Today a bunch of rich white guys held a “Fiscal Summit” and agreed that:
1. Despite the fact that unemployment is causing untold suffering for millions of people, it’s not very important.
2. Despite the fact that wage stagnation is destroying the middle class, that’s not important either.
3. Despite the fact that we need the social safety net more than ever after what they’ve done to the economy, it’s expendable.
4. Despite the fact that our government can borrow money at record low rates and use it to put people to work, thereby ending the recession and jumpstarting the economy, that option’s not even worth discussing.
5. Despite the fact that these men all possess great power, wealth, and/or influence, everything that’s wrong with the economy is your fault.
6. Since it’s all your fault, you better get ready to pay up.
Oh, and one other thing:
7. They’re all very smart and very brave. It’s too bad the rest of you people are such jerks.
Any questions? Let’s hope not, because they’re all busy men and it’s great golfing weather this week in DC.
Recently, in a Facebook “discussion” someone claimed “I’m not blaming anyone,” apparently unfamiliar with William J. Ryan’s classic and timeless analysis. I don’t blame the discussant, as this lack of awareness reinforces a system of particular consequences.
Well, they’re at it again. We have a structural problem with unemployment in this country, and the Wall Street Journal, anecdotally, I might add, seeks to blame the unemployed and the government. Like the targets of original “blaming the victim” analysis, this is baseless (and self-serving) ideology.
MONDAY, AUG 9, 2010 11:50 ET
BY ALEX PAREENE
Did you think that the massive unemployment crisis was caused by profitable multinational corporations and banks sitting on “mountains of cash” combined with collapsing consumer spending due to the fact that so many people are without work and those who have work have had stagnant wages for decades now? You fool! The Wall Street Journal highlights two stories today that explain the real problem: Lazy would-be workers receiving too many unemployment benefits and high government taxes!
While the actual “data” show a miserable climate in which there are millions more jobless people than there are job openings (there are 3 million openings and 17 million jobless, according to the “chart”), the Journal’s Mark Whitehouse found anecdotal evidence of employers who desperately want to hire people, but simply can’t find any applicants. Sure, “many employers are inundated with applicants,” but “a surprising number” can’t find anyone to hire, anywhere!