Does the minimum wage help low-skill workers? (1)get translated into
Would I be happy if employers gave low-skilled workers a raise? (2)which often elictits the answer "yes". If it is then interpreted as an answer to question (1), we have an economically illiterate view, according to Caplan.
I guess there's a lot of truth to his model of constructing answers to econ questions, but perhaps it's worth pointing out that, according to what I've read and heard from him, Caplan also uses a simplified question translation, namely
Does a rise in wages lead to less demand for work, according to a supply-and-demand graph? (3)to which the answer is yes. As for the truth, I haven't delved into the literature and won't, but according to this piece by Eric Crampton, not known as a raving socialist and opposed to minimum wages on grounds of liberty, minimum wages may not negatively affect employment if they are set at less than 45% of the average wage.
Lesson: When scoffing at other people's heuristics, be aware that your mind, too, may be working with a simplifying model. Disclosure: My heuristic in this post is, "trust what Crampton writes is roughly true".