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(11,289 posts)
Tue Feb 12, 2019, 01:33 PM Feb 2019

Let's REBUILD the American Middle Class with POLICY

Creating the American middle class was the result of policy decisions, mostly implemented by Democrats, that deliberately increased the flow of money to the lower part of the economic ladder.

Money going to the poorer people gets spent. It makes them customers. Suddenly, it creates a market for what poorer people want, and supply follows.

Getting money into the hands of poorer people happened by

* Supporting Labor Unions, to give them power to negotiate with capital
* Increasing minimum wage, to reward work
* Social Security, aid to widows and orphans
* Unemployment insurance
* Disability
* Food Stamps
* Overtime rules

The GOP has been working to slash all of these things for forty years, and is largely succeeding. Supporting these Robin Hood policies ensures a healthy economy, participation in the economy by the most people, creates markets, etc.

The way back to economic sanity runs through strengthening and increasing these policies. Let's work towards them together.

14 replies = new reply since forum marked as read
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Let's REBUILD the American Middle Class with POLICY (Original Post) ProfessorPlum Feb 2019 OP
Oh, I forgot to add ProfessorPlum Feb 2019 #1
Yes! dlk Feb 2019 #2
New fair labor standards act Midnightwalk Feb 2019 #3
Great comment ProfessorPlum Feb 2019 #5
Bottoms up... pecosbob Feb 2019 #4
Increasingly, these programs are losing their effectiveness... Wounded Bear Feb 2019 #6
a couple of charts Hermit-The-Prog Feb 2019 #7
This was one of the charts I was looking for AND EVERY DEMOCRAT NEEDS TO SHOW a kennedy Feb 2019 #11
compare today with the time of the Great Depression Hermit-The-Prog Feb 2019 #13
I KNOW....SHOW THE DAMN CHARTS...... a kennedy Feb 2019 #14
Absolutely and... stopwastingmymoney Feb 2019 #8
Here here! zentrum Feb 2019 #9
The reality of 'work' and income will be changing appalachiablue Feb 2019 #10
Absolutely everything you say ... plus FakeNoose Feb 2019 #12


(11,289 posts)
1. Oh, I forgot to add
Tue Feb 12, 2019, 01:34 PM
Feb 2019

* By the government directly employing people, often to build or maintain infrastructure


(3,131 posts)
3. New fair labor standards act
Tue Feb 12, 2019, 01:59 PM
Feb 2019

I see you added infrastructure.

I’ll add a couple others

Affordable education. Young people have to be able to attend college without incurring a lifetime of debt.

Healthcare. People should be able to get medical care. For people living paycheck to paycheck that means essentially “free”.

I don’t know where you would put livable wages but even that doesn’t capture it. People should be able to live on a single full time job. Short and unpredictable hours mean people are at the beck and call of their employers and makes it hard to juggle multiple jobs.

I think overtime, minumum wage, sufficient and predictable hours could be covered under a Fair Labor Standards Act for the 21st century. Perhaps thatsya good issue for us but might take several individobills to make progress.

Wounded Bear

(59,043 posts)
6. Increasingly, these programs are losing their effectiveness...
Tue Feb 12, 2019, 05:28 PM
Feb 2019

as our definition of work changes. Corporations are busily eliminating jobs through automation.

We need Universal Basic Income, too, to offset the loss of active jobs.

a kennedy

(30,125 posts)
11. This was one of the charts I was looking for AND EVERY DEMOCRAT NEEDS TO SHOW
Thu Feb 14, 2019, 08:16 PM
Feb 2019

AT EVERY CAMPAIGN, LUNCHEON, DISCUSSION and POLITICAL GET TOGETHER. I don’t really think the average American really knows how the middle class has lost it’s power. This chart needs to be shown EVERYWHERE.


(34,088 posts)
13. compare today with the time of the Great Depression
Thu Feb 14, 2019, 08:39 PM
Feb 2019

The income inequality is worse now than during the Depression.

We can't stand much more GOPerism.

a kennedy

(30,125 posts)
Thu Feb 14, 2019, 08:45 PM
Feb 2019



(41,407 posts)
10. The reality of 'work' and income will be changing
Thu Feb 14, 2019, 08:12 PM
Feb 2019

radically very soon for millions of people according to experts. *But the critical programs that enabled the great American middle class, the world's largest, as you noted can still be in play. The supports have been demolished over decades and the damage is clear. In addition to jobs and income, we need Medicare for All and affordable education.

Economists, including the left have been writing for several years that the US may be evolving into a developing nation, with two economies, no sizeable middle class and a huge wealth gap. At the top, a very small ruling elite class (oligarchy), a large lower class at the bottom, and a small middle class. This characterizes societies in present day Argentina, Russia and Caribbean nations, and western economies before major reforms of the progressive era in the late 19th and 20th centuries.

Experts have also been discussing automation, that in the next 10+ years, millions of jobs will be automated through artificial intelligence/AI- namely store clerks, restaurant workers, truck drivers and also white collar work, worldwide.

The idea of a Universal Basic Income/UBI has existed for several hundred years, and many authorities in various developed nations- Canada, Finland, Netherlands and US have recently been exploring options through trial projects.

UBI advocates include Andrew Yang, American tech expert who is campaigning on UBI for his 2020 presidential campaign.

We are facing enormous challenges for the survival of the planet, us and our way of life. Yet the many bright, committed people working on these issues provide hope.

Presidential candidate Andrew Yang discusses UBI. https://www.yang2020.com/


(33,425 posts)
12. Absolutely everything you say ... plus
Thu Feb 14, 2019, 08:23 PM
Feb 2019

...our economy needs to support and encourage small business free enterprise. We need to make it easier and more profitable for individuals to start their own businesses and grow in our economy. The last 30 or so years we've seen everything against free enterprise, and nothing to help the little guys. Free enterprise will become an important way to build our new middle class of the 21st century. I'm retired now and it's too late for me. But the 30- to 50-year-old Americans need something to build on and believe in!

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