Findings Emphasize Contrast Between Clinton’s Plan to Invest in Good-Paying American Jobs and Trump’s Reckless Proposals
Hillary for Nevada today is announcing new analysis that shows Nevada could add 94,000 jobs under Hillary Clinton’s economic plans, while it could lose 31,000 jobs under a Donald Trump presidency. The findings are based on two recent reports by Moody’s economist and former John McCain adviser Mark Zandi. The analysis showed that under Clinton’s plans, the economy overall would create 10.4 million jobs nationwide while under Trump, the economy would lose 3.4 million jobs and the nation would plunge into a “lengthy recession.”
Clinton has pledged to make the largest investment in good-paying jobs since World War II in her first 100 days in office. This plan would grow jobs in Nevada by making the boldest investments in infrastructure since President Eisenhower built the interstate highway system, investing in Nevada manufacturing, and cutting taxes and reducing red tape for Nevada’s small businesses, among other provisions.
“Hillary Clinton is the only candidate with a bold vision and a real plan to create new jobs and make our economy stronger,” said Neera Tanden, President and CEO of the
. “Thanks to President Obama’s leadership, we emerged out of one of the deepest economic recessions in our history, but we still have so much more work to do. Hillary knows that we need an economy that works for everyone, and she will lead us by making major investments in our infrastructure, small businesses, manufacturing, technology and clean energy. Meanwhile, Donald Trump’s plan would work against all the progress we’ve made over the last eight years and take us back into another recession.”
“As one of the states hit the hardest by the recession, our communities continue to face economic stress. Hillary Clinton is the only candidate who has a plan to help Nevada families step out of poverty,” said Assemblywoman Dina Neal.
Tanden and Neal held a media conference call today, along with Henderson Councilwoman Gerri Schroder. A full fact sheet on today’s analysis of Zandi’s findings and additional details on how Clinton’s 100-Days jobs agenda would benefit Nevada and create jobs is attached. The estimated job gains and losses in Nevada under Clinton’s plans and Trump’s plans were calculated by distributing Zandi’s national projections evenly among the states in proportion to their populations.
Paul Ryan’s Record Indicates We’re In For The Same Broken GOP Policies
After much chaos and dysfunction, the House of Representatives elected Representative Paul Ryan from Wisconsin to be Speaker of the House. The Republicans have lauded their new Speaker as their “thought leader” who creates the “blueprints” for policies: he was Mitt Romney’s running mate in 2012 and chairman of the Ways and Means Committee. Much of the GOP rhetoric around Ryan’s run for speaker has suggested that he will usher in a new era of moderate, pragmatic, and effective leadership that will be both good for the economy and the American people. Though we hope Ryan can bring sanity to this House of GOP crazies and stop them from holding the government hostage time and again, we’re not holding our breath for a “new day in the House of Representatives.”
Despite GOP rhetoric, the reality of Paul Ryan’s record, including his signature 2014 budget, suggests that his Speakership will be full of the same old, out of touch, extreme Republican policies that undermine working families to help the rich get richer—policies that voters already rejected in the 2012 election. Here are a few reminders of Ryan’s record:
Bad for low-income families. Ryan tried to paint himself as an anti-poverty crusader, by embarking on poverty tour in 2014 and releasing a report documenting his concerns about poverty. But in reality, Ryan creates policies that cut programs that are vital for working families and blames poverty on personal failures, claiming that it is the result of a “culture problem.” The bulk of the Ryan Budget’s spending cuts—69 percent—come from gutting programs that serve low-income people. And after his 2014 poverty tour, he proposed slashing $125 billion from the
(SNAP), also known a food stamps, over the next 10 years, and converting it to a flat-funded block grant. He also proposed cuts to Medicaid, a critical program that provides health care to 70 million Americans, including low-income children, seniors, and people with disabilities. And of course, Ryan wants to repeal the Affordable Care Act, which has provided health insurance for 17.6 million people.
