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OpEdNews Op Eds    H1'ed 6/13/19

Trump to Working Class: "Adios, Chumps"

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The guy who pretended to be a champion for America's workers has been a one-man working-class wrecking crew, systematically destroying employee rights and protections against the abuses of corporate bosses.

Wealthy will save millions in tax cuts.
Wealthy will save millions in tax cuts.
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Congratulations on that nice pay raise you got last year, a 7% hike wow!

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Seven percent might not sound all that big, but after 40 years of stagnant wages, even a small uptick can help cover some of your old credit card bills or get an upgrade on your 10-year-old pickup.

Oh, wait ... You say you didn't get 7%? Oops, my mistake. It was the CEOs of corporate giants who reported to the Associated Press that they enjoyed a median jump of 7% last year. And as their paychecks were already king-size, that uptick amounted to an extra $800,000 in their take-home, for a median yearly income of $12 million each. Bear in mind that "median" means half of the corporate bosses grabbed more than 7%. For example, David Zaslav, honcho of the Discovery television network, had a 207% boost in pay, raising his total take in 2018 to $130 million.

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These lavish payouts to top-floor bosses combined with a miserliness toward rank-and-file employees who actually produce the corporate wealth is creating an untenable income disparity in corporate America, stretching inequality in our Land of Egalitarianism to the snapping point. The pay gap between aloof CEOs and typical employees nearly doubled last year at a range of corporate giants, from PayPal to CVS Pharmacy, and it tripled at Discovery.

AP's recent survey of 340 major corporations found that compensation inequality is now so extreme that a middle-wage employee would have to work 158 years to make as much as his or her chief executive was given last year alone. This separation is widening at warp speed, propelled by the boundless greed and narcissism of so-called leaders like Zaslav. To amass as much pay as he pocketed in 2018, a typical Discovery employee would have to work 989 years.

When you hear corporate chieftains and such corporate cheerleaders as Donald Trump gloat that our economy is "booming," ask yourself: A boom for whom?

We have a president who mistakes price for value. Thus, to measure America's economic health is simple for him: Just check the price of corporate stocks and any fool can see that he's the best president ever at running the economy. After all, since he's been in office, Wall Street has been whizzing! Unfortunately, though, it's whizzing on you and me.

Wall Street is an inequality machine. It encourages top executives to jack up their own wealth by artificially inflating their corporation's stock prices. Then it rewards executives who offshore jobs, cut wages, monopolize markets, bust unions, gouge consumers and dodge taxes. Far from reining in Wall Street's destructive plutocratic power, Trump has juiced it up with new tax advantages for big investors and the removal of rules to restrain banker scams.

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Meanwhile, the guy who pretended in his campaign to be a champion for America's workers has been a one-man working-class wrecking crew, systematically destroying employee rights and protections against the abuses of corporate bosses. On everything from overtime pay and minimum wage to workplace safety and the right to form a union, Trump & Company has sided with corporate interests over working stiffs, essentially saying to workers: "You're on your own. Adios, chumps."

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Jim Hightower is an American populist, spreading his message of democratic hope via national radio commentaries, columns, books, his award-winning monthly newsletter (The Hightower Lowdown) and barnstorming tours all across America.

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11 people are discussing this page, with 15 comments  Post Comment


Art Costa

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"It's the system stupid!"

Submitted on Thursday, Jun 13, 2019 at 2:09:51 PM

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Lance Ciepiela

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Reply to Art Costa:   New Content

Yes, it's Trump, not "the system" - Trump's #1 priority for his presidency and his signature achievement for his four years in office are "his corporate tax cuts" which promote greater "inequality", "more than ever" in the United States, and he "ran up the deficit" greater "than it's ever been" (9. Possibly the Trump administration's biggest economic and social blunder was the huge tax bonanza given to large corporations and super rich individuals, thus exacerbating income and wealth inequalities in the United States. Such large tax reductions are pushing the federal fiscal deficit above $1 trillion a year, thus saddling future generations with a huge public debt).

Submitted on Thursday, Jun 13, 2019 at 3:09:18 PM

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Art Costa

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Reply to Lance Ciepiela:   New Content

Disagree. The numbers show that the Trump administration has simply continued a 40 year (to be kind to Carter) trend.

The policies drive what's going on. Obama codified: 1) the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy and then 2) codified the Patriot Act, and then, 3) took 2 inherited wars and expanded our invasions to 7 nations. He reduced torture and replaced it with signature assassinations. The greatest rise in income disparity occurred during Obama's administration.

Obama destroyed a stable and relatively equitable nation - Libya - turning it in to a hell-hole. This was followed up by green lighting the overthrow of the democratically elected president of Honduras. Today the people are fleeing by the droves. He began the sanctions on Russia and then Venezuela, calling the latter a national security threat....As a farewell he dropped 26,000 bombs on the Middle East in 2016 alone! As he is quoted as saying, "Really Good At Killing People."

Need I go on. Trump epitomizes what Obama hid so well...the imperialist rogue nation....endless war since WWII, all illegal and unconstitutional...

Submitted on Thursday, Jun 13, 2019 at 11:44:58 PM

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Michele Goddard

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Reply to Art Costa:   New Content

It is very rare to see someone so even handed in their criticism and so aware of events the media has covered up, especially concerning US constant agreesion. What sources do you use? I'm always trying to find good sources that report on these things. I look at original material when I can but like most people time contraiint ofnwork and child rearing make it difficult.

