FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

The Long Run to the Bottom

Now would you just stop arguing, and listen a minute?  The days of this “yeoman-farmer” you mentioned are gone, pal!  People need jobs, “good jobs,” sure, even jobs with a “Living Wage.”  What do mean, this fella Marx says the capitalist “expropriates” all the profit and gives the worker ONLY a “living wage”?  What’s so bad about that?  Your precious worker would starve otherwise, wouldn’t he?  The fact is, people need to be deployed—I mean, employed—and companies need cash to do that.

And that’s where these banks come in, don’t you see?  Sure, they were reckless, irresponsible, what with their “toxic debt instruments” and so forth.  But who do you think has bankrolled the entrepreneurial spirit that has made this country so great?  Right: banks!  HOW did they become “Too Big To Fail”?  How should I know?  The point is: no cash to loan to companies—whether it’s General Motors or some ingenious start-up venture—equals no jobs.

The government could, what, hire its own citizens to provide necessities and services that people really need?  Don’t make me laugh!  No, wait—just listen a minute.  Firstly, that’s socialism: you want us to model ourselves after CUBA?  Second, there’s no profit in that.  Where’s the incentive?  No: banks need money to make money, which is their incentive.  Sure, I don’t like it any better than you do: the public had to come up with what, a trillion dollars, to “help” the likes of Bank of America!  Necessary evil, buddy.  Seed money: and look at the result—the Dow’s going up again, companies are declaring record profits and…What?  Jobs?  Be patient, my good man.  These recessions take time to turn around, but in the long run…

What’s that?  Downsizing?  Automation?  “Outsourcing”?  These big American companies are pretty savvy, they’re not gonna keep their own American people cashless—who’s gonna buy their products if the people aren’t working?  No, they need jobs, good jobs, before they can drive to the mall, don’t you see?

What do you mean, “emerging markets”?  Oh sure, I know, big companies are looking to sell a lot overseas, sure, they even make a lot of their stuff in China or Mexico…but what’s that got to do with creating more good jobs here?  “Capital flight,” “race to the bottom”?  NAFTA and GATT?  I don’t see how these Free Trade Agreements are anything but that: agreements to FREE trade from all these embargoes and whatnot that block American companies from selling their goods everywhere!  If American companies can make money, as I’ve been trying to tell you, they can start hiring again—and create a lot of jobs, good jobs.

What is an “American” company?  What do you mean?  What are you trying to say?  You know what?  I give up: it’s useless trying to talk to you!

BILL MANSON previously taught social science at Columbia and Rutgers universities.

 

 

More articles by:
June 21, 2018
Dean Baker
When Both Men and Women Drop Out of the Labor Force, Why Do Economists Only Ask About Men?
Bruce Lerro
Big Brother Facebook: Drawing Down the Iron Curtain on Yankeedom
June 20, 2018
Henry Giroux
Trump’s War on Children is an act of State Terrorism
Bill Hackwell
Unprecedented Cruelty Against Immigrants and Their Children
Paul Atwood
“What? You Think We’re So Innocent?”
Nicola Perugini
The Palestinian Tipping Point
K.J. Noh
Destiny and Daring: South Korean President Moon Jae-In’s Impossible Journey Towards Peace
Gary Leupp
Jeff Sessions and St. Paul’s Clear and Wise Commands
M. G. Piety
On Speaking Small Truths to Power
Dave Lindorff
Some Straight Talk for Younger People on Social Security (and Medicare too)
George Wuerthner
The Public Value of Forests as Carbon Reserves
CJ Hopkins
Confession of a Putin-Nazi Denialist
David Schultz
Less Than Fundamental:  the Myth of Voting Rights in America
Rohullah Naderi
The West’s Over-Publicized Development Achievements in Afghanistan 
Dan Bacher
California Lacks Real Marine Protection as Offshore Drilling Expands in State Waters
Lori Hanson – Miguel Gomez
The Students of Nicaragua’s April Uprising
Russell Mokhiber
Are Corporations Behind Frivolous Lawsuits Against Corporations?
Michael Welton
Infusing Civil Society With Hope for a Better World
June 19, 2018
Ann Robertson - Bill Leumer
We Can Thank Top Union Officials for Trump
Lawrence Davidson
The Republican Party Falls Apart, the Democrats Get Stuck
Sheldon Richman
Trump, North Korea, and Iran
Richard Rubenstein
Trump the (Shakespearean) Fool: a New Look at the Dynamics of Trumpism
Kevin Zeese - Margaret Flowers
Protect Immigrant Rights; End the Crises That Drive Migration
Gary Leupp
Norway: Just Withdraw From NATO
Kristine Mattis
Nerd Culture, Adultolescence, and the Abdication of Social Priorities
Mike Garrity
The Forest Service Should Not be Above the Law
Colin Todhunter
Pro-GMO Activism And Smears Masquerade As Journalism: From Seralini To Jairam Ramesh, Aruna Rodrigues Puts The Record Straight
Doug Rawlings
Does the Burns/Novick Vietnam Documentary Deserve an Emmy?
Kenneth Surin
2018 Electioneering in Appalachian Virginia
Nino Pagliccia
Chrystia Freeland Fails to See the Emerging Multipolar World
John Forte
Stuart Hall and Us
June 18, 2018
Paul Street
Denuclearize the United States? An Unthinkable Thought
John Pilger
Bring Julian Assange Home
Conn Hallinan
The Spanish Labyrinth
Patrick Cockburn
Attacking Hodeidah is a Deliberate Act of Cruelty by the Trump Administration
Gary Leupp
Trump Gives Bibi Whatever He Wants
Thomas Knapp
Child Abductions: A Conversation It’s Hard to Believe We’re Even Having
Robert Fisk
I Spoke to Palestinians Who Still Hold the Keys to Homes They Fled Decades Ago – Many are Still Determined to Return
Steve Early
Requiem for a Steelworker: Mon Valley Memories of Oil Can Eddie
Jim Scheff
Protect Our National Forests From an Increase in Logging
Adam Parsons
Reclaiming the UN’s Radical Vision of Global Economic Justice
Dean Baker
Manufacturing Production Falls in May and No One Notices
Laura Flanders
Bottom-Up Wins in Virginia’s Primaries
Binoy Kampmark
The Anguish for Lost Buildings: Embers and Death at the Victoria Park Hotel
Weekend Edition
June 15, 2018
Friday - Sunday
Dan Kovalik
The US & Nicaragua: a Case Study in Historical Amnesia & Blindness
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail