Jeb! wants you to work harder

gw_and_jeb_01You can’t expect Jeb! Bush to know anything about juggling 2 or 3 jobs to pay rent and buy food. After all, his family is filthy rich, and he’s spent nearly his whole life playing at his hobby of politics. Still, unless you’re a privileged member of his social and economic class, you probably don’t want someone like this in charge of our country’s economic and labor policies:

“My aspiration for the country and I believe we can achieve it, is 4 percent growth as far as the eye can see. Which means we have to be a lot more productive, workforce participation has to rise from its all-time modern lows. It means that people need to work longer hours and, through their productivity, gain more income for their families. That’s the only way we’re going to get out of this rut that we’re in.”

Actually, if people work longer hours and produce more, it won’t get them out of their rut because their efforts will just make the rich even richer. The problem isn’t productivity, but distribution. You see, America’s productivity has increased dramatically since 1970, but all extra income from that has gone to the top 1%. The truth is,

1. In the U.S., 85.8 percent of males and 66.5 percent of females work more than 40 hours per week.
2. According to the ILO, “Americans work 137 more hours per year than Japanese workers, 260 more hours per year than British workers, and 499 more hours per year than French workers.”
3. Using data by the U.S. BLS, the average productivity per American worker has increased 400% since 1950.

In other words, Americans are working pretty darn hard, but you can’t expect a Silver Spooner who’s never done an honest day’s work in his life to know that.



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