Paul Craig Robert’s “Saving the Rich, Losing the Economy”
From Counterpunch, by Paul Craig Roberts, former Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Economic Policy and Associate Editor of the Wall Street Journal.
Economic policy failed for three reasons: (1) policymakers focused on enabling offshoring corporations to move middle class jobs, and the consumer demand, tax base, GDP, and careers associated with the jobs, to foreign countries, such as China and India, where labor is inexpensive; (2) policymakers permitted financial deregulation that unleashed fraud and debt leverage on a scale previously unimaginable; (3) policymakers responded to the resulting financial crisis by imposing austerity on the population and running the printing press in order to bail out banks and prevent any losses to the banks regardless of the cost to national economies and innocent parties.
… in the last 10 years, the US lost 54,621 factories, and manufacturing employment fell by 5 million employees…
…Republican economists blame “high” US wages for the current high rate of unemployment. However, US wages are about the lowest in the developed world….
[The true US unemployment rate may be as high as 22 percent.]
All the while, the US government allows in each year one million legal immigrants, an unknown number of illegal immigrants, and a large number of foreign workers on H-1B and L-1 work visas. In other words, the policies of the US government maximize the unemployment rate of American citizens.
… In a word, the US financial system was socialized as the losses of the American financial institutions were transferred to taxpayers.
…. This is what economic policy in the West has become–a tool of the wealthy used to enrich themselves by spreading poverty among the rest of the population.
… The path that the US economy is on means that the number of Americans without resources to sustain them will be rising. Considering the extraordinary political incompetence of the Democratic Party, the right wing of the Republican Party, which is committed to eliminating income support programs, could find itself in power. If the right-wing Republicans implement their program, the US will be beset with political and social instability. As Gerald Celente says, “when people have have nothing left to lose, they lose it.”