Twitter Erupts After AOC Shows She Knows Nothing About the Free Market


Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez just might be the gift that keeps on giving — to conservatives, that is.

The self-described “Democratic socialist” is intent on moving toward a more collectivist government, but apparently hasn’t stopped to reflect on what that actually means.

On Monday morning, she fired up Twitter to complain about the price of baked goods, and was hit with a wave of replies all tied for comment gold.

“Croissants at LaGuardia (Airport) are going for SEVEN DOLLARS A PIECE,” the congresswoman whined, along with a “horrified” emoji.

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Her big takeaway from discovering that things are a bit expensive at an airport? Turning a high priced croissant into a twisted lesson about minimum wage.

“Yet some people think getting a whole hour of personal, dedicated human labor for $15 is too expensive?” she wondered.

If you’re confused about what the first sentence has to do with the second, you’re not alone. As far as we can tell, Ocasio-Cortez was attempting to say that because her croissant cost $7, people must be worth at least two croissants. Or something.

Do you think Ocasio-Cortez understands economics?

Of course, this is a total non sequitur which makes less sense the more you think about it. Why are workers not worth half a croissant per hour, or four, or a hundred? Why was an airport snack being bizarrely used as a unit of value and not, say, a plastic toy or a car or anything else? The extent of her “logic” here seems to be, “that seems high to me so I’ll complain about minimum wage.”

But ironically, New York’s climbing minimum wage may be one of the reasons airport croissants cost so much in the first place. As we recently discussed, more and more New York restaurants are being forced to hike prices and cut employee hours thanks to the very liberal policies Ocasio-Cortez supports.

“So as a result (of the minimum wage hike), it will cost more to dine out,” New York restaurateur Jon Bloostein told CBS News in January. “It’s not great for labor, it’s not great for the people who invest in or own restaurants, and it’s not great for the public.”

Or for croissant prices. The state’s young socialist congresswoman apparently missed that memo, but many Twitter users were quick to school her on just how clueless her post was.

“If I am a business owner and all of a sudden I have to pay someone $15 an hour, wouldn’t I just raise my prices to keep the same margins??? So in effect nothing happens…” one user named Tim Badock wondered.

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“Why do you think the croissants cost seven dollars?” asked another.

Conservative pundit Ben Shapiro went into even more detail to ask essentially the same question.

“Ok, CEO, tell me all the inputs for the croissant price, including the price of all the labor in the chain of production and distribution,” he posted.

Shapiro’s point was particularly sharp. Ocasio-Cortez seemed completely ignorant about the fact that the croissant price wasn’t randomly pulled out of a hat, but was almost certainly set after a lot of number-crunching by the business.

Restaurants track expenses closely. How much does it cost to get the dough there by truck? What’s the energy cost to bake them? How much do they need to pay employees to make them properly and then sell them?

Oh — and while we’re at it, there’s one of the most important cost factors at all: The airport.

For one, airports are closed locations where travelers cannot easily step out to cross the street to a better-priced restaurant. They’re hungry and in a hurry; basic economics allows food, drinks, and other goods to be marked up a bit. This isn’t some conspiracy, it’s Business 101.

Then there’s the fact that running a restaurant or store inside an airport is almost certainly more expensive than many other locations. The cost to lease a place inside a constantly-busy airport like LaGuardia is steep, not to mention additional factors like security checkpoints which products must pass through before being sold.

“You don’t understand how markets work, do you?” wondered Justin T. Haskins on Twitter.

Well, no, she doesn’t — and the fact that a sitting congresswoman with a university degree seems to be clueless about money and economics is very, very eye-opening.

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Benjamin Arie is an independent journalist and writer. He has personally covered everything ranging from local crime to the U.S. president as a reporter in Michigan before focusing on national politics. Ben frequently travels to Latin America and has spent years living in Mexico.