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Class Warfare Scoreboard -- Guess Who's Winning?

By       Message Mike Whitney     Permalink
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And these same people have the audacity to talk about "profligate consumers"?

Give me a break. Big business is nothing more than legalized fleecing disguised as legitimate enterprise. You'd have to be a fool to buy their PR-hype. Here's more from Anne Lowrey on Slate -- "More Profits, Fewer Jobs":

"According to the Bureau of Economic Analysis, real corporate profits neared an all-time high in the last three months of 2010, with companies raking in an annualized $1.68 trillion in pre-tax operating profits.... The Federal Reserve estimates that companies are sitting on about $1.9 trillion....

"How can the corporate economy be so profitable while the jobs economy remains so weak? Part of the answer lies in improved productivity. When the recession hit, businesses fired millions of workers then asked the rest to make up the difference -- and, in many cases, they did. Productivity increased 3.9 percent in 2010, while labor costs fell....

"...in the last quarter of 2010, the story was all about Wall Street. Profits actually decreased a bit at non-financial firms. But companies like investment banks and insurers saw profits climb to an annualized $426.5 billion. The financial sector now accounts for about 30-percent of the economy's overall operating profits....

"Still, record-high profits do not necessarily translate into improvements in the economy -- as the country's 14-million jobless workers would be (not so) happy to tell you. For the past year, companies have hesitated to spend all of that cash, worried about a lack of good investment opportunities and fearful about demand. The upside is that it seems they are beginning to spend down their $1.9-trillion pile. The downside is that it does not seem that it will be to the immediate benefit of American workers."

So the corporate mukky-muks and financial alchemists have figured out how to fatten the bottom line without hiring workers. Great. So, you and I can spend our days watching soaps and panhandling at the freeway on-ramp, while moneybag speculators catch 9-holes at the Club. What a racket.

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This two-tiered system only serves the interests of the privileged few and their spoiled kids. The only way to level the playing field is by ripping it up and starting over.

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Mike is a freelance writer living in Washington state.


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