The Obama administration now controls how much you can earn. Not just inclined to meddle in the ongoing “minimum wage” argument — the minimum wage must always and everywhere be $0.00, which is what unpaid interns work for — the Emperor Hussein II has now decreed that private employers must provide overtime pay to salaried employees who work more than 40 hours a week. Doubling the Washington-ordained salary threshold from $23,600 to $47,500, the “progressives” take one more step toward disabling the private market economy and replacing it with the Marxist “labor theory of value,” all in the guise of doing good, of course. Take a listen:
The Department of Labor finalized a rule to extend overtime protections to 4.2 million more Americans. It’s a move that will boost wages for working Americans by $12 billion over the next 10 years. We’re more than doubling the overtime salary threshold. And what that means is, most salaried workers who earn less than about $47,500 a year will qualify for overtime. Or, their employers can choose to give them a raise so that they earn more than $47,500. Or, if employers don’t want to raise wages, they can let them go home after 40 hours and see their families or train for new jobs. Any way you slice it, it’s a win for working families. And we’re making sure that every three years, there will be an automatic update to this threshold – so that working families won’t fall through the cracks for decades at a time ever again.
This is the single biggest step I can take through executive action to raise wages for the American people. It means that millions of hardworking Americans like Elizabeth will either get paid for working more than 40 hours, or they’ll get more time with their families. Either way, they win. The middle class wins. And America wins.
It’s unconstitutional of course. But the to Left, the “living Constitution” must change from being a charter of “negative liberties” — laying out what the federal government may not do to you, under pre-existing rights we hold from God — into one of positive rights: what the government can and must do to you. Therefore, since there’s nothing in the Constitution that explicitly proscribes the president’s actions, he’s just going to go ahead and do it.
You see the fallacy, though. Progressivism, like Marxism, assumes a static system, under which wealth is not created but shared. It’s a misapplication of 18th-century physics — matter can neither be created nor destroyed. For the Left, wealth is like an infinite pie that can neither be baked nor eaten, but somehow its slices are up for grabs between greedy employers and the starving, exploited masses. Obama assumes the employers can just unlock that vault where they’ve been keeping all those profits and distribute them to the lower end of the salaried workforce in overtime pay.
Or, the employers could just do the right thing and boost salaries past the threshold, which is based on “the lowest-wage Census Region, currently the South ($913 per week; $47,476 annually for a full-year worker).”
Or, the worker can just put down his hammer and sickle when the labor clock strikes 40 and go home to play with his kids. Never mind that salaried employees are being paid not by the hour (for their time and labor), but by the job (for their skill and expertise), and both they and the employer enter into a contract to that end. Never mind that an employee’s failure to do the job could imperil the entire purpose of the economic enterprise; that’s the Boss’s tough luck.
This won’t stop here. Unless the Democrats are tossed out in the fall, along with their malevolent army of faceless bureaucrats, those baselines will keep going up and up until everything collapses — and then the Marxists will blame you and your greed.