A program for real change...

http://peaceandsocialjustice.blogspot.com/2013/03/a-progressive-program-for-real-change.html


What we need is a "21st Century Full Employment Act for Peace and Prosperity" which would make it a mandatory requirement that the president and Congress attain and maintain full employment.


"Voting is easy and marginally useful, but it is a poor substitute for democracy, which requires direct action by concerned citizens"

- Ben Franklin

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Finally the Cuban Five are free!!!

http://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/obama-us-re-establishing-relations-with-cuba/ar-BBgUJV0?ocid=mailsignout

Some good news...

Now is the time for the American people to push for ending this barbaric U.S. economic embargo against Cuba and exert pressure on Congress to open up U.S. tourism to Cuba without limitations.

This is the first half-way decent thing Obama has done during his presidency... but still far too little and far too late; but, better late than never even if only a half-measure.

No doubt this will be center-pieced by the Obama Administration to cover up its dirty deeds in bringing us closer to World War III as Obama sends arms to the fascists who have illegally seized power in the Ukraine.

I look forward to being able to get on a boat or plane from the United States with my destination Cuba as I am sure many other Americans do just as our Canadian neighbors to the north have been able to do for so many years.

Two choices: bust up the big banks or take them over?

U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren is calling for "busting up" and "breaking up" the big banks:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DJpTxONxvoo#t=458

BUT--- busting up the big banks is no solution to anything.

Busting up these big banks isn't even any kind of progressive reform.

What is required is bringing these big banks, and the entire banking and financial industry, under public ownership and democratic control.

We should have learned from the government ordered, overseen and directed break-up of Ma Bell that busting up these huge monopoly corporations is no solution at all... and only makes it more difficult to regulate and control these industries which government ordered the "break-ups" of to reach greater profits through more severe exploitation of the industries' employees (and outright union busting as in cases like Verizon and CenturyLink) while expanding into new heights in ripping off consumers.

Workers and consumers will fair no better with the break-up of big banks like Citibank than they did with the government busting up Ma Bell.

I find it interesting Senator Elizabeth Warren fails to examine what happened after the government busted up Ma Bell before she starts talking about doing the same thing with the big banks like Citibank.

The real progressive solution in both situations--- be it communications or banking--- is nationalization: public ownership of these industries under the democratic control of the people.

Elizabeth Warren sounds like she is attacking Wall Street when Wall Street investors are drooling at the mouth just waiting for the government to bust up these big banks so their fortunes will increase as the misery created for most people deepens.

Just ask any worker who had been employed by Ma Bell if their union is stronger today than before Ma Bell was busted up and if their livelihoods in comparison to actual cost-of-living are better today than before the break-up. And don't forget to ask them about health care costs.

Real reformers of the banking industry talk about public banking and public take-over of the banking industry and they aren't afraid of the red-baiting that they are sure to endure.

Many are saying that this recent speech in the U.S. Senate by Elizabeth Warren has assured her a shot at the presidency; but, does her anti-Wall Street rhetoric match up with the real reforms required which would really challenge Wall Street's strangle-hold on political and economic power?

In fact, in spite of her anti-Wall Street rhetoric, Warren proposes the Wall Street solution... public banking is the working class solution.

Senator Elizabeth Warren should be calling for the establishment of a national bank along the lines of the State Bank of North Dakota... then she would be talking about a real progressive solution.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

The KKK not past history in Texas

I am visiting Texas.

Yesterday I went to the Bob Bullock Museum in Austin, Texas.

At this museum a few blocks from the Texas State Capitol building, they have an important exhibit about the Ku Klux Klan in the history of Texas which points out its long, sordid, criminal history of racism and dirty racist deeds.

One fact I found quite surprising, and alarming, since Texas is always puffed up as one of the more modern and forward thinking of the southern states is that Texas has, at present, the largest number of KKK chapters in the United States.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Ethics and morality

Ethics and morality under capitalism.

Some people push the idea that some kind of new ethics and morality beyond greed can be created under capitalism if people will just purchase in an informed manner the products produced by corporations bound by some kind of code of ethics and morality.

Missing from this thinking is the fact that under capitalism all production by these corporations begins with unethical and immoral conduct from which they can't escape; namely, the exploitation of workers by these capitalists and only the public ownership of the mines, mills and factories along with other enterprises can change this.

For working people, capitalism will always be an unethical and immoral system with only socialism being an ethical and moral alternative because socialism puts an end to the exploitation of man by man.

One simply can not wisely purchase products manufactured by workers employed by capitalists believing they are changing corporate ethics and morality because these capitalist corporations and those who own and run them only understand greed: profits.

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Do you need a bunch of overpaid party hacks to do your thinking for you?

Trust yourself based on what you see happening in the world around you and your real life experiences; chances are good you know more than you think you do.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Ferguson--- A travesty of justice.

Ferguson--- A travesty of justice. Blame Obama and Holder for not going after this racist cop and the racist Ferguson Police Department for civil rights violations which prepared this grand jury to think that they could come to this decision and get away with it.

Racism and all forms of hate are like a snowball going down a long steep hill on a warm spring day--- the snowball just keeps getting bigger and bigger.
If you let these racist bigots who are cops in this case get away with murder and violence it will encourage other bigots to act in the same way thinking they can get away with murder.

The fact is, it was either convict this racist cop, Darren Wilson, for murdering an innocent Michael Brown or let him go free because if convicted of this racist, cold blooded murder Wilson would have been placed on Missouri's death row and this would have sent a completely different message to all racist bigots that they would be prosecuted for their crimes to the full extent of the law.

This racist cop pumped six or seven bullets into Michael Brown. Could you just imagine what the talk would be had Michael Brown pumped six bullets into Darren Wilson? All these racist bigots would be calling for Michael Brown's execution.

We have gone through this up here in Northern Minnesota with racist cops who kill and commit acts of violence and all kinds of dirty racist acts against Native Americans...

The same United States Department of Justice comes in and says the solution to this racism is "educating" these racist cops with "diversity training."

So, these racist cops get off with an education and people of color go to prison or sit on death row.

What does all of this tell us about justice being blind in America?

And will we find out years from now that the role of the FBI going into Ferguson was to incite the violence we are seeing now in order to cover up the crimes involved in this grand jury decision.

Note how the grand jury was used to shield this racist killer cop from prosecution.

Monday, November 24, 2014

What is the condition of the working class today?

"The condition of the working-class is the real basis and point of departure of all social movements of the present because it is the highest and most unconcealed pinnacle of the social misery existing in our day." Friedrich Engels writing in 1845; as true today as when Engels wrote it.


