Thursday, November 27, 2008

Corrections to the $70-Per-Hour Myth

Class warfare is alive and well. And what better time for it to rear it's ugly head -- when we're teetering on a depression. But, then again, if you were the financial wizards, free marketeers, and laissez faire capitalists whom had boosted, brokered, and gotten us into this mess, you'd want to find a scapegoat too. Well, who better to blame than those damn unionized workers. Luckily, there are still a few good journalists out there to squash such nonsense.

Detroit's $70-an-hour auto worker
Do Autoworkers Make $70 Per Hour?
$70 per hour meme
Countdown's Worst Person in the World
Rachel Maddow & Ron Gettlefinger of UAW
Rachel Maddow Dissects White Collar V. Blue Collar Bailouts
Unions Being Scapegoated

Let's also take a look at what the executives are making.

Executive Excess 2008
Executive Incentives
Executive Pay (Business Week)
Executive Pay (Economic Policy Institute)
Executive Pay (PBS)
Executive Pay (NY Times)
Executive Pay News
Executive PayWatch (AFL-CIO)
Five Lousy CEOs Who Get Fabulous Pay
My Big Fat CEO Paycheck
Pay Without Performance

Now, for some perspective, let's look at inequality in the United States.

By The Numbers

And, some basic income numbers (obtained from the Census Bureau).
Percentage of the population & income:
30% earning under $25,000
55% earning under $50,000
75% earning under $75,000
85% earning under $100,000
95% earning under $150,000

An attempt was made here to conceptualize this issue and present it with a bit more breadth than it is being given by the mainstream media. We can see the problem isn't that workers are making extraordinary sums of money and putting their employers at a competitive disadvantage. The problem is the greed of executives, their mismanagement, and their unwavering obsession with short-term gains and share price manipulation, rather than the long-term sustainability of their companies.

But this is class warfare, never mind the truth. I'm off to Washington in my private jet to ask for a bailout. Damn those unions!

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