Sunday, February 03, 2008

It's the Ordinary People, Stupid

You've heard The Decider parroting the phrase over and over.... "I say that the fundamentals of our nation's economy are strong."

Just what does that mean? What are the "fundamentals." Economists say the fundamentals for a strong economy are growth in jobs, incomes and number of new households.

Obviously, either The Decider doesn't understand the fundamentals, or he's purposely whistling past the graveyard of our economy.... 17,000 jobs were wiped out last month according to the Labor department, and real wages fell last year according to a just-released study by the Economic Policy Institute.

And, new households?.... how about existing households.... people are losing their homes as home values fall and bait-and-stick-it-to-them mortgages come due.

The GOP's one-note solution to this problem is to cut taxes. What these well-heeled politicians don't realize is... IT TAKES AN INCOME TO PAY EVEN THE LOWEST TAX!

Not that the Democrats are much better.... they swarmed to The Decider's stimulus package life boat, abandoning the mother-ship of fiscal responsibility and long term solutions like.... a return to progressive taxation, higher wages and real government oversight of lending and credit practices.

As Barbara Ehrenreich points out in today's "The Boom Was a Bust For Ordinary People." (WaPo) "For years now, that strange stimulus-crazed beast, the economy, has been going its own way, increasingly disconnected from the toils and troubles of ordinary Americans."

In a far-off time, before NAFTA and "trickle-down" economics, job-creating titans like Henry Ford realized that his company would only prosper if his own workers earned enough to buy a Ford. No more.

Today, consumer behemoth's like Wall-Mart haven't figured out that their poverty wages will eventually curtail their own growth and profits, while Ford's once-thriving auto industry shipped manufacturing overseas and a rusting Detroit builds casinos to replace them.

It's the ordinary consumers.... the poor, and the struggling middle and working class.... who "have become a tripwire in the American economy - generating defaults on debts, depressed consumption and global market turmoil."

Our war-president Bush, and the GOP's next-in-line war president John McCain, can envision only spending hundreds of billions of borrowed dollars on their bloody crusades while at home the country is imploding.

It's this type of "leadership" that is the real threat. Fundamentally flawed policies that favor the wealthy and bloated corporations while "eating our seed corn".... the working middle-class.

A strong national economy depends on ordinary people.

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