blog of a classless curmudgeon

Gordon Hilgers

Gordon Hilgers
Dallas, Texas, United States
July 22
Born in Denver, Colorado, 1950s-era capitol of the Beat scene, Gordon Hilgers was exiled to Dallas, Texas, in 1963, and Dallasites were so angry that another 9-year-old Democrat had entered the city that they killed Kennedy. From there, Gordon began writing poems and stories, eventually received a BA degree in newswriting, has written for The Dallas Morning News, despite the fact he was far too Liberal for the likes of William F. Murchison and John Birch, worked as an advocacy journalist and is partly responsible for the City of Dallas' public homeless shelter--where poor people can go to find jobs rather than getting told that because they've forgotten to embrace Jesus that God made them homeless.

Gordon Hilgers's Links
MARCH 7, 2012 2:47PM

The Fraudulent Linkage of Tax-Cuts and Job Creation

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Oops!  I heard it again this morning.  Some shill for the Republican Party appeared on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” program and uttered what has become the Republican mantra these days: The economy may be recovering from the Great Recession, but if we raise taxes, we won’t solve the unemployment problem. 


Of course, Joe Schmoe—otherwise known as Joe Scarborough, the Republican host of the show—didn’t call the shill on this fraudulent statement.  In fact, for as long as I’ve been watching MSNBC (and other commercial news outlets), I’ve never heard anyone challenge that fraudulent claim.  Sure.  Rachel Maddow, one of the sharpest media commentators in the nation, has obliquely questioned the assertion that only tax cuts will bring back jobs in America.   Regardless, nobody to my knowledge has gone right out and said it:  CATTLE CRAP!!!!


To really understand America’s lackadaisical attitude towards burgeoning unemployment, we have to consider two factors: 1) the effects of globalization on employment in America and 2) the every-man-for-himself attitude of companies doing business in America. 


Here’s how the first one works.  Just as the Republican shill said on Morning Joe this morning, Singapore indeed has an unemployment rate of two percent.  Compared to the real  unemployment rate of America, which hovers around 18 percent, Singapore’s unemployment rate looks miraculous at first glance.  But then there’s the fine print.  For one thing, Singapore has no minimum wage.  Because of that, corporations by the hundreds have migrated to Singapore and other countries to participate in what are known as Export Production Zones (EPZ)—where workers are typically exploited.  In other words, American corporations have taken the front lines of their very own little class war overseas, and are profiting from worker repression and oppression. 


This little game is happening all over the Far East and India.  Because the standards of living of many nations in the Far East (and in Latin America) are much lower than that of the US, companies like the almost-holy-in-America Apple Computers go over to foreign countries and get their expensive-as-hell products (the prices are jacked-up to an almost ridiculous amount considering how much it actually costs Apple to produce, say, and iPAD 3) manufactured for literally pennies. 


Some activists in the American civil rights community make this observation: The entire history of America has been one of white domination over so-called “darker” peoples.  And while we’ve amended to an extent our domineering attitude towards these people in America, we’re pulling-off the same game all over Asia.  We’ve merely moved the movie “Metropolis” to Shanghai and Singapore and dozens of other eager cities.  We’ve transferred our racism and made racism a foreign commodity like Hello Kitty products. 


All of the above is why hundreds of thousands of people protested the WTO in 1999-2000.  To no avail.  The elite of America and elsewhere in the so-called Western world were too busy thinking of all the pretty mansions and luxury cars they were going to get out of, well, injustice. 


This brings-up the second factor: The every-man-for-himself attitude of companies doing business in America.  If the business elites aren’t fighting the concept of a living wage, they’re moving their business elsewhere to save on “capital expenses”.  While they’re waving the American flag like drunken fools in their television commercials, these people are selling-short the American worker.  How’s that for patriotism? 


I’ve long said this to friends: What is work about anyway?  Is it about making money for a small circle of very rich people?  Or is it about providing income for all?  Apparently to that small circle of very rich people, it’s about the former.  Who cares about the latter?  Over the last 50 years, the small circle of very rich people has managed to gut unionization in America, and many states outlaw collective bargaining—while at the same time huge business associations practically fix prices in the market.  Something’s got to give. 


Hence, Occupy.  Have a nice day. 

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Capitalism is a slave system enshrouded in libraries of bullshit.
toritto--I agree that demand creates jobs, but the problem is that demand is already creating jobs, but only jobs overseas. That's why I asked that question about what work in society is supposed to accomplish: Is it only to build the fortunes of a few? Or is it supposed to provide a means for every person to live? That's an important distinction that is never mentioned by our "knowledgeable commentators" on ANY channel. What seems to be happening is that our business elite are opting for the former because the idea of "enlightened self-interest" has been replaced by mere "self-interest". Enlightened self-interest would require a commercial world sense of mutual responsibility. That sense is fading in our society for a number of reasons.

Peter--I think unregulated, ungoverned, capitalism is just as dangerous as the communist totalitarianisms that emerged in the 20th Century. Both are pretty smarmy extremes that create elites of their own. One elite is meritocratic in that it's based on money. The other is essentially autocratic because only the elites are allowed any say in the government.
yep. a small miracle the public is starting to smell a little rat with Foxconn etc.
much more in my blog re globalization see eg "the great sham/scam/farce/lie"
its too bad it literally took decades to figure out the propaganda
vzn--We've known it all along. I got wind of this stuff when I read Naomi Klein's "No Logo" which came out at about the same time as the anti-WTO protests in 1999. All through the Eighties and Nineties, the legal teams of corporations were figuring out all kinds of ways to make big bucks without paying taxes. Now the public's consciousness has been raised and there's no telling what's coming up the pike. I'll check out your piece.