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So, income has been flat for thirty years why?

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Economics 101 at AP:

Rising productivity means that employers can boost salaries because of workers' increased efficiency. It is the single most important factor supporting rising living standards.

Sure, they can. And weasels could fly out of my butt.

They could also cream off the profits from our harder and harder work for themselves. Which is exactly what's been happening for the last 30 years, as real income has been flat for all but the top 1%.

There's two words I'd really like to start hearing from Democrats:

"Claw back."

As in clawing back all the wealth that's been stolen since the winger billionaires started to run the country thirty years ago.

NOTE Barney Frank shoves the Overton window a tiny bit left:

That's explained in part by the growth in productivity. It was not as high last year as it's been, but it was still considerably above trend.

And if you look at productivity over the last five years, as has been noted, it has been very high.

And then we get to page 17: "Increases in hourly labor compensation were moderate in 2005." In fact, real wages, wages paid to people who work for other people, taking into account inflation, have not gone up for years. They have been flat.

What we have is an economy in which, thanks to increased productivity, gross domestic product goes up and a very, very large share -- an excessive share of the increased wealth has gone to a very small number of people who own the capital.

Now, obviously, for the system to work, there has to be compensation for people who own capital. No one is, I hope, arguing that that shouldn't happen at all. But in recent years, that has become disproportionate.

So there you go. And there you don't go.

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Ruth's picture
Submitted by Ruth on

As more people are drained off the labor pool, the few left are doing increasing amounts of work. A friend at TI says three people have been let go, each of their jobs has come to him to do. No increase in pay. That is how the execs get bigger salaries, showing how they've kept up production while 'trimming' the pay.

Ruth

Ruth

dumluks's picture
Submitted by dumluks on

Mismanage the company, get stock options.
Work your ass off. get it roundly kicked every time you turn around.
That's the free market at work with it's not so invisible hand squeezing labor.
--ml