Submitted on Friday, Jun 14, 2019 at 10:43:26 AM

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Lance Ciepiela

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No, not even once, during Democrat Obama's eight years in office, six of those years controlled by a Republican Majority controlled House (Rep John Boehner) and Senate (Sen Mitch McConnell), did anyone speak of, "impeaching the president" - not so for Trump. After only two years in office the Democrats in the House "have started the gears of impeachment" for Trump. Taking "pen to paper" - here are (scroll to "Trump's 10 Impeachable Offenses") and the House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has already said of Trump - "she wants to see Trump in prison" - his "cruel hypocrisy knows no bounds" - Trump's #ineptitudes - "moral & financial bankruptcy".

Submitted on Friday, Jun 14, 2019 at 11:48:19 PM

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Michele Goddard

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Great article. I wonder when the average Trump supporter will see his propaganda for what it is. They are pretty devoted but at some point their real life experience will contradict the bs and they will have to see he is not interested in helping workers.

Submitted on Thursday, Jun 13, 2019 at 3:07:37 PM

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Lew Weingarth

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Well said. Here is my executive version. To be a fascist, you either CANNOT understand economics, or you are simply a paid thug. Fascists have always worked to eliminate freedom and restore aristocracy, though the vast majority of fascists don't know they are doing this. If you don't like the word fascist, just substitute monarchist, MAGA, Trumper or Republican, it's the same people. To be fair, 80% of the Democratic Party are also pushing fascism, and justifying it by saying unless they take money from the same sources as the fascists, they can't fight fascism. In actual actions rather than speech, they are working for the same people as the Republcians

Submitted on Thursday, Jun 13, 2019 at 3:14:01 PM

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Susan Lee Schwartz

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I already posted this on another article here, because it nails how I feel.

I would like to share Peter Mann's comment on "The Imbeciles are Coming" by Dr. George Koo's in Asia Times. click here

"Dear Dr. Koo,

"Methinks the American Imbeciles are not coming. They are already here and they're in charge." "The imbecility is everywhere. When I read or watch the Mainstream Media nowadays, there is no longer any attempt to apply finesse or subtlety to insinuate or equivocate. I used to work in that cesspool. How I miss those golden days when lying should not be baldfaced. "

"With very few exceptions such as yourself, every talking head or pundit is either a moron, a liar, a hypocrite, or any combination of the above. As for politicians, Americans keep electing the most brilliant morons and the worst liars, so if they don't lie and do something stupendously stupid, Americans will think that it's not democratic. Watch the Democrats clamor for more democracy, which has produced our own Imbecile in Chief, among earlier less grievous ones. You'd think politicians should have a minimum threshold IQ of at least 80 to be eligible."

"H.L. Menck said in the fifties, "As democracy is perfected, the office of president represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart's desire at last and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron."

"I thought he was talking about Dubya Bush. I thought that the American voters couldn't do worst than that, until they re-elected Bush, then I wasn't so sure. What is the chance that Trump is the lowest we can get? Maybe people like Shumer will take up the slack. Soon they'll be outlawing Sweet and Sour Shrimp Balls and Chicken Fried Rice. They'll ban Bonanza reruns because Hop Sing was a Chinese spy. "

"You got it right , Peter."

and, Susan

Submitted on Thursday, Jun 13, 2019 at 3:14:50 PM

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Eddy Schmid

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I've been saying this for ages now, except instead of reffering to them as imbeciles, I refer to them as STUPID. Could it be, that all the polutants Americans are consuming has done something to their brains ????????? After all LEAD is supposed to reduce mental capacities.

Submitted on Friday, Jun 14, 2019 at 4:21:18 AM

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911TRUTH

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This headline could/should also read:

Obama to Working Class: "Adios, Chumps"

Mr Nope and No Change is THE reason why we have trump.

He chose to bail out the criminal banks instead of homeowners after the crash and screwed working people to the wall, which allowed trump to slither in and exploit perfectly. He's a much bigger fraud than trump, IMHO.


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Submitted on Thursday, Jun 13, 2019 at 4:32:39 PM

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I hope the Jackass in question, is the American electorate in this cartoon.

Submitted on Friday, Jun 14, 2019 at 4:22:56 AM

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Good one 9-11

Submitted on Monday, Jun 17, 2019 at 6:15:23 PM

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Sure would like to hear talk on TV of the worker ownership of the Mondragon Cooperative of the Basque in Spain as a model to follow to how to get good jobs.

Submitted on Friday, Jun 14, 2019 at 8:11:37 PM

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People seem resigned to their fate, and many people actually vote Republican. It's not like they shouldn't have figured out who these people actually represent long ago. So now you have a large evolving peasant class, just like the old days of the serfs and the Nobility. The Nobility being those who got a leg up, mostly through luck and chance and now want to cement their "Noble standing" in perpetuity." I'd say you have a chance to set it straight, somewhat, in 2020, but I doubt it, the deck has been thoroughly stacked. Oh, and as far as a foreign hostile power having great sway over our once great Democratic Republic, most peasants could care less and don't much prefer one tyrant over another.

Submitted on Saturday, Jun 15, 2019 at 5:01:14 PM

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b. sadie bailey

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I always enjoy reading Jim Hightower's articles because he nails it so succinctly every time.

Another thing Obama did was, he gave himself and every future president unlimited executive power - so yeah, he set the dominoes up for Trump and corp. to push over,, and he's as guilty if not more guilty than the rest of them because of all the aforementioned actions he did, plus this one that cemented our fate - all the while, posing as a "progressive." No wonder progressives are so hated; it's what spindoctors excel at- changing definitions so that right wingers and corporate-owned "democrats" will hate anyone who stands for environmental or human rights and truth to power for the people.

Loved Susan Lee Schwartz's "the imbeciles are coming" example...Yep. They're here, well represented by BOTH corporate scofflaw parties.

Submitted on Monday, Jun 17, 2019 at 5:31:48 PM

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