The AD NAUSEUM support for Obama and the Democrats coming from people who haven't even attended a Democratic Party meeting to push an anti-imperialist working class agenda is sickening. In fact, they don't even attend Democratic Party precinct caucuses, county, state or national conventions because they know if they bring forward peace, social and economic justice issues that would remedy the problems working class families are experiencing they would be red-baited, called names, silenced and chased away by the corporate lawyers placed in charge by the Wall Street firms they are employed by.


Read what former socialist governor of Minnesota elected on the Minnesota Farmer-Labor Party ticket had to say:


http://collections.mnhs.org/…/articles/47/v47i04p154-161.pdf

Sunday, November 23, 2014

An interesting article about the Minimum Wage/Living Wage Movements by Steven Greenhouse in today's New York Times... BUT---

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/11/23/business/how-a-coalition-pushed-for-a-hotel-workers-minimum-wage.html?smid=fb-share&_r=0

But, are these real living wages?

More to the point: Will these be real living wages at the time they go into effect?

This is the trap we are led into by the "$15.00 NOW!" movement. Instead of demanding that these wages be tied to actual cost of living, the "$15.00 NOW!" movement assures employers of poverty wages and rising profits.

Workers are always thrilled with any wage increase; nut, being thrilled is not the issue.

The issue is eliminating poverty wages which eliminates poverty.

Furthermore, all of these schemes are attached to leaving thousands of workers without the wages being held up as advances.

We need universal Minimum Wage legislation which assures non-poverty, real living wages tied to actual cost of living factors... and we need a powerful coalition to accomplish this but as a first step we need to widely promote the idea of wages being linked to cost-of-living.

Most unions are opposed to making this link simply because most of the contracts that have been shoved down workers throats since the late 1940's have been poverty wage--- or near poverty wage--- contracts with COLA not being anywhere near the actual rise in cost-of-living.

As Mark Froemke, a leader of the Minnesota/Dakotas AFL-CIO blatantly stated: "We aren't going to advocate anything higher (higher than $10.10) because we aren't getting any dues from these workers." This is the way millionaire labor leaders and their flunkies in the labor movement think.

I was recently thrilled to get a forty-cent an hour increase in my pay... but I'm still getting a poverty wage under a union contract! And I make far less than the pay in this NYT's article.

I would point out that the intent of the Minimum Wage is to get workers to a real living wage in line with actual cost-of-living and not to provide employers with low wages from which they reap huge super-profits.

Steven Greenhouse obviously understand "the big squeeze" workers in this country are being subjected to but does he understand every single working class family is trapped in a COST-OF-LIVING CRISIS and the only way out is through full employment and a real living Minimum Wage based on actual cost-of-living?

What we need is a "21st Century Full Employment Act for Peace and Prosperity" where swords will be beat into plowshares and instead of manufacturing multi-billion dollar Gerald R. Ford Aircraft Carriers with massive cost overruns (see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gerald_R._Ford-class_aircraft_carrier) we need to invest our resources in National Public Health Care and Child Care Systems which will create meaningful jobs providing the American people with the requirements for decent lives and livelihoods.

An argument is made that these adjustments in the Minimum Wage will eventually get us to real living wages. This simply is not true. Nor will the advocacy piecemeal reforms result in the reforms required.

The Full Employment Act of 1947 was defeated by a vicious red-baiting assault launched by Wall Street. It is time for rank-and-file workers, organized and unorganized to unite and fight for what is needed:a "21st Century Full Employment Act for Peace and Prosperity."

We should be asking what happened to the AFL-CIO's Committee on Conversion that was brought into existence as a result of the work done by the IAM's William Winpisinger.

Also see:
http://uslaboragainstwar.org/Article/60/uss-gerald-r-ford-check-out-the-construction-of-the-most-expensive-ship-ever/tab/4458

I find it interesting that the Wall Street merchants of death and destruction are always allowed by the government to implement whatever cost overruns they want to claiming rising prices and costs but when it comes to workers needing wage increases to meet their rising cost-of-living requirements the employers and the politicians they elect cry.

Friday, November 21, 2014

More money for militarism and wars

What could we do to improve the lives of people with this kind of money and resources?


Bloomberg.com
November 21, 2014
U.S. Aircraft Carrier’s Cost Likely to Rise Again, GAO Says
By David Lerman and Tony Capaccio

The cost of the U.S. Navy’s new aircraft carrier is likely to keep rising from the $12.9 billion now estimated, with the final price masked by deferring some work until after the ship is delivered, the Government Accountability Office said.

In the latest in a series of reports offering political ammunition to critics of the Navy’s most expensive warship, the GAO yesterday reaffirmed its earlier concerns that the Ford-class carrier being built by Huntington Ingalls Industries Inc. (HII) will cost more and take longer to complete than advertised.

“With the shipbuilder embarking on one of the most complex phases of construction with the greatest likelihood for cost growth, cost increases beyond the current $12.9 billion cost cap appear likely,” the watchdog agency said.

To stay within the cost cap, the Navy is deferring some work, including installing satellite communications equipment and correcting defects, until after the ship is delivered, to create a funding reserve, according to the report.

“This approach obscures visibility into the true cost of the ship and results in delivering a ship that is less complete than initially planned,” the GAO said.

The report may serve as fodder for renewed attacks on the Navy’s construction plans from the Senate Armed Services Committee. Senator John McCain, an Arizona Republican poised to become chairman of the panel in January, has been a persistent critic of the carrier.
McCain Criticism
McCain said in a statement that “after $2.4 billion in cost overruns on this ship already, the Navy is now trying to artificially shift more cost overruns until after the Ford’s delivery.”

“The Armed Services Committee will be seeking further explanation from the Navy on this troubling report and will work to hold those responsible for these cost overruns accountable,” McCain said.

Huntington, the only U.S. builder of aircraft carriers, defended the progress of the Gerald R. Ford, which is the first major redesign of a carrier since the 1960’s-era Nimitz class.

The Ford is 83 percent complete and “we continue to see improvements on our performance on Ford and we continue to further increase efficiencies and to retire risk,” said Beci Brenton, a spokeswoman for the Newport News, Virginia-based shipbuilder.

The GAO, the investigative arm of Congress, urged lawmakers to consider revising legislation that set the cost cap on the ship “to improve accountability of Ford-class construction costs.”
‘Operational Capabilities’
The Pentagon rejected that advice, saying all needed funding is already included, according to a written response to the report by Katrina McFarland, assistant secretary of defense for acquisition.

The GAO also found that Ford will deploy “without demonstrating full operational capabilities” because some requirements, such as increasing aircraft launch rates, won’t be met in time and will limit the carrier’s operations.

The Navy is confident that a ship will be delivered under the cost cap, said Commander Thurraya Kent, a Navy spokesman.

