It’s still about the economy |

It’s still about the economy

“Job Growth, but No Raises” was the editorial headline in The New York Times on Nov. 8, four days after the midterm elections.

For many voters, “No Raises” was a good-enough reason to take President Obama down a peg and give Republicans more government clout.

The U.S. employment report for October, released on Nov. 7, showed “a steady-as-she-goes economy,” according to The Times editorial. “And that is a problem, because for most Americans, more of the same is not good enough.”

The Times editorial showed in clear numbers that during the six years of Obama’s presidency, the American economy has increasingly delivered the largest increases in income and wealth to the top.

“Since the recovery began in mid-2009,” stated The Times, “inflation-adjusted figures show that the economy has grown by 12 percent; corporate profits, by 46 percent; and the broad stock market, by 92 percent. Median household income has contracted by 3 percent.”

Emmanuel Saez, a professor of economics at the University of California, Berkeley, reported that 95 percent of all the post-recession income growth in the United States, 2009 to 2012, went to the top 1 percent of income earners.

Economic growth generally increases workers’ pay by increasing the demand for labor, “but growth is still too slow,” stated The Times. “At the current pace, it will take until March 2018 for employment to return to its pre-recession level.”

By then, Obama’s executive orders may have changed 5 million illegal aliens into guest workers, potentially lowering the demand for American workers.

In contrast to his current position, “President Obama once declared that an influx of illegal aliens would harm ‘the wages of blue-collar Americans’ and ‘put strains on an already overburdened safety net,’” according to Neil Munro, White House correspondent for The Daily Caller.

“There’s no denying that many blacks share the same anxieties as many whites about the wave of illegal immigration flooding our Southern border — a sense that what’s happening now is fundamentally different from what has gone on before,” wrote then-Sen. Obama in his 2006 autobiography, “The Audacity of Hope.” “Not all these fears are irrational,” said Obama.

Those earlier Obama positions are “the exact argument the president’s critics have been making as he now rushes to announce a sweeping executive order that would give work permits to millions of illegal immigrants in the country,” Munro explained.

“Native-born Americans suspect that it is they, and not the immigrant, who are being forced to adapt to social changes caused by migration,” wrote Obama in 2006. “And if I’m honest with myself, I must admit that I’m not entirely immune to such nativist sentiments.”

And now, Obama via executive order is set to provide work permits to millions of illegals, “allowing them to compete,” according to Munro, “against the very Americans — black, white, Latino and Asian — who he once said would be harmed by such a move.”

Burying his focus about job losses and wage stagnation of American workers while clearing a path to work for formerly illegal aliens, “Obama,” Munro said, “has repeatedly declared, ‘It’s the right thing to do.’ ”

Ralph R. Reiland is an associate professor of economics at Robert Morris University and a local restaurateur ([email protected]).

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