Milton Friedman – Case Against Equal Pay for Equal Work

equal pay for equal work laws are a Source of apartheid you know the basic source of apartheid in South Africa Was [the] insistence by trade unions on equal pay for equal work? The equal the women who go around today urging equal pay for equal work are being anti [feminists] they don’t intend a bit, but that is the effect of their policy because if there is any [activity] in which for any reason a male is preferable to a female Or vice versa the only weapon the less productive sex has is to offer to work for less and if you deny them [that] opportunity You’re assuring yourself that you’re going to have all male jobs are all female jobs, or white jobs are all black job But aren’t you also condemning them to stay that way not at all? Not at all the typical course if you go back to American history By taking these low paid jobs a great many people not all But a great many people were [able] to develop skills and activities accumulate a little skill a little capital a little knowledge improve their lot become Advanced in the stage Get to a higher level of productivity [and] get a higher income that’s been the typical Way up the ladder for most of the people who came in here was a way up the ladder from my parents for your Parents or grandparents or great-grandparents. I don’t know when and that’s the way in which unfortunately. There’s no way in which you can son immediately Propel people to the top of the ladder okay, thank you very much. Thank you Mr.. Friedman referring to the statements that you made about women who abdicate equal pay for equal work Gee I thought I’ll get a rise out [of] that sooner or later Delighted to have it um Yes, okay. I just would like to know if you’re insinuating or perhaps. You know point blankly saying that women and other minorities skills are inferior to those of those now holding those jobs and that they Need to go through a period where their skills need to be improved and therefore deserve to be paid less No, I don’t think deserve has anything to do with it I’m not affirmed first of all. I think deserve is an impossible thing to decide who deserves. [what] nobody deserves anything? Thank God. We don’t get what we deserve But but I’m not saying that at all. I’m saying a very different thing. I’m saying that the actual effect of Requiring equal pay for equal work will be to harm women if women’s skills are Higher than men’s in a particular job and are recognized to be higher the law does no good Because then they will be able to compete away and can get the same income if their skills are less for whatever reason Maybe it isn’t because they’re saying it’s their sex. Maybe it’s because they were out of the labor force Maybe it’s for other reasons And you say the only way you can you are able to hire them is by paying the same wage then you’re denying them the only weapon they have to fight with if the Unwillingness of the men to hire them is because a men are sexist are What’s the phrase racist? Sexist pigs or whatever if that’s the only reason they want to hire nonetheless If you want to make it costly to them to exercise their prejudice if you say to them hmM You have to pay the same wage no matter whether you pay will hire women or men Then here’s Mr.. Sexist pig. It doesn’t cost him anything to hire men instead of women However, if the women are free to compete and to say well now look I’ll offer my work for less then he can only hire men if he Bears a cost if the women are really good as a man as good as a man Then he’s paying a price for discriminating and what you are doing not intentionally But by misunderstanding when you try to get equal pay for equal work laws is what you are doing is Reducing to zero the cost imposed on people. Who are who are? discriminating for irrelevant reasons, and I would like to see a cost imposed on them. I’m on your side, but you’re not

100 Replies to “Milton Friedman – Case Against Equal Pay for Equal Work

  1. My dad came to the US, back in the 70's, LEGALLY from Honduras via Job Corp. Yes, they paid below the average wage as a carpenter. It's been over 30 years since then. What did that do for him? Well, initially, he sacrificed, but employers wanted equilibrium for pay/quality of work. Companies paid him lower than the average but he was learning a skill set. Within 5 years he bought his first home because his skill set demanded a higher wage. He now owns 7 homes (owns… not paying a mortgage) and has over quarter of million in the bank. He still works 70-80 hours a week and has a net worth over million dollars. My dad may not know the intricacies or the mathematical theoretical framework of capitalism, but he knows far better than any SJW or liberal, he rather have capitalism everyday of the week and twice on Sunday. Friedman is objective truth. To any minority, don't drink the liberal Kool-Aid.

