West Coast, Messed Coast™: Minimum Wage Rises, Thousands Lose Their Jobs, Democrat Elites Laugh


by Victoria Taft

Greetings West Coast, Messed Coast™ readers! This week, your humble correspondent has witnessed another tranche of elitist Democrats ruin the lives of thousands of people and pretend everything’s fine.

In California, Democrats forced a 25% pay increase for fast food workers and workers learned the hard way about being priced out of a job. Oregon thought decriminalizing hard drugs was a cool idea until it wasn’t, and, in Washington, Seattle spent the week teetering on the edge of another CHOP/CHAZ melee with Joe Biden’s illegal aliens.

We can’t be the only ones who noticed. Do you suppose Democrat voters will too? Let’s start in Gavin Newsom’s California.

Repealing supply and demand doesn’t work AGAIN

When Seattle’s program of raising the hourly wage of independent contractor app drivers crashed and burned in a heap of lost jobs, higher prices, and extinguished market share, and California’s AB5 fallout became fully known, we thought West Coast, Messed Coast™ Democrats might pause for a minute to notice the disturbance in the force. As it happened, however, the We Know Better Than You crowd in California put their hands over their ears, closed their eyes, and la, la, la’d all the way to destroying people’s lives in the name of helping them.

Welcome to California, where between Bidenomics inflation and Gavin Newsom’s new $20/hour fast food worker minimum wage has caused cheap fast food to become unaffordable, especially to the people who either got their hours cut or lost their fast food jobs completely.

Take a bow, fellas.

Hence, on March 25, Gavin Newsom plunged headlong into a 25% increase in the cost of labor for fast food employees. The minimum wage increases didn’t apply to Newsom’s Plump Jack wine restaurants or his big donor friend’s Panera stores, a charge the governor denies.

Democrats gave carve-outs to grocery stores with restaurants, such as Whole Foods. Disney escapes the higher costs since the forced minimum wage will not apply to theme parks, hotels, airports, and “event centers.” Governments run airports, so fellow cadres were exempted.

“Families [owners] are going to have to make very smart choices over capital exit expenditures,” Scott Rodrick told CNBC this week. Rodrick owns 18 McDonald’s franchises in California and “the last thing I want to do is impact the folks who run my golden arches” but is now forced to make some big choices.

He must decide if he will have to choose between sprucing up his restaurant’s dining rooms, improving his HVAC system, and automating. Moreover, “should I open a new restaurant in California against these extraordinary legislative headwinds?”

“Even leading up to today [April 1, the day the increase went into effect] Pizza Hut and Roundtable Pizza laid off 1,500 drivers up and down the state,” he said. Those restaurants joined Auntie Anne’s and Cinnabon in pre-announcing staff cutbacks.

“In an area I do business in, Redding, California,” he told “Squackbox,” “18 Subway sandwich shops, family-owned, closed overnight. This is just a harbinger of things that will come.”

That was echoed by a Los Angeles restauranteur who warned America that, “This man [Gavin Newsom] is destroying California.” Angela Marsden said, “And, oh, by the way, who’s paying for it? It is a silent tax on the public.”

National destruction tour!

This effort to kill small businesses and jobs harkens back to AB5, California Democrats’ attempt to kill off private contracting for the sake of their union paymasters. Worse, Biden’s choice for Labor Secretary, Julie Su, presided over the killing of California’s jobs and the plunder of $30 BILLION in COVID unemployment program funds. 

The California Policy Center reports that Su, though she is not the official labor secretary, has rewritten the nation’s rules to wipe clean her own horrible management of the state unemployment system during COVID. How? Su says the states should take reasonable action to recover the funds. But who decides if actions are reasonable? Will Swaim writes that the answer is “on page 186 of a sprawling financial report, in the very last paragraph just before anaphrodisiac spreadsheets included as ‘Required Supplementary Information.’” And the answer is: Su’s Democrat friends in state government decide, of course.

Though Su’s so awful that she hasn’t been confirmed to the labor post, she has successfully rewritten work rules to take AB5 nationwide. No wonder Biden opened the border. He needs illegal aliens for a new underclass because their last underclass is too expensive now.

Oregon’s consequence-free drug law faces consequences

Oregon’s Measure 110, the measure to decriminalize small amounts of hard drugs, has been effectively repealed. It seems that even the woke mob in Salem is tired of walking over fentanyl-addled bodies in clumps on sidewalks, human tacos filled with tranq, and the resulting increased crime. The move brings to an “end the decriminalization experiment that has cost so many Oregonians their lives and has torn families and their communities apart.”

Considering that Oregon was the first state to kill people under “assisted suicide,” which exists today, and thinks nothing of aborting innocent babies at any stage in the womb, the hot-and-cold-running drug bums ruining Portland was the bridge too far in Bridgetown.

Mere days ago, the unfortunately-named Governor Tina Kotek, under siege for ethics contretemps, signed the bill that “repealed and reformed” the get out of jail free card for drug addicts. Now, possessing hard drugs will become a gross misdemeanor punishable by fines.

When passed in 2020 by bored voters during COVID shutdowns, the New York backers made amazing promises of consequence-free buzzes. Locals noticed the phalanx of drug tourists who drove their RVs to Oregon to take advantage of their stupidity. Drugged “homeless” campers soon overwhelmed the sidewalks, overpasses, and parks, exacerbating Portland’s already out-of-control homeless conditions.

People stopped going downtown.

This tent-dwelling homeless tourist reports that her new home Portland is populated by “pedophiles, creepy people, and violence,” but hey, she’s “got a nice tent.”

It turns out that those moderate and conservative voices were right. When you allow people to take drugs freely on the streets you get a LOT of people on the street taking drugs. Surprise, surprise.


People who actually want to help get the homeless off the streets have noticed the Antifa-led efforts to keep the homeless on the streets to disrupt normal life. This group Stop the Sweeps is now hijacking Joe Biden’s illegal aliens to use as a wedge against the City of Seattle to extort millions.

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Gosh, and we could have the WHOLE COUNTRY like this? What are we waiting for?