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Global workforce competition is on the rise.  The jobs that are coming back aren’t the same ones that went away during the Great Recession.  Service jobs, part-time jobs, dead-end jobs are a significant portion of the recovery that we’ve seen.  Some say higher wages aren't coming back.

Policymakers may find it tempting to try and mandate good jobs through extensive regulation, but the workplace is a complex and constantly changing environment, and the risk of unintended consequences is high.  Raising the minimum wage only hastens the turn to automation, as more-costly employees can be replaced by cheaper alternatives that never make wage demands or go on strike.

It’s not surprising that low-margin businesses facing higher mandated labor costs often opt for cost-saving (and labor-reducing) changes to stay in the black.  Higher wages also systematically eliminates the ability for unskilled or low-skilled people to compete for jobs, thereby creating near-permanent unemployment for those individuals.

European fast food workers are beginning to look more like R2D2 than entry-level employees.  Some experts think that robots and computers will replace one third of all workers by 2025.

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