The Weiner Component #122 – Jobs: A Successful United States

n the United States today we have about 5.5% known unemployment plus, at least, if not more than 5 percent hidden unemployment. That is much too much in a country as wealthy as the U.S.  The known unemployed, register and are actively looking for work; the unknown unemployed have given up, feeling ultimate defeat they are no longer looking for jobs.

 

The existence of both these groups is a sad comment upon this country.  For a nation as rich as ours, with all the needs it has for constantly improved infrastructure there is no excuse for this situation.  We are a modern nation that is still living largely in the last century when most of our infrastructure was created.  In a manner of speaking we are like the young man who has just acquired his first automobile and expects it to last forever without any real care or maintenance.

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In late 2008, under a Republican Administration, after thirty some years of at first gradual and then accelerated economic growth in the Housing Market, the Real Estate Bubble burst and the entire economy of the United States was about to crash, beginning with the major banking houses within the country.  The Treasury Department, under a Republican Administration, extended hundreds of billions of dollars in loans to these banks to keep them solvent and functioning.

In Europe and Asia, on a smaller scale, the nations there underwent the same crisis with similar solutions.  Some of the nations of Europe like Greece and Spain, had lived richer than others on this new wealth that the banking houses had created and were far more in the red than others countries.  This was particularly true in the Eurozone.  Some of those nations underwent extreme austerity measures in order to be bailed out by the European Central Bank or the other nations in the Eurozone.  This was done in 2009. They are still in extreme economic troubles.

In the United States we went from at least 12% unemployment in 2009 to 5.5% by 2015. What saved the country from falling into a deep depression, deeper than that of 1929, was the Federal Government bailouts of the banks and the auto industries, plus innovative use of Monetary Policy by the Obama Administration.

Unemployment today, in early 2015, is still a problem in the U.S., particularly for the young and unskilled.  Another problem tends to be rates of pay.  The Federal minimum wage in the U.S. is $7.25 per hour before social security, assorted taxes, and unemployment insurance are taken out.  While many states have a higher minimum wage the Republicans in Congress refuse to raise the National minimum wage.  It has existed for several years now while prices have gradually increased.

What’s interesting or odd here is that Scott Walker, the governor of Wisconsin, is attempting to gain the Republican presidential nomination on a platform of “right to work” laws.  These laws mean that no business can have a closed union shop; no worker has to join a union where ever he works.  The object of these laws is to break the power of the unions across the U.S. and he probably would like to get rid of the minimum wage, as was suggested during the Reagan Administration.

Henry Ford, in his early factories, discovered or realized that if you pay your workers enough they will buy the product they are producing.  The same premise holds true today: if workers earn more they will spend more.  In essence increased spending equals increased production, and consequently more profit for everybody. Growing productivity creates jobs and raises the standards of living within the country.  And conversely the lower the national income distribution the lower the productivity and the higher the unemployment.

No one can buy goods and services with money they don’t have.  Somehow the Republican understanding of the situation throughout the country is backward; their goal, regardless of what they say or believe, is actually to reduce productivity throughout the nation and increase unemployment.  This they have very effectively done since 2011 when they achieved dominance in the House of Representatives.

If we look at their current goal of keeping the minimum wage at $7.25 an hour.  Working at that rate for 40 hours a week allows an individual to earn $290.00 a week, which works out to about $1,160 a month, and $15,080.00 for a 52 week year before assorted government withholdings.  This puts this person living alone slightly above the poverty line, which is $12,300 for one adult, $15,853 for two adults is slightly below the poverty line, $19,055 for two adults and one child is well below the poverty line, and $24,008 for two adults and two children.  If that amount is doubled by both adults working full time at that rate of pay then their condition improves but who will take care of the child or children.  It’s a sad comment upon a society that will not pay a goodly percentage of its workers enough to not live in poverty or to live just above the poverty level when they are fully employed.  We are a nation with a good percentage of employed being working poor.

There is an interesting note of irony here.  The working poor person earning the $7.25 an hour is almost below the legal poverty level.  In most states this person qualifies for food stamps and government medical aid, as well as other programs.  All these aid programs are paid for by tax dollars.  Ultimately, then, the tax payers in the country are subsidizing those businesses or industries that pay the minimum legal wage.  Consequently a good percentage of these companies’ profits are being paid indirectly by the American taxpayer.

