Why Poor People Vote Republican

Let’s start by laying bare some assumptions of mine that should be clear to most readers.

Conservative politicians (often members of the Republican party) have traditionally opposed legislation that seeks to give poor people a hand up. The track record for them is pretty clear. They have tended to fight everything from the expansion of social services such as Medicaid/Medicare, WIC, welfare, and unemployment insurance, to measures designed to lift up the poorest and most oppressed, such as minorities and women. Affirmative action and civil rights legislation, long staples of progressive politics, have been bitterly fought by the Republican party, especially in the South.

That’s not to say that Democrats ALWAYS support expansion of government benefits and protections to the poor, or that Republicans ALWAYS  fight them. But as a general rule party lines are sharply drawn around such issues. Despite this fact,  apparently there exists a large percentage of poor people who are willing to vote conservative, even if it means voting against their own economic interests. In 2008 McCain won a slim majority (51%) of white Americans who earn less than $50,000. Between 2008 and 2012, even as the the economic situation worsened for many working people, this trend seemed to continue unabated. In a poll conducted by the Washington Post in 2012, 58 % of white voters who admitted to having financial hardship said they would vote for Romney.

Perhaps the optimal word here is WHITE. No doubt the politics of race and racism influence some poor white people to vote against the Democrats, long perceived as the party of minorities, inner city poor, “walfare queens”, and the like. The recent upsurge in the far right, not least of which is illustrated by the Tea Party take over of the Republican party, demonstrates the political depths to which some of the white working class are willing to sink.

The internet is full of stories about poor white men, often Southern, often themselves recipients of government subsides, screaming about how terrible that “socialist” Obama is. In an ironic twist that would be funny if it wasn’t so tragic, there is plenty of data to support that some of the most conservative areas of the country are also the poorest, and contain extremely high numbers of people living on government subsides. In fact, what has been dubbed  the “food stamp capital” of the United States is almost entirely white. Owsley County, Kentucky bears that sad distinction. The county is about 99% white,  95% vote Republican, and 96% of the population uses food stamps. Owsely County is ripe with drug use and social problems (as is any ghetto), and many of the recipients of subsides are no doubt unemployable.

However, it is not just the chronically unemployed and unemployable that have come to rely on government subsides to meet the basic needs of life.  The safety net was designed to keep the poorest Americans from slipping into abject poverty or homelessness. Sadly, it has become an economic necessity for more and more as the middle class has shrunk. Often these people belong to a layer of working people, formerly middle class, who have been pushed by economic necessity to use government services they themselves often deem shameful, and harbor far right sympathies.

Since 2008 the number of Americans relying on government subsides has been on the increase. This means that people who considered themselves moderately successful, have fallen into economic hardship. As the economy is racked with recurring crisis, more and more traditionally Republican voters are thrown into the ranks of the working poor. Although they continue to harbor conservative ideas about the role of government, they still take advantage of government programs championed by liberals, albeit often with misgivings and a certain amount of shame. The shame and rage they feel about being so poor as to need help from the government, can then be directed toward the “non-deserving” segment of poor people who are perceived to do no work, yet get government hand outs. This creates a psychological defense for their own feelings of inadequacy for having to get on the dole. Republicans are good at harnessing this anger and using it to the party’s benefit. Mit Romney accused Obama in 2012 of “gutting welfare” for the sake of people who refused to work. The message is that we (i.e. white, Southern, and Republican) are more deserving than they are, and thus a little better off.

As should be obvious, the issue of race is a big part of the equation. Since Nixon launched his Southern Strategy the south has been a stronghold for Republicans. White males felt disenfranchised by federally mandated desegregation and the Voting Rights Act, and Nixon leveraged this, along with the Democrats’ War on Poverty, to build Republican strength. Ronald Reagan picked up where Nixon left off by declaring support for “states rights” and getting “Cadillac driving welfare queens” off the state tit. He called a young African-American man a  “young buck” lazy and undeserving for using food stamps to buy t-bone steaks. Romney continued the theme by deriding social-security, medicare/medicare, WIC, and the Affordable Care Act. Even though most beneficiaries of these programs are white seniors, retirees, women and children, and white workers, in the coded language of right wing political rhetoric,  people who use “government handouts” are lazy or black or both.

