"Fake Research": Seattle Mayor Knew Critical Min. Wage Study Was Coming, So He Called Berkeley 'Economists'

Earlier this week we wrote about a study published by the University of Washington which was fairly damning for Seattle's $15 minimum wage.  To our total 'shock', the study found that higher minimum wages caused a 9.4% reduction to total hours worked by low-skilled workers, or roughly 14 million hours per year.  Given that a full-time employee works 2,080 hours per year, that's the equal to just over 6,700 full-time equivalents who have lost their jobs, just in the city of Seattle, courtesy of moronic politicians who don't seem to grasp basic mathematical concepts (see the full note here: Seattle Min Wage Hikes Crushing The Poor: 6,700 Jobs Lost, Annual Wages Down $1,500 - UofW Study).

As it turns out, however, the bigger story might be why the Mayor of Seattle decided to waste taxpayer money commissioning a competing study from the University of California, Berkeley...especially in light of the fact that the University of Washington study was already paid for by taxpayers and researchers on the project were granted far greater access to data. 

Hmm, might it have something to do with the fact that Seattle's mayor knew that Berkeley's liberal economists would manipulate data in whatever way necessary to paint a rosy picture for higher minimum wages?  That's a rhetorical question...

As the Seattle Weekly noted, the controversy started when a Forbes blogger discovered a curious sentence in the minimum wage study released by Berkeley a couple of weeks ago, days before the University of Washington study was published.

The sentence got him wondering why the "Office of the Mayor of Seattle" would commission a study when taxpayers of his city were already funding a study on the exact same thing?

Could it be the fact that Berkeley's Michael Reich was well known to be the "go-to academic for proponents of a $15-an-hour minimum wage" who "has done at least six … studies on the minimum wage in California municipalities, all showing that a wage increase would be beneficial."

So the Forbes blogger reached out to the Mayor's office for clarification...

Last week, I reached out to Benton Strong, the mayor’s spokesman, to ask why the city was requesting research already covered by the UW team.


He responded to say that “the upcoming UW study is not part of the work funded by the City. Michael Reich is a well-known economist who had done extensive work on policies like the minimum wage and the City asked him to review early drafts of the UW report, specifically the methodology, and provide analysis. Yesterday, he also provided analysis of the impacts of the minimum wage in Seattle.”


At the time, I wasn’t aware of what upcoming UW study he was talking about, and asked for clarification, to which Strong said: “There’s apparently one coming next week.”


And so there was.


To review, the timeline seems to have gone like this: The UW shares with City Hall an early draft of its study showing the minimum wage law is hurting the workers it was meant to help; the mayor’s office shares the study with researchers known to be sympathetic toward minimum wage laws, asking for feedback; those researchers release a report that’s high on Seattle’s minimum wage law just a week before the negative report comes out.

In other words, the Mayor of Seattle used taxpayer funds to commission a duplicative, "fake study" from a clearly sympathetic, biased economist, at a liberal university, all in an effort to mislead voters about the real effects of his disastrous minimum wage policy.

Of course, we're sure Donna Brazile would classify this as just another attempt to "criminalize behavior that is normal"


Insurrexion (not verified) Wed, 06/28/2017 - 23:28 Permalink

 Tyler, did the Mayor of Seattle use a socialist, biased source from a fucking U.C. Berkeley communist to back his fucking political agenda?Of course, he did you fucking naive puke.This is the political fiction in the last days of America. And few people read in America.This is Fight Club.Own your ignorance.

merizobeach The_Juggernaut Thu, 06/29/2017 - 03:18 Permalink

"Duplicative"?  Seriously?  Why don't you use the commonly accepted real word instead of trying to sound smart (and utterly failing) by inventing your own?And furthermore, with regard to "The sentence got him wondering why the "Office of the Mayor of Seattle" would commission a study when taxpayers of his city were already funding a study on the exact same thing?", this is not a question.I understand that the original two Tylers are rich now and may not want to put in all the long hours that they used to, but this new third Tyler is not the answer any more than the one who got shitcanned last year.

