Switzerland Proves Voters Don’t Have to Be Economic Idiots

I am pleasantly surprised that the people of Switzerland have voted down a minimum wage law. The European country has no minimum wage law at all. The proposal would have raised it to the highest in the world—the equivalent of $25 an hour.

Despite heavy propaganda, and “tens of thousands” demonstrating in Geneva and Zurich, the vote was strongly against the new law. From BBC:

Swiss voters have overwhelmingly rejected a proposal to introduce what would have been the highest minimum wage in the world in a referendum.


Supporters said the move was necessary for people to live a decent life.

But critics argued that it would raise production costs and increase unemployment.

The minimum wage proposal was rejected by 76% of voters. Supporters had argued it would “protect equitable pay” but the Swiss Business Federation said it would harm low-paid workers in particular.

The issue was the most prominent of several referendums held on Sunday.

I am amazed the Swiss didn’t fall for the lies and manipulation. With many feeling the pressure of a high cost of living, it would be easy for them to want to believe that their problems can be fixed with a simple law. It is to their great credit that, rather than believing a comfortable lie, the Swiss engaged in critical thinking and embraced the hard truth. No matter what problems beset them, mandating a minimum wage could only make it worse. Paying a high minimum wage would either drive people out of business or else cause them to charge higher prices. Either way, the people who are most destitute are the ones most likely to be hurt by a raised minimum wage.

This makes me wonder if Americans are as economically stupid as I have been led to believe. While the media is eager to portray everyone as favoring the increase, this reminds me of the report that many Seattle liberals are backing away from raising the minimum wage.

Dare we hope that people have common sense?