The Apologist wrote:
If I want to work for $5/hr and the company wants to hire me for $5/hr, the people who call themselves the government have no right to stop me. It is a consensual transaction.
If jobs are scarce relative to the number of job seekers, as they generally are, and if having a job is a matter of livelihood for the job seeker, as it generally is, then the employer and the prospective employee have drastically unequal bargaining power. As a result, the wage-setting transaction is more coercive than consensual, and unreasonably low wages constitute a violation of workers' rights.
We can formulate the problem without making use of consequentialist (or utilitarian) language.
A coercive wage-setting transaction would mean that one of the parties would be forced by another party. There is no force. If I choose a job, then there is no coercion. If that wage isn't a living wage and I still choose it, I have decided that it is my best option, out of all others. Is it unfortunate, possibly. Is the market distorted by government currently, thus increasing job scarcity? Yes and greatly.
Ginger Josh wrote:
There are two justifications that I've seen for the non-aggression principle. 1. If everyone hits each other, society couldn't work. (Utilitarian) 2. Hitting people is fundamentally morally wrong. Why does morality matter? A. Moral principles make society function well. (Utilitarian) B. God says morality matters. Thus, if we violate morality, God will not be pleased. If God is not pleased with society, there are consequences, e.g., Sodom. (Utilitarian, ultimately)
Morality isn't utilitarian. Morality, by definition, determines what you ought to do and what you ought not to do. Morality matters, because it ultimately ought to guide our actions.