  2. Lets assume that a company is ruled by sexist employers. Assume 2 types. Employer A is a sexist who will hire women but for low pay. Employer B is a sexist who will not hire women at all. If the Employer A type describes the market in general because of widespread prejudice, the woman does not have many options other than to accept low pay for the same type of work. In addition she must be able to negotiate her salary and that can happen only if: a) she has an idea of the salary potential of the employer or how much he is paying a male for the same job b)there is enough labor demand or low labor supply to be able to negotiate (i.e in high unemployment periods there is diminished negotiating power for the worker). In that case the sexist employer A will potentially benefit by exploiting low pay labor. He will not pay any price. Lets take Employer B. He will not necessarily pay the price for not employing women either. There are many skillful men to employ besides women and since men have had a head start compared to women in the work force, depending in the industry he may actually have an even larger crowd to pick a skillful male employee from. Employer B is not paying the cost either. He still has skillful employees. This is why it is important to at least have worker rights in the constitution that allow a worker, if there is evidence of real discrimination to raise litigation procedures.

  3. it might have been more effective to start out by discussing the idea of the work place being based on a meritocracy and that pay scales should be based on skill levels, and from which a law mandating that everyone be paid the same, regardless of skill levels, this has the effect of removing any personal incentive to increase ones own skill sets and therefore removes any drive to improve yourself. which in turn makes your worth to an employer, drop.
    Once that is clearly understood, then it is much easier to see his point of women who have the higher skill sets WOULD BE ABLE to get higher wages than someone who was just starting out. (honestly, just like men did at the time)

    Example: My mother could type 160WPM and she also held an accounting degree. So she commanded a better wage than the rest of the ladies in the office whose best levels were only 120WPM and did not have degrees.
    but under the new law. she would have lost her "skill set" advantage and was simply paid the same as the workers who had never "applied" themselves to better their typing skills, and/or who had never gone to school to get a degree.

    in that context, its easier to understand that in reality, she would have gone to school and practiced her typing.. for nothing.
    her hard won "skill set advantage" was ineffectual under the new law which reward everyone the same

    this really boils down to … "participation trophies"

  4. Wow. Look at how people asked questions to those they disagree with back then. Genuinely trying to get clarification.

  5. I disagree. The assumption Friedman is making is that employers care about the value they are getting for the price they are paying. Perhaps they value their own committment to eugenics, "racism", more ? And how to argue with supervisors who falsely evaluate your performance, such that you have to work twice as hard to get the same pay. Same employer, same job, should mean same pay. BatGirl said it best, maybe :

  6. Capitalism is better than socialism, but it never occurs in its pure and efficient form. The idea is ok, but it won't ever work purely on this planet. If it worked, we would be so much better off here. But anyway, it is better than socialism, but maybe some kind of mixed form like in the Nordic countries would pay much more back to society. As a matter of fact it seems so, when we check how these countries have developed over the last 50 years.

  7. the argument that a "sexist pig" without equal pay laws in place would pay more to hire and pay a man instead of paying a woman less is
    and not at all based in reality. the business owner is so sexist he'll hire the man to spite himself? no. the "sexist pig employer" employs the woman for less money and is actually rewarded financially for his discrimination. lol.

    but I gotta give it Milton, he's very confident of the bullshit he's peddling and that seems to work for a lot of you rubes commenting here.

  8. Staring down the stare of death from that angry girl. Lol MF don't give a fuck. I'm on your side but you're not. Like a MF

  9. Friedman should be declared a war criminal. Period. He NEVER -EVER completed his Doctoral Model. They gave this POS a Doctoral PHD. He was ANGRY because Hitler took away his families Chicken farm in Germany,So he should be Angry,! However HE went too far in his hatred.He conspired with the U.S (CIA) to KILL People around the World.He was a SICK,SICK POS. His Legacy is still here Today. He aligned himself with right Wingers that Killed innocent People by the Millions. From Chile-Malaysia-Nicaragua. etc. This guy is NOTED for his WAG and SWAG WILD ass GUESSING and STUPID wild ass GUESSING. He does not have a NOBEL Peace prize. He has a Nobel Prize which is Given by a Bank in The Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economics. The NOBEL FAMILY ARE APPALLED that this Fake Prize is given to these Idiots.ANYWAYS this guys name should be wiped off the face of the earth. Ok Bring on the attacks.

