Monday , December 11 2017
Home / SNB & CHF / The Attack on Workers, Phase II

The Attack on Workers, Phase II

Summary:
Labors with No Fruits It’s been a long row to hoe for most workers during the first 17 years of the new millennium.  The soil’s been hard and rocky.  The rewards for one’s toils have been bleak. For many, laboriously dragging a push plow’s dull blade across the land has hardly scratched enough of a rut in the ground to plant a pitiful row of string beans.  What’s more, any bean sprouts that broke through the stony earth were quickly strangled out by seasonal weeds.  Those ‘green shoots’ that persisted bore pods that dried out on the vine before maturity. This has been the common experience of the typical 21st century American worker, thus far. Countless, stories of labors with no fruits have been shared at bowling

Topics:
MN Gordon considers the following as important: , , ,

This could be interesting, too:

Marc Chandler writes FX Weekly Preview: FOMC and ECB Highlight Central Banks’ Last Meetings of the Year

Win Thin writes Emerging Markets: Preview of the Week Ahead

Investec writes Large email hack reported – Swiss agency tool lets you check if your account was compromised

Swissinfo writes General Electric to cut 1,400 Swiss jobs

Labors with No Fruits

It’s been a long row to hoe for most workers during the first 17 years of the new millennium.  The soil’s been hard and rocky.  The rewards for one’s toils have been bleak.

For many, laboriously dragging a push plow’s dull blade across the land has hardly scratched enough of a rut in the ground to plant a pitiful row of string beans.  What’s more, any bean sprouts that broke through the stony earth were quickly strangled out by seasonal weeds.  Those ‘green shoots’ that persisted bore pods that dried out on the vine before maturity.

This has been the common experience of the typical 21st century American worker, thus far. Countless, stories of labors with no fruits have been shared at bowling alleys across the Bible Belt.  There are also hard numbers that backup these woeful tales.

Just this week, for example, Sentier Research released a new report showing that after scratching and clawing the earth day after day, median household income has finally surpassed a level last seen in January 2000.

In other words, living standards for the typical family are now a smidgen higher than they were at the turn of the century.  Rick Newman offers several details:

The Attack on Workers, Phase II

Ma and Pa farm worker lean against one of their recent productions to mug for the daguerreotypist. Their happiness at a job well done is marred by misgivings about their remuneration in real terms. - Click to enlarge

“Sentier calculates a monthly index representing median household income, based on Census Bureau data, starting at 100 in January of 2000.  Since it’s an index, it’s adjusted for inflation and represents the real earning power of a typical family.  The index drifted slightly above 100 a few times leading up to the 2008 financial meltdown, but mostly went sideways during the George W. Bush administration.  Then it plunged beginning in 2009, with a long recovery beginning in 2011.

“The latest reading in the Sentier index is 100.9, the first time it’s been above 100 since 2008. That number matches the previous high, from 2002, which means family income will hit a new high if it rises in May.”

Sentier Household Income, January 2000 - May 2017

The Attack on Workers, Phase II

- Click to enlarge

Rip Van Winkle

Good grief.  What took so darn long? A lot has changed while the typical worker was running in place for the last decade and a half.  In fact, Rip Van Winkle would hardly recognize the world that remains after these lost years.  Good manners, good ethics, and good people have mostly gone the way of the dodo bird.

For one, politics at home has gone stark raving mad.  Debbie Wasserman Shultz.  Jim Comey.  Barry Obama.  Susan Rice.  John Podesta.  Hillary Clinton.  Anthony Weiner.  Barney Frank.  John Burton.  Harry Reid.  Chuck Schumer.  Ted Kennedy’s ghost.  And on and on.  And so on and so forth.

Years ago, when upright character was an expectation, these malevolent dingle berries would have been painted with tar and rolled in a dirty chicken coop full of feathers, among other things.  Nowadays, they get extended lordship, pensions, and countless hours of paid vacation. What to make of it?

The federal government – and many state and local governments – appear to be self-destructing in grand fashion.  Federal agencies and politicians are stabbing each other and the President in the back at a clip last witnessed in Moscow during the twilight of the Soviet Union.

At the same time, the truth has become a liability.  Specifically, sharing the dirty truth has become hazardous to one’s life expectancy.  For the ruling class has become desperate to keep the world tilted in its favor.  They’ll go to any length to keep money and power flowing towards them.

The Attack on Workers, Phase II

Traveling by rail – citizens express their displeasure at a misbehaving politician the traditional way. Reportedly these folkways work wonders with respect to maintaining a certain minimum level of moral standards. Clearly some traditions are worth preserving; this one cries out for more practice. - Click to enlarge

The Attack on Workers, Phase II

No doubt, President Trump’s a ghastly fellow.  But he’s not nearly as ghastly as the headlines make him out to be.  There are much worse haircuts out there.  Plus he’s facing an unwinnable battle.

All of Congress wants Trump to fail and are doing everything they can to ensure this happens.  Even his most partial efforts to redirect some of the failing social programs that are bankrupting the country are greeted with a disjointed and frenetic mass hysteria.  Rational contemplation and pragmatic decision making has given way to foaming mouths and erratic neck convulsions.

The Attack on Workers, Phase II

The Donald (he’s either praying for rain here or bestowing a benediction on his flock). Based on past experience with the Oslo-based Nobel committee’s decisions, we would argue he deserves a Nobel peace prize for the mere fact that he’s not Hillary. Not to mention that he merits recognition for having thrown all of Washington into a severe and persistent outbreak of hallucinatory hysteria that appears thoroughly Prozac-resistant. - Click to enlarge

Should we be surprised?  Maybe this is the way things always were; only now they’ve been ratcheted up several notches.  For instance, two generations ago Nixon era Treasury Secretary William Simon let the cat out of the bag:

“One of the things I learned during my tenure in Washington is that the civic book picture of government in operation is completely inaccurate.  The idea that our elected officials take part in a careful decision-making process – monitoring events, reviewing options, responsibly selecting policies – has almost no connection with reality. 

“A more accurate image would be that of a runaway train with the throttle stuck wide open — while the passengers and crew are living it up in the dining car.”

These days, however, the runaway train is one ridge turn from jumping the tracks.  Alas, a stock market crash, depression, and world war will likely accompany it.  After that the attack on worker begins in earnest.

 The Attack on Workers, Phase II

Tags: ,,
About MN Gordon
MN Gordon
Making sense of the latest economic policy touted by the Federal Reserve or the U.S. Treasury is an exercise in befuddlement. No doubt about it, the economics trade is overcome with an abundance of nonsense these days. This is no coincidence. M.G. Gordon of Economic Prism looks to bring clarity to the muddy waters of economic policy.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *