Sunday, June 15, 2014

The Fools Who Attack Unpaid Internships

By Chris Rossini

The low-skilled can't catch a break here in the good 'ole "land of the free". Not only does the government outlaw them from getting a job if they don't have the skills to earn an arbitrary "minimum wage," but unpaid internships are now in the crosshairs.

The so-called "free-market" publication known as Forbes isn't providing any help to free market ideas. Here's Susan Adams, who writes:
After writing three posts and doing another round of interviews with lawyers on both sides of the issue, in addition to a plaintiff and an employer, I believe most if not all employers should pay their interns. At the very least, I agree with defense lawyers who say employers are asking for trouble if they don’t pay at least a minimum wage and instead try to hide behind school credit.
I'm not sure if they have orientations over a Forbes, but here's what "free market" means: Everyone (in every exchange) is free to set the terms of the exchange. A third party (like The State) is prohibited from sticking its nose in, and dictating with force what the terms should be.

Simple enough, right?

Guess what happens if you force someone to pay for what is supposed to be an unpaid intern?

Fewer interns!!!

Less valuable experience, less of a chance to quickly find out if a job is right for you, less entries on your resume, less consumer satisfaction...less...less...less.

"Land of The Free" has turned into "Land of The Fools".

Chris Rossini is author of Set Money Free: What Every American Needs To Know About The Federal Reserve. Follow @chrisrossini on Twitter.


  1. Should we ban people from volunteering for a charity (something they would get less out of than an internship) too?

  2. Just the copy editor in me but "fewer" not "less" interns.

  3. And fewer (not less) opportunities to mingle with people in the field you're interested in -- people you otherwise might never get to meet. When it's called "networking" it's OK, but somehow when it's called an internship, it's evil.

  4. Land of the Sheep, Home of the Slaves

  5. It's not dumb at all.
    This will create even a better stranglehold by those people who go to the right schools. As Gerald Celente says, Harvard, Princeton, Yale.
    There is no dumb in government, just people who can't see where the self-interest is that explains why something is being proposed or done.

  6. But the State should NOT be exempt.
    Congress-crooks who espouse minimum wages should be forced to pay minimum wage.
    (and all back pay)
    (from their own personal loot).

  7. "Cluster Of Central Banks" Have Secretly Invested $29 Trillion In The Market

    Another conspiracy "theory" becomes conspiracy "fact" as The FT reports "a cluster of central banking investors has become major players on world equity markets." The report, to be published this week by the Official Monetary and Financial Institutions Forum (OMFIF), confirms $29.1tn in market investments, held by 400 public sector institutions in 162 countries, which "could potentially contribute to overheated asset prices." China’s State Administration of Foreign Exchange has become “the world’s largest public sector holder of equities”, according to officials, and we suspect the Fed is close behind (courtesy of more levered positions at Citadel), as the world's banks try to diversify themselves and "counters the monopoly power of the dollar." Which leaves us wondering where are the central bank 13Fs?

    While most have assumed that this is likely, the recent exuberance in stocks has largely been laid at the foot of another irrational un-economic actor - the corporate buyback machine. However, as The FT reports, what we have speculated as fact for many years now (given the death cross of irrationality, plunging volumes, lack of engagement, and of course dwindling credibility of central planners)... is now fact...

    shower the rich with wealth, hammer the little people into the ground!

    the interns, the interns, the interns................get real.

  8. This could be the single most ignorant article I have ever read about unpaid internships. Not paying people, regardless if they are students or not, violates the basic principles that make our economy strong. We have established a social contract in this country (the minimum wage) and by not paying interns at least this amount is a violation of that contract.

    1. By that reasoning, children FORCED to attend public schools should be compensated for their wasted time.

      Your ignorance of economics is astonishing, "Dr"!

    2. You haven't read many articles here, have you?

  9. Our current system of "degrees" is much better than low starting wages, apprenticeships, or internships. People called "students" pay fees to organizations which usually don't produce anything from the student's work. They learn things, which may or may not make them employable, from altruistic individuals called "teachers" who communicate the beautiful, ideal parts of things, rather than the grubby details of producing something. The students then graduate to lives of high wages and immediate productivity in their society.

    - -
    Yes, sarcastic. Why shouldn't people be able to make the arrangements that they wish? At least the interns can quit with whatever experience they get. Colleges refuse to grant any credit (no partial degrees) unless the student serves and pays for four years, a type of credential servitude.

    Low wages for inexperienced workers can be seen as a type of tuition. The worker earns less while he learns the business, getting a higher wage job after "graduation". This is a better approach than having the worker pay a school for training which may or may not apply to the jobs available to him. Minimum wages keep this efficient form of training from happening.

    Minimum Wage Prosperity: Suppressing black competition

    The minimum wage has a racist history. It was instituted explictly to keep black workers from competing in the Northeast US. Minimum wage legislation did not arise from a noble effort to help the poor. Senator and future President John F. Kennedy of Massachusetts spoke at a Senate hearing for the minimum wage (link below):
    === ===
    Having on the market a rather large source of cheap labor [hundreds of thousands of black workers] depresses wages outside of that group, the wages of the white worker who has to compete.
    === ===