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There was a time when Labor Unions meant something in America. In 1983, a solid 20% of American workers belonged to labor unions in the United States. In 2010, that figure declined to 11.9%.
"The union membership rate for public sector workers (36.2 percent) was substantially higher than the rate for private sector workers (6.9 percent). Within the public sector, local government workers had the highest union membership rate, 42.3 percent. This group includes workers in heavily unionized occupations, such as teachers, police officers, and fire fighters.
Private sector industries with high unionization rates included transportation and utilities (21.8 percent), telecommunications (15.8 percent), and construction (13.1 percent). In 2010, low unionization rates occurred in agriculture and related indus-
tries (1.6 percent) and in financial activities (2.0 percent).
Among occupational groups, education, training, and library occupations (37.1 per-cent) and protective service occupations (34.1 percent) had the highest unionization rates in 2010. Sales and related occupations (3.2 percent) and farming, fishing, and
forestry occupations (3.4 percent) had the lowest unionization rates." (Source)
The result of anti-unionization has been an even greater concentration of real wealth in the hands of the very few:
"Just about every socio-economic indicator shows that the distribution of income in the United States is becoming increasingly unequal. In 2010, the top 20% of Americans earned 49.4% of the nation’s income, compared with the 3.4% earned by the roughly 15% of the population living below the poverty line. This earnings ratio of 14.5 to 1 was an increase from the 13.6 to 1 ratio in 2008 and a significant rise from the historic low of 7.69 to 1 in 1968. Looking back even further to 1915, an era in which the Rockefellers and Carnegies dominated American industry, the richest 1% of Americans earned roughly 18% of all income. Today, the top 1% account for 24% of all income.
This trend of increasing inequality was not always the norm; the 1930s and 1940s actually saw a decrease in inequality, followed by relative stability in the distribution in the 1950s and 1960s. Beginning in the 1970s, though, income inequality sharply increased. Nobel laureate Paul Krugman refers to the period after 1979 as the “Great Divergence” for the rapid increase in income inequality that occurred. (Source)
The Gini Index, which measures income disparities, tells us the same story:
"Gini index ratings for countries range from 24.7 in Denmark to 74.3 in Namibia. Most post-industrial nations had a Gini coefficient in the high twenties to mid thirties. The CIA estimates the US Gini index at 45, and the UN placed the US Gini index rating at 40, in 2006. Since the Census Bureau started measuring the Gini coefficient in 1967, it has risen by 20% for full-time workers and 18% for households. Among households, the index has risen from 39.7 to 46.9, from 31.4 to 42.4 among men and from 29.8 to 35.7 among women. According to Gini coefficient data, income inequality in the U.S., already among the highest in the post-industrial world, has risen considerably between 1967 and 2005 among households and individuals." (Source)
The reality is that large, international corporations, have played the leading role in trashing the United States Labor Force. Organized Labor has also facilitated this decline. Fascism, by definition, is a government formed between Big Business, Big Labor, and Big Government. Yes, this country has been destroyed by all three forces.
I blame political corruption and Party loyalty for this decline. Even though Bill Clinton and Algore brought us NAFTA and GATT, they still received union endorsements, money and votes for their Presidency. Even though George Bush Sr. and Junior decimated the small businesses in this country with additional regulation, illegal immigration, and catering to the interests of Multi-National Corporations, they still had the support of small businessmen and the Chamber of Commerce.
Now we have the Obamanation in the White House, who gets the honor of being scapegoated for the failed policies of his predicessors, and is both unable and unwilling to reverse the Fascism that now controls America. Socialism is no solution, like Fascism, it also concentrates the wealth into the hands of the Communist elite, which make up less than 1% of the total population. Communist China is a great example.
Communism and Fascism present two false choices when America needs real reform to survive:
1. Shadow Stats shows real unemployment at 25%. (Source)
2. "In 1975, US trade surplus was about $12 billion, but that would be the last time in the 20th century that the United States had a trade surplus. In 2008, the US export amounted to $1.84 T, but imports were about $2.52 T." (Source)
3. "US exports to China totaled $69.7 billion while imports from China totaled $337.8 billion in 2008. Thus, US-China bilateral trade deficit was $268 billion in 2008." (Ibid)
4. "Personal savings rate was about 10% of income until 1990, but has since steadily declined, even below zero. Pesonal savings were negative in some years (2005)."
In China, national savings rate is about 50% (35% personal savings, 15% public savings) (Ibid)
5. About 11.2 million illegal immigrants were working in the United States in 2010, a number essentially unchanged from the previous year.. That is 5% of the American Workforce. Over 58% of illegals are from Mexico. (Source)
6. "an estimated 2,600,000 illegal immigrants resided in California in 2009, compared to 1.5 million in 1990 and 2.5 million in 2000. This number represents about 25 percent of the entire estimated illegal immigrant population in the United States This estimate puts the percentage of California's population that are illegal immigrants to be about 6.8 percent, with a majority being from Mexico. Across the entire United States, an estimated 6.7 million illegal immigrants were from Mexico, up from 4.7 million in 2000." (Source)
7. "As of mid-March, Gallup reported in its new survey, 10.2 percent of American workers were unemployed and 9.7 percent were working part-time but wanted a full-time job. That equals an underemployment rate of 19.9 percent—or approximately one out of every five workers. (Source)
8. Shadow Stats shows real inflation over 10%. (Source) Real wages are in decline. Gasoline, not part of the CPI, is up 1 dollar per gallon since last year (25%)
You are witnessing the final stages of an economy in collapse. The dollar is in decline, the stock market is in decline, the bond market is in decline. The only thing that isn't in decline are precious metals. Silver is up 1000% since 2000, and gold is up about 600% over that same time frame.