The key driving factor for wages is employer competition. When companies are competing for your talent, they will attempt to outbid one another in order to secure your talent for themselves.This changed under the FDR administration, when it was declared illegal to pay employees more than a certain amount. Called wage controls, these rules made it highly difficult for employers to bid for talent, automatically cutting down on the amount of skilled talent that the markets were calling for, which led to an overall decrease in the amount of effort people were willing to invest in developing their own talents.

This of course led to a drop in the nations’ overall level of talent, something which severely impacted the nations’ readiness when Pearl Harbor occurred.Historical implications aside, the fact that companies could no longer compete in terms or raw cash meant that had to find other ways in which to compete, other ways in which they could outdo one another in their quest to attract the best and brightest into their own camp.This generally meant benefits.

Employer based healthcare coverage, pensions and other retirement benefits, these were among the various methods employed by the various corporations to compete with one another and get the top dogs for themselves.Enter the DOL.Tasked with ensuring that no one person as happier than his fellow, the DOL passed a flurry of rules and regulations designed to ensure equality and fairness, which means that no one person gets more than or less than another. Unless, of course, the DOL agrees that he has earned it.

Insert a picture of Don Corleone here, smiling at you over his contract, with the caption saying “I’m not unreasonable”Among the various methods employed by the DOL to ensure minimal competition is a clause requiring that employees be free to discuss working conditions. This may seem straightforward enough, except that it also requires that workers be free to talk about ongoing investigations.

A terrible thing, because the reason no one is allowed to talk about ongoing investigations is that talking about them is a sure way to mess them up, to confuse them and set them back. This is why governments on all levels prohibit discussing active investigations.Apparently, however, the mantra of ‘quid licet Iovi non licet bovi’ is still alive and well,because while the government is free to prohibit these discussions, mere corporations are not.At least we can keep still crackpots out of the workforce by running background checks.So run background checks.

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