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AP: War On Unions Makes Inflation Hurt

From an oh so subtle Associated Press:

Why inflation hurts more than it did 30 years ago

March 18, 2011

WASHINGTON – Inflation spooked the nation in the early 1980s. It surged and kept rising until it topped 13 percent.

These days, inflation is much lower. Yet to many Americans, it feels worse now. And for a good reason: Their income has been even flatter than inflation

[In the 1980s] workers typically got pay raises to match their higher living costs. No more.

For some reason this article keep talking about "the early 1980s." In fact, inflation began to spiral upwards in 1978, when it topped 9%. And in 1979 it reached 13.29%.

Indeed, it was only higher than that rate for the first six months of 1980. And it was below 9% by 1981. But "the 1980s" makes it sound like this rampant inflation happened under President Regan, while it actually occurred under Mr. Carter.

Over the 12 months that ended in February, consumer prices increased just 2.1 percent. Yet wages for many people have risen even less — if they’re not actually frozen

That’s why even moderate inflation hurts more now

The median U.S. inflation-adjusted household income — wages and investment income — fell to $49,777 in 2009, the most recent year for which figures are available, the Census Bureau says. That was 0.7 percent less than in 2008

Significant pay raises are rare during periods of high unemployment because workers have little bargaining power to demand them

Which is why we need more unions, you see.

Even after accounting for inflation, the median income rose 3.1 percent from 1983 to 1984. At the time, workers were demanding — and receiving — higher wages.

More than 20 percent of U.S. workers belonged to a union in 1983. Labor contracts typically provided cost-of-living adjustments tied to inflation. And competition for workers meant those union pay increases helped push up income for non-union workers, too.

Last year, just 12 percent of U.S. workers belonged to unions. And among union members, a majority now work for the government, not private companies. Wages of government workers are under assault as state governments and the federal government seek to cut spending and narrow gaping budget deficits.

Workers’ average weekly wages, adjusted for inflation, fell in February to $351.89. It was the third drop in four months

Falling behind inflation is something many people hadn’t experienced much in their working careers until now. In the 1990s and 2000s, for instance, most Americans kept ahead of rising prices. Inflation averaged under 3 percent

Er, officially, inflation is still well under 3 percent, by the way. It was 2.1 percent over the last year.

These days, though, Americans face the certainty of higher prices ahead

So do you get it? We have to end this "assault" on government workers and other union members. In fact, we had all better join a union as soon as possible.

But, once again, do note that there is no reporter listed for this article. Once again the Associated Press staffer has withheld his ‘byline’ in protest over the unreported by long since ongoing labor dispute between the AP and its employees.

To quote Sally Fields, ‘Union! Union!’

This article was posted by Steve on Friday, March 18th, 2011. Comments are currently closed.

10 Responses to “AP: War On Unions Makes Inflation Hurt”

  1. GetBackJack says:

    Shoplifting costs American consumers hundreds of billions every year, billions which have to be recouped by raising prices on people who otherwise pay their bills and play by the rules. Shoplifters quite literally steal hundreds if not thousands of dollars from me and you every year.

    At Whole Foods their estimate is that for every $5 item shoplifters steal, the store must do several hundred dollars of sales to make up for the loss.

    UNIONS are shoplifters in extremis.

    Their existence costs you and me billions in added costs and pass-along artificial inflation of prices of goods and services that otherwise would stay in my pocket and yours if UNIONS did not exist.

    UNIONS are a virus living off a host, and like any virus, makes the host sick and enfeebles the host as the virus takes from the host in order to live, multiply and enlarge it’s sphere.

    UNIONS are the antithesis of freedom. health and personal responsibility.

    I wouldn’t be at all surprised when the anti-Christ appears he is a Union man.

    • proreason says:

      Imagine what the cost of living would be if the following were reduced to insignificance:

      – shoplifting
      – predatory lawyers
      – medicare and other health care fraud
      – other insurance fraud
      – violent crime (reduce prisons, police, property damage, etc.)
      – political graft, bribery and outright theft
      – beaurocratic inefficiency, sloth and empire building
      – union graft, inefficient work rules, political contributions
      – tax simplification (i.e., eliminate tax attorneys, accountants, H&R block, etc.)

      The true cost of goods and services is probably much less than 50% we pay. The rest is all bureaucracy and crime.

    • GetBackJack says:

      Yes, to the tenth power

    • Right of the People says:

      I wasn’t aware Barry belonged to a union.

      Just sayin’

  2. wardmama4 says:

    Man – here I am only thinking of the time I knew Sally Field was a fraud – You Like Me, You really Like Me.

    Indeed the Unions/Dems/welfare queens etc – are all leeches that live off a host – at least for 20 years – we get some work from the Union leeches – but it’s not worth it – when they all are screaming equality, justice and fairness – and the people who are paying for all of this crappola – Never get to have a voice in the negotiations much less to opt out of paying for any of it – look at the shell game being played in DC – the 100 billion proposal was kicked down the field by the state run media and now we are quibbling over a measly 2 billion – maybe until they can figure out a way to sneak it back into the budget.

    War on Unions – Just might save America. But then this isn’t a war on the Unions – it is just making sure that like the majority of Americans – they pay toward their healthcare and retirement. To me forbidding Unions in the US at all (as anti-Constitutional and anti-Freedom) is what we need to do – then and only then could anyone with a straight face use the phrase – war on Unions.

  3. Reality Bytes says:

    Having just returned from a union negotiation meeting, this is certainly timely. The union is so pathetically inept our workers want to file an unfair labor practice grievance AGAINST THEM.

  4. JohnMG says:

    Just filled the truck up with diesel yesterday. Cost? $144.00! For one tank full.

    Bio-diesel, ethanol, etc. are all subsidized, and crops are diverted to their production thus raising the cost of foods AND transportation costs of those foods to market. These cost increases are passed on to the consumer via increased overhead recovery.

    Yet we can’t drill for oil. We can’t burn coal. And now we can’t develop nuclear. All thanks to the peckerhead in the White House and his like-minded minions.

    Are you surprised at the current state of affairs?

  5. untrainable says:

    The reason inflation hurts more now even though the “numbers” are lower than in the late 70s, is that they are using different math to calculate those numbers. If they calculated the rate of inflation the same way they did back in the Carter days the numbers would show that it’s not that wages aren’t keeping up with inflation it’s that inflation is actually much higher now than then. If commodities were still used in the equation the true inflation rate would be probably 7 or 8% higher than they are reporting. The problem is that the inflation numbers are used to determine cost of living increases in payments to social security recipients. If the real consumer price index was made public, social security payments would effectively double. Also intrest rates would necessarily “skyrocket” totally quashing any illusion of an economic recovery. In short, inflation hurts more now because the government is lying about the inflation numbers to make Obama look good. If they told the truth, the pitchforks and torches would be the least of Washington’s worries.

    • Rusty Shackleford says:

      In any case, the “misery index” is quite high and will go much higher than in Jimma’s time.


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