California City Raises Wages for Grocery Workers, Grocery Chain Responds Predictably

(AP Photo/Mark Schiefelbein)

The City of Long Beach, California has been among the hardest hit in the country as a result of COVID-19 restrictions placed by both the state and the City of Long Beach.  Lots of small businesses continue to remain closed and those lucky enough to be open are struggling for business.  Among the businesses that never closed, grocery stores have been exempt from most, if not all of the government-imposed restrictions.

There’s an old saying about the road to hell, and it definitely applies in this case.  In order to reward the work of grocery store employees, Long Beach passed the “Hero Pay” measure, which increased the pay of grocery store employees by four dollars an hour.  While the measure seems like it was well-intentioned, good intentions don’t balance budgets nor make the availability of products any more diverse.  Long Beach officials were looking for a positive moment in the press, however, the Kroger grocery brand quickly put that to rest, by announcing that they were closing two grocery stores in the city, a Ralph’s location as well as a Food4Less store.

In an interesting development, Kroger tied the decision to close the stores directly to the ordinance.  Most of the time, companies are less likely to wag their finger at the government as they don’t wish to draw the regulatory ire of elected officials.  In this case, Kroger didn’t hold back.  When people (who obviously don’t understand how business works yet continue to opine about it) began to attack Kroger about the decision, Kroger doubled-down to respond to those critics:

With the announcement that Kroger was closing 30% of their Long Beach locations, you’d think that other local governments would have caught on, but instead, as you’d expect from idiot progressives, they decided to follow Long Beach’s example and announce their own “Hero Pay” measure.  Of course, Los Angeles was not to be outdone and increased the pay in their measure to five dollars.

Imagine being as insane as to watch a policy literally backfire, which will lead to the layoff of dozens if not hundreds or thousands of grocery workers, reduced hours for the workers who are not laid off (with greater responsibilities), the reduction of accessibility of products (because of the likely closing of other stores) and other horrible outcomes, and still enacting the policy anyway.  When I have said for a long time that liberalism is a mental disorder, I mean it.  Their policy proposals are so divorced from reality that when the chickens for their horrible policies come home to roost, they have yet another policy in the hopper ready to wreck business or industry.

If only someone could predict these outcomes when these policies are forwarded.  You know… like anyone who has the first friggin’ clue about how to run a business or what this crazy thing is that is  called a “budget.”