Monday, January 08, 2007

Bob Herbert on class warfare

Bob Herbert in NYT TimesSelect:

"There’s a reason why the power elite get bent out of shape at the merest mention of a class conflict in the U.S. The fear is that the cringing majority that has taken it on the chin for so long will wise up and begin to fight back."

What will rile up the cringing majority?
Perhaps these numbers from Andrew Sum of the Center for Labor Market Studies at Northeastern University in Boston.

Between 2000 and 2006, labor productivity in the nonfarm sector of the economy rose by 18 percent, real wages rose by 1%.

The (excluding farmworkers) 93 million production and nonsupervisory workers' combined real annual earnings from 2000 to 2006 rose by $15.4 billion, which is less than half of the combined bonuses awarded by the five Wall Street firms for just one year.

"Fairness plays no role in this system."