  10. In 2019, these students would be holding a sign and a bullhorn while wearing an Antifa mask instead of actually LEARNING something form Milton Friedman.

  11. On the paper this reasoning is ok, but it is NOT right that women and minorities are paid less. I know you liberals won't like what I will say, but the only way this can be solved is by STATE LAWS that impose on firms not to have a too big disproportion of men and women in their firm and to pay them equally. Quote.

  12. This America is dead and buried.There is no way this level of free speech and open honest civil discourse would be allowed.

  13. Some people are just stupid. I got this moron at work that hired in with me at work. I am direct hire he is through a temp agency. He has been told time and time again he can become a direct hire if he just applies. They invest all this time and money into him for training they will hire him. Yet he keeps taking the probably 4 or more dollars less an hour. Not only that but then he would gain benefits. You can't fix stupid. I am a dumbo and didn't realize this was about women before I made my comment but the idea is still the same. You don't ask you don't receive.

  14. Wouldn’t Milton’s point of view actually make a case for new immigrants coming into this country offering to work for less than American born people in the workplace? And ultimately end up lowering wages, hurting the Americans born citizen while the immigrant gains new skill sets while he/she work for less? I’m talking about low skill legal immigrants. Anyone willing to dialogue?

  15. lol! How to convince women to stay in the kitchen and not compete on an equal footing. Convince them to accept one-third less pay than their male counterparts for the same work, and convince them that they are being "anti-feminist" if they insist on equality. One wonders if
    Friedman sat in front of a mirror and practiced his b.s. until he was able to say it with a straight face. I would be willing to bet he got a quiet thrill out of convincing people to buy his complete hogwash that being valued less was actually better than being valued equally.

    It's a shame he got away with it for so long, and not called out by the public and other economists as the cynical huckster that he was….

  16. Furthermore once people have their jobs in an equal pay for equal work environment. The more skilled people have little incentive to achieve more and then start to slack off. Then everyone looks at each other and slacks off more and more and now everyone is doing the bare minimum and you get to where we are today.

  17. This doesn't work today.
    Cuz if companies have all male employees, they would already be paying a price on terms of loss of image. Everyone these days wants to project themselves as"inclusive" and want to have a"diverse work force". Automatically the bargaining power of the workers that fall into the "diverse" categories goes up as their non existence comes with an inherent loss to the organization.

    So I guess, the movement has eventually become beneficial to the women who really do equal work as men.

  18. I’m not an economist, but hasn’t this ‘problem’ been solved (correctly or incorrectly) by the democrats pushing diversity laws?

    So not only do they support legislated equal pay but also legislative equal representation.

  19. Ss this idiot is saying its good for women to be less paid for the same work. Why we need govermnet regulations and trade unions.

  20. You should get paid for the work you’ve done…it’s about quality…if a man/ woman gets paid 4 grand to build a kitchen… the kitchen should look and have the quality of a 4 grand kitchen… I agree swallowing pride and learning a skill helps but a skill isn’t a skill if you can put a price tag on it… get into trades…. learn what real work is from real people who do real work. You’ll see the difference between good work and then cheap labor… this fuck wants profit at a cheap expense, he wants to give pennies to slaves… men have to do hard shit on jobs, I’ve seen some serious shit go wrong and people get hurt… these are jobs men have… it’s not “sexist” it’s the fact that no one wants to die at work but someone has to do it… typically women get the easier shit, or what’s considered easy relatively… equal pay across both genders levels the playing field for competence… “okay fine, you as a woman want to get paid equally to a man…you must present the equal amount of skill and willingness to work…” it’s not sexism, it’s fucking logic. “I’m on your side” no you’re not, you’re on the side of cheap labor and taking advantage of people. “ thank god we don’t get what we deserve” interesting line to hear coming from a Jew…

  21. A way up the ladder for a few, but not all. But you know what, fuck the poor to begin with. The important people are the rich. If you wanna be important, then get rich. That's basically shit heals overall message.

