Wealthy Celebrity Chef Emeril Lagasse Claims He Will Go Broke, And Guess Who He’s Blaming

Emeril Lagasse via Facebook

Emeril Lagasse via Facebook

Wealthy celebrity chef Emeril Lagasse claims he’s heading for the poorhouse. Can you guess who he’s blaming? If you guessed President Obama, then — BAM! — you were right on the money.

During an event to promote his new reality series on TNT, Lagasse lamented that his future as a businessman in the restaurant industry is bleak.

“I have nowhere to go, really — other than broke,” Lagasse said.

It’s becoming a very challenging industry to become a very successful restaurateur. I can’t charge $300 a person in my restaurant or I would not be in business. Am I using any different ingredients? Not really. Am I using any caliber of service staff? I don’t think so. I think our service is as good or better than most places.

Of course, when it came to naming the reason why he has such a pessimistic outlook, Lagasse used the tired conservative reason: President Obama.

And then you add all the Obama nonsense to what it’s become in the last several years. I don’t have anything against Mr. Obama. I’m just saying the way that, you know…the government should stay out of things. Pretty soon, they’re going to wipe a lot of the middle restaurateurs and restaurant cooks. If it continues, then watch: you’re going to have high-end, and you’re going to have fast food, and you’re going to have chain restaurants.

By “all the Obama nonsense,” Lagasse is presumably talking about Obamacare and raising the minimum wage to over $10 an hour.

As we all know, the landmark healthcare law requires all businesses who employ over 50 workers to provide health insurance to their employees. We also know that many restaurant owners have complained about the law and claim that they’ll have to raise food prices to compensate. According to Marketwatch, however, diners are expected to pay around 2 percent more to eat out. That’s not much of a rise to realistically whine about.

And then there’s raising wages. We all have heard the stories of fast-food workers going on strike across the country. They want higher wages so they don’t have to rely on federal aid to get by. But once again, restaurant owners are complaining about it because they say it will hurt them financially and cause workers to lose their jobs. Once again, this scare-mongering over something that is beneficial to the economic future of workers doesn’t pass the smell test.

According to Bloomberg, past data covering seven minimum wages since 1990 show that the doom and gloom prophecies of restaurant owners are bullsh*t. Statistics show that restaurants increase employment when the minimum wage rises. In fact, the minimum wage wouldn’t cause soaring food prices either. Wages in Australia are twice as high than in America, yet a burger just costs about 50 cents more. Even though prices may go up a little, at least the workers can making a decent living and they wouldn’t have to take federal aid. They would be able to help themselves without using taxpayer dollars.

Furthermore, according to the National Restaurant Association, the restaurant industry is expanding and making bank. The trend is upward, not downward.

Emeril Lagasse has a net worth of $50 million and a restaurant empire that generates $150 million per year. Surely, he can afford to pay his employees more and provide them health insurance. In the long-run, raising the minimum wage will increase the spending power of millions of Americans, resulting in more people choosing to eat in restaurants like Lagasse’s instead of fast-food joints. He may end up not being as rich as he is at the moment in the short-term, but I’m sure he’ll get by considering he also sells cookbooks and other products as well as produces and appears on television shows. He certainly won’t go broke as he claims.