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Sun Feb 10, 2013, 06:51 AM

What It's Going to Take to Claw Back Middle Class Wealth from the 1%

http://www.alternet.org/economy/what-its-going-take-claw-back-middle-class-wealth-1




If you truly care about economic justice, then you've got to worry about the precipitous decline of labor unions in the United States. Just take a look at these two charts. The first shows the rise and decline of union membership in the private sector from the depths of the Great Depression to today. You can clearly see that unions were a very big deal from the mid-1930s to the early 1980s. By 1953, more than one out of three American workers were members of private sector unions. That means there was a union member in nearly every family.

Through the late 1950s and 1960s, the percentage of union members declined, but the absolute number continued to increase, peaking at nearly 21 million members in 1979, (largely due to the influx of public sector workers during the 1960s and 70s). Then the decline accelerated as the share of union members fell by half between the mid-1970s and the early 1990s. (If we include public employee union members, the current rate is 11.3 percent.)



The second chart traces the share of our national income grabbed by the top one percent of U.S. households. It's basically the inverse of the unionization chart. When unions were at their strongest, inequality was the lowest. In 1928, the top one percent hauled off 23.94 percent of all U.S. income. As unions grew, the income share for the richest dropped to less than 10 percent. And as unions declined, the income share going to the wealthiest shot right back up to 1928 levels.



It's not a coincidence. When unions are strong, they bargain for higher wages and benefits. At the same time, non-union employers increase wages and benefits to attract qualified workers and prevent unions from coming in. Also, unions work for legislation that benefits middle- and low-income people (unemployment benefits, minimum wage, progressive taxation, Medicare, Medicaid, Social Security etc.). Overall, those efforts shift income from the top to the middle and bottom of the income ladder. (For more information on inequality, please see my new book, How to Make a Million Dollars an Hour: Why Hedge Funds Get Away with Siphoning Off America's Wealth ).

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Reply What It's Going to Take to Claw Back Middle Class Wealth from the 1% (Original post)
xchrom Feb 2013 OP
KG Feb 2013 #1
NorthCarolina Feb 2013 #17
bubbayugga Feb 2013 #78
roosterpack Feb 2013 #2
SnowCritter Feb 2013 #3
sendero Feb 2013 #4
roosterpack Feb 2013 #14
Demo_Chris Feb 2013 #57
sendero Feb 2013 #61
Demo_Chris Feb 2013 #62
sendero Feb 2013 #63
Demo_Chris Feb 2013 #64
freshwest Feb 2013 #65
TheKentuckian Feb 2013 #56
Doctor_J Feb 2013 #68
Fumesucker Feb 2013 #5
Lasher Feb 2013 #6
Blanks Feb 2013 #15
geckosfeet Feb 2013 #7
Spryguy Feb 2013 #8
geckosfeet Feb 2013 #19
2naSalit Feb 2013 #79
Drahthaardogs Feb 2013 #16
Left Turn Only Feb 2013 #26
libtodeath Feb 2013 #9
tomp Feb 2013 #10
ProfessionalLeftist Feb 2013 #11
marmar Feb 2013 #12
xchrom Feb 2013 #13
sendero Feb 2013 #18
geckosfeet Feb 2013 #20
DinahMoeHum Feb 2013 #27
Catherina Feb 2013 #32
Starry Messenger Feb 2013 #33
socialist_n_TN Feb 2013 #35
rhett o rick Feb 2013 #59
Initech Feb 2013 #60
Zorra Feb 2013 #83
mountain grammy Feb 2013 #21
1-Old-Man Feb 2013 #22
Left Turn Only Feb 2013 #23
The Wizard Feb 2013 #24
rhett o rick Feb 2013 #58
raouldukelives Feb 2013 #25
dkf Feb 2013 #29
raouldukelives Feb 2013 #34
dkf Feb 2013 #38
raouldukelives Feb 2013 #84
kestrel91316 Feb 2013 #37
dkf Feb 2013 #39
kestrel91316 Feb 2013 #42
dkf Feb 2013 #51
Cal Carpenter Feb 2013 #43
dkf Feb 2013 #46
Cal Carpenter Feb 2013 #48
dkf Feb 2013 #49
brentspeak Feb 2013 #45
dkf Feb 2013 #47
progressoid Feb 2013 #55
dkf Feb 2013 #66
progressoid Feb 2013 #69
dkf Feb 2013 #72
progressoid Feb 2013 #74
dkf Feb 2013 #80
progressoid Feb 2013 #81
dkf Feb 2013 #28
kestrel91316 Feb 2013 #41
dkf Feb 2013 #44
Progressive dog Feb 2013 #30
1-Old-Man Feb 2013 #31
Progressive dog Feb 2013 #36
The2ndWheel Feb 2013 #40
abelenkpe Feb 2013 #76
Octafish Feb 2013 #50
xchrom Feb 2013 #54
woo me with science Feb 2013 #52
Laelth Feb 2013 #53
WillyT Feb 2013 #67
senseandsensibility Feb 2013 #70
hay rick Feb 2013 #71
lib2DaBone Feb 2013 #73
Thinkingabout Feb 2013 #75
love_katz Feb 2013 #77
MrSlayer Feb 2013 #82

