Pressure is growing for Labor to abandon the third stage of the tax cuts, due in 2024, because of pressure on the Budget. The tax cuts overwhelmingly favour high-income earning men and are a piece with the tilt against ordinary workers under the Morrison government, writes Alan Austin.
Source: Workers’ share of the national income pie falls to all-time low – Michael West
It Took More than Trade to Screw the Country’s Workers But trade is not the whole story of the upward redistribution of the last decade. We also made government-granted patent and copyright monopolies longer and stronger. We also encouraged the financial sector to become bloated, giving big paychecks to Wall Street types at the expense of the rest of us. And, we have a corrupt corporate governance structure that allows CEOs and other top management to line their pockets and rip off the companies they work for. And we also ensured that highly paid professionals, like doctors and dentists, are protected from the same competition that their less educated counterparts face.
This is the topic of Rigged [it’s free]. It’s also the focus of a video series I recently did with the Institute for New Economic Theory, How to Unf*ck America. (Coming soon to a theater near you.)
Perhaps what is most striking about the inequality just happened story is how deeply ingrained it is among people in policy circles. When we make policy decisions that are virtually guaranteed to redistribute income upward, the implications for inequality do not even get raised.
Source: The Big Myth About Inequality: It Just Happened! – scheerpost.com
Just how much more can wealth and incomes be concentrated?
A jobs and skills summit brought together union, business, and government leaders to address stagnant wages in Australia this week. While some seemingly progressive proposals got much attention, the outcome is set to further undermine pay and conditions.
Source: In Australia, Workers Are Facing Another Decade of Wage Suppression
The inflation crisis is squeezing workers. And the only way out of it that is acceptable to capitalists is to squeeze workers even harder.
Source: Defeating Inflation Doesn’t Have to Mean Harming Workers
Even among Marx-friendly economists, the labor theory of value has fallen out of favor. But its technical validity is less important than the core message: workers are exploited because the value they create is undemocratically taken by capitalists.
Source: Karl Marx Was Right: Workers Are Systematically Exploited Under Capitalism
It’s time the workers united again to claim their share of the profits their labour produces. Companies should fulfil their part of the social contract by paying fair wages and taxation. With 12% of Australians living in poverty, it’s time we had a government that puts the welfare of its people first. It’s time.
Source: Why isn’t our “strong economy” benefitting workers? – » The Australian Independent Media Network
To strengthen workers’ collective bargaining rights, the Biden administration looks poised to recommend a host of modest reforms to existing programs and policies. But the working class will remain disempowered unless it organizes itself on a mass scale.
Source: Workers Need Organization, Not Technocratic Fixes
Eisenhower warned us of the Industrial-Military Complex
In 1973, Australian workers at the joint Australian-U.S. low-frequency communications base at North West Cape in Western Australia were unhappy with their working conditions.
Yes, Australian workers need jobs and they need well paid and ongoing employment. Weapons manufacture in Australia will certainly fulfil this objective to some extent. But it does not need to be this way. There always have been real alternatives. Alternative employment that provides workers with well-paid, sustainable jobs making socially useful things: public housing, transport systems, alternative energy technology. Workers want employment that means they are contributing to building a better world for our community.
Source: The U.S. State Department sought to control Australian workers
Much of Australia is back under pandemic lockdown thanks to Coalition mismanagement. The Liberals have used the crisis to bolster big business. Now the workers’ movement needs to champion its own measures to counter the pandemic and rebuild the economy.
Source: Australian Business Has Used the Pandemic to Attack Workers — Now It’s Time to Fight Back
Tennis has often been considered an exclusive sport — but in the 1930s, trade unionists came together to challenge the private clubs with their own tournament: the “Workers’ Wimbledon.”
Source: The Workers’ Wimbledon
The current blizzard of stories about a “worker shortage” across the U.S. may seem as though it’s about this peculiar moment, as the pandemic fades. Restaurants in Washington, D.C., contend that they’re suffering from a staffing “crisis.” The hospitality industry in Massachusetts says it’s experiencing the same disaster. The governor of Montana plans to cancel coronavirus-related additional unemployment benefits funded by the federal government, and the cries of business owners are being heard in the White House. In reality, though, this should be understood as the latest iteration of a question that’s plagued the owning class for centuries: How can they get everyone to do awful jobs for them for awful pay?