Bad for the economy. Ryan’s budgets and rhetoric tout the same failed trickle-down economic theories that have only helped the rich get even richer but leave middle class and working families behind. His budget proposed giving millionaires a tax cut of at least $200,000. And analyses indicate, there is no way to implement Ryan’s tax cuts for millionaires in a deficit-neutral way without raising taxes on the middle class. Ryan also advocates for austerity measures that have never worked and would hurt the economy. And yet, his budget advocates for enormous cuts to investments in education, science, and other programs that benefit the middle class.
BOTTOM LINE: Though we’d like to hope that Paul Ryan’s new title will cause him to reevaluate his policies and support legislation that will actually help working families, his record of damaging polices creates huge warning signs. If Paul Ryan’s reign as speaker is anything like his record, we’re in for another period of GOP extremism that hurts families, seniors, women, and the economy. But now that the chaos has cleared, Republicans in the House of Representatives should take this opportunity under new leadership to pass policies that support working families, rather than the wealthy few.
— by Paul Buchheit
Law enforcement, education, health care, water management, government itself — all have been or are being privatized. People with money get the best of each service.
At the heart of privatization is a disdain for government and a distrust of society, and a mindless individualism that leaves little room for cooperation. Adherents of privatization demand ‘freedom’ unless they need the government to intervene on their behalf.
These privatizers have a system:
1. Convince Yourself that “I Did It On My Own”
The people in position to take from society seek to rationalize their actions, and many have accomplished this through the philosophy of Ayn Rand, the author of The Virtue of Selfishness. She rejected community values, saying “Any group…is only a number of individuals…If any civilization is to survive, it is the morality of altruism that men have to reject.”
Post-Ayn-Rand, in the growing era of neoliberalism, with Ronald Reagan blurting “government is the problem” and Margaret Thatcher proclaiming “There is no such thing as society,” once-respected institutions like public education and public transportation were demonized as “socialist” and “Soviet-style.” The message has been repeated so often by the business-backed media that the general public began to believe it. Said The Economist with regard to product development, “Governments have always been lousy at picking winners, and they are likely to become more so, as legions of entrepreneurs and tinkerers swap designs online, turn them into products at home and market them globally from a garage. As the revolution rages, governments should stick to the basics…Leave the rest to the revolutionaries.”
But as Mariana Mazzucato points out in The Entrepreneurial State, “In reality it is the State that has been engaged on a massive scale in entrepreneurial risk taking to spur innovation.” There is much evidence for this, in a multitude of disciplines, especially in technology and pharmaceuticals, both of which have seen corporate research labs diminishing if not entirely disappearing.
In the burgeoning new field of nanotechnology, says Mazzucato, industry cannot justify applications that require 10 to 20 years of development and which demand a coordination of physics, chemistry, biology, medicine, engineering, and computer science.
2. Insist that the Removal of Government Will Benefit All People
The removal of government is equated to a vague demand for “freedom” which is hyperbolic if not meaningless. It gained momentum with Milton Friedman, who said: “Underlying most arguments against the free market is a lack of belief in freedom itself.” The Cato Institute went on to preach that “Free markets create a future promoting integrity and trust.” And Forbes Magazine founder Steve Forbes blustered: “You can’t create prosperity without freedom!”
Despite the fact that this ‘freedom’ has generated the greatest inequality in nearly 100 years, apologists try to convince us that somehow we’re all prospering. From the Wall Street Journal: The U.S. economy is on a tear. From a Moody’s analyst: Our economy is firing on most cylinders.
Some libertarian “lovers of freedom” go to even greater extremes to defend the benefits of inequality for all of us, claiming that income inequality is Good For The Poor, and even that “Income inequality in a capitalist system is truly beautiful.”
3. Ensure that Government Isn’t Removed Until You Get Rich
As the well-to-do have complained about government, they’ve also made sure that government has continued to help them, with a mind-boggling array of deductions, exemptions, exclusions, and loopholes.
At least $2.2 trillion per year in tax expenditures, tax underpayments, tax havens, and corporate nonpayment go mostly to the very rich, the most brazen of whom make the astonishing claim that their hedge fund income should be taxed at a much lower rate than a teacher’s income.