Deferring “some non-critical work, such as air wing berthing spaces, that are not required at delivery was done to allow the shipbuilder to focus his resources on the most critical activities to deliver the ship,” Kent said.

To contact the reporters on this story: David Lerman in Washington at dlerman1@bloomberg.net; Tony Capaccio in Washington at acapaccio@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: John Walcott at jwalcott9@bloomberg.net; Larry Liebert, Michael Shepard

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Is there a link between problems with foster care in this country and incarceration?

Recently a group of reform minded people were granted a meeting with the head of the Michigan Department of Corrections.

During this meeting a very important fact came out which I was never aware of and probably most people in this country are not aware of this important fact:

Over 80% of the people locked up in local, state and federal prisons come out of foster homes.

This has apparently been well known by politicians and bureaucrats for a very long period of time.

Common sense would seem to dictate that the foster care system in this country should have come under very close public scrutiny since so much money--- public and private--- is spent on foster care.

I am sure there are some very good foster families because I know some; I also know some who just do foster care for the money.

Much of this foster care is related to the churches and given all the corruption, unethical and criminal behavior of so much of the clergy it would only be logical to conclude many people are in jails and prisons because of the failures of the foster care system in this country.

is there or isn't there a direct correlation between foster care and people being imprisoned?

Seeing as how the government has failed to investigate this I think we have to consider that there is a direct link between foster care and the high rate of incarceration in this country.

I would also note that many of these priests being found guilty of molesting young children have been deeply involved with foster care programs.

I am sure there will be some people who come forward telling me that I have no right to draw these kinds of conclusions based on the fact that 80% of the people incarcerated have been in foster care; however, I ask:

Why has the government failed to investigate this connection?

What will politicians in Michigan now do with this information?

And why aren't the reformers like activist Angela Davis who are so concerned about the prison-industrial complex bringing forward this fact?

Monday, November 17, 2014

The time has come to break free from the two-party trap.

Haven't we heard this talk of "fighting back" from these same millionaire labor leaders over-and-over again with no attempt made to mobilize the working class for fighting back?

What a crock of bullshit.


After tough election, labor leaders say unions are here to stay

mmonday520x2
CHICAGO - Just weeks after many Republicans were swept into office three of the nation's top labor leaders declared at a public forum here Nov. 13 that unions are ready to fight what they expect will be a renewed nationwide assault on workers' rights.

"What happened in this election," Richard Trumka, president of the AFL-CIO declared, "is that the vast majority of the voters stayed home." He attributed the massive stay-away to widespread disgust with falling wages, fear of the uncertain in both foreign and domestic affairs, a flat or declining standard of living and serious problems in the messaging that came form both major political parties. "The Republicans blamed everything on President Obama and there was no real message coming from the Democrats either," Trumka said.

He warned that the GOP should not interpret the results as "any kind of mandate for their policies," pointing out that when given the chance to vote on specific issues, "people voted overwhelmingly for hikes in the minimum wage. When polled they were overwhelmingly against any cuts in Medicare and Social Security."

Trumka was joined by Leo Gerard, president of the United Steelworkers and by Eliseo Medina, former SEIU secretary-tresurer and currently a leader in the national fight for comprehensive immigration reform. The event was a forum sponsored here by the University of Chicago's Institute of Politics.

Gerard said the election results should also be blamed on "the record amount of dark money poured into the Republican campaigns. They, the Koch brothers and their like spent four and a half billion buying this election," Gerard said. "That's a record."

Trumka said the labor movement "can usually be counted upon for 25 percent of the vote. That usual 25 percent went down to 18 percent. Still," he noted, "the fact that 18 percent of the voters were union members puts our participation in the election ahead of our percentage in the overall population."

Nationally, only 11 percent of the workforce is unionized.

Trumka noted that because of the small size of the labor movement, unions cannot alone carry on the fight to defend workers rights and turn the country around. "This is why we are fully engaging with our allies in the community," he said. "Our values and what we stand for are in sync with the majority of Americans. We want to build a permanent coalition on as many issues as possible together with other groups," he added. Trumka noted that current efforts to build lasting coalitions with allies differ from past efforts by unions "which were directed at forming temporary alliances on single issues rather than ongoing coalitions around a number of concerns we all have."

Some in the crowd at the University of Chicago last Thursday questioned the enormous amount of effort unions have been putting into the fight for immigration reform. "Wouldn't it be better if we just froze all immigration for the time being, until the job situation improves?," one participant asked.

"That is not the way to deal with the problem we have," Medina said. "There are millions who are now here with their families. Their immigration status is being used to deny them their rights and this brings down conditions for all workers in the country."

"As long as I am president of the AFL-CIO," Trumka said, "our fight is going to be for full rights for immigrants. That is the only way unscrupulous employers can be prevented from playing immigrant workers against native born. It's the only way to resolve the problem."

Gerard said that when President Obama acts soon by executive order, to provide relief for perhaps millions of undocumented workers, "we [the labor movement] are going to have to get behind him and support him; the Republican attacks on him will be unrelenting," Gerard warned.

Trumka vowed that unions will continue their battle for civil rights on every front.

"We were down in Ferguson right away," he said. "During the last pesidential elections we made it clear that the one totally unacceptable reason for not voting for Barack Obama was that he was black. Equally, it would be unacceptable not to vote for Hillary Clinton because she is a woman."

Gerard said that there is work to be done yet in the area of increasing workers' understanding of major economic issues.
"People need to know, for example," that when the Republicans talk about the 'free market' they are talking about something that doesn't exist. No markets are free. They all have rules, it's only a question of who makes the rules for whom."

Trumka followed up on that theme: "People need to know, for example, that it was Milton Friedman from this university who first developed the extreme free market shock capitalism model and that it was no accident where he applied it first - in Chile where it resulted in tens of thousands of deaths and economic disaster that continues on some levels today."
He was referring to the right-wing economic policies instituted under the Washington-backed military coup that resulted in the death of elected socialist President Salvador Allende in Chile in 1973.


Come on; does anyone really believe this bullshit?

We have all heard this same talk from these big blowhard millionaire labor leaders before with nothing ever being done. They will do nothing now except what Trumka has more than hinted at--- helping to elect Hillary Clinton who is just one more puppet being worked on strings controlled from corporate boardrooms by the parasitical crowd of Wall Street warmongers.

As for what happened in Chile, the barbaric carnage and brutal repression orchestrated by a bunch of murderous fascist bastards working at Wall Street's behest, the AFL-CIO was working side-by-side with Wall Street bosses and hand-in-hand with the U.S. CIA; apparently a story Trumka and Gerard do not want to  fully tell and explain.

These never-ending dirty imperialist wars are making us all poor. There is always enough money for another war but never enough to fund the requirements of working class families for more decent lives. Trumka and Gerard are eating up this crap about a "populist economics" spewed by the likes of NAFTA supporter Robert Reich without any mention of how militarism and wars are robbing our Nation of the wealth created by workers which should be used to fund people's needs like health care and child care through National Public Health Care and National Public Child Care systems which are publicly funded, publicly administered and publicly delivered just like public education.

The Democrats, including Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton, are no better than the Republicans.

It's time for working people to break free from Wall Street's two-party trap otherwise we are not going to improve our lives and livelihoods; we will not have peace and our living environment will be unable to support healthy populations with clean air, water and land.

As for Obama and "immigration reform;" Obama has deported more workers than any other president and he has not ended these maliciously racist deportations where the only "crime" committed by these working class families has been seeking a better life through hard work.

Compare the way these "undocumented workers" have been treated like criminals to how this rotten Wall Street government has coddled Nazi war criminals who should have been dangling from the hangman's noose, but, instead, were provided with the highest Social Security payments as their dirty deeds were covered up.

 In fact, thousands of workers who have been deported by Obama were paying union dues--- and how have their unions defended them? Listening to Trumka and Gerard talk as if they are actually doing something to defend the rights of "undocumented workers" who are no different from any other workers and entitled to their rights under the United States Constitution, Bill of Rights and the words proclaimed in the United Nations' Universal Declaration of Human Rights is enough to make one vomit. Mere words; no action.

The cause of workers leaving their homelands is Wall Street's exploitation of workers and the rape of their lands and resources and now these innocent workers are being used as scapegoats for Wall Street to hide its criminal dirty deeds behind. Just leave these "undocumented workers" alone and let them live here in the United States in the peace and dignity they are entitled to; they have had enough punishment for several lifetimes. If anyone should be locked up it is the Wall Street warmongers and the crooked, corrupt and unethical bankers robbing this country blind while creating havoc and misery all over the world--- not to mention these politicians being bribed by Wall Street.

Unions should be using their resources to organize the unorganized and to build a progressive working class-based people's party that has as its intent deep-seated reforms while challenging Wall Street for political and economic power.

To go along with a new people's party we need an anti-imperialist movement and working-class think-tanks all over this country in every place of employment and in every working class community.

As far as all this talk coming from Trumka and these other millionaire labor leaders about how we need a "new economy;" they are definitely correct about this--- but, what are they seeking? A more human capitalism and there is no such thing; never has been and never will be. What we need is what millions of Americans are supporting: socialism, a cooperative socialist commonwealth.


All these people who claim we have such a great democracy, let's find out what they think about giving the American people the right to vote on whether or not they want to continue down this dangerous capitalist road or get on the road to socialism. Capitalism is Wall Street's system; socialism is the workers' system. Capitalism is evil. Socialism provides peace and harmony.

Capitalism was evil at its birth and is even more evil today as it has grown into a barbaric monster of state monopoly capitalism with Wall Street the head of this most cannibalistic imperialist system that capitalism has become. Life for working people under this rotten Wall Street imposed capitalist system will never get any better; life can only get worse--- this is the nature of the beast. The rich get richer; the poor get poorer. This is the way the system works.

That what is supposed to be a revolutionary working class newspaper like the People's World would actually publish a story like this without comment and analysis that is so full of lies, excuses and misinformation is shameful and disgusting. No mention of the need to build working class Communist Party Clubs and united, militant rank-and-file committees and organizations capable of taking to task these millionaire labor leaders living the "life of Riley" off the dues they take in from workers who in return are only getting one bankrupt message from them: Elect more Democrats... when everyone knows that if there was a Democratic super-majority--- a Democratic president, all Democrats in the House and Senate, working class families would fare no better than they do now because the Democrats, just like their Republican counter parts, are part of Wall Street's two-party trap. The two-party trap is intended to trap workers and the working class. Millionaire labor "leaders" like Trumka and Gerard are part of this trap as they use their persuasive powers to push workers out of the streets and into the arms of the Democrats who work for the bosses.

And as for racism, every single community in this country is a "Ferguson, Missouri" with racist killer cops acting just like the black-booted fascists who trampled democracy and murdered a sickly Pablo Neruda in Allende's Chile; fascists who were being being defended in the same way as racist murdering cops by the AFL-CIO.

Has anyone heard Richard Trumka or Leo Gerard call for the arrest of this murdering cop in Ferguson, Missouri which justice requires?

The same military equipment being brought out against the people of Ferguson, Missouri who are demanding justice will be used against workers fighting for justice against the Wall Street bosses.

Workers paying union dues are not being properly represented by these millionaire labor leaders who don't have a clue as to what is meant by "the duty and responsibility" to represent workers when it comes to the most basic and fundamental grievances. How many grievances are just allowed to pile up waiting for filing in "the circular file cabinet"--- the trash can?

Trumka and his coterie of millionaire labor leaders refuse to stand up for the workers whose dues are paying their big fat salaries--- does anyone really believe these millionaire labor leaders have the moral and ethical integrity to defend the interests of the entire working class? They will continue to piss away the dues of hard working Americans supporting Democrats who are owned by Wall Street.

People aren't voting because there is no organized alternative to vote for.

Workers in Canada have their own political party--- the socialist New Democratic Party now challenging Wall Street and its junior partner, Bay Street, for political power. We should be looking north of our border to find out what Canadian workers are doing--- workers who recently elected a class struggle trade unionists to lead the Canadian Labour Congress; why is Trumka getting a free pass?

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Robert Reich offers Hillary Clinton advice...

I told this to Robert Reich who is backing Hillary Clinton for President with the advice that she should mouth his "economic populism:"

Hillary Clinton intends to "ride your phoney populist wave" which is based on an "economic populism" that doesn't even take into consideration the adverse impact of Wall Street's militarism and wars on the economy.

Hillary Clinton will take your advice and talk a good line about an "economic populism" which is nothing but nice sounding bullshit who, like your friend Obama, she will forget about her "economic populism" if elected.

I wouldn't lift a finger to support Hillary Clinton who is nothing but a Wall Street warmonger and it is these dirty imperialist wars that belong to her as much as to Bush and Obama which are making us all poor.

Any economist with an once of common sense understands that when a nation pumps its wealth into militarism and never-ending dirty imperialist wars that wealth, which has been created by the very workers you claim so piously to love even though you sat in silence through Bill Clinton's welfare "reform" as you were a primary advocate of NAFTA which killed millions of jobs, end up poor as their labor is squandered on this senseless militarism and wars.

We might better ask the people of this country just to toss their pay-checks into the ocean rather than fund war after war.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Just what is Richard Trumka's idea of a "new economy?"

Richard Trumka held another one of his press conferences claiming he was expressing the anger of the American people over the direction of the economy but he failed to articulate that this is Wall Street's capitalist economy and imperialist system.

Trumka also failed to articulate an alternative economy that would best serve the interests of the working class--- which would be socialism.

Not only did Trumka fail to articulate the need for socialism, he failed to spell out and articulate the kind of real reforms required that would improve the lives of working class families because Trumka knows full well that this would require the working class to become engaged in the class struggle.

Is there really anyone who believes that what is good for Wall Street will be good for the working class when Wall Street's greatest profits are derived from what makes working class families suffer?

Are we fed-up yet?

I find it interesting so many of the people associated with the Citizens United movement claiming they are for getting big money out of politics were so heavily involved in supporting millionaire and billionaire Democrats as if these wealthy Democrats have interests in opposition to the Wall Street interests of Republicans when nothing could be further from the truth.


There is now plenty of time for these people to become active in 2016 campaigns providing alternatives to the two-party trap but do you think they will join us even though they piously and hypocritically claim they are "with us?"


Heck no; what we will be hearing from them, again, is that big-money Democrats exploiting labor and raping Mother Nature to amass even greater wealth for themselves is somehow better than voting for wealthy Republicans.


And they continue to ignore the plight of working class families suffering from poverty and unemployment while touting figures "proving" that this crumbling capitalist economy is somehow miraculously "recovering."


Isn't anyone else besides me fed-up with this bullshit being dished out over and over again playing us all for fools?


It's the same scratched record being played over and over again as millions of working class families continue to suffer with no relief in sight.


Perhaps the people of Ferguson, Missouri will be teaching us how to revolt to get results.


Are we fed-up yet?

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Did Obama's supporters vote for him so he could work with the Republicans?

I think this is a question his supporters are going to have to answer.

Congratulations to the Green Party of Minnesota; their candidates did very well.

The Green Party in Minnesota did really well in the 2014 elections which should put them in a position to start winning.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Blame Obama and the Democrats.

Obama's and the Democrats' dirty imperialist wars, combined with the austerity measures being shoved down our throats to pay for these dirty wars, is what set the stage for this Republican comeback.



Those who speak of Obamacare being some kind of progressive reform have most likely never had to use it because most of the people I talk to who have used it have incurred horribly high deductibles shoving them into medical bankruptcies.



As for "saving the economy," again, ask someone who is unemployed or trying to scrape by from pay-check to pay-check and I doubt these people feel the economy has been saved.



People turn out to vote mostly for one simple reason: because they know, or think, their lives will be improved.



By putting twenty million unemployed people to work and ending these dirty wars, the Democrats could have won a landslide but, they, like the Republicans, are committed to Wall Street's thoroughly reactionary agenda.



People are just plain fed up and the only reason the Democrats got as many votes as they did was because the votes were anti-Republican.



If we started spending as much time working to build a new progressive working class based people's party for peace, social and economic justice which declares its intent to challenge Wall Street for political and economic power we would see big changes for the better with improved lives for working class families--- but, we won't be seeing any kind of even the most basic progressive reforms until then.



If we think about all of this, isn't this the reason people turned out in droves to vote for Obama the first time around thinking he would take the path of anti-Wall Street, pro-peace progressive reforms?



Obama lied. the Democrats lie. And this is what has people fed up. Thank Obama and the Democrats for a Republican controlled U.S. Senate and Republicans retaining and winning new seats all over this country.



But the Democrats will not be blaming their Wall Street agenda on their losses; they will be blaming the voters who refused to show up to vote for them because they felt betrayed between what these Dumb Donkeys say to get their votes and what they do once elected.


Already some mean-spirited and vindictive Democrats are starting to blame the very people they claim they are for helping by saying things like, "I hope all these people who didn't vote or voted for Republicans like losing their Social Security benefits and pensions."


Well, the fact is, working people have lost plenty while Obama has been at the helm of government and Democrats had a solid majority in both the U.S. House and the U.S. Senate when Obama first came into office and what did they do? They squandered their majority along with the wealth of our Nation on more of these dirty wars which are making us all poor while implementing Wall Street's thorougly reactionary agenda and bailing these parasites out to boot.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

The hypocrites bandy about "facts" and "figures" as millions of children go to bed hungry.

Have you ever noticed how politicians, the pundits and the media always toss around "facts" and "figures" based on very ambiguous research but with all of their support for "individual liberty" and the "protection of individual rights" they aren't willing to talk about the misery of individual, living, breathing human beings who suffer the consequences of the wars they start, the poverty their policies create as they choose to campaign behind slogans of an improving economy?

We have a good example of this when it comes to unemployment.

We here the numbers about "job growth" and "economic recovery" as if we should just ignore the plight of more than 20 million workers and their families still living in poverty.

What about the right of each and everyone of these workers and their families rights to live free from poverty?

Please distribute widely...

PRESS RELEASE

PNN - NOV. 2nd 7pm - PROGRESSIVE JOURNALIST ROUNDUP
with special Guest Candidate for Lee County Commission Debbie Jordan

Join News Director Rick Spisak and his guests
from the Progressive Roundtable with Luis Cuevas Progressive Push, Alan Maki Union Organizer, Walter Barash Journalist, Ruthann Amariefio Progressive Journalist , Gwen Holden Barry of Here Be Monsters
and ...

Join us Sunday evening, November 2, 2014 at 7pm (Eastern) or any time
Solidarity & Peace

Rick Spisak, News DIrector, PNN
 
Rick Spisak

Thursday, October 23, 2014

You won't find any Democrats or Republicans claiming credit for child poverty in their campaign literature

In newspapers across the country today there was a "little" tid-bit of information we won't see Democrats and Republicans boasting about even though the problem of child poverty is of their making:

"U.S. child poverty highest in 20 years"

Only a few weeks ago the front pages of these same newspapers blazed headlines about how the country has pulled out of the worst recession since the "dirty thirties."

Obama owns this child poverty as he has been in the lead squandering our Nation's wealth created by the very workers whose children are now living in poverty on more militarism and war after dirty imperialist Wall Street war.


http://www.latimes.com/science/sciencenow/la-sci-sn-child-poverty-20141021-story.html


There is a very good reason why the greatest labor leader of the 20th Century, William Z. Foster whose base of support was with the rank-and-file, said the U.S. working class needed "a good strong dose of anti-imperialist education."


Our kids are going to bed hungry and leaving for school hungry as Obama spends millions bombing grain silos in Syria.


How much sicker can capitalism get?


From the L.A. Times:



"As the U.S. emerges from the worst recession since the Great Depression, 25% of children don’t have enough food to eat and 7 million kids still don’t have health insurance..."


If this is the best capitalism can do in the wealthiest country in the world how can the poor nations of the world be expected to end poverty?


Of course, no one wants to ask why these other nations are so poor. They are poor because Wall Street is stealing their resources using cheap labor and shipping our jobs to these impoverished countries.



Why has there been no examination of the child poverty on Indian Reservations?



Why are politicians allowed to "set goals" for eliminating child poverty without providing the framework with specific programs capable of ending child poverty?

Friday, October 17, 2014

U.S. Destroys $500M Planes, Sells for 6 Cent Scrap

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2787460/U-S-Air-Force-probed-scrapping-costly-planes-bought-Afghans.html


The United States purchased a bunch of planes for the Afghan Air Force.

They purchased the planes from Italy...

for $485 million dollars and the planes didn't work so the U.S. Defense Department sold them for scrap and got $32 thousand dollars.

Who paid for this?

Who made big profits?


U.S. Destroys $500M Planes, Sells for 6 Cent Scrap



Thursday, October 16, 2014

Will voting for Democrats bring the change we need?

All kinds of Democratic Party front groups are sending out e-mails like this in the name of "fighting back."

But are "blame the Republican" statements like this really true?

"Need more motivation?  There is important legislation waiting to be passed on behalf of youth and students.  Republicans have been holding these bills hostage.

* In response to Ferguson and mass unemployment among African American youth, Sen Bernie Standers is introducing a bill to provide $5.5 billion to states and municipalities to employ one million youth ages 16 to 24.

* Senator Elizabeth Warren’s Bank on Students Emergency Loan Refinancing Act cuts interest rates on student loans.  It was two votes short of stopping the Republican filibuster.

* Sens Bernie Sanders and Patrick Leahy are leading support to restore the fundamental protections of the Voting Rights Act and oppose voter ID and other laws that limit turnout of youth, African American, Latino, Native American and Asian Pacific voters."

If there was a solid Democratic House and Senate with Obama as President without any Republican opposition at all, would any of this proposed legislation pass?

The answer is obvious: NO.

This is another old election eve gimmick the Democrats have been using for over 70 years... bring forward legislation at a time to make it appear the Republicans are the only road-block to progress when they know full well Democratic Party super-majorities would not even pass the legislation because Wall Street controls them just like they control the Republicans.

Same old shit; different day.

All these organizations fronting for the Democrats with millions of dollars in resources and tremendous organizational strength in numbers have had plenty of time to build up united, militant rank-and-file and grassroots movements capable of forcing the Democrats to pass this legislation and they haven't lifted a finger to do this and now they call on us to use our precious votes to keep--- and put more--- of these worthless Democrats in office who they know full well would never pass such legislation.

We will never get people centered legislation in this country until we have a working class based progressive people's party for peace, social and economic justice bringing forward real solutions to our problems with the stated goal and objective of challenging Wall Street for political and economic power.

In other words, we need a massive anti-monopoly coalition uniting the American people against Wall Street's thoroughly reactionary agenda of dirty imperialist wars abroad paid for with austerity measures shoved down our throats here at home and a working class based progressive people's party capable of electing politicians who can be relied on to bring forward legislation in line with what the American people need and want--- jobs at real living wages not wars.

We need a "21st Century Full Employment Act for Peace and Prosperity;" is there anyone who believes Democrats will deliver?

Tribal government needs investigation and reform

Grand Forks Herald publishes Letter to the Editor by Curtis Buckanaga. Please read and circulate:

http://www.grandforksherald.com/content/letter-tribal-government-needs-investigation-and-reform

LETTER: Tribal government needs investigation and reform
By Curtis Buckanaga from Bemidji Today

Leech Lake is a $200 million-a-year corporation funded by taxpayers to provide services to uplift and empower its underserved and socio-economically challenged band members, who are historically disenfranchised.

Our tribal government operates under the Indian Reorganization Act, which Congress enacted in 1934 in hopes of encouraging tribes to become more self-determined -- even though our traditional governmental practices already had been proven effective.

Eighty years later, we learn that this is a detriment to many Native Nations, including Leech Lake.

For under this form of governance, there are no checks and balances to maintain order, accountability and transparency against the tribal council, whose members are the handlers of the annual $200 million revenue stream.

Across America, efforts are taking place to reform tribes out of Indian Reorganization Act standards. Most are being spearheaded by indigenous academic organizations, which research best practices to help tribes transition to culturally matched governments that let tribes reach their full potential.

At Leech Lake, those efforts have been discouraged and sabotaged by tribal officials, who mishandle taxpayer dollars to maintain dysfunction. These officials work with state and federal officials to create this dysfunction against the tribal members, who are misrepresented because most of the time, only 10 percent or fewer of tribal members vote in tribal elections.

As taxpayers, we are funding these ineffective tribal officials, who are not only abusing resources allocated to them by the federal government, but also oppressing the tribal members.

Yes, we have casinos to help us be less reliant on federal dollars, but the casino revenue is mishandled at the council’s discretion.

I am a citizen of Leech Lake as well as the United States. As taxpayers, don’t we deserve accountability from these individuals to whom we hand our money? Shouldn’t we call for the Indian Reorganization Act to be repealed to encourage reform and prevent the abuse of tribal people and their tax dollars?

Shouldn’t we demand an annual audit and report?

I’m not trying to open the door for bigoted criticism. I’m trying to raise some valid points about wasteful and wrongful spending of taxpayers’ money.

Curtis Buckanaga

Bemidji

Buckanaga is a former executive assistant for the Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Economic Recovery

With all the talk about "economic recovery" being an unemployment rate of around 6%, have you ever noticed no attempt is being made to ask unemployed people how they feel about being one of the "normal" unemployed people who are part of what politicians and "economists" are willing to accept as "normal unemployment" of around 6%?


And have you ever noticed no attempt is made to ask unemployed people who are unemployed yet not counted because of government requirements for statistics as unemployed how they feel about that?


Is the economy in a stage of "recovery" for people who remain unemployed?


Is the economy in a "recovery" for working class families trapped in a "cost-of-living crisis" unable to make ends meet?


Have you noticed politicians, pundits and these so-called economists never so much as mention this "cost-of-living crisis" all working class families are experiencing?


What we need to be asking is: "Economic Recovery" for who?


Let's not let any politician off the hook without addressing fully and honestly unemployment and the "cost-of-living crisis" both spun by reactionary Wall Street interests aimed at boosting profits by hurting working class families.


Isn't the right to address economic issues in an honest way part of a democratic electoral process?

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Nothing but a bunch of morons running this country and industry at every level...

You know, the complete stupidity and arrogance of these Democratic Party hacks never fails to amaze me.

A few minutes ago I got a call from a Democratic Party hack in Roseau County who told me that "you should thank the Democrats for the Roseau Electric Co-Op and the network of rural electric cooperatives in rural Minnesota."