  22. Friedman is such a market ideologue. The point is not that sexist of racist bosses can pay less for women or minority workers, and that's the reason they hire them. Sexists and racists don't give a shit about microeconomic rationality. The point is that companies should hire people that represent the population, and that they should pay those people equal value for equal work. Otherwise, back in the 1950s, you would just have a bunch of white dudes hiring white dudes, because that's what they were comfortable with. Had nothing to do with who was better at the job. Because there are always more prospective employees than jobs.

  23. Hence gender and other arbitrary attribute quotas are brought in which impose a cost on the employer and society at large.

  24. Hiring people which are expected to perform less only happens in a job market where they're screaming for personnel. It's OK if people would get the same job for less wages if that gives them at least an opportunity to climb the ladder, if they would be declined one otherwise. Generally, this would only happen if there are more jobs than applicants. By far most companies have developed a way of trying to select the best candidate rather than consider wage/skill balance for lesser candidates. In an oversaturated job market this is even more the case.

    But equal pay laws will not help anybody in either market situation and it will damage some people's chances (woman or man) in the undersaturated market.

  25. Honestly when I saw the title of the video I thought “No way could I possibly end up agreeing with this view”. But I clicked on it anyways because maybe I can learn something. Once again, Milton Friedman has proved to me that I still have a lot to learn. Well said Mr. Friedman

  26. I have a different view on this "Equal Pay for Equal Work" matter. Not having this in law allows contract companies to take advantage of people by hiring them to do identical work at a fraction of the cost, while they take the difference, without doing any of the work.

    I understand this is by choice and people dont have a gun to their heads forcing them to take the job, but when work is scarce, and people are desperate, sometimes they have no other choice.

    It doesn't make it right.

  27. Equal pay for equal work prevents women from out-competing men by undercutting them.

  28. Friedman quite plainly lies here, and argues in bad faith. Let me preface this by saying that I am not even in favor of a female workforce or vote, but I aim to identify the issues with Friedman’s argument, from within the assumptions of his case. He makes the case that equal pay laws would be bad for a woman, since there would be no reason to hire them, as he’s assuming that a woman’s output is inherently inferior. (Potentially true in most cases) However, then he lies by saying he’s on the woman’s team, by slipping in something he knows is false: that it may be an irrelevant reason behind discriminating against women in hiring practices, therefore their best weapon is to work for less and outcompete the men – this would effectively drive men’s wages down to women’s levels though, if his false assumption here is correct. Further, he also says that the law would have no effect if a woman’s skills are identical or superior to a mans – but that is because, like most libertarian thinkers, his entire worldview is premised on faith in the rational behavior of market actors. There’s no reason to assume that there wouldn’t be a cultural bias against one particular group. Incidentally, this is why the words of libertarians are poisonous to the cultural integrity of the west. Their unshakeable faith in the wisdom of the market as some reified entity, has led to ridiculous support for mass migration, and a total denial of ethnic birthright.

  29. Speaking on average. Women keep becoming more and more unhappy. I know so many who don’t have kids or only have 1. They spend all their time working. They buy a phone, shoes, whatever, and they are miserable.

  30. Equal pay for equal work is so difficult to measure. Let’s say I’m a private teacher and I teach five days a week every week year round. So does Mary. Is that equal work? What if we work the same time but I have 20 students a day and Mary has 10. Is it still equal work? What if 90% of my students place into advanced classes after 1 year studying with me and only 10% of Mary’s students place in advanced classes. Is it still equal work now? What if all my students are poor kids with behavioral problems and Mary’s students are all upper class well behaved kids. Still equal work? What if Mary has to drive 2 hours to get to work and I’m walking distance to my job. What if Mary works in the hills of West Virginia where cost of living is lower, and I work in the DC suburbs. What if we get paid the same but I get free healthcare and an employee matched pension account? Now let’s do that analysis for hundreds of millions of workers. Want to create a huge wasteful federal Bureaucracy? Let’s do it! What if we make all of these adjustments and there’s still a discrepancy between white males and everyone else? What do you do then?

  31. This guy's a bullshit artist! All he does is cook up justifications for crooked operators to abuse workers with substandard pay. Equal pay for equal work is a universal, honest principle. It doesn't mean equal pay for people who CAN"T do equal work. There's no law demanding equal pay for A LOWER standard of work. If someone only has the skills to work as a helper or an assistant, they will have a different job classification and lower pay. The real problem is crooked operators who put people into a lower paying titles DESPITE their ability to do "equal" work at the higher level. You'll never hear anything from Friedman on that issue! He's strictly pro employer even if they're crooks!

  32. What he just said was absolutely brilliant, but from the comments I see that a majority of the people dont understand what he's actually saying. What he's saying is if the employers don't pay a woman or a minority for the same job a white man is doing is ok right now, because that woman or minority would still a job and an income. Let's say the white man is paid 100k and the woman or minority gets paid 90k a year. If the woman or minority is truly equal in work and quality. Then how long do you think that employer will pay that white man 100k a year when he could fire him because that woman or minority are just as qualified to do that job and for a little less? That so called racist or sexist employer would now have a work force of mainly women and or minorities. He would be forced to stop his racist or sexist hiring practices unless he wants to continues over paying the white guy instead of hiring women or minorities. So therefore its costing that employer thousands of dollars more a year to be sexist or racist.

  33. It's almost as if politicians are titling laws so that the laws' titles obfuscate conversation.

    Here we see a conversation where "Equal Pay for Equal Work" was used interchangeably, but not intentionally, with "equal pay for equal work"

  34. Yet again Friedman's analytical skills are lacking here. To cite just one example – he ignores the possibility that sexist employers will choose to employ a woman in a particular job over an equally qualified man, precisely because under Friedman's approach, the employer can get away with paying the female employee less. In that scenario the employer is clearly not punished for his sexism, but rewarded for it (with lower expenditure) and the sexism remains uncorrected by the free market. Indeed, how else did Friedman think that, in the absence of an equal pay for equal work law, a woman could possibly compete against an equally qualified man for the same job with a sexist employer, other than by offering to work for less money than the man?

    He may have come up with some decent quips (such as the obviously prepared, "I'm on your side, you're not"). But a deep thinker he was not.

  35. Fucking word salad talk.
    He says equal pay for equal work. But he talks about a different situation.
    One person qualified, one not.

  36. If we could all learn to debate with such frustrated people in such a deft way as Milton Friedman the world would be a much more peaceful place🙏🏻

  37. Free markets, wherever they are allowed to flourish, produce the best results for everyone involved. This is the case here as well. Milton basically argues this one simple point millions of time on every issue. Freedom and limited government is always the solution.

  38. This guy is only correct if equal pay laws were the only ones passed to deal with this issue. However, in reality equal pay laws are paired with non-discrimination laws, which when paired with public action from citizens, act as a means to help prevent sexist / racist people from excluding any particular demographic

    Equal pay for equal work is only one part of the puzzle

  39. It could also so be rephrased as: "Companies and firms will always seek to pay the least possible for the maximum benefit." And as such, if hiring "minorities" represented lower costs then they would have all the jobs.

  40. Politicians create these false narratives to win votes. In most cases, the government causes more harm than good to the groups they claim to help.

  41. I'm not in favour of equal work for equal pay legislation BUT Friedman tends to flatter the human condition. History proves time and time again that people are more than willing to incur the cost of exercising their prejudice as though it were a benefit unto itself.

    Even today it's very difficult not to notice how employers discriminate as to who they hire or how they pay their employees. When they do so to their own detriment, their prejudice either blinds them to the cost that they bear or they're consciously willing to bear it. People are unfortunately not as rational as Friedman's economics hopes them to be.

  42. I used to think that one could only be either a savage or a sweetheart. This man changed my mind just now. Wow!!!

  43. Same job
    Man is paid 1$
    Woman is paid 79¢
    Businesses will hire only women theyre cheaper even if youre a sexist business.

    If equal pay
    Man 1$
    Woman 1$
    If business is sexist then they will only hire men. There is no reason to hire women because its the same.

    Lets say if you hire 10000000 workers
    If you hire woman
    It will cost 790000000 while man costs 100000000.

    Thats a lot of savings if you only hire woman.

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