By BJ Bjornson
Via Kevin Drum, more proof that economics of the very rich don�t mesh all that well with Republican ideology. Not only does Nick Hanauer call for higher taxes on the rich, but he gets to real nub of just who are the �job creators� in society.
I can start a business based on a great idea, and initially hire dozens or hundreds of people. But if no one can afford to buy what I have to sell, my business will soon fail and all those jobs will evaporate.
That�s why I can say with confidence that rich people don�t create jobs, nor do businesses, large or small. What does lead to more employment is the feedback loop between customers and businesses. And only consumers can set in motion a virtuous cycle that allows companies to survive and thrive and business owners to hire. An ordinary middle-class consumer is far more of a job creator than I ever have been or ever will be.
. . .
One reason this policy is so wrong-headed is that there can never be enough superrich Americans to power a great economy. The annual earnings of people like me are hundreds, if not thousands, of times greater than those of the average American, but we don�t buy hundreds or thousands of times more stuff. My family owns three cars, not 3,000. I buy a few pairs of pants and a few shirts a year, just like most American men. Like everyone else, I go out to eat with friends and family only occasionally.
. . .
I can�t buy enough of anything to make up for the fact that millions of unemployed and underemployed Americans can�t buy any new clothes or enjoy any meals out. Or to make up for the decreasing consumption of the tens of millions of middle-class families that are barely squeaking by, buried by spiraling costs and trapped by stagnant or declining wages.
If the average American family still got the same share of income they earned in 1980, they would have an astounding $13,000 more in their pockets a year. It�s worth pausing to consider what our economy would be like today if middle-class consumers had that additional income to spend.
The whole column is well worth the read, and it�s always nice to see someone with wealth acknowledge that a policy of sticking it to the middle class and increasing income inequality is actually cutting their own throats as well.
The only unfortunate part being that there are still far too many vultures out there content to feed on the rotting carcasses their policies are creating. When one of the leading GOP candidates can talk seriously about using the labour of poor children to replace unionized janitorial staff because otherwise they'll be criminal riffraff and thereby increase his inner-party standing, you know things are unlikely to change fpr the better anytime soon.