The fact is, these so-called cooperatives are nothing but bill collectors for the fossil fuel industry.
Anyone can read the musings of these morons and idiots they have managing these "cooperatives" to see this.

Just read the stupid things this moron, Tracy Stoll, managing the Roseau Electric Co-Op writes questioning the science involved with global warming and climate change.

Tracy Stoll made sure the members of the Roseau Electric Cooperative continue to get big fat bills compliments of the coal industry because he refuses to negotiate a long-term deal with Manitoba Hydro which creates its electricity through green, clean hydro cheaper than of the cost of coal.

Yes; thank a Democrat for your sky high and rapidly increasing electric bills because overpaid morons like Tracy Stoll peddle the corporate lies challenging global warming/climate change for the fossil fuel industry.


Tracy Stoll even lobbied Minnesota legislators "on our behalf" to penalize people who install their own solar and wind generators... could Republicans do us any worse?

As a Nation we are almost all "fed up."

Are you "fed up?"


http://www.nbcnews.com/politics/first-read/americas-fed-obama-approval-rating-hits-all-time-low-poll-n173271


The MainStreamMedia doesn't want to hear from working people why we are "fed up." Instead, the MainStreamMedia continues to push a heavy dose from the right-wing Wall Street agenda as if it offers solutions to the reasons people are "fed up."


The left needs to push its ideas into the public square so people can fully explore their alternatives.
We can do this through "letters to the editor," leafleting and tabling, demonstrations and informational picketing.


Notice how the MainStreamMedia continues to completely ignore the fact all working class families are caught up in a cost-of-living crisis... this is done to take the sharp class edge off from American's dissatisfaction with the wrong direction the country is headed.


The MainStreamMedia loves to keep hitting at the fact "government spending is out of control" yet government spending on militarism and wars seldom is a topic for discussion and debate even though there is no more wasteful government spending than spending on this insanity.

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Was the socialist Minnesota Farmer-Labor Party a "flop" as some on the left are claiming?

Since I and a few others have sought to expand discussion about the history of the socialist Minnesota Farmer-Labor Party in order that people learn from this experience, a number of people on the "left" have begun an attack--- claiming the Minnesota Farmer-Labor Party was a "flop."
I would like to take the opportunity to dispute this view.
The socialist Minnesota Farmer-Labor Party was not a "flop." In fact, it was so successful that big-business ganged up on it and the government orchestrated the most massive campaign of repression against it as the fascist Dies Committee (a forerunner to Joe McCarthy's the House Un-American Activities Committee) set out to destroy it beginning in 1938 and it was the target of a massive anti-Communist, racist and anti-Semitic campaign launched by Harold Stassen.
I would encourage everyone to take the time to read these two articles.
One by Elmer Benson and one his obituary.
I find it interesting so many people will comment about things without doing any research or reading.
The merger was the final method used to destroy the Minnesota Farmer-Labor Party after massive government repression, slander, etc; the final method used to try to destroy the ideas embodied by the Farmer-Labor Party and to rid the merged Democrat and Farmer-Labor parties was the Communist Control Act authored by Hubert H. Humphrey who worked in league with Joe McCarthy.
http://collections.mnhs.org/.../art.../47/v47i04p154-161.pdf
And this:
http://articles.latimes.com/.../fi-27186_1_minnesota...
"Benson also said he never forgave himself for agreeing to the 1944 merger of the Farmer-Labor and Democratic parties into the Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party, the dominant force in Minnesota politics since then.
President Franklin D. Roosevelt asked for the merger and Humphrey helped bring it about.
"I think it was a mistake because the party became part of a larger party that's been taken over by political hacks," Benson said.
Benson split with Humphrey by backing Henry A. Wallace as the Progressive candidate for President in 1948. However, it was Humphrey's support of the Vietnam War that most upset Benson.
"Humphrey was a war criminal," he said. "He was the chief ballyhoo artist for the war. I remember him saying, 'This is America's greatest moment and I'm sure glad to be part of it.' "
For over two-decades the socialist Minnesota Farmer-Labor Party played a very important role, not only in Minnesota but nationally. Electing two socialist governors, members of Congress, the majority in the State House and a near majority in the State Senate along with thousands of members elected to township boards, county commissions, park boards and school boards.
Hardly what anyone could call a "flop."
Anyone who makes such an absurd claim has obviously not been targeted themselves by government political repression.
The Farmer-Labor Party was led by Socialists and Communists working together for the common good of workers and all who toiled for a living.
The present Minnesota Democratic Farmer-Labor Party working together with the local, state and FBI "Red Squads" still does all it can do to keep those like myself with Farmer-Labor ideas from being heard in the Minnesota Democratic Farmer-Labor Party.
Sometimes I think those who continually bad-mouth the history and efforts of the socialist Minnesota Farmer-Labor Party are themselves fearful of becoming victims of right-wing and government repression.
The Minnesota Farmer-Labor Party is probably the best kept secret in this country--- and not because it was a "flop" but because it was so successful... Wall Street hated it and it still does.
That such a successful challenge to big-business was mounted and it doesn't even merit mention in most history books should be enough to peek everyone's interest in finding out more.
There is much to learn from its mistakes, of which the merger with the corrupt Democratic Party was its major mistake; but those who refuse to learn from its successes will most likely be unable to be part of a movement challenging Wall Street for political and economic power.
That anyone would buy into this "flop" crap peddled by anyone and everyone who wants to maintain capitalism is disgraceful. At least take the time to read the real history of the Minnesota Farmer-Labor Party.
By the way; I bring forward Elmer Benson because he was probably the most honest politician of the 20th Century here in the United States and he is honestly self-critical of his role in the demise of the Minnesota Farmer-Labor Party.To find such an honest politician as Elmer Benson in our present times one would have to look at the political career of Howard Pawley who led the socialist New Democratic Party in Manitoba, Canada. Pawley's book, "Keep True," about his life in politics is a real precious jewel for left political activists and working people... get it, read it, pass it along to family and friends.
i understand there are those on the "left" who don't like or support the concept of building an anti-monopoly people's front which includes a mass organization that is anti-imperialist with a complimentary political party capable of challenging Wall Street for political and economic power; but, because one disagrees with this political point of view is no reason to peddle these lies about the Minnesota Farmer-Labor Party being a "flop."
If we had local, statewide and national efforts today just a fraction as successful as was the Minnesota Farmer-Labor Party in defending the interests of working class families with the stated goal and objective of challenging Wall Street for political AND economic power we would be in very good shape and well on our way to a better future free from these dirty imperialist wars, free from the scourges of racism and poverty where workers are the determining part of the decision-making process in a real democracy.Let us set the record straight: The Minnesota Farmer-Labor Party not only got its people's politicians elected--- those politicians used the levers of government at every level to work for better lives and working conditions for working people and all who toiled for a living; from the north woods to the farms and the industrial centers.
Just setting the record straight.
I challenge anyone to refute the views I have brought forward.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Working class families are trapped in a Wall Street "SNAFU."

