Offering frequent news and analysis from the majestic Evergreen State and beyond, The Cascadia Advocate is the Northwest Progressive Institute's unconventional perspective on world, national, and local politics.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

This recovery quacks like a hippo

More and more top heavy, as profits expand and wages and incomes contract, the national economy continues to suffer under corporate domination. The Bush team's massive deficit spending has weakened the economy as lived by the average American, even as it compromises our future.

A policy statement from the Economic Policy Institute ("What's wrong with the economy?" included the following numbers:

Inflation-adjusted hourly and weekly wages are below November 2001.

Median household income (inflation-adjusted) has fallen five years in a row, from $46,129 in 1999 to $44,389 in 2004.

The inflation-adjusted debt of U.S. households has risen 35.7% over the last four years.

The number of people living in poverty has increased by 5.4 million since 2000.

More than 3 million manufacturing jobs have been lost since January 2000.

The personal savings rate is negative for the first time since WWII.

Private sector jobs are up a miserable 0.8%. (If this is a recovery, it doesn't quack like one. Never before has a recovery produced less than 6.0% job growth over the same time span.)

Households health care bills rose 43-45% for married couples with children, single mothers, and young singles from 2000 to 2003.

Nearly 3.7 million fewer people had employer-provided insurance in 2004 than in 2000.

This is the trend. At this rate we are not going to survive our "recovery." Remember, we've added trillions of dollars in new debt to get here.

Oh, the good news?
35% of the growth of total income in the corporate sector has been distributed as corporate profits, far more than the 22% in previous periods.

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