December 13, 2016

AMITY SHLAES: The Greatness Of The Puzder Choice: “A thumb in the eye to the minimum-wage lobby is how most of the press depict the nomination by President-elect Donald Trump of Andrew Puzder to the post of Labor Secretary. But offering up a fast-food entrepreneur for the Labor post does more than offend a particular interest group. The Puzder nomination represents a structural blow to the whole edifice that we have called ‘Labor Relations’ since the Department of Labor was created more than 100 years ago. . . . The fact is that Democrats have long counted on Republican presidential winners being too timid to appoint a Labor Secretary who might challenge Big Labor. The prospect of the victory of the non-timid Trump is the only way to explain why Puzder’s otherwise genteel predecessor, Thomas Perez, a former assistant attorney general for civil rights, actually descended dangerously close to scatology when asked to comment on the merits of the then-Republican candidate. . . . If confirmed, Puzder is likely to do something that demonstrates the economy expands better without government, powered by those shadowy figures who don’t usually win places at the top table. He’s likely, too, to remind us that a union-tilted Labor Department doesn’t necessarily serve the country best. After such an appointment—and the change of a few laws—our business culture will change. And labor—the lower-case kind—which includes both workers and employers, may finally show Big Labor and the rest of us what it can do.”

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