Destroying Labor, Destroying The Country
On this Labor Day, it is timely to roll out several pieces that show how corporate money in our politics and the resulting destruction of our middle class by both political parties and Corporate America has turned this country into a second-world nation.
At a time when the right wing and its media spend millions demonizing unions, and both political parties support policies that destroy them, not surprisingly Gallup reports that American workers in 2011 express greater dissatisfaction than in previous years about their health insurance, promotional opportunities, job stress, job security, and the safety of their workplace. If the Democratic Party was truly aligned with working America and not K Street, it would be a slam dunk to turn this dissatisfaction into a potent political argument for taking back Congress in 2012. Yet because of Obama’s indifference to labor and gutless appeasement of Corporate America, the labor movement finds itself going its own way next year. If Democrats lose the Senate as well as the White House in 2012, progressives have the opening they need to seize the party back from K Street and tell the DINOs to get with the program or change labels.
Yves at Naked Capitalism gives us a great case study of how Wall Street’s demands for profits over products and capacity destroyed the American paper industry. And yet both political parties are against anything resembling an industrial policy because supposedly business knows better than government.
With today’s piece in the NYT about the US Postal Service’s impending insolvency over unfunded pension payments, it’s critical to remember that this “problem” has direct roots back to GOP congressional action back in 2006 to load onerous pension obligations upon the USPS so that the right wing could break the union and kill off the USPS for Fed Ex and UPS. And yet the Obama administration stays silent and gutless on the matter, just as expected.
Lastly, as if the destructive influence of corporate money on our politics wasn’t enough to kill off this republic, the ability of corporations and the GOP to steal elections will seal the deal. You should all know by now that the GOP and their corporate check writers are doing everything they can to steal races in 2012, whether it be by voter ID scams and other disenfranchisement schemes, or by continuing to steal elections through electronic voting. If you want proof, keep in mind that several of the Wisconsin recall elections where GOP incumbents allegedly won were probably stolen, just as the 2004 election was stolen for Bush in Ohio.
The "greatest generation" didn't sacrifice and die for their country, just so Corporate America could rape and destroy Main Street and plunder the middle class. Yet the GOP and corporate Democrats are guilty of dismantling this country and flushing that sacrifice down the gutter in a criminal pursuit of cash. We can argue about when this country went south, whether it was with Reagan in 1980, or later with Bush or even Clinton. I actually think it began with Carter's wasted opportunity in the aftermath of Watergate. Nonetheless, America has been on a downward spiral since then, and ascribing all the blame to the GOP and Corporate America doesn't fully explain why the Democratic Party went along and sold out the middle class as well.
Hat tip to Kenneth Quinnell at Crooks and Liars and Papau at Firedoglake.