Whatever Happened to Overtime?


Politico has the article Whatever Happened to Overtime? : It’s one reason we’re poorer than our parents. And Obama could fix it—without Congress. by Mick Hanauer. The article is written by a wealthy capitalist who is trying to explain to you how he and his fellow capitalists are taking advantage of you.  He’d prefer for you voters to change the rules so he won’t have to do  this, but until you do, he and the others will continue to do this.

This is the part of the article I decided to focus on as I read the beginning.

But what about the most basic need of all—jump-starting the real economy by giving more middle-class Americans a fair shake? You would think that for a Democratic administration, raising the threshold back to where it once was would be a no-brainer, but I have grave doubts that administration officials are heading in this direction. In fact they are likely to raise the threshold only partly, and the Obama administration has not yet grappled with the broader question of how moves such as this are critical to helping to restore America’s middle class. How do I know? Intuition. OK, I admit it, more than intuition. I’ve had conversations with administration officials about their forthcoming policy changes. And the scuttlebutt out of the Labor Department looks promising—for corporations. Not the middle class.

It is my sense, based on my conversations with government officials, that the administration is buying the line from corporate lobbyists who are arguing that such rule changes would devastate their bottom lines, forcing them to lay off workers. You know, the old trickle-down gambit—if workers earn more money, it would be bad for business, the economy and workers. The Obama team, in other words, is buying into the same discredited theories that were used to erode the threshold in the first place. Officials will very likely raise the overtime threshold just enough to say they’re doing something, without actually doing much of anything for the middle class or our demand-starved economy at all.
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What very few Americans seem to understand is that that extra trillion dollars isn’t profit because it had to be, or needs to be or should be. That extra trillion dollars is profit because powerful people like me prefer it to be. It could have been spent on your wages. Or it could have gone into discounts to you, the consumer. We capitalists will tell you that our increasing profits are the result of some complex economic force with the immutability and righteousness of divine law. But the truth is, it is simply a result of a difference in negotiating power. As in, we have it. And you don’t.

This part focuses on what Obama has failed to do, but could still do to help the middle-class.  This goes along with my continuing thesis that the Democrats lost big in the last election exactly because they were not doing all they could to help the middle-class.

As I read more of the article, I realized there was much more to it.  Unfortunately for you, I am not going to quote it here.  You’ll have to read it yourself.

It goes a long way to explain why I am retired and getting richer, while you may be working and getting poorer.

Sarcasm Alert
Do you have any interest at all in finding out what is going on? I thought not. Just keep struggling.

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