And market forces are universal, right? The law of supply and demand apply everywhere, right? Then why is it that when I go to a third-world nation, Starbucks costs almost as much as it does here? Why is it that food still costs almost as much as it does here? Why is it that cars and electronics cost twice what they do here? This is despite the fact that poverty is so rampant in such places.
My point is, the fear that higher wages automatically results in higher prices is not an iron law - it is not an infallible rule of economics. If it were, then why is food not much more expensive here in high-cost Puget Sound as it is in the poverty-ridden MS Delta? Why are the costs the same? The houses are cheaper there, but rent is not that much cheaper. Motel rooms cost the same there as here. Gas costs just a little less than it does here. Walk into a convenience store and pretty much EVERYTHING costs the same there in the MS Delta as it does in Puget Sound.
If high wages automatically equaled higher prices, then that would NOT be the case - almost everything would be cheaper! But it's not. Why is that?