Federal Reserve Board Chairman Alan Greenspan, long a mouthpiece for U.S. monopoly corporations and Wall Street speculators and now a servant of the big business Bush administration, delivered an economic report to Congress recently that had but one aim: to give economic advice and leadership to promote and protect profits.
The problems of 18 million unemployed, underemployed and never-to-be-employed were the furthest thing from Greenspan’s mind.
Greenspan said he would not raise interest rates at this time because the economy was not overheating. In other words, jobs, income and consumer demand were not growing.
Only 113,000 new jobs were created in January. But 175,000 new jobs were predicted. Did that alarming shortfall bother the feds? Not on your life.
Greenspan said that if the economy heated up – i.e., more jobs and more consumer demand – then he would hike interest rates to slow economic activity.
Did it bother Mr. Greenspan that Bush economists predicted a 1.7 million gain in jobs for 2003, but instead working people suffered a 400,000-job loss? Again, not on your life.
Greenspan is supposed to protect all the people, not only the corporations and their profits. Where does it say in the U.S. Constitution that capitalism, the private-profit system, is the economic law of the land?
Bush’s economic team is playing fast and loose with the lives and livelihood of the American people.
Bush and company say there will be 2.6 million more people working this year. Yes, and the moon is made of green cheese, isn’t it?
Gregory Mankiw, chairman of Bush’s Council of Economic Advisers, says that exporting jobs “is good for the country.” Shouldn’t Mr. Greenspan, in the interests of all the people, explain the Bush fakery so that people can make informed decisions?
The fact is, after the Bush team is kicked out, the fakers like Greenspan and Mankiw should not be far behind. Then the government’s finance hierarchy should be cleaned out and turned into pro-people departments and agencies.
There is a growing anger and concern among working people over the flippant and duplicitous treatment they are getting from the Bush administration, corporations and Wall Street.
Wall Street’s so-called “recovery” is touted as an economic recovery. But it really is a profit and job loss “recovery.” Speedup, overtime, wage and benefit cuts, job loss to low-wage areas abroad are the underpinnings of the Wall Street recovery.
The rising tide of anger among the people needs to be channeled into positive ideas and mass actions. This is the only way it can be a successful positive force.
New alliances need to be built to do that – both for the short and long term. The most basic unity alliance is that of the employed and unemployed. The best place to begin organizing the unemployed is in local union halls. Organizing the unemployed and bringing them into collective action is a solid way for those still employed to build job protection. Together they can build alliances with other groups such as civil rights, peace, women, environmental, public education, and seniors.
Together they can change the Congress, get rid of the job-killers and start working to build a new America, where people are more important than profits. A new America where those who run government agencies work and speak for the people, not Wall Street.
Abraham Lincoln said: “Labor is prior to capital. Without labor there would be no capital. Therefore, labor deserves much the higher consideration.”
November 2, 2004, can be the first long stride we take on the road to a new America.
Pat Barile is a member of the National Board of the Communist Party USA. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.