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New research just out shows not only a huge, historic income and wealth gap, but also a huge employment gap. People at the upper end of wealth and income in America have unemployment of about 3.2 percent. People at the lowest end of the ladder suffer 20+ percent unemployment. 3.2 percent is considered full employment. The unemployment at the lowest end of the economy is roughly the same as unemployment during the Great Depression. All this is from a new report from the CENTER FOR LABOR MARKET STUDIES AT NORTHEASTERN UNIVERSITY. As Andrew Sum said, part of the country is in full employment, part in depression level employment.
The Radical Right-wing Republicans will tell you that the massive and historic inequalities of wealth, income, quality of life and living standards, job opportunities, education, and even employment are the result of the free market.
As former Labor Secretary Robert Reich wrote: The Right constantly tells us that the free market exists in nature and “whatever inequality or insecurity it generates is beyond our control… in reality the ‘free market’ is a bunch of rules… These rules don’t exist in nature; they are human creations. Governments don’t ‘intrude’ on free markets; governments organize and maintain them. Markets aren’t ‘free’ of rules; the rules define them.”
Guess who the rules are organized to protect, secure, and promote in this economy?
Which means in this economy the relevant question is who has the POWER to change the rules to work for all of us.
That is precisely why ORGANIZING IS SO CRITICAL. ORGANIZING IS HOW AVERAGE PEOPLE BUILD ENOUGH POWER TO MAKE THE RULES WORK FOR US.