Posts by Paul Constant

Jeb Bush: “We should not have a multicultural society” in America

Jeb Bush: “We should not have a multicultural society” in America

  American Bridge 21st Century just released video of Jeb Bush at a campaign event in Cedar Falls Iowa. In the video, Bush says that “we should not have a multicultural society” in America. He argues that the United States is not just a place, but is rather “a set of values that people share” that “defines our national identity…not race, not ethnicity, not where you come from.” Because people continue to embrace their cultural heritage, Bush argues, “the assimilation process has been retarded.” In case you thought Bush was misstating his own position, he concludes, “we’re creeping towards multiculturalism, and that’s the wrong approach.” This is kind of a weird tack for Bush to make, considering the fact that back in February he was promoting the “fact that I’m bilingual, bicultural.” So does Bush still think biculturalism is something to praise, but multiculturalism is not? If so, when does “multicultural” begin? Is it three cultures? Triculturalism is just too far? Or is quadculturalism where he draws the line? It’s frustrating in 2015 to hear a presidential candidate decry multiculturalism as something that tears society apart. In fact, multiculturalism is how we as a society come together to solve problems better than anyone else. As Nick Hanauer and Zach Silk wrote on this blog last week , “diversity does not hinder growth—it supercharges it. That has always been America’s competitive advantage: we have the most diverse workforce in the world, and for all our problems, we do a better job of integrating diversity than anyone else.” The homogeneous culture that Bush is arguing for (this month) is a dumber, less vibrant culture. If immigrants were to heed Bush and Bobby Jindal’s calls to assimilate, they would lose part of their unique experiences, and the culture would be poorer for it. Look: would you rather live in a city with a thriving restaurant scene
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Latest Restaurant Jobs Data Proves Nothing Except the Fact That We Shouldn’t Believe Mark Perry

Latest Restaurant Jobs Data Proves Nothing Except the Fact That We Shouldn’t Believe Mark Perry

A couple months ago at the conservative American Enterprise Institute , economist Mark Perry wrote that according to the St. Louis Fed, Seattle’s minimum wage was turning out to be a huge failure. “The loss of 1,000 restaurant jobs in May following the minimum wage increase in April was the largest one month job decline since a 1,300 drop in January 2009, again during the Great Recession,” Perry wrote. Problem is, Perry’s allegation wasn’t true. The dip proved absolutely nothing about our minimum wage. We’ve talked at length about how the numbers were based on a much larger geographic area than just Seattle, which makes the data meaningless. Seattle’s increased minimum wage would not be responsible for job losses in Tacoma, for example. And then the next time the St. Louis Fed’s restaurant employment numbers were published, they indicated the largest month-over-month gain that the region has ever seen. This should be obvious, but I’ll say it again for people who confuse correlation with causation: this does not mean that every question relating to the increased minimum wage has been settled. That month-over-month gain relates to a very large geographic area, and so it’s impossible to attribute the gain to Seattle’s minimum wage. So let’s bear all that in mind when we look at the very latest set of numbers from the St Louis Fed , which fall juuuuuuuuust a little short of the all-time seasonally adjusted gain. Does this mean the $15 minimum wage is settled? Again, just the same as I said in the above paragraph, no it doesn’t. It’s going to take a long time before we can quantify the effects of the increased minimum wage. So why am I even bothering to comment on this? Do these numbers prove anything at all? Yes. They do prove one thing conclusively: Mark Perry shouldn’t be allowed to predict the future based on a single data point. The fact that Perry’s report got as
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Vast Majority of New Yorkers Favor $15 Minimum Wage

Vast Majority of New Yorkers Favor $15 Minimum Wage

CBS News reports : A new poll finds that New York voters support raising the state’s minimum wage to $15 per hour. The poll released Friday by Quinnipiac University found 62 percent of voters supporting a phased-in increase. This isn’t some online clickbait poll, either. It’s drawn from a fairly substantial sample size—1,366 voters. The American people are finally coming around to the understanding that raising the minimum wage won’t harm business. In fact, they realize that if you give workers more money, businesses will have more customers. Opposition to the minimum wage increase is running low, at 35 percent. This is a popular idea: Americans are in favor of giving workers a raise. Why, then, was Rick Santorum the only Republican candidate to support a minimum wage during the entire five hours of Wednesday night’s debate? And why was Santorum supporting a measly 50-cent minimum wage increase? That would leave the minimum wage below $8 an hour. I know math is tough, but Republicans are going to have to realize at some point that you can’t win a majority election with 35 percent of the vote. It’s time for Republicans to abandon their regressive fear and hatred of a minimum-wage increase. The numbers are running against them.

Seattle Needs to Join the Fight Against Clopening Shifts

Seattle Needs to Join the Fight Against Clopening Shifts

When I was younger, my life was packed with clopening shifts. In my first job at Sears in the Maine Mall, I’d work on the receiving docks until 9 at night, drive the half hour home, eat, get a few hours’ sleep, and then wake up at 5 am so I could eat, shower, and get back to work for a stocking shift by 6 am. A few years later,
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The Media Obsesses Over Jeb Bush’s Diet Tips

The Media Obsesses Over Jeb Bush’s Diet Tips

Look, I’ve worked in the media during a presidential campaign. I know what it’s like. You get swept up in the craziness of it all, and sometimes your good sense goes out the window. You forget that these politicians are trying to be leader of the free world and you start to think of it
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