The Widdershins

Eight Days a Week…

Posted on: July 15, 2015

Last week, the Bush “Hair Apparent” said something quite remarkable.  In talking about the economic needs of workers tethered to a living wage calculated for the 1970s, he said, “Workers need to work more hours.”

Okay, let’s dissect this in the light most favorable to the third Bush in the dynasty hedgerow.  Jeb! (always add the exclamation point to give him a little pizzazz)  said he meant, “More hours should be made available to workers,” as opposed to saying, “Workers were lazy slugabeds and needed to work more hours.”  Whatever exclamation boy!

Even if it was a misspeak, still not good Jeb!  In fact, it demonstrates an even more fundamental lack of understanding of the workforce and workers in general.  Here’s the 411:

  • American workers are the most productive workers on the face of the planet;
  • Since the 1970s, productivity has more than doubled and wages have only increased 13%;
  • Even from 2000 until 2012, productivity increased 25% and wages have actually receded – I’m repeating this for the appropriate amount of emphasis, from 2000 until 2012, wages have actually receded while productivity increased by one-quarter;
  • If wages had increased at the same rate as productivity, the current minimum wage would be $22/hour; and
  • Working people now take home the lowest share of total corporate income that’s been recorded since 1950.

Here’s a chart explaining the great parting of the ways between productivity and real earnings:

Productivity and Average Real Earnings


Here’s another one depicting productivity, the average income of the 1%, and average overall wages:

Productivity and Average income since 1979

Finally, this last one shows where the great chasm began:

Productivity and Average income of top one percent


The other thing about this dust-up and its utter lack of understanding is this:  People who are working part-time for the minimum wage don’t just work one job.  They work two and sometimes three jobs to pay the bills.  As Robert Reich says, “Part-time workers work sixty to seventy hours a week making them almost double full-timers.”  So the answer under the Bush beans-for-brains theory is, “Let’s just change the calendar and add a day – eight days a week and the plebeians can afford the electricity to run their luxury microwaves.  Long live the plutocrats!”  (Another appropriate use of an exclamation point is after the word plutocrat!)

The really sad thing is this – it isn’t the gaffe, or the misunderstanding of the labor market, or the failure to grasp simple economics – it is the abject failure to understand or offer even a cursory acknowledgement that trickle-down economics is a bust – no bueno – territory reserved for turds in the punch bowl!  Trickle down, supply side economics has been harmful and counterproductive to the entire economy, not just minimum wage workers, but wage earners throughout the economic spectrum.

Here’s the news flash every Republican doesn’t get or chooses to ignore:  Track the divergence between productivity and wages and it is the 1980s.  Track any number of economic indicators demonstrating the demise of the middle class and it is 1980s.  Track the economic damage to the middle class and the meteoric ascendancy of the wealthy, and it is 1980s.

First Fox debate...

First Fox debate…

Cut taxes, upload earnings to the cuticle pushed, gentrified echelon of the wealthy as spouted today by the Ben Hur cast of Republican presidential candidates and there isn’t a fly wings’ breadth of difference between now and what was peddled back in the 1980s by Ronaldus Maximus.

Here’s a question to stop those annoying uncles at cookouts this summer:  We’ve given 93 cents of every dollar in income growth to the top one-percent, why are the 99% not celebrating their new found prosperity?  “Big lotta ingrates they are, wouldn’t you agree Uncle Fester?”

I will be checking in sporadically today since I have flood clean-up duty so feel free to take the conversation in any direction you might like.


22 Responses to "Eight Days a Week…"

Excellent post, Prolix. Hope that things are improving there at Waterworld, so that you can get off of and prop up those “dishpan feet”.

They already have two Todd Akins in the GOP and they are Jeb Bush and Donald Trump.

Yes, great post, Prolix. I just read it to my Mom. Laker & I are visiting the fam in WA. I hope it stops raining there and starts raining in Calif!

@2, LOL! I can’t wait to see trump in the debates!

Jeb! is just as much in touch with the real world as Poppy was.

@1, courtesy of my dishpan feet, I’m walking around on two size 13 prunes. Here’s the scary thing — given how ugly my hooves are, the prune look is a step up — pun sorta intended.

@2, Jeb! and the Canadian Cuban are just the early over-achievers, there will be others to join them. This first debate will be must see teevee.

@3, Have a great time in WA — I love, love, love that state — beautiful!

Tell Laker hello.

@5, wonder what will be the equivalent for Jeb! when it comes to grocery store scanners? Whatever it is I hope it makes a noise. Have you heard Jeb! make noises. He did an imitation of the internet the other day — feature this: A future CinC going, and I quote, “Beep, beep, boop.”

I think Fredster is having internet problems — the weather has decided no one in his vicinity should be on the internet for the time being.

For the climate deniers, I would like to take them to my basement and let them deny that it is water I would holding their heads under.

I don’t know what state you are in Prolix but a friend of mine in Ohio says that it literally has rained for a month there and they are having horrible flooding. I’m sure she wishes she could send the rain somewhere else. I’m sure California would be glad to take it.

@11: Prolix is in Kentucky but I try not to hold that against him.

We’ve had rain for at least a month and a half here in Indiana. There’s flooding all over the state. It’s really hurt the corn crop. Soybeans, too.

SoFLA missed the “rainy season” memo. It’s wicked hot and we’ve had little or no rain for 3 weeks.
Fredster has no power, no internet.

Good heavens. Bush 41 fell “breaking a neck bone”, but is in “stable” and “non life threatening” condition. Only the top few vertebrae are life threatening when fractured, but rarely is one “stable” either. He may have just chipped one of the little spinous processes or the odontoid bone…..
There. Now I’ve murmured sweet li’l medical nothings. Nighty-night, all.

@14, there you go a’talkin’ all medical and stuff. You know what that does to me.

@11 & 12, yep, I’m in KY, but as do all KY’ians I have a boatload of relatives in Ohio. It has rained, seems like, since right after the Super Bowl. The ground can’t take any more water.

For the next two days it is supposed to be “unrainy”, but I think it is merely a trick the weather guessers are playing in order for them to use other graphics since they have worn out the rain and thunderstorm ones.

Hey, Beata, did you see where they are going to start running an overnight boat excursion between Madison, IN and Frankfort, KY? Now, I can see wanting to get out of Madison, but why in the world would anyone, I mean anyone with walking around sense, want to go to Frankfort of their own volition? They even give prisoners a choice of another city because sending them to Frankfort is cruel and highly unusual punishment.

I am amazed at all the rain and flooding. My mom says that here in WA they just had the driest winter and spring on record! And you all know about my poor state. Good lord, what a disaster.

Prolix, laker says “Hi” back.

That exclamation point after Jeb’s initials is really ridiculous. Can you imagine the criticism if Hillary did something lame like that?

I hope it will be safe for Fredster to return soon.

He started the (!) thingee when he ran for Guv.

Oh my! I thought Jeb! was just a construct of Prolix’s. Like me calling him “Der Jebinator.” I had no clue he added that punctuation himself. Why didn’t he go all the way and bedazzle it! (Here is where SM77 should do “satire on a budget.” )

Unfortunately, no Republican is likely to admit that Ronnie dearest’s voodoo economics only succeed at transferring wealth to the top 1%. That inconvenient truth would cost them a large chunk of their base.

Speaking of “An Inconvenient Truth,” Al Gore said in that film that one of the effects warming would be for storms to become more.severe, and last longer. I’m sorry to hear about Prolix’s, and all the other Widdershins’ weather woes!! Hang in there Prolix, I am sure the sun will come out eventually…

P.S. Beata posted this a couple of days ago. Here’s how Hillary sees the same issue. Not a neoliberal meme in sight.

Hey folks, trying to catch up on everything going on now that internet and tv have been restored.

Luckily for us here in Bama, we didn’t get the flooding that Prolix had. However we had a squall line of straight line winds that had reported gusts of 64 and 72 mph which is what did the deed to the power and cable lines.

It could have been worse for my area, we kept the lights on. News reports said about 19k folks lost power in the b’ham area and the early morning news said some areas may not get power restored until around 10 tonight. It’s miserable hot also and supposed to be worse this weekend. I feel for the folks who have no power. Hope they had some relatives/friends they could go stay with.

Beata I remember that thing with 41 and the bar code scanner. That was such an indication of how clueless he was.

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