Friday, May 14, 2021

Let Them Eat Low Wages

After pledging undying loyalty to "unity," House Republican Conference Chair Elise Stefanik of upstate New York declared"the American people are suffering under the far-left, radical socialist policies of Speaker Joe Biden and Speaker Nancy Pelosi."

But "unity." Stefanik's charge is so antithetical to the cause of unity that it's easy not to notice that Stefanik has referred to Joe Biden and Nancy Pelosi as "far-left" and "radical." That may be unsurprising, however, in a party whose leadership follows self-anointed "Chosen One" Donald Trump, who has replaced Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior.

More significantly, however, Stefanik, speaking for the GOP caucus, maintained

The economic risis.. We see the worst jobs report in over twenty years. Unemployment is up, small businesses are struggling to hire workers and Speaker Pelosi and Jo Biden (sic) solution to that is to pay people to stay out of work rather than incentivize people to get back to work. And Republicans, we are fighting to re-open the economy....

The average monthly increase in jobs in the first three years- before the pandemic- of the Trump Administration was approximately 185,111. Last month, the "worst jobs report in over twenty years" showed a gain of 266,000 jobs. Wallowing in alternative facts, Stefanik has passed her first test as a GOP leader. Worse, GOP governors are acting in lockstep with House Republicans as

More than 1.9 million Americans in Alabama, Mississippi and 14 other Republican-led states are set to have their unemployment checks slashed significantly starting in June, as GOP governors seek to restrict jobless assistance in an effort to force more people to return to work.

The cuts are likely to fall hardest on roughly 1.4 million people who benefit from stimulus programs that Congress adopted at the height of the coronavirus pandemic, including one targeting those who either are self-employed or work on behalf of gig-economy companies such as Uber. Beginning next month, many of these workers are likely to receive no aid at all.

In a move undoubtedly rankling many Republicans

McDonald’s announced Thursday that it is raising hourly wages by an average of 10% for more than 36,500 employees at its company-owned restaurants in the U.S.

The fast-food giant says the changes, which have already begun, will include raising the entry-level wage to a range of $11 to $17 an hour, as well as increasing the starting range for shift managers to between $15 and $20 an hour, based on restaurant. location.

(There is no word on whether the food will be made edible; one issue at a time.)

McDonald's is raising wages while Republicans rush to slash unemployment compensation to send more individuals into the workforce.  Some individuals are still queasy about the coronavirus, some are without child care, and some are simply unable to work, but Republicans adamantly advocate increasing the labor supply, the better to put a brake on wage increases.

Free money. Washington wants to send money to state capitols, to be relayed to the residents of those states. And fifteen (15) Republican governors are rising in unison to say: "keep your money."

Rejecting free money is unwise and probably wouldn't be done if those Republicans and their donors were simply heartless. They have to be heartless- and want loads more of their constituents competing with other constituents, lest wages rise. 

It's bad enough that numerous GOP governors won't take the free money which would help people feed their families. It turns out that the compensation doesn't even discourage individuals from returning to the workforce:


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