In the April 16, 2015 issue of the L.A. Times there was an article dealing with this subject which cited a UC Berkeley Center for Labor Research study.  They reported that 56% of all state and public assistance in the United States now goes to working families.  That adds up to 153 billion a year, including 25 billion in state funding.  Individually California spends 3.7 billion, New York 3.3 billion, and Texas 2 billion on public assistance programs.  These go to, among others, fast food employees, child and home care workers, and part-time college faculty.

To quote the L.A. Times: “Last week the Colorado Fiscal Institute said 600,000 Colorado employees, or a quarter of the state’s working force earned less than $12 an hour. As a result taxpayers ante up about 304 million a year to cover their healthcare costs… It’s clear these big employers are shifting their costs to the taxpayers.”

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George W. Bush’s presidency ended in 2008 and Barak Obama became president in 2009.  Most of his early efforts were aimed at keeping a deep depression from happening.  Unemployment still increased but it was minor compared to what it might have been.

Today are there enough jobs in the society to keep everyone who wants to work fully employed?  There were jobs for everyone up until the end of 2008 before the Real Estate Bubble burst.  At that time the banking houses in the United States were encouraging people to use their homes as bank accounts and constantly withdraw their equity from their homes and spend it.  The society was flowing with money.  Once the Bubble Burst there was an intense shortage of funds and unemployment was well over 12% overnight.

There has been a large percentage of recovery since 2009 but the bulk of the National Income has gone to the upper echelon of society with very little going to the middle class and even less than that going to the bottom of society.  The distribution of the National Income is completely out of kilter.  It is encouraging, with Republican help, a shrinkage of economic prosperity.  If it were not for the creative Monetary Policy the Federal Reserve used this country would now be in the doldrums with everyone, all Republicans and Democrats, currently well off and otherwise, suffering considerably.

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The odd part of all this is that the country could easily be well off with full employment and everybody having at least a decent standard of living.  The key here is expending money in Fiscal Policy which Congress controls.  The Republicans are loath to spend money on things other than the military.  They are very conscious of the National Debt that they have mushroomed since Reagan took office but for which they claim no credit.

Interestingly the Federal Government currently owns well over 50% of its own debt. Legally, it seems, no one, with the exception of the Federal Government, can owe itself money.

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The infrastructure of the United States is still in the 20th Century.  Some of it was installed over a hundred years ago.  Underground pipes and sewers are continually breaking down and being repaired to the level where they are just usable again.  It’s currently a Band-Aid approach; barely maintaining but no really improving anything.

President Obama had a plan in 2011 to drop unemployment that the Republican House of Representatives chose to ignore for two reasons: one, He presented it and two, it cost money, which they are loath to spend on anything except the military and business expansion like the Keystone project.

The prime example of Fiscal Policy is the New Deal that Franklin D. Roosevelt inaugurated in 1933 when he became President during the Great Depression.  While the Republican, Herbert Hoover was President when the Great Depression broke in 1929, he was incapable of such massive spending Roosevelt began in 1933.

Roosevelt was able to fund the New Deal by doubling the money supply in the nation.  He had government officials collect all the gold coins in circulation and replace them with paper money. The value of the gold was then doubled from $18 an ounce to $36. And suddenly the money supply doubled; there was twice as much money in circulation.

While this did not get the country out of the depression it did significantly improve economic conditions.  In order to end the Great Depression the Roosevelt Administration would have had to, at least, quadruple the money supply beyond that level. That situation occurred during the 1940s when World War II broke out.

The New Deal was a series of domestic programs encompassing Relief, Recovery, and Reform and enacted from 1933 on.  It included laws passed by Congress and executive orders issued by the President.  Programs like the Works Progress Administration (WPA), the Civilian Conservation Core (CCC) made the government the largest employer in the nation.  Others like Social Security, the Fair Labor Standards Act that set maximum hours and minimum wages for most categories of workers and the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) are with us today.  Banking reform was reconstituted after the 2008 Banking Debacle.  There were a myriad of other agencies mostly denoted by the letters; all of which created jobs, upgraded whole sections of the nation, and brought about

Did the government have to do this?  Obviously not; but in so doing the Federal Government took on the responsibility of providing for the common man (forgotten man) where he could not then provide for himself.  It was in the mind of Roosevelt and his administration necessary in order to save our free capitalistic society.

This is what the current Republican Congress seems to be incapable of doing. They feel this country cannot afford this luxury today.  I suspect they also feel that the unemployed are really themselves responsible for being in that condition.  Whether there are jobs available or not is immaterial.

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Fiscal Policy is something the Federal Government is going to have to get involved with sooner or later whether they want to or not.  The infrastructure of the United States was built during our period of urbanization and industrial development, from the late 19th Century through the 20th Century.  Our growing needs then were a lot smaller than they are now.  We grew then from a country of 140 plus million to over 350 million people today.  Some of the sewerage pipes in many cities are over 100 years old.  Roads, freeways, and interstate highways have to be maintained and improved.  The electric grid that runs throughout the nation has to be upgraded.  Many schools are antiquated and should be replaced or upgraded.

All of this is mentioning only a small portion of what needs to be done.  We can take a piece-meal approach, fixing things as they break down and wait until a point comes when much of the infrastructure can no longer be repaired or the Congress can begin a process of bringing the infrastructure into the 21st Century, rebuilding for today’s population..

Money is not really the problem for the Federal Government since it owns most of its own debt.  Actually spending money would increase government tax receipts.  In fact it would significantly increase the amount of taxes received on all levels of government, city, state, and federal.

What the Republican Congress is doing by refusing to even consider fiscal policy is exacerbating unemployment, encouraging the growing wealth of the upper ten percent, working to shrink the middle class, and radically increase the lower classes.  They are working to bring back the conditions of the 1880s and 1890s when there were massive divisions between the different classes within society.

Interestingly Grover Norquist, the president of Americans for Tax Reform, who has successfully gotten the Republican members of Congress to sign a pledge that they will, under no circumstances, raise taxes, has stated that his favorite period in U.S. history was the last two decades before the 20th Century.  It would seem he has been working very hard to bring us back to that period of inequality.

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More jobs are needed.  The current Congress will do nothing to alleviate the problem; instead they will by their actions increase it.  What will determine our future direction will be decided by the 2016 Presidential Election.  If we reelect a Republican Congress and also vote for a Republican President then conditions will continue as they are now, probably getting far worse.  If, on the other hand, both Houses of Congress are Democratic, then fiscal policy should bring about a radical lowering of unemployment and an overall return of prosperity for all levels of society.

It will be all in the hands of the voting public.  If they all vote their interests then the problem can be solved or, at least, move in the direction of a solution.  If enough people vote their beliefs or prejudices or stay at home and refuse to vote then the country will continue as we are now and probably go downhill economically.

To me the unemployment problem is ridiculous.  It can so easily be solved.  We can have full scale employment and solve our infrastructure problems at the same time.

 

 

 

The Weiner Component #106 – The Fickle Voter

English: President George W. Bush and Presiden...

English: President George W. Bush and President-elect Barack Obama meet in the Oval Office of the White House Monday, November 10, 2008. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Years ago, when I used to write occasional articles for a local newspaper, I discovered that there was nothing deader than yesterday’s news. Within a very short period of time the past drops out of the minds of the American public. This seems to be particularly true also in politics.

The Republicans have systematically fought President Barak Obama since he was first elected trying to hamper anything and everything he has attempted to do. Affordable Health Care, Obama care, was passed during his second year in office when the Democrats had a majority in both Houses of Congress. The medical plan, which the Democrats espoused, was a Republican plan that had originally been developed by a far-right think-tank and was first put into practice by Mitt Romney when he was the Republican governor of Massachusetts. It relies on private enterprise to supply universal health care.

Obama Care is unlike the Canadian and European plans in which the government serves as the provider and private insurance companies are excluded. The Republicans came out against the plan because President Obama would get credit for it. They dubbed it Obama Care originally as a put-down. It was the action of spiteful adolescent.

But even before this the Obama Administration in 2009 saved the economy from totally collapsing in the 2008 Real Estate Bubble that was inherited from President George W. Bush. The economy collapsed in late 2008 toward the end of the Bush presidency. New President Obama halted the economic disintegration and turned the tide in the direction of recovery. Six years later we still have not reached total recovery. Many people are still hurting but the overall economy is functioning well again.

One of the major reasons we have not yet fully recovered has been caused by the Republicans, particularly those in the House of Representatives which acquired a Republican majority in 2011 and adroitly kept it since then.  They have systematically refused to consider fiscal policy or any other real job creating measures that would allow President Obama to look successful. The sad part of this is that the country needs to have its infrastructure rebuilt, much of it is well over fifty years old. We desperately need to have it brought into the 21st Century.

Despite the fact that nothing has been said about it for quite a while, the Republicans have facilitated a continual war on women. In the states where they control the legislature and the governorship they have legislated the free health services for poorer women practically out of existence using the excuse that these facilities perform abortions. In essence they are limiting the medical choices for poorer women. Those who can afford it can always go to a state or country where these medical procedures are legal. But for the poorer women in that particular state all medical services they should have are now essentially gone. In point of fact many Republicans would like to push through a personhood bill or amendment that would not only make abortion illegal it would also make birth control illegal. It would seem that to them women are second class citizens incapable of making their own decisions and would be better off “barefoot and pregnant.” Or it would seem that these men have been frustrated too many times over their life cycles by females and are consciously or unconsciously attempting to get even.

Immigration is another subject the Republicans in the House of Representatives have refused to even consider. A bill was passed in the Senate but never taken up by the House. President Obama has taken take executive action on this issue after the House of Representatives has refused to even deal with it. The President can act by executive order but he cannot legislate. Whatever he does will still be a temporary action. Only Congress can make laws.

The Republicans have continually refused to deal with the issue of the minimum wage. It has remained $7.25 for the last seven plus years even though prices of virtually everything have slowly risen. Actually many Republicans would like to drop the concept completely. They feel the Market, the forces of supply and demand, should determine what can be paid to these unskilled workers. The irony of someone receiving $7.25 or even $10.00 an hour and attempting to raise a family is that in order to succeed they have to receive state and possibly federal aid. That wage does not even allow an individual to afford survival

The Republicans will not allow a law to be passed that requires equal pay for equal work. Generally women are paid about 60% of what a male will make in the same job. The overall justification for this is that the male is supporting a family but the woman is earning extra money. This is, of course, nonsense since a goodly percentage of the women are raising fatherless families or are divorced and supporting themselves and their children.

For the November 2014 Election twenty-one states, where the Republicans control the legislature and governorship, have laws restricting the right to vote. These restrictions tend to affect the poor minorities and the young voters who generally vote Democratic . They require types of identification that generally cost money, like a state driver’s license or a gun license in order to register to vote. The state that has the best of these in restricting voting is Texas which requires some form of official identification even for the people who are registered to vote. It’s estimated that in that state about 600,000 Blacks and other minorities have not been able to cast a ballot in the 2014 Midterm Election.

The Republicans systematically oppose any laws limiting gun ownership. They are staunchly supported by the National Rifle Association with heavy financial aid during their political campaigns. Regardless of the number of atrocities committed practically weekly throughout the nation they seem to believe that everyone should own their own weapon regardless of their mental state and that there should be no background checks on anyone buying a weapon. It would seem that the gun lobbies control this organization.

One of the major problems of the 2014 Midterm Election was voter indifference. Many people did not bother to vote. They had issues with both political parties. But by not voting they did indirectly vote for the political party that will do them the most harm over the next two years, that is the Republican Party. This is the one that specifically represents the upper two percent of the population and whose total agenda coincides with the needs of the very rich.

By feigning disinterest in the midterm election a goodly percentage of the population indirectly approved the party that works against their interests. If reasoning was required for these people to vote it came down to the question of which political party did you least dislike or which party best serves your economic needs? That would have been the party they should have voted for. By not voting they actually supported the political party they like the least.

English: Barack Obama signing the Patient Prot...

English: Barack Obama signing the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act at the White House (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Anger is always justifiable but complete inaction is just plain stupid. It allows the individual in this case to work against himself. This seems to be the fickle position of a large percentage of the American voters. There was a 37% voter turnout in the 2014 Midterm Election, the smallest since 1942. Everything that was done by the Democrats over the last six years was forgotten, only what was not accomplished was remembered and reacted upon. The majority of voters are indeed fickle.

The Weiner Component #98 – Income Inequality

Income inequality and mortality in 282 metropo...

Income inequality and mortality in 282 metropolitan areas of the United States. Mortality is correlated with both income and inequality. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The United States and, for that matter, most industrial nations are today facing numerous major problems, economic and otherwise, that can and will definitely affect their futures negatively if they are not, more or less, solved in the near future.

According to the World Economic Forum: the gap between the rich and the poor is one of the major global risks we face today. The upper ten percent of most of these countries are expeditiously getting richer while the rest of the populations are either maintaining their level of income or finding it continually decreasing. How long can these conditions continue until the consumer base can no longer purchase the goods and services needed to reasonably survive and violence erupts from the level of subsistence more and more people find themselves living. The 21st Century could be bloodier than the 20th Century. The coming depressions could be deeper and far bitterer than that of 1929, the Great Depression of the 20th Century.

