New York City

Published on February 8th, 2014


Nelson Mandela’s lesson for Bill de Blasio

At a Brooklyn church in December, New York’s then mayor-elect, Bill de Blasio, praised Nelson Mandela for the late South African leader’s refusal to tell citizens only what they wanted to hear. “Part of Mandela’s brilliance was acknowledging difficult truths and then guiding people through them,” de Blasio said. Now Mayor de Blasio is preparing his first State of the City address, which he’ll deliver Monday.

He’s been pushing Albany lawmakers to let the city set its own minimum-wage level, and it’s likely he’ll raise the issue again in his speech. But if the mayor really wants to emulate Mandela’s truth-telling, he should look closer at the example of South Africa, which demonstrates the damaging effect of wage levels set higher than the labor market will bear. De Blasio might then acknowledge his own difficult truth, one pertaining to economics: minimum- and “living-wage” laws put the poor at greater risk of unemployment.

Source: City Journal . Read full article. (link)

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