I sent this "Letter to the Editor" to the Minneapolis Star Tribune in response to an article they published:

The headline in Nation+World read: Recession lingers in wages (Star Tribune, Sept. 9, 2014 page D3).

These low wages amid rising prices on everything from groceries to gas to home heating fuels and electric bills to health, car and home insurance and college tuitions result in a cost-of-living crisis for every working class family.

The government is enforcing poverty by failing to establish state and federal Minimum Wage laws in line with actual cost-of-living factors.

Poverty wages combined with this incessant senseless squandering of our Nation's wealth on militarism and wars which fuels inflation along with monopoly price fixing is destroying the livelihoods of working class families.

But this is what we get when we allow Wall Street to have a monopoly on political and economic power.

How else can one explain why it is that we have a government that can enforce poverty wages but can't stop the robbery at the gas pumps and rising prices at the grocery store?

All of this contributes to this cost-of-living crisis; this is why a "Recession lingers in wages."

We are trapped in a Wall Street SNAFU.

Alan L. Maki





Definition of "SNAFU:"

http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=SNAFU

Situation Normal, All Fucked Up




Link to article:
http://www.startribune.com/lifestyle/274359091.html

Note: The Minneapolis Star Tribune only published a digested version of this Associated Press article. Why?

And why doesn't the Minneapolis Star Tribune interview workers, the victims of poverty wages?

Is not losing one's job a "pay cut?"

5 years after Great Recession ended, stagnant pay remains economy's weakest link

Article by: CHRISTOPHER S. RUGABER ,
Associated Press Updated:
September 8, 2014 - 8:15 PM

WASHINGTON — The U.S. job market has steadily improved by pretty much every gauge except the one Americans probably care about most: Pay.

The unemployment rate has sunk to a nearly normal 6.1 percent. Employers have added a robust 2.5 million jobs the past 12 months. Layoffs have tumbled.

Yet most people are still waiting for a decent raise. Friday's August jobs report confirmed that average hourly pay has crept up only about 2 percent a year since the recession ended five years ago — barely above inflation and far below the gains in most recoveries.

Just why pay has been so weak and when it might strengthen are key issues for the Federal Reserve in deciding when to raise interest rates.

The trend has mystified analysts.

"This is the primary economic and policy puzzle facing policymakers right now: Why have wages remained so low in the face of an improving economy?" said Joe Brusuelas, chief economist at McGladrey, a tax and accounting firm.

Some economists expect pay to pick up eventually as the job market keeps improving. They think wages have lagged because millions of people are still out of work — many of whom aren't counted in the unemployment rate because they're no longer looking for a job.

But others say they fear that pay has stagnated because of trends that will persist even after the economy has moved closer to full health.

They note that companies have been making more use of temporary and part-time workers, usually at lower pay, to replace full-time permanent jobs. And newer technologies have enabled businesses to produce more with fewer employees.

A survey of Harvard Business School graduates released Monday lends weight to that notion. Nearly half the respondents said they'd rather invest in technology than in workers. Just over 40 percent expect wages and benefits to decline over the next three years.

Economists are flummoxed by the way the historical relationship between pay and unemployment has eroded since the recession ended. Based on historical trends, the steady drop in unemployment should have raised inflation-adjusted wages by 3.6 percent by June, according to researchers at the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago. That's because employers have had to fill jobs from a smaller pool of unemployed people — a trend that normally forces them to pay more.

Instead, overall inflation-adjusted wages have essentially flattened since 2009.

That said, workers in some industries have fared better. For those in a category that includes data processing and analytics, as well as broadcasting, film and publishing, hourly wages have surged 4.6 percent in the past year. And pay is up at least 3 percent for financial services workers and wholesalers.

By contrast, wages are up just 1.3 percent for employees in education and health care.

So why has overall wage growth been so weak? Economists point to several factors.

The biggest is that there are still too many people desperate for work than is typical for a healthy economy. That makes it easier for employers to fill jobs without raising pay.

There are 227,000 fewer people with jobs than in November 2007, just before the recession began. Yet the working-age population is up 15.3 million since then. That's kept the number of unemployed elevated: 9.6 million Americans, up from 7.6 million when the recession began.

But it's not just unemployment that's holding down wages. The many part-timers who would prefer full-time work are also competing with those who are out of work. There are 7.2 million involuntary part-timers, up from just 4.6 million in late 2007.

Half the economists surveyed by The Associated Press last month cited the high number of people without full-time jobs as the main reason wage growth has been weak.

The Chicago Fed estimates that if all measures of unemployment, including involuntary part-timers, had returned to pre-recession levels, paychecks after inflation would now be rising up to 1 percentage point faster.

Given these trends, people who do have jobs have less leverage to demand higher pay. Sixteen percent of working Americans say their pay hasn't budged in the past year, up from 11 percent before the recession, according to research by Bank of America Merrill Lynch.

In a healthier economy, more people would seek higher pay elsewhere and quit their jobs once they found it. But the number who quit their jobs tumbled during the recession and has only partly recovered.

In addition, fewer startup companies are being created, holding back hiring. In the final quarter of 2013, new companies created just 1.3 million jobs, down from an average of 1.75 million in the 1990s, according to government data.

Fewer startups and fewer quits have reduced what's called job-market "churn." Economists liken churn to musical chairs: When people quit or new jobs are created by startups, more positions open for the unemployed or for workers seeking higher pay.

But churn has declined by up to one-third since the early 1990s, according to research by economists Steven Davis and John Haltiwanger.

Typically, wages also rise in line with increased productivity. Productivity measures output per hour of work, and higher productivity enables companies to pay more without sparking inflation. Yet productivity has been unusually sluggish the past three years.

Some economists are surprised that the recession didn't weaken Americans' pay even more than it did. So deep was the recession that many analysts assumed companies would reduce not only jobs but also wages.

The lack of pay cuts during the recession may help explain meager raises now. Having paid more than they typically would during the downturn, companies may now try to make up for lost ground by holding off on raises longer than usual.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

The warmonger has spoken...

Off to war we go--- again.

No improvement in wages

The "Cost of Living Crisis" every single working class family is experiencing stems from poverty wages and continued massive unemployment amidst rising prices due mainly to monopoly price-fixing and inflation spurred on by militarism and these dirty imperialist wars with many decades long attacks by Wall Street on the livelihoods of the working class.

http://www.pharostribune.com/news/business/article_91de35e7-74b5-54d2-84be-76c3aa77c137.html