Over the last year or so in the United States many food prices have risen significantly, particularly the cost of many protein products have gone up 20 to 45 percent. Meanwhile the minimum wage remains at $7.25 an hour and has been at that level for the last five years. Someone with a family earning that much and working a full forty hour week needs government aid to survive. This is true even if his wife is also earning that much.

In order for this family to survive it has to be subsidized by federal and state entitlement programs which the taxpayers subsidize. One can say that a percentage of companies like Walmart’s profits, are indirectly supplied by the taxpayers.

Rand Paul, a hopeful presidential candidate for 2016, who like his father, is essentially a libertarian, in a recent interview, stated that to raise the minimum wage would be to increase the level of unemployment in the United States. Here someone who is opposed to government interference in the marketplace is supporting a system that is ultimately socialistic, with the government paying the difference between the family earnings and what is needed for survival.

Of course the overall Republican attitude toward all entitlement programs, like payments to the unemployed and aid to dependent children, is to reduce these government programs. They seem to want to bring about more privation than already exists.

I fail to understand the thinking here. These people are loudly and dramatically supporting a system that they adamantly oppose, indirect government support of the marketplace. It would seem that the Republicans are totally ignorant of some of the basic principles of economics; they cannot think far enough ahead to realize that they are espousing socialism, having the government provide for people, by their definition of a free marketplace. Wouldn’t it be easier to raise the minimum wage to a level where people can earn enough to pay for their family’s basic needs without needing to apply for government help?

Another interesting area pertains to student college loans. It is estimated that student loan debt has surpassed one trillion dollars.   Approximately three of every five college students have taken out student loans in order to pay for their tuition and books. These loans are strung out over their university career and have to be paid back after they graduate. The average college graduate has over $26,000 in student loan debt at graduation.

Many students can end up owing many more thousands of dollars at a good rate of interest which they generally have to begin paying back six months after graduation. It can, in many cases, take a decade or more to repay these loans and the interest charged on them, in some cases it can be even longer. Even if the ex-student declares bankruptcy it is practically impossible to have the college loan removed from his/her record.

People like Senator Elizabeth Warren have tried to reduce the interest rates but Republicans have refused to go along and support such legislation. I remember one such legislator commenting publically that the interest rate can’t be reduced because the government needs the money. This, of course, is pure idiocy because it means that whole generations of former college graduates have to wait years before they can afford to marry or otherwise start their lives. They have to spend their early work years for a decade or more paying back their college loans. But even more than that it also means that these young people will not really contribute to the economic growth of the nation unit they have freed themselves from debt.

There is in economics a principle called the multiplier effect. This means that money spent in the society tends to be spent numerous times. The amount, for example, that I spend at the supermarket is spent again as salaries or for the purchase of more goods, which, in turn, is spent as rent or a mortgage payment by the employee who receives it. It can then pay for the bank’s utilities or be used as salaries, and so on. The money is spent over and over again until it becomes part of the natural flow of currency creating for the GDP up to six or eight times the original amount. This principle also works in the reverse, negatively, on monies not spent. Dormant or non-spent funds can subtract six to eight times their initial amount from the GDP. All the ex-student payments to their college loans have this effect on the GDP, not allowing it to grow as it would if these people did not have this debt. The overall effect of the payment of these loans actually shrinks the GDP.

From comments made by a House of Representatives Republican and by the minority leader in the Senate, Mitch McConnell, the young college graduates rather than the upper 10 or 20% of the population are needed to help fund the government. Their paying the interest on their college loan debts will importantly help the government financially. The concept is inane. Interest on the debt should be mostly reduced or completely done away with. Having the ex-students spend their earnings on goods and services that will allow them to live in a positive and normal fashion will most aid the nation by adding to the GDP. Their welfare adds to everyone’s welfare and the monies they pay in taxes will exceed what they have to pay on their college loans.

By succeeding in completing college they put themselves on an earning level far greater than they would earn as high school graduates. The government has actually invested in them and the return over their lifetimes will be far greater than the cost of their education. This is a good argument for actually forgiving the loans. People invest their money to make a profit; so does government in its population with the use of taxes.

To get back where we started, the ever increasing gap between rich and poor is one of the biggest problems currently existing within the United States. The Congress is largely at a state of gridlock with the Republicans actually continuously trying to pass legislation to expand the economic space between the two groups. And, of course, many of the conditions causing this problem already exist in law. The conservative right in Congress will allow no reform of archaic legislation, some of which was passed during World War II to encourage oil production. Unless there is change this country will eventually find itself a second rate nation with a largely growing unemployed poor not able to afford the basic needs of survival.

