Posted 52 days ago
What an absolutely crazy time to be a worker, owner, or anything remotely related to the restaurant industry. Paumgarten's review of outdoor dining is spot-on, and it's really interesting to read his analysis of New York City and compare it to the regulations wherever we live. For example, in North Carolina, I'm sometimes amazed at how little cases we have and how we manage to keep many businesses running. But then i see some next to where I live that completely flaunt restrictions, have the police called multiple times a week, and still just jug along as if there was nothing wrong.
But New York City has way more regulation, and authority as a government, than North Carolina for example. Apart from this, I was also really struck by the shear number of workers in the industry. Paumgarten lists twelve million people compared to fewer than a million in the automobile manufacturering industry and half a million in the airline industry. These both got bailouts while workers are struggling to hold on.
Of course, if you are the government, the automobile manufacturers literally were the bedrock if huge amounts of the economy. At first look, it may seem like restaurant workers aren't. But i think the Biden administration has realized the precariousness of not addressing their needs immediately, and has acted to get the $1.9 trillion dollar stimulus into people's hands (many of these will be restaurant workers, who should also be collecting unemployment). More on the stimulus package here: