Current Events

Friday, August 26, 2011

Where Is the Economic Justice King Fought for?

I’ve written quite a lot about Rick Perry and the other 51 percenters and about the maldistribution of income that is sucking the life out of this country, but today I got an insight from a column by Eugene Robinson that made me wonder where I had been.  In “A dream unrealized,” August 26, 2011, in the Post’s Washington Forum, he reminds us that Martin Luther King at the Lincoln Memorial on August 28, 1963 was talking about more than racial equality.  He reminds us that the "event.... was officially called the 'March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom.'  Meaningful employment was a front-and-center-demand." Here’s the url.  If you haven’t read it already, you should.

One of the most telling figures he cites is that men in their 30s in 2004 were making 12% less than their fathers made at the same age.  They are paid less despite increases in productivity.  Profits from those gains have all gone to management.  Another interesting set of figures concerned median pay.  In 2010 median pay for males over 25 was $982 for union members and $846 for nonunion workers.  No wonder corporate America is so dedicated to union busting.  And they are succeeding.  From 1983 to 2010 union membership for wage and salary workers dropped from 20.1% to11.9%.  I guess it will be up to Republican governors to clean up what’s left.

No comments:

Post a Comment