The oncoming Midterm Election can help or worsen already negative conditions. The people of the United States will decide our immediate future. If they don’t vote or do vote for the conservative Republicans they will be asking for continued gridlock in Washington and continued misery for many of themselves and the rest of the population. It will be interesting to see what happens!

The Weiner Component #25 – Muddling Through: The Minimum Wage

Raise the Minimum Wage

The term commonly used in Great Britain for getting through uncomfortable political, military, and social problems was called “muddling through.”  This was a euphemism for working uncomfortable and complicated situations.  Somehow they beat man’s capability for logically and sensibly solving them.  These situations were just worked through and supposedly came out “all right” at their conclusion.

We have, in a manner of speaking, been “muddling through” the minimum wage for years.  As it exists now, an individual working full time at its current rate of seven dollars and twenty-five cents an hour will find himself at or below he poverty line.   This amount became the official Federal minimum wage on July 24 2009 when it was raised from a lower level and signed into law by President George W. Bush.

The official poverty level for 2013 is $11,170 for a single individual.  For two people the rate increases by $3,960 to $15,130, and for every additional individual it goes up by another $3,960.

At $7.25 an hour, working all 52 weeks of the year and taking no days off, the rate is  $15,080 before Social Security, Medicare, and assorted other taxes, both Federal and state.  Social Security is 6.2% of the gross income and Medicare is an addition 1.45%.  Altogether, the government withholds no less than fifteen percent of the $15,080 earned during an entire year’s labor that is no less than $2,269, with nothing withheld for income tax.  It is probably higher; leaving the minimum wage worker with less than $12,861 to live on for the year, this amount keeps him at or just above the poverty line.  If he/she were married or taking care of one other child or adult the individual would then be below the poverty line.

At nine dollars and hour, the new minimum wage President Barack Obama recommended, the yearly earning for a fifty-week year would be $18,000, before any deductions.  Fifteen percent of that is $2,700, leaving $15,200 to live on.  That amount is just above the poverty line for a family of two.  If the two are married and there are any children the family will sink deeper and deeper into poverty with every additional child.

At ten dollars an hour the yearly income is $29,000.  After 15% withholding, which incidentally is more than Mitt Romney pays in his yearly income tax, the family will be below the poverty line if they have three members; that is married with one child.

We are considering here a goodly percent of the population, individuals working full time and yet not being able to earn enough to properly support his family.  These are married and responsible men fighting a losing economic battle or single responsible parents fully employed with one or more children and limited economic skills.

Henry Ford sold his Model T automobile from 1908 through 1927.  He was one of the first innovators to realize and put into practice the idea that if you paid your workers a high enough salary they could afford to buy the product they produced.  The Model T swept America.  By the year 1915 the car cost 440 dollars.  Five years later in 1920 the price had dropped to $260.  A Ford factory worker earned enough in four months to purchase a Model T.  Ford understood the principle of paying his employees enough so that they could purchase what they produced.  This allowed him to up his production and profitability multitudinously.   Incidentally I don’t think the average person earns enough to pay for a vehicle today with four months labor.

Aren’t our values today a little twisted?  Aren’t the entrepreneurs, by squeezing every ounce of labor for a poverty level of pay, limiting their own markets and their level of profits?  They could certainly take a lesson from the practices of Henry Ford

In addition the United States is the richest nation that has ever existed and yet we keep a percentage of our population at the barest level of subsistence while others live in unbelievable opulence.  What are our values?  Beliefs?   Are we that uncaring?  There has to be something dreadfully wrong with our entire system of distribution of the goods and services produced in the nation.

Can this system be rectified?  Obviously, by a fairer method of taxation and a greater provision of resources to the lower echelons in the nation the GDP will be increased and everyone could receive a greater share of the productivity.  .

There is an interesting element or irony here.  Today we seem to have gone back to the time before Henry Ford’s Model T.  By the entrepreneurs limiting what they pay their employees they also limit the amounts of goods and services these employees can buy or the amounts of goods and services they can afford to consume.  By being more generous to their workers the employers are actually being more generous to themselves.  More wealth being produced would give them an opportunity to gain more wealth for themselves.  More generous wages here would result in the potential for far greater profits for themselves.  They are by their tenuous acts actually decreasing their potential profits.

After all consumption equals production.  The more consumption the greater the production of all goods and services and, thus, the greater the amount of wealth produced within the nation.  As the scale of production goes up so does the potential for the levels of profit.  The upper elements of the society by limiting the distribution of the money supply limit their own potential for profits.

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