As the economic position of working white people declines many continue to cling to these beliefs poor minorities can be used as an effective scapegoat, along with “bloated government programs” to explain why they are doing so badly. The rise of far right rhetoric always grows out of the increasing impoverishment of the middle-class who refuse to identify with authentic working class politics. The media offers explanations to the newly impoverished that include attacks on “immigrants”, poor people, minorities, and the like that seem plausible, especially to the under educated. The shame and rage of being on welfare or food stamps provides physiological energy to a strategy of blaming the other to account for ones own feelings of failure. Bailouts to the large banks and business, corporate welfare, and the obscene budget of the military-industrial complex are conveniently left aside, as minorities and  greedy state bureaucrats take the blame.

But, even though poor white people in the South do tend to vote Republican, college educated whites do not, nor do large sections of Northern whites. This is because education tends to produce a more critical view toward politics, and people in the South are less likely to have college degrees. Also, even though many poor whites do vote Republican, many simply do not vote at all. As is the case across the racial spectrum, the poor tend to feel hopeless or apathetic about the possibilities of political solutions making their life any better. And who can blame them? Perhaps another answer to the question posed in the title is “WHY NOT?” The liberal dedication to progressive economics and social justice legislation has been so watered down as to no longer have mass appeal to those who need it most. The Affordable Care Act is the most recent illustration, NAFTA and welfare “reform” under Clinton is another. The Affordable Care Act, although a step in the right direction is not so affordable to millions, who would rather pay the penalty than couple hundred a month in insurance premiums, and it was Clinton who delt a death blow to the unions with NAFTA.

Thus the solution is two fold: First, turn out the vote. It is time that a truly progressive political alternative present itself to the American public, and aggressively go after those forgotten and left behind victims of unchecked capitalism. This must take the form of mass grass roots action centered in poor neighborhoods and barrios across the country, and would utilize direct actions along with mass meetings to inspire people to get organized, get active, and VOTE when the time comes. Second. We need real solutions. The welfare system is clearly broken. The solution is not to give people money but to train them to make money and then provide jobs if the private sector cannot. In so far as the private sector is robust enough to employ people, our politicians should encourage and support labor unions so that those jobs pay a living wage.

This is ultimately the goal of our Full Employment Now campaign. Of course it wont happen overnight, but it CAN happen, and the first step is YOU GETTING INVOLVED. You can do this by signing the petition below and sending me an email (duhon.aron@yahoo.com) letting me know you did so. It’s time to pull together to make America a place we are proud to call home.

SIGN NOW

https://www.change.org/p/congress-pass-full-employment-legislation

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Why Poor People Vote Republican

Why We Need Employment Legislation NOW!

America has some tough truths to face. Compared to it’s peers in the developed world, our nation falls behind in some key areas. Below are a few facts that I think all Americans should know.

Income Inequality and Poverty: In my last post I wrote a little about income inequality. The top 1 % gets as much as 40% of the pie, while the rest of us left to scramble for the rest. The Wealth gap in America is worse than anywhere else in the developed world.The same can be said about child poverty. UNICEF studies reveal that mexico is the only developed nation with a higher child poverty rate.  

Crime: As compared to other developed nations, America has by far the highest crime rate. This is especially true in regards to gun violence and homicide. Among Ireland, Germany,  Netherlands, Norway, Canada, and France, America has the highest instance of homicide. 

The United Nations reports that America leads the developed world in reported rapes by an alarming rate.  The much pronounced idea the the United States brings a culture of equality among the sexes to “backwards” nations like Afghanistan is absurd in light of such information.

