Letter: One income once sustained family
Wednesday, August 10, 2011
So, we keep trying the same old supply-side economics, hoping for a different result. For years, we have been deregulating the economy, slashing taxes for the wealthy, fighting inflation by keeping wages low, and hoping that, somehow, all the wealth accumulated at the top will trickle down.
I remember when my father, a union plumber, made a good living, had yearly vacations, health insurance for his family, a retirement plan, owned his own home, and bought a new car every two or three years. My mother stayed at home and took care of her family and didn’t worry much about our finances. Life was pretty decent. They even had enough money to help put me through college.
Since that time, the average American worker’s wages have stagnated, we have lost millions of family-wage jobs in manufacturing and the trades overseas, and families can’t afford to buy the products they make.
It’s demand-side economics that creates wealth and prosperity for all.
We need to increase wages, put people back to work rebuilding our infrastructure, and stop giving corporations tax breaks for moving jobs overseas. It’s not our national debt that needs attention, but a trade deficit that benefits multinationals and foreign-wage earners at our country’s expense and peril.
Michael D. Newman