Response to xchrom (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:30 AM

1. piss on the 'middle-class' - they've been voting GOP for decades.

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Response to KG (Reply #1)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 09:31 AM

17. True, but then again neither party really advocates for the middle class.

It's become more of a lose-lose proposition.

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Response to NorthCarolina (Reply #17)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 10:39 PM

78. You can't squeeze blood out of turnips and the 1% has the means to protect their wealth.

 

what does that leave you with? the middle class.

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:51 AM

2. excellent article.....................

.................xchrom.

posting on my facebook page for my repug aquaintences and family to read.

organized labor needs to seriously rebuild. we are getting close to losing our influence as the backbone of the progressive democratic party.

big problem is union members who are registered repugs. the enemy within the ranks. we need to police that and there are ways to make that happen. i'll get into that later.

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 08:01 AM

3. Shared to facebook, too

It'll probably start some kind of shitstorm amongst my "conservative" friends - but, at the moment, I'm past caring.

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 08:03 AM

4. As dismayed as I am.....

..... about the income inequality that has rolled over the country like a foul odor, I'm not sure I believe unions are the answer.

I don't know what IS the answer, but the whole idea of unions depends on a critical mass of participation and unions have lost that completely. I don't see how we get it back.

The time for unions to circle the wagons and defend themselves was over 20 years ago. Better find a new paradigm, IMHO.

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Response to sendero (Reply #4)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 09:13 AM

14. paradigm.................

................that i see could well be the immigration reform that's being pushed by many dem/progressive legislators.

give immigrants the path to citizenship................then ORGANIZE them into union labor.

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Response to roosterpack (Reply #14)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 04:43 PM

57. 100% wrong answer

The reason unions and workers have no power is that there are more workers than jobs. This is largely because we decided to export our jobs to other countries.

The solution is not to bring more workers here.

In fact, there can be NO solution here so longs as companies can continue to move to wherever the labor is cheapest and continue to sell their products here.

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Response to Demo_Chris (Reply #57)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 04:50 PM

61. I don't disagree ...

.... with anything you have said, but unions are going nowhere whether you like it or not. They have sat by and let all this happen and now they have NO POWER WHATSOEVER. In case you didn't notice.

But feel free to try to resurrect a corpse, if that is what you think works.

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Response to sendero (Reply #61)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 05:14 PM

62. I agree with that. My point is they cannot be revived through immigration n/t

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Response to Demo_Chris (Reply #62)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 05:37 PM

63. I never said..

... anything about immigration. Of course immigration is NOT helping our jobs scenario.

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Response to sendero (Reply #63)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 05:48 PM

64. The post I responded to DID say that though :) -nt-

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Response to roosterpack (Reply #14)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 06:07 PM

65. That's pretty much been the plan for years. The GOP wants an illegal labor force to depress wages.

That has been their strategy every time they've backed from their long-standing anti-immigrant stance in various bills. They get support from donors who make money off illegal laborers.

Still a zero sum game to them to destroy solidarity among workers. Despite strong immigrant showing in recent actions, they have not gotten much done because of the continued attacks on their families who have not got full status. This keeps people in personal turmoil and severe financial stress.

I'm not sure what the rank and file union member will be able to do. I know union officials who have the majority of their members voting for teabaggers who say destroying unions is their 'first priority for economic growth.'

Unions been maligned for so long it's set in many people's minds. The greatest failure I can see was the separation of the public and corporate unions. I saw when I was a steward how new unions had to be formed because older ones did not want the new workers affected in their unions. The problems that affect union membership is the same that effects all the demographics of the country.

JMHO.

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Response to sendero (Reply #4)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 04:41 PM

56. The real paradigm shift is accepting that we might be trying to re-fight the last war rather than

the one now which is not exclusively but substantially is an ever decreasing need for labor of all sorts without which our present economic system has no answer for the many. No question the value of labor issues remain and are actually increasing, those organization can be a big part of mitigating but the page is already turning on that chapter to such a large degree that even working miracles with participation won't begin to protect from the coming wave. Raw numbers of supply and demand dictate it. High level specialties will have too few positions against the population to matter how much the few individuals can demand, while those below reach up and create a glut of the pool of those qualified which puts downward pressure on wages.
Everything else will have more looking than can possibly be needed, driving those wages toward any legal minimum or zero.

Every "shortage" is resolved with a little hype and a touch of old fashion bootstrap mythology. It is always a matter of a rounding error's worth of need to transforms very quickly to a glut with ever increasing demands for career wide decrease in wages. Next thing you know the RN's we were in a desperate shortage of are scarcely employable and BSN's are sought instead but if you really want to get ahead you need to be a nurse practitioner, RN's are a dime a dozen.

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Response to sendero (Reply #4)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:42 PM

68. Too true

what's really needed are some guillotines and large holes in the ground for the aftermath. Unions aren't going to salvage this situation. Hate Radio has brainwashed even the members themselves that unions are bad for them.

Think more aggressively - MUCH more.

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 08:04 AM

5. Heated leather seats and burl appointments in the tumbrels? n/t

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 08:05 AM

6. Top Marginal Tax Rates



When the top rate was higher, it was harder for senior executives to pay themselves such obscene salaries. This is another factor of the rise in wage inequality.

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Response to Lasher (Reply #6)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 09:20 AM

15. That's right.

Thank you for making that point.

Also notice when you overlay the union graph with the top marginal tax rate; the tax rate peaked at the same time as union membership.

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 08:11 AM

7. Agreed. Unfortunately there is widespread perception that unions protect their members

from discipline and other management scenarios. That unions have too much power.

My response to that is so what. I want the unions to have that power, and I want them to protect me from managements arbitrary policies. The alternative is the direction we are now headed, increasing economic inequality.

What It's Going to Take to Claw Back Middle Class Wealth from the 1%
When unions decline, inequality soars and we all lose.



The top one percent understands that unions are the only institution in America that stands in the way of the rich getting richer. As a result, the assault on unions has been deliberate and merciless. Step by step, labor laws have been weakened so that organizing new members has become nearly impossible. For example, employees get fired right and left for organizing activities in violation of labor law. But, employers are rarely charged by the National Labor Relations Board. And when they are, the only penalty is that the discharged workers get back their jobs and back-wages -- minus what they earned in the meantime.

Americans are furious with Wall Street. We're living through a crash created by and for financial elites, and the elites are coming out of it unscathed. Instead of Wall Street paying for the damage it has done, the rest of us are now being asked to pay with cuts in Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and many other programs that benefit middle- and lower-income groups. Occupy Wall Street proved that the American people were, at the very least, sympathetic to a movement that targets financial elites, just like the Populists and the Progressive movements did more than a century ago. A similar movement needs to be ignited and led by unions.

...

It's time for all of us to realize that inequality did not fall from the sky. It's not an act of god. It's not the result of globalization (look at Europe where unions are larger and inequality is smaller). It's the result of deliberate policies made by and for our economic elites, especially those on Wall Street.

...

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Response to geckosfeet (Reply #7)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 08:18 AM

8. And what is it going to take to claw back wealth the middle/upper took from the lower class?

 

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Response to Spryguy (Reply #8)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 09:40 AM

19. Whatever it takes.

Lets start with strong unions and labor groups, and policies that support unions and labor groups.

Then let the bargaining begin.

on edit - I would also start with a rollback of citizens united. This is clearly a policy that favors the voice of wealth over the voice the people.

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Response to geckosfeet (Reply #19)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 10:40 PM

79. Did anyone see

this thread? It applies here and would be a good insertion to this conversation right about here...

http://www.democraticunderground.com/10242988

It's definitely some healthy food for thought.

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Response to geckosfeet (Reply #7)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 09:23 AM

16. There was a recent poll here, and 20% of DU members did NOT support unions (that replied)

Can you imagine the ban hammer that would be wielded and the ensuing chaos if it had been a poll on abortion rights? on homosexual rights? equal rights? Why are those who are anti-labor allowed to continue posting here?

The Democratic Platform CLEARLY states that it is pro-union, strongly supports collective bargaining, and supports other labor laws.

As the grandson and nephew of coal miners, a grandchild of Ludlow, I will tell you what it takes. It takes sacrifice, blood, and at times arms to take back from the wealthy. The Union battles were bloody and rights were TAKEN back by hard men and women who were willing to die for their cause, it was not GIVEN back by a politician.

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Response to geckosfeet (Reply #7)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 10:03 AM

26. Europe is slowly loosing the battle, too.

Europe is the last hold out for the middle class, but if you look closely, you will see that globalization is making its mark there as well. It will take a little longer, but conservatives like the leadership in Germany will slowly make inroads to weaken unions in Europe, as well.

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 08:20 AM

9. How do you get people to stop voting for union busting politicians?

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 08:53 AM

10. it will take a MASS movement....

....and a party to represent that movement, i.e., not the democratic party (in its current form it is complicit, and the likelihood of its changing is miniscule).

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 08:59 AM

11. This can't BE more right. It's the truth!

We HAVE to have labor unions or we have no middle class. And without labor unions, we have unsustainable, unstable income inequality and horrific trade imbalances.

Rec'd and bookmarked.

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 09:08 AM

12. ........

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Response to marmar (Reply #12)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 09:12 AM

13. +1

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Response to marmar (Reply #12)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 09:36 AM

18. +2

... what it has taken throughout history.

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Response to marmar (Reply #12)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 09:41 AM

20. +1

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Response to marmar (Reply #12)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 10:03 AM

27. Odious, but sadly, probably, necessary. . .



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Response to marmar (Reply #12)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 10:25 AM

32. +5 n/t

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Response to marmar (Reply #12)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 10:50 AM

33. But think about all the sad wealthy people.

They work so darn hard!

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Response to marmar (Reply #12)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 10:55 AM

35. Revolution (for those who don't get the picture)......

Unless anybody thinks the 1% is going to give it back out of the kindness of their lil capitalist hearts? I didn't think so.

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Response to marmar (Reply #12)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 04:48 PM

59. While that is romantic, revolutions rarely if ever turn power over to the masses.

The best we can hope for is to scare the ruling elite into throwing us some bones.

I recommend reading, Thomas R. Dye's, "THe Irony of Democracy".

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Response to marmar (Reply #12)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 04:49 PM

60. Every day more and more I'm beginning to understand why the French revolted.

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Response to marmar (Reply #12)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 01:12 AM

83. well done :)

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 09:43 AM

21. If 1 to 2% of the US population holds the majority of the wealth

and 98% are left with what's left and blamed for the ills of the nation, then how did Rmoney get 47% of the vote? I don't need an answer, I was voting for Carter in 1982 while my working class, union friends were sucked into "morning in America!" only to find out it wasn't morning for them. But the propaganda machine was cranking, and, after 8 years of the lovable actor president, the die was cast.
When the masses of working people who can't be bothered to register and vote for their best interests finally wake up and when "poor Republicans," an oxymoron for sure, finally realize that racism won't cut it and "Jesus plus nothing" won't heal their sick child, then finally, we might see the dawn of "morning in America."

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 09:52 AM

22. Inheritance taxes reclaim wealth, income taxes pull back a small portion of annual earnings

And the real problem, which is the establishment of dynastic wealth, can only be dealt with by inheritance taxes. As it is now we essentially have none.

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 09:54 AM

23. checkmate

You are absolutely right, but while progressives have been saying these things for decades, a large part of the public is too ignorant to know that a divide and conquer strategy was implemented by the corporate world, and globalization of the economy was the winning move. Because American workers are competing with wages and benefits (or lack thereof) with workers from the developing world, they are no longer needed if they are going to demand just compensations. You don't want to work for what we're giving you...fine, we'll move to Indonesia. Globalization has been so successful that the billions of people of China and India have become consumers, meaning Americans aren't even absolutely necessary as consumers anymore. And the American workers have been made to hate the few unionized workers that remain because compared to themselves people like teachers appear overcompensated.