Source: You Must Work or Die: The Long History of “Worker Shortages”
Has anyone seen Trump or his family on the front line? Boris Johnson was and he has the virus to show for it. He’s Your President America!!! (ODT)
via Workers Are Warriors in the Fight Against the Coronavirus | The Nation
THE WAGES SLUMP the Abbott Government plunged Australia into back in 2014 is now firmly entrenched. More than five years after the first failed budget by disgraced former Coalition Treasurer, Joe Hockey, workers’ wages are increasing at the lowest rates since records have been kept. It is unlikely there has been a worse period in Australia’s history for workers receiving a fair share of the nation’s vast wealth.
This dismal news emerged from the quarterly wages figures released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) last Wednesday.
Tradingeconomics.com has data on wage growth for 30 developed countries, current to March or June this year for most. The average rise after allowing for inflation is 2.27%.
Australia’s puny 0.82% ranks a dismal 21st out of those 30 countries. Down in the bottom one third.
This is the time when workers should be earning a fair share of the nation’s vast wealth and investing in homes for now and superannuation for the future. The nation should be investing in the quality of life for all citizens now – especially those doing it tough – and in infrastructure for the future.
It seems the rich foreign controllers of the Coalition parties have decided to grasp as much as they can while they can and to hell with the Australian people. Because eventually, surely, one day, citizens must wake up to what is going on and call a halt.
As the Post-Gazette reported:
The choice for thousands of union workers at Royal Dutch Shell’s petrochemical plant in Beaver County was clear Tuesday: Either stand in a giant hall waiting for President Donald Trump to speak or take the day off with no pay.
“Your attendance is not mandatory,” said the rules that one contractor relayed to employees, summarizing points from a memo that Shell sent to union leaders a day ahead of the visit to the $6 billion construction site. But only those who showed up at 7 am, scanned their ID cards, and prepared to stand for hours—through lunch but without lunch—would be paid.
“NO SCAN, NO PAY,” a supervisor for that contractor wrote.
via Workers Were Reportedly Ordered Not to Protest or Show Any ‘Resistance’ at Trump Rally in Pennsylvania | Common Dreams News
The biggest lie ever told in American politics is the claim that Donald Trump cares about working people.
He never has. He never will.
As a bankruptcy-prone business mogul, Trump has always financed his lavish lifestyle at the expense of the workers and contractors he screwed over. Now he is doing the same thing as president, having engineered a government shutdown that on Friday denied 800,000 federal employees their paychecks.
via Trump Got Rich by Screwing Over Workers—Of Course He’s Doing It Again as President | The Nation
Would or could ordinary people ever unite for change? (ODT)
The world’s largest economies have grown at a steady pace and unemployment has consistently fallen in the years following the greed-driven global financial crisis of 2008, but income gains during the so-called recovery have been enjoyed almost exclusively by the top one percent while most workers experience “unprecedented wage stagnation.”
via As Global 1% Seize Economy’s Gains, ‘Unprecedented Wage Stagnation’ for Everyone Else
Midwestern workers voted for Obama in 2012, but they have lost faith in the establishment. Trump echoed their resentments while promising change
Source: Disaffected rust belt voters embraced Trump. They had no other hope | Richard C Longworth | Opinion | The Guardian
The treatment of low-paid workers in Australia today is reminiscent of master-servant relationships we supposedly ditched last century
Source: Is Australia egalitarian? Ask the worker sacked for using a Post-it note | Van Badham | Opinion | The Guardian
If the China-Australia free trade agreement proceeds without labour market protections, the Turnbull government will “effectively surrender autonomy over its migration laws” and invite a wave of Chinese workers into Australia, driving down local wages and conditions, a new report has found.
Source: China free trade agreement to invite wave of Chinese workers, drive down wages: report