Incarceration : As can be expected, America also leads the industrialized world in incarceration rates. Even though the U.S. has only 5 percent of the worlds population, it has about a quarter of the worlds prisoners. China is 4 times a populous as the U.S., but it but places a distant second in terms of number of people locked up. Perhaps China should be giving the U.S. lectures about human rights, and not the other way around.

Infant Mortality:The CDC recently compared countries in terms of instances of Infant Mortality. Among developed countries, the U.S ranks 28th. Cuba has a lower infant mortality rate than the U.S. That means that more babies die from lack of services in the United States than in the famously impoverished “communist” island.

Hunger and Malnutrition:About 15% of Americans worry about where they will get their next meal. Between 2006 and 2010 “food insecurity” increased in the U.S. by 10 percent. Take a look at the streets in any major city and you will see people literally dying in the streets due to malnutrition.

Health Care: Americans pay more for health care than nearly any other country in the world, yet the care they receive is still sub-standard. A recent study by Bloomberg reveals that America placed 46th out of 48 countries in this regard. China and Iran have better systems. Again, it seems ironic that any American politician should lament the state of China’s record on human rights.

Overall Quality of Health: Given the state of our health care system, it shouldn’t  shock anyone to hear that Americans are living shorter lives and getting sick more than those in other developed countries. The National Research Council finds that infant mortality, rate of teen pregnancy, traffic fatalities, and heart disease are all far more prevalent in the U.S.

Education: Most of us have seen the skits on late-night talk shows where a reporter asks average people simple questions, and they are unable to answer the question correctly. It might be funny on late night television, but ignorance is no laughing matter. International researchers have found that Americans are severely under educated, as compared to their peers in Europe, Canada, China, Japan, and large sections of the Middle East.

So why does the U.S., (the richest country in the world), compare so poorly to the other developed countries? The reason is because Americans lack access to basic state funded social services. The public sector invests very (little compared to it’s peers) in services like quality education, health care, child care, rehabilitative services, and social well-fair programs in general.

It hasn’t always been this way. The U.S. once had a much better social safety net, until about the mid eighties, when it was dismantled. The long term repercussions of taking  the “social wage” away from working people is that all boats start to sink. It has wide spread repercussions in all areas of life. Crime and spousal abuse, child abuse, homelessness, substance abuse all rise with unemployment  as people are unable to meet the basic needs of life.

So, What is the answer? Simple. Rebuild the safety net, and in the process society in general. We can do this by passing jobs legislation that would employ people, and give them skills to participate in society in a positive way. Think about a society that provides free education for people to become doctors, teachers, counselors, psychiatrists, and the like, and then builds institutions for them to work. In this type of society people would not only have access to the complete range of services, but also to good jobs in professional fields.

This is what America needs NOW!

Help us build a movement around this idea, and get people elected who can help us resurrect the American Dream! You can start by signing our petition 

You can also help us build the movement by becoming a contributor to our PAC.

Next, e-mail me and ask me how you can get involved at duhon.aron@yahoo.com

Lets work together to make America truly Exceptional!

Why We Need Employment Legislation NOW!

Why Full Employment Benefits Everyone

Economist define Full Employment as the level of employment at which all persons who are eligible and willing to work are employed. Some definitions go on to calculate the unemployment rate below which causes inflation, and define full employment as being below this rate. Regardless, full employment legislation would invest in creating jobs, striving to create a society that tends towards full employment.Such legislation would obviously help millions of unemployed and underemployed Americans, but it also would benefit people who are fully employed. Here’s Why:

1. Better Pay for Everyone: Most economists agree that in a tight labor market wages tend to rise. This is because corporations are competing with each other for workers. The biggest rise will occur among workers on the low to medium end of the pay scale. The labor market tends to inflate prices as demand goes up. So with higher demand for labor, wages will tend to rise. In addition, in some areas of the economy unions will be able to grow. Stronger unions means higher wages. The historic decline in union membership has run parallel to declining wages, and the reverse will be true as well. The relationship between rising real wages, full employment, and union membership has been well documented in a number of studies. For a good introduction on this see Getting Back to Full Employment 