What's the answer? Since even Democratic presidents like Clinton and Obama continue to push the free trade agreements that ultimately give away more decent jobs than we gain, other than a radical restructuring of the world economy (like what we almost had with the Great Recession), the future doesn't look good for the true middle class in America. When I saw how quickly the status quo was put back in place by a Democratic president, no less, I realized that the days of FDR are gone. Checkmate.

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 09:57 AM

24. Start with overturning the radical

Supreme Court's Citizens United decision. Step two, seize the assets of all who benefited from this most corrupt decision. Make Cayman Islands accounts and investments illegal and punishable by 50 years of hard labor.
Drag some corrupt bankers into the street for arbitrary horse whippings, and seize their assets of those and their families.
Any politician who objects or intervenes gets a blindfold and cigarette. Within 24 hours the turnaround will commence.

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Response to The Wizard (Reply #24)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 04:45 PM

58. You have good ideas but sadly we dont have tools to bring them about.

The 1% own Congress and the President.

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 09:58 AM

25. The problem is more people care about Wall St returns than Main St's return.

The only thing that will harm it is starvation. Only the people hold that power. They will not exercise it. People are down for suffering for a cause, as long as it doesn't include their participation.

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Response to raouldukelives (Reply #25)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 10:08 AM

29. Wall Street returns are Main St's returns.

 

Wall Street allows Union members to retire. Without those returns there is no retirement.

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Response to dkf (Reply #29)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 10:51 AM

34. All I have seen from Wall St in my neck of the woods is the reduction of labor.

Along with the Redwood trees, salamanders, eagles and salmon. My Main St was stripped of mom and pop shops and filled with big box corporate stores, my fellow citizens are homeless and are losing safety nets because of corporate lobbyists pushing for austerity. Even as the Dow reaches lauded goals, the stench of death in my hometown grows ever stronger. They are not Main St's return, they are its demise.

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Response to raouldukelives (Reply #34)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 11:36 AM

38. My parents are state workers who retired at 55 with full health benefits.

 

Their retirement rests on the investments in their retirement plan.

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Response to dkf (Reply #38)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 01:20 PM

84. I'm glad they were able too.

And that they did it in a time when the realities of climate change were not yet known.
Now we know. Support Wall St, support climate change, support denial science.
I am happy for people that have nice retirements. It just saddens me that the cost for that is the future sustainability of our natural world and the extinction of things that make this life better for me. I get it though, not many people care about plants and animals. Not when a slightly more comfortable retirement is at stake.

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Response to dkf (Reply #29)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 11:35 AM

37. Wall Street shenanigens ATE my retirement.

FUCK Wall Street.

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Response to kestrel91316 (Reply #37)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 11:36 AM

39. You should be close to where you were. The stock market is.

 

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Response to dkf (Reply #39)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 11:42 AM

42. Wall Street shenanigans ATE my retirement.

And it ATE my clients' jobs and retirement. It destroyed my client base financially. I had to sell off the remnants of my stocks to get by through the recession.

You REALLY don't get it. Either that, or you are mocking people you see as your inferiors.

I won't say which of the two I think is the case.

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Response to kestrel91316 (Reply #42)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 12:14 PM

51. It was a housing bubble based on too much debt...

 

Like the latest college loan debt bubble or the government debt bubble.

I see people here saying government deficits don't mean anything, nor does the amount of debt.

Yet it's all Wall Street Wall Street.

No... Its debt debt debt.

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Response to dkf (Reply #29)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 11:42 AM

43. "Wall Street allows Union members to retire. "

You say: "Wall Street allows Union members to retire. "

Or not...

And therein lies the problem.

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Response to Cal Carpenter (Reply #43)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 11:45 AM

46. Oh practically any union member is better off than a non union member in that field.

 

But yes things may not be as rosy as once thought.

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Response to dkf (Reply #46)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 11:52 AM

48. In what field?

I'm confused.

Also, very few people can go through life at this time thinking "things *may not* be as rosy as once thought". Sorry your rose-colored capitalist glasses are fading to clarity.

Life sucks here (well, economically speaking).

