

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