Let’s Celebrate Next Labor Day by Putting More Money in Workers’ Wallets

Yesterday marked the passage of another Labor Day weekend where workers had to suffer from coercive union dues. As Richard Berman, executive director of the Center for Union Facts, noted in Detroit News: …in the last decade, union leadership has sent more than $1 billion collected without prior permission from member dues to the Democratic Party and liberal special interests — 99 percent of Big Labor’s political advocacy budget. The recipients range from the notorious Clinton Foundation to Planned Parenthood. When 40 percent of union household members vote Republican, you’re looking at a problem best described as immoral. In 2016,

To Trump and Clinton: Heed the Lesson Jimmy Carter Never Learned

Yesterday I observed here how the 2016 race reflects American conditions in the late 1970s — also stagnant — and how the political elites are echoing President Jimmy Carter’s feckless reaction in his notorious July 15, 1979 address to the nation in which he said, in part: The threat is nearly invisible in ordinary ways. It is a crisis of confidence. It is a crisis that strikes at the very heart and soul and spirit of our national will. We can see this crisis in the growing doubt about the meaning of our own lives and in the loss of a

Hillary Clinton Elevates the Federal Reserve to God-Status

On Monday, Donald Trump stated what is essentially a fact to anyone who follows financial markets — the Federal Reserve has created a “false economy” that has artificially inflated the stock market. Via Reuters: “They’re keeping the rates down so that everything else doesn’t go down,” Trump said in response to a reporter’s request to address a potential rate hike by the Federal Reserve in September. “We have a very false economy,” he said. “At some point the rates are going to have to change,” Trump, who was campaigning in Ohio on Monday, added. “The only thing that is strong is

A Letter to the Left: The Gold Standard Will Restore Upward Mobility

About a year ago, Stan Sorscher, Labor Representative, Society for Professional Engineering Employees in Aerospace, published a frighteningly important blog at The Huffington Post (where I also blog on a regular basis) headlined “Inequality — “X” Marks the Spot — Dig Here.” It was as important for what it gets right as for what it misses. Sorscher writes: In 2002, I heard an economist characterizing this figure as containing a valuable economic insight. He wasn’t sure what the insight was. I have my own answer. The economist talked of the figure as a sort of treasure map, which would lead us to

Trump Sounds Like Reagan: GOP Should Help Workers

There’s a story in Politico today where Donald Trump says that the GOP will become a ‘workers party’ under his leadership: “Five, 10 years from now — different party. You’re going to have a worker’s party,” Trump said in the May 17 interview. “A party of people that haven’t had a real wage increase in 18 years, that are angry.” Trump is right to recognize a critical flaw in the GOP’s current economic platform, which focuses almost exclusively on businesses and “job-creators.” The only way to win future elections is to make the GOP platform more friendly to workers. Republicans’ goal should be to

The GOP’s Best Shot in 2016? It Could Be This…

FiveThirtyEight has put together a fantastic summary of how each issue should impact the 2016 campaign. Check it out here. On economics, Ben Casselman writes: Americans remain uneasy about the economy, even if they have become more sanguine in recent years. In a recent Wall Street Journal poll, just 47 percent of Democrats — and only 4 percent of Republicans — reported being “cautiously optimistic” about the economy. That dissatisfaction is driven by a harsh reality: Six-plus years after the recession officially ended, there has been no meaningful recovery in household income. Republicans clearly see an opening. At last month’s CNBC debate, which focused on economic issues,

Don’t Look Now, But Monetary Policy Just Became a Top Issue in the GOP Primary

It’s greatly encouraging to see the GOP candidates focus more on one of the largest economic problems facing the United States: the Federal Reserve and monetary policy. On Tuesday night, we witnessed the GOP field address monetary reform as a key to economic fairness and growth in a bigger and more substantial way than ever before. Candidates centered their comments on the problems created by the Federal Reserve’s artificially low interest rates and how it has adversely affected equitable prosperity through rising prices and stagnant wages for working families. The Federal Reserve’s zero interest rate policy repeatedly came under fire at

Incomes Decline Again, But Will GOP Candidates Speak Out?

Last week, new data released by the U.S. Census Bureau showed inflation-adjusted median income slipping to $53,657 in 2014, a drop from the previous year and a 6.5 percent drop from 2007, the year before the Great Recession, when it was $57,300. The fall in real income is affecting millions of families across the United States. So why aren’t the GOP presidential candidates talking about it? If Republicans want to appeal to voters when they discuss economics, they had better talk about what’s impacting everyone — stagnant wages and a rapidly rising cost of living. Wage stagnation has been going on for

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