In reply to by The_Juggernaut

wisehiney Wed, 06/28/2017 - 23:16 Permalink

Instead of killing themselves out of self loathing.They try to relieve their envious guilt by seeking revenge on normal people.All of their miserable lives.

CaptainObvious Wed, 06/28/2017 - 23:19 Permalink

So, what then?  Yet another Dem politician will be investigated for ethics violations and egregious waste of taxpayer money?  Wake me up when one of them (Team Blue or Team Red) actually pays a ruinous fine and does some hard time.

ThuleNord Wed, 06/28/2017 - 23:23 Permalink

This would be horrible news if the fake research didn't already correlate to the fake money and fake news and the fake politicians and the make-believe country we now live in.

With jews you lose. They've stripped reality out completely

red1chief Wed, 06/28/2017 - 23:27 Permalink

Cut the wages of the lower paid, it's good for them. More money for the .01% government-protected oligarchs, also good for the lower paid. Rich elite: "Socialism for me, capitalism for you!"

bardot63 Wed, 06/28/2017 - 23:38 Permalink

Can anybody name one fucking good thing that comes from liberal scum pits like Seattle, San Francisco, Chicago, New York, Philly, Baltimore, Venezuela or the whole of Europe?  Name just one.

gregga777 Wed, 06/28/2017 - 23:42 Permalink

Of course, we're sure Donna Brazile would classify this as just another attempt to "criminalize behavior that is normal"

Well, it is normal behavior for the political parasites.

Herr Deux Thu, 06/29/2017 - 00:01 Permalink

i live in Seattle, Fyi.   Rents on shitty little one bedroom apartments can't be easily paid even with a $15/hour shit job. for the cost of living here, $15/hour is a survival wage, when you factor in taxes and all the other shit.I pay my help cash, and i pay them double the minimum wage. If you're smart enough to run a profitable business, the $15/hour minimum wage law is irrelevant.Find something relevant to bitch about.   There's plenty to choose from.Or....DO something with all of your angst that's acctually constructive.

peippe VWAndy Thu, 06/29/2017 - 00:54 Permalink

Fun Fact: Guy is alleging molestation by the mayor back in the eighties,along with others, including Foster child, & a man who had him appointed his guardian as well. All called off for now while the first who filed lawsuit withdraws complaint to finish rehab.Stay Tuned in Kiddies!!  

In reply to by VWAndy

AgainstYourThought Thu, 06/29/2017 - 00:14 Permalink

I took Reich's Labor Economics class at Berkeley. Pretty good class, but he definitely did spend a lot of time prostelitizing for higher minimum wage, telling us that higher min. wage actually lead to higher levels of employment(!) He also spent a lot of time talking about how great unions are had a union rep come and speak to/recruit in our class. It's Berkeley so I guess that shouldn't come as a surprise.

Manny Thu, 06/29/2017 - 08:08 Permalink

Lets do some math:If you are working 40 hours at minimum wage of $13 per hour, you make 40*13 = $520 per week.Now per the UoW study there is a 9.4% reduction work hours. Heck lets say if there is a 10% reduction in your work hours than you work 36 hours per week.So 36 hours at $15 per hour minimum wage, you make $540 per week.A miminum wage worker is making 20 dollars more per week and has to work 4 hours less. That's a win win.Bottomline is whenever we have talk about minimum wage increases the opposition predicts Armagaddeon in the economy. That is not taking place and working class people are walking away with more money in their pockets. That sounds like a win win.

flyingcaveman Manny Thu, 06/29/2017 - 08:47 Permalink

You don't understand what win-win is.  It cost the employer $20 plus the 4 hours of labor that must be made up cost another $60.  That's $80.  Its hard to make that up depending on what your selling.  I don't imagine there's much margin on a place selling $.39 tacos  Starbucks, selling those $6.00 coffee flavored milkshakes could probably absorb some of it though. 

In reply to by Manny

Zoobs Thu, 06/29/2017 - 14:31 Permalink

Just another politician trying to cover ass.  They never want to own the outcome of their attempts as social engineering that ultimately screw up something else in a big way (unintended consequences). Their bias and lack of ability to see a bigger picture gets them wrapped around the axle of their ideology until their policies come to a screeching halt.