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Response to Cal Carpenter (Reply #48)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 11:56 AM

49. With an equivalent job, a union worker is much better off than a non-union worker.

 

But with the lack of return since the crash, the pension funds aren't as healthy and therefore the future not as rosy. Five years of no gains is a long time.

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Response to dkf (Reply #29)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 11:45 AM

45. Congrats on winning Dumb Post of the Week

You are well ahead in the race for the Dumb Post of the Year, and probably for the Decade, as well.

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Response to brentspeak (Reply #45)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 11:49 AM

47. Any retirement is based on investing in Wall Street.

 

Unless its based on investing in real estate.

Cash won't do it....you need more of a return on your savings.

It's the people who don't understand this and hate Wall Street who will never retire.

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Response to dkf (Reply #29)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 03:11 PM

55. Only 11% of Americans are in Unions.

And 46% of Americans have no investements in the stock market.

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Response to progressoid (Reply #55)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:40 PM

66. 46% don't 54% do. That's a majority.

 

And I don't know if union members say they own stocks even if their pensions are invested in them. It's not something they control after all.

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Response to dkf (Reply #66)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:53 PM

69. Well if it's a majority, then it must be good.

I know that every time the stock market surges upward, I get all tingley between my legs.

A rising tide lifts all boats donchaknow. As long as you are one of the 54% that have a boat.

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Response to progressoid (Reply #69)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 09:03 PM

72. Investing is the only path to retirement. Otherwise it's whatever your SS provides for you

 

And no early retirement.

If more people realized that maybe they would realize Wall Street can't be the enemy. You've got to use it to your advantage or you will be pretty miserable.

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Response to dkf (Reply #72)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 09:41 PM

74. There are 50 million Americans living in poverty.

And millions more on the cusp. Maybe you could manage their finances.


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Response to progressoid (Reply #74)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 10:51 PM

80. All I can hope is they see the light.

 

I see no other way to make it work.

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Response to dkf (Reply #80)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 11:49 PM

81. Seeing the light ain't gonna help

if they have no money.

But I'm sure some of that Wallstreet money will trickle down to them and then they can invest in Wallstreet.

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 10:07 AM

28. The wealth lost was the housing market. The stock market is back up to pre crash levels.

 

So the middle class needs to hope for a recovery in the housing market. That's how they "claw back" their wealth.

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Response to dkf (Reply #28)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 11:39 AM

41. Your mockery of the Obama 2012 slogan is duly noted.

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Response to kestrel91316 (Reply #41)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 11:43 AM

44. You may not have noticed but the housing market IS recovering.

 

The degree to which it recovers is where hope comes in.

But that isn't a source of wealth people can or should tap anyway, not unless they are downsizing.

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 10:12 AM

30. Without a high inheritance tax, it will continue to get worse

The war on Unions is only part of the war for the 1%.

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Response to Progressive dog (Reply #30)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 10:25 AM

31. It is always pleasing to see a person with a low post count hit the nail right on the head.

Welcome. As another low poster (actually I had a count over 10k before the change in screen name) it is good to see a person who understands how widespread this war on us is and what weapons are being used against us, things like the diminishment of the "death tax", Right to Work laws, disenfranchisement of minorities, and a transfer of responsibility for the day to day workings of Government from the public sector to the private sector.

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Response to 1-Old-Man (Reply #31)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 10:57 AM

36. Thanks, I did see your post so you hit the nail first

The war on the middle class and poor is so widespread that it is damn near impossible to pay attention to all of it.

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 11:38 AM

40. Unions are strong when place matters

It's an increasingly placeless world.

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Response to The2ndWheel (Reply #40)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 10:34 PM

76. We need global labor unions. Nt

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 12:00 PM

50. Brilliant OP, xchrom. Here's why so few know the facts...

From Maria Galardin's TUC (Time of Useful Consciousness) Radio:



Alex Carey: Corporations and Propaganda
The Attack on Democracy


The 20th century, said Carey, is marked by three historic developments: the growth of democracy via the expansion of the franchise, the growth of corporations, and the growth of propaganda to protect corporations from democracy. Carey wrote that the people of the US have been subjected to an unparalleled, expensive, 3/4 century long propaganda effort designed to expand corporate rights by undermining democracy and destroying the unions. And, in his manuscript, unpublished during his life time, he described that history, going back to World War I and ending with the Reagan era. Carey covers the little known role of the US Chamber of Commerce in the McCarthy witch hunts of post WWII and shows how the continued campaign against "Big Government" plays an important role in bringing Reagan to power.