Their tax breaks are augmented by the payroll tax rate limit, which allows multi-millionaires to pay a tiny percentage compared to middle-income earners; by high-risk derivatives that are the first to be paid off in a bank collapse; and by a bankruptcy law that allows businesses, but not students, to get out of debt.
4. Defund Government Until Privatization Seems Like the Only Option
This has happened most notably in education, with a simple formula, according to The Nation: “Use standardized tests to declare dozens of poor schools ‘persistently failing’; put these under the control of a special unelected authority; and then have that authority replace the public schools with charters.” And, of course, cut funding. According to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, forty-eight states — all except Alaska and North Dakota — were spending less per student in 2014 than they did before the recession.
It’s happening to Social Security, perhaps the most efficiently run system, public or private, in our nation’s history. As Richard Eskow notes, “Congress has cut 14 out of the last 16 SSA budget requests. There’s only one rational explanation for that: a hostility toward government itself, combined with the determination to place more public resources in corporate hands through ‘privatization.’”
It’s happening to police forces, which are going private in neighborhoods and on corporate campuses as public money is disappearing.
5. Remain Ignorant of Any Troublesome Facts
Facts abound of failing private systems, including:
Education: A private system that pays a charter CEO 350 times more per student than the corresponding public school chancellor.
Health Care: The most expensive system in the developed world, with the price of common surgeries anywhere from three to ten times higher than in much of Europe, and with 43 percent of sick Americans skipping doctor’s visits and/or medication purchases in 2011 because of excessive costs. Medicare, on the other hand, which is largely without the profit motive and the competing sources of billing, is efficiently run, for all eligible Americans.
Banking: Thanks to private banks, interest claims one out of every three dollars that we spend, and by the time we retire with a 401(k), nearly half of our money is lost to the banks. But the public bank of North Dakota (BND) had an equity return of 23.4% before the state’s oil boom. The normally privatization-minded Wall Street Journal admits that the BND “is more profitable than Goldman Sachs Group Inc., has a better credit rating than J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. and hasn’t seen profit growth drop since 2003.”
Law Enforcement: As public money for police protection is depleted, our communities are being subjected to law enforcement officers who are insufficiently trained, poorly regulated, and often unaccountable to the public for their actions.
Water Management: A water security expert suggested that “One promising solution is to create water markets that allow people to buy and sell rights to use water.” But a 2009 analysis of water and sewer utilities by Food and Water Watch found that private companies charge up to 80 percent more for water and 100 percent more for sewer services.
The Environment: According to former World Bank Chief Economist Nicholas Stern, climate change is “the greatest market failure the world has seen.” Yet Bloomberg reports that “Wall Street firms are investing in businesses that will profit as the planet gets hotter.”
Government Itself: In a study of outsourcing, the Project on Government Oversight found that in 33 out of 35 cases “the average annual contractor billing rate was much more than the average annual full compensation for federal employees.”
Great Individuals Emerge from Cooperative Efforts
Privatization is closely connected to the demand for individualism over cooperation. But the belief that self-centeredness will benefit everyone is backwards. As George Lakoff summarizes: “The Public provides freedom…Individualism begins after the roads are built, after individualists have had an education, after medical research has cured their diseases…”
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 License
Paul Buchheit is a college teacher, an active member of US Uncut Chicago, founder and developer of social justice and educational websites (UsAgainstGreed.org, PayUpNow.org, RappingHistory.org), and the editor and main author of “American Wars: Illusions and Realities” (Clarity Press). He can be reached at paul@UsAgainstGreed.org.
NV Controller Ron Knecht’s “2nd Monthly Report” was published last week in the Humboldt Sun. I took exception with much of what he had to say. Below are his report and my rebuttal which was published in the second edition of this week’s Humboldt Sun:
Mr. Knecht’s Report:
The second Controller’s Monthly Report is now on the state web site (www.controller.nv.gov). It addresses state revenues, while the first one reviewed state spending. In sum, its findings are …
Nevada state revenues include taxes, federal and other grants and contracts, plus charges for services that have amply served the public interest. Both total tax revenues and charges for services have increased slightly relative to Nevada’s economy and the incomes of Nevada families and businesses since 2008. Total state revenues have increased at roughly the same rate as state spending, and both spending and taxes have grown significantly faster than our economy, proving again that we have a spending problem, not a revenue deficit.