John Pilger called Carey "a second Orwell", Noam Chomsky dedicated his book, Manufacturing Consent, to him. And even though TUC Radio runs our documentary based on Carey's manuscript at least every two years and draws a huge response each time, Alex Carey is still unknown.

Given today's spotlight on corporations that may change. It is not only the Occupy movement that inspired me to present this program again at this time. By an amazing historic coincidence Bill Moyers and Charlie Cray of Greenpeace have just added the missing chapter to Carey's analysis. Carey's manuscript ends in 1988 when he committed suicide. Moyers and Cray begin with 1971 and bring the corporate propaganda project up to date.

This is a fairly complex production with many voices, historic sound clips, and source material. The program has been used by writers and students of history and propaganda. Alex Carey: Taking the Risk out of Democracy, Corporate Propaganda VS Freedom and Liberty with a foreword by Noam Chomsky was published by the University of Illinois Press in 1995.

SOURCE: http://tucradio.org/new.html



The audio is a must-listen. While the names aren't changed to protect the guilty, the message and how it relates to our current pickle shows who and what counts.

http://tucradio.org/AlexCarey_ONE.mp3

Helps explain how Democracy devolved into its current condition and what we need to do to move forward, starting with putting the "Public" into Airwaves again.

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Response to Octafish (Reply #50)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 12:54 PM

54. +1

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 12:15 PM

52. K&R

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 12:16 PM

53. k&r for labor. n/t

-Laelth

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 07:41 PM

67. HUGE K & R !!!


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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 08:13 PM

70. It's all about cheap labor

The top one percent cares about that above all else. They want everyone in the bottom ninety nine percent powerless and groveling. It's not only because they don't want to pay wages (of course they don't) , but also because when everyone is overworked and stressed out and desperate they can grab even more power, politically and economically. That's why it's impossible to be anti-union and be a progressive IMO.

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 08:18 PM

71. K&R

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 09:31 PM

73. Its going to take Labor.. fighting together...even a total work stoppage.

 

Just like Lech Walesa fought for Poland.. we are going to have to claw our way back to what should have prevailed all along.

G.W. Bush and his Neocons set the world stage on 9-11-2001. Since then.. we have all been dancing to the tune of the NeoCons... and it is getting very old.. very tired.. and there is very little left to steal.. the Republicans have stolen, and plundered ...what used to be a Democratic nation.

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 10:06 PM

75. The early union members fought, sweated, cried and died for the cause.

When the old bargainers started dying out those who followed just did not seem to have the backbone to stand up to the pressures. The art of bargaining has been lost along with weak links in membership to take the hard stand.

The non members who did not know squat about union "knew" what they was fed by anti union writers and would argue all day long. (I know, I was married to one who read Bill Buckley) After many years of me refusing to change my mind he finally found out what I did as a job Stewart and his opinion changed. I also told my members when their actions was going to get them terminated and I would not be able to help them. I had medical, vacation and pension but most of all we had a working contract which needed to be followed by union members as well as management. The first line supervisors loved when we got a raise and better benefits for they got them also. When unions lobbied for safer working conditions it was for those who was not union members.

When you hear those like Scott Walker telling you if every state had the right to work there would be more jobs in the state than ever could be filled, he is lying. The states where they have right to work has lower wages, less benefits and less jobs. Before the rest of us old farts die off some one needs to learn from real union members, it is their future. With our Republican Congressman trying to end SSI and Medicare it is going to be really hard, young people are not making enough money to save and no pensions

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Sun Feb 10, 2013, 10:35 PM

77. + 1,000,000,000,000

K&R!

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Mon Feb 11, 2013, 01:09 AM

82. At this point? Full blown revolution.

 

We need to face it, It's over. The bad guys won. Globalization is a reality we're never coming back from. They sold us out for the cheap labor and having no oversight. And the worst part is, we let them do it and in many cases cheered it on. It's the fault of my parents' generation for voting for that fucking piece of shit Reagan. That was the end right there. There was hope up until that point and now there is none. Enjoy what you can, while you can.

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