Every cent taken in taxes is an act of destruction of human and social well-being; so, public spending items should not be adopted unless they clearly provide benefits exceeding the damage done by taxes required to support them. The essence of sound fiscal policy is to deploy only the least destructive tax methods and most beneficial spending measures, and to find the taxing/spending balance point that maximizes net social benefits and public wellbeing.
All taxes are “unfair” because they can’t be charged according to the social costs that people cause, nor the benefits they receive. Fairness being illusory, in taxation and other public policy, we should seek to maximize economic growth and the human well-being that growth fosters. “Ability to pay” criteria, which have a superficial ring of fairness, and “redistribution” policies are particularly destructive to the broad public interest in growth. And claims that taxing one person to subsidize another involves “compassion” are false.
The real tax fairness issue is that public spending’s beneficiaries — public employees and contractors, plus those receiving public payments — have an unfair political advantage over taxpayers and the public, an advantage that produces excessive taxing/spending levels.
So, consider the recent fortunes of taxpayers and public employees. In the last six years, Nevada taxpayers’ average incomes declined by nearly 8 percent (from $39,079 in 2008 to $36,039 in 2010) before rebounding slowly back to prior levels ($39,173 in 2014). State employees took 4.6 percent cuts via furloughs for a couple of years, followed by a combination of furloughs and actual pay reductions still totaling roughly 4.6 percent. At present, they still must take furloughs equal to cuts of about 2.3 percent.
So, state employees in general have borne roughly the same burden from our economic troubles as have taxpayers. Considering the total package — pay, benefits and job security — state employees in Nevada essentially get total compensation at market levels. Local government employees, on the other hand, have taken fewer, if any, pay cuts and many have continued to get increases. In Clark and Washoe counties, their total compensation levels are much higher than market levels prevailing in the private sector.
The accumulated and ever-increasing over-reach of government is greatly responsible for the slow economic growth of recent years and the prospects of the same in the future. So, voters, taxpayers, Nevada state employees and the broad public interest are victims of government excess, while local public employees are to some extent beneficiaries.
All these considerations reinforce the conclusions of Controller’s Monthly Report #1 that to leave our children a better future, we must stop the growth relative to the economy and to Nevadans’ incomes of public spending that drives taxes. We must especially avoid mistakes such as adopting versions of the business margins tax defeated 4-1 by voters last November. We must restructure fiscal processes for real budget constraints and effective cost management, emphasize no- and low-cost reforms in K-12 education and end public employee collective bargaining and prevailing wage rules.
My rebuttal to his partisan ideological propaganda:
I have some serious problems with Mr. Knecht’s “Commentary” in the 3/13-16/2015 Humboldt Sun.
”Every cent taken in taxes is an act of destruction of human and social well-being?” Really? Mr. Knecht doesn’t believe in ANY public commons? He doesn’t believe in public roads? Or public water and systems? Or police and fire fighters? Or public schools and universities? I’m sorry, but all of those do promote “human and social well-being” and they’re all part of OUR public commons created using OUR tax dollars. So exactly what is Mr. Knecht proposing, selling off all of our “public commons” at fire-sale prices to the “deserving” richest among us, all so THEY can charge us by the mile, by the book or test, by the flush or by the flame? What about the police? Is he proposing we should submit to a “Robocop” scenario across the state? Isn’t that why our fore-father’s fled Europe? To flee the tyranny of the rich who oppressed those beneath them?
“All taxes are unfair because they can’t be charged according to the social costs that people cause, nor the benefits they receive?” What does that even mean? That we should bestow OUR public commons to corporate parasites that pay NO taxes just because they might be the bearer of jobs? Isn’t it “corporations” that consume our infrastructure and pollute our lands and waters at the greatest rates, causing destruction of human and social well-being? Isn’t it the corporations that choose NOT to pay a living wage NOR to provide health benefits to their workers, leading to the destruction of human and social well-being? Isn’t it those same workers who now, no longer have an “ability to pay,” again, leading to the destruction of human and social well-being? Is that really what Mr. Knecht’s “fair way to run our country” would look like?
Then there’s his rant about public employees. Every cent of Mr. Knecht’s paycheck is paid with public tax dollars. That makes Mr. Knecht a PUBLIC employee. What makes him believe he’s so infinitely better than police, firefighters, teachers, or even a clerk at a local DMV?
He may talk fondly about our kids/grandkids, but that’s just a ruse, a distraction. He does make his intentions clear: to do everything he can to stifle/gut K-12 education programs that might make our children competitive and productive in an ever changing economy.
I disagree with Mr. Knecht and with that for which he stands. Instead of looking for ways to improve our “human and social well-being,” he’s apparently looking for ways to destroy it. I fear that our “investment” in his paycheck will yield only negative dividends for the everyday Nevadan before all is said and done.
The November jobs report was released today, and it brought a lot of good news. The U.S. economy added 321,000 jobs in November, well exceeding analysts’ expectations of 230,000. The unemployment rate remained at 5.8 percent. But the report also offers a reminder of the struggles that many working Americans continue to feel in the sluggish recovery.
The monthly jobs report doesn’t provide a comprehensive view of how our economy is doing, but it does offer an important glimpse into some of the macro employment and wage trends that reflect whether the economy is growing, and who is sharing in that growth. Here are five charts that show what to be happy about, and why we need to continue to work so that everyone has a chance for economic opportunity and prosperity.
Our immigration system has been broken for decades. And every day we wait to act, millions of undocumented immigrants are living in the shadows: Those who want to pay taxes and play by the same rules as everyone else have no way to live right by the law. That is why President Obama is using his executive authority to address as much of the problem as he can, and why he’ll continue to work with Congress to pass comprehensive reform.
We know the catastrophic risks we are passing onto future generations and we wonder, with anxiety and grief, what will become of our planet. We ask ourselves, “what can I do?”
“The message that solutions to climate change and environmental degradation is up to the individual directly conflicts with what people are witnessing.”
One of the key barriers to taking action on the paramount issues of our time is that these problems are the end result of entrenched cultural, economic and social systems. The message that solutions to climate change and environmental degradation is up to the individual directly conflicts with what people are witnessing: the health and well-being of their bodies and their communities coming a distant second to powerful economic interests.
Current economic calculations do not recognize the full cost to the Commons – the cultural and natural heritage we share that is the foundation of our economy.
Yet growing numbers of people are waking up to the reemerging Commons ethic, which holds that human systems must be aligned to match ecological ones. People believe that future generations have the inalienable right to a healthy planet, and many are now seeking ways to withdraw their consent to the politics and policies that lead to a toxic future.
A rights-based approach to human systems like the economy allows us to open our discussion to questions like: What is the economy for? What are the principles needed to guarantee that we are fair to future generations? What tenets make justice and the protection of the Commons more likely?
Participants at the Congress will bring forward ideas to help shift the way we care for and relate to our Earth–ideas such as moving environmental law out of free market private property law into rights law; caring for the Commons, the Precautionary Principle, and Free Prior and Informed Consent. Congress goers– both men and women–will imagine different economic principles that counter dominant but destructive paradigms.
Some of the new principles to be discussed are:
The Earth is the source of our life and our economic activity.
The Commons, the cultural and natural heritage we share, are the foundation of economics, which presupposes: a) a role of government as the trustee of the commons; b) Laws and rules governing economic systems must first protect the commonwealth; c) Concepts such as economic growth, which ignore the cost to the commons are evolutionary dead-ends.
Justice within generations and justice between generations must be linked to economic justice.
This is a conversation about the definition, boundaries, and acceptance of limits. And, these are a few of the tenets that flow from these economic principles:
Measure the right things: Currently we do not measure the health of the Commons. Pollution and disease count as good for the economic GDP.
Polluter Pays: The one who pollutes or damages the commons shall be held responsible and pay for restoration.
No Debt to Future Generations without a Corresponding Asset: We cannot ask future generations to pay for our messes. We can share with them the costs of assets like parks, art, clean air and water.
Audit, Account for and Fund Commons Assets.
If one accepts the incontestable truth that present generations inherit an Earth left from previous generations, and that we are all eventually ancestors, then our lives are a simultaneously defined by inheriting and bequeathing.
Facing another incontestable truth that our Earth is finite allows us to expand our point of view to include a “bigger picture,” which tells a story with a common goal: It is a story of an incredibly interconnected living systems on which we are dependent, not dominant. The story of human development that has recalibrated its systems to match those of nature itself. The story of a civilization that thrives on stewardship and care, generation after generation into the far future.
Friday, October 10th, was National Minimum Wage Day in honor of the efforts by progressives to raise the minimum wage to $10.10 per hour. At $7.25 an hour, today’s minimum wage is worth 30 percent less than the $1.60 minimum wage of 1968. It has been five years since the last increase in the federal minimum wage and nearly three-quarters of Americans support an increase, yet we have seen no progress. Just this morning four former Republican US Representatives announced their support for an increase in the federal minimum wage. The article begins, “When the cost of living goes up, so should wages. It’s common sense.”
Despite the fact that 22 previous increases in the minimum wage have passed through Congress with bipartisan support, Republicans in Congress have tied the issue up in partisan politics, ignoring the needs of their hard working constituents.
To continue with the theme, we’ve put together 10 key facts you should know about raising the minimum wage.
Since the last increase in the minimum wage, prices have skyrocketed: groceries are 20 percent more expensive, a gallon of gas is 25 percent more expensive and tuition at a community college is 44 percent more expensive than it was in 2009 at the time of the last increase.
BOTTOM LINE: Raising the minimum wage isn’t just good for workers who earn the minimum wage, it’s good for the American economy. What minimum wage workers need—what the American economy needs—is for lawmakers to put aside partisan politics and get behind creating an economy that works for everyone, not just the wealthy few. The answer is simple: give hard working Americans a wage they can live on. Raise the federal minimum wage to $10.10.
After returning from a two-week recess, the Senate is planning to vote on raising the minimum wage to $10.10 this Wednesday. The bill, called the “Minimum Wage Fairness Act,” needs 60 votes to advance thanks to the de facto GOP filibuster threat. And while in the past we have used this space to outline many of thedifferent benefits of raising the minimum wage to $10.10, in anticipation of this important vote we wanted to go over some of the most important reasons one more time. Here they are:
Increasing the minimum wage to $10.10 and indexing it to inflation would raise the wages of 28 million workers by $35 billion. Raising the minimum wage would provide Americans who work hard a better opportunity to get ahead while giving the economy a needed shot in the arm.
In 2013, CEOs made 774 times the pay of minimum wage workers.While the top CEOs made an average of $11.7 million in 2013, full-time workers making the minimum wage took home only $15,080 a year.
One million veterans would benefit from a minimum wage increase.After risking their lives to protect our country, 1 in 10 veterans working in America today are paid wages low enough that they would receive a raise if the minimum wage is raised to $10.10.
Raising the minimum wage will cut government spending on food stamps. Millions of workers earning the minimum wage make so little that they qualify for food stamps (SNAP benefits). This, in effect, amounts to taxpayers subsidizing corporations paying low-wages. Raising wages for low-income workers would actually cut government spending on SNAP by $4.6 billion a year, or $46 billion over the next 10 years, as workers earn enough on their own to no longer rely on the program.
Minimum wage workers are older than you think.Nearly 90 percent of minimum wage workers are 20 years or older. The average minimum wage worker is 35 years old. A higher minimum wage doesn’t just mean more spending money for a teenager, it means greater economic security for the millions of Americans who rely on it as their primary income.
Businesses see the value in increasing the minimum wage.Nearly 60 percent of small business owners recognize that raising the minimum wage would benefit businesses and support raising it. In fact, 82 percent of those surveyed don’t pay any of their workers the federal minimum wage of $7.25.
BOTTOM LINE: Over the next few days, as Senators take to the chamber floor to debate and then vote on this legislation that would help the economy and millions of American workers, they should make sure they keep in mind these vital facts on why the minimum wage should be raised to $10.10. A vote against increasing the minimum wage is quite simply a vote against working Americans.