2. Improved Public Services and Public Space: In the 1930’s FDR created jobs that improved parks, roads, schools, infrastructure, and other public spaces. The Works Project Administration and the Civilian Conservation Corps helped build and maintain the nation’s State and Federal Parks. Many of the beautiful buildings that grace America’s parks were constructed by programs that FDR began to put people back to work. Almost every county in America had some sort of federally funded project that put local people to work for the betterment of the entire community. A New jobs program would do much the same. It’s time for a “NEW” New Deal.  Instead of bailing out the banks and the Wall Street fat cats, we should demand Washington put people to work in our communities. America’s infrastructure is badly in need of a revamp. The most recent study conducted by the American Society of Civil Engineers our roads our infrastructure got a grade of D. In addition, our schools, parks, and other public spaces could be updated and expanded. This would not only put people to work, but make life better for us all, and leave our children an America they can be proud of.

3. Less Crime: Myriad studies have shown the links between unemployment/underemployment and crime. A 2002 Study shows that as wages go down, crime rates tend up. Between 1979 and 1997 the wages of men without college educations fell by 20%, while the incidence of crime went up 35%.  A 2012 study showed much the same results. It does not take a social scientist to know that when people are poor and desperate they are more likely to commit desperate acts. When their family is starving, who knows what a person could be capable of? A host of other social ills are also linked to unemployment and poverty. Instances of alcoholism and drug abuse , along with domestic violence, tend to go up as poverty and unemployment increase.Well over 48 million Americans live in poverty. This puts America at the bottom of the pack as compared to other “developed” nations. Child poverty is especially sever. In “the richest nation in the world” 1 in 3 children lives in poverty. It should be no surprise that America also compares terribly to the rest of the world in regards to crime. The U.S. murder rate is the highest of most of the developed countries.   The was to address these problems is to pull people our of poverty, not lock them up and warehouse them. Locking people up only makes the problem worse in th long run because felons have a much harder time finding jobs. The solution to all these problems is jobs, plain and simple.

4. A more Just and Equitable Society for Everyone: The recent Occupy protests have brought to light the rising inequality in America. Income inequality has been on a steady rise since the mid 70’s. The rich are getting richer at an alarming rate, and the rest of us are getting poorer. The gap between the rich and the poor is as wide now as it was in 1928. The top 1% now owns about 23% of the wealth, while the other 99% gets the rest. Inequality in America is worse now than any other time during the Great Depression. America has the greatest inequality than any other country in the developed world. 

We should be asking our self’s what kind of nation we want to live in! America, as compare to other countries, makes a pretty poor showing. What kind of world do we want our children to inherit? One in which the rich live in walled enclaves and the rest of us are packed together in ghettos? Where there is two classes, the super rich and the rest of us? Where it is unsafe to go out of your house at night and a third of the population is permanently locked up? This is the world we are making for our self’s. Without drastic action this is the world we can expect our children and grand children to live in.

There is a solution. JOBS NOW! We need money for jobs and education not wars without end and blank checks for the people who created the economic crisis in the first place. We could make this a reality. Congress has passed jobs legislation in the past and it will do so again, if we build a movement strong enough to push them to. In order to do this we have to come together and organize.

You can start this process today by signing the below petition. Enter your e-mail and a comment in the comments section.

Join the FEN. PAC today and help us build a movement.

Re post this blog on your social media sights and tell your friends to do the same.

E-Mail me at Duhon.Aron@yahoo.com

Why Full Employment Benefits Everyone

Why Full Employment is Possible

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Introduction

Wouldn’t it be wonderful to live in a world where if you wanted to work, you could easily find a decent job that would support you and your family’s needs, in a world without grinding poverty and economic insecurity, in a world where good jobs were easy to come by? These days, most people think that a nation where everyone is employed can be nothing but a Utopian dream. However, this is far from true. The fact is, full employment, (a real unemployment rate of 2% or less) was at one time a policy agenda in America, and around the world. In America, attempts at passing Full Employment legislation had some very limited success, and more so in Europe. There is no reason why a movement can’t once again be created around full employment legislation. This blog is devoted to making that movement a reality, and in case you didn’t notice, there are a lot of people that desperately need us to start a movement.


The REAL unemployment rate

The most recent numbers from the U.S. Labor of labor statistics puts the official unemployment rate at around 6.2%. But these figures are very misleading. The real unemployment rate is 13.8%. The real unemployment rate for people of color is around 19% – 20%. But things are worse than those numbers suggest. The official unemployment figures don’t account for large swaths of the actually unemployed. One group not included in the official numbers is the under employed or “marginally employed”. These are people working at part time jobs that don’t pay the bills. Many of these people are trained professionals or recent college graduates who can’t find “real” jobs in their fields. Think of the waiter with a masters degree or the barista that is a laid off marketing professional. Another large group is what the government call “Discouraged Workers”, which are people that are not looking for work at the time the government collects the statistics or applying for unemployment benefits. Gallup Poll recently reported that the percentage of the population employed full time is about 44%. By anybody’s honest assessment these numbers don’t look good. And for working people they probably don’t come as any surprise. Most working people have been unemployed and know what it’s like to desperately need work.

History of Full Employment Legislation

High unemployment is not “natural” or necessary. Despite what the bosses would have us believe, systemic unemployment is a man made problem, and as such it can be fixed. People haven’t always been willing to accept joblessness. There was a time in America when full employment was very much on the political radar, and politicians were willing to push legislation that would enact steps to get there.

The first major attempt at full employment was enacted during the presidency of Franklin D. Roosevelt “FDR”. FDR used Keynesian economics to formulate a response to the Great Depression. Keynesian economists advocate for a “mixed economy”, such that the public sector helped stabilize the economy through the wild fluctuations of the business cycle. Through public sector investment and a host of job programs, FDR was able to blunt some of the worst aspects of the depression. An Economic Bill of Rights or Second Bill of Rights grew out of the New Deal policies with a mixed economy. In 1944 FDR told the American people in his State of the Union Address that the state should guarantee full employment, along with a host of other social benefits. Roosevelt hoped that he could pass legislation that would progressively fulfill these mandates.

After the great depression (and WWII) Americans were afraid of a return to mass joblessness. The war had put the nation to work, both as soldiers and civilian manufacturers of war-time goods. Now, millions of solders were coming home and the nation desperately needed to put them to work. Also, all those employed through defense contracts needed to stay at work. Full employment was the big issue in the 1944 presidential election and the Democrats promised to guarantee work for all

The Full Employment Bill of 1945 was an attempt to enact legislation that would make the federal government an employer of last resort. Such a bill would also go a long way in fulfilling the promise of the Second Bill of Rights. If the private sector could not generate sufficient demand for jobs, then the government would step in with investment and jobs programs. In some respects the bill simply sought to preserve and expand programs that were already in place such as building roads, bridges, and other public works. Jobs programs and federal investment were a major part of the New Deal. So the of the infrastructure for the legislation already existed.

The bill mandated that a Council of Economic Advisers be created. The council would prepare a report every year to advise the president on the unemployment rate and propose policies necessary to reach full employment. The bill in effect gave the government the power to put people to work, even if the private sector could not.

Wall Street and business interest quickly mounted against this attempt to provide work. They argued that government “interference” in the economy went against “free market” principles. They also foresaw runaway inflation as a result of higher wages. Perhaps most importantly, a tight labor market shifts economic and political power in the direction of working people. When unemployment is low, workers can demand more from their bosses because there is less competition for their jobs, and workers have more leverage to bargain with. Also, such legislation would have swelled the ranks of labor unions, which was perhaps the biggest threat to the bosses’ monopoly of the political process.

About 15% of workers were unionized in 1946.  Labor had played a key role in organizing support FDR’s New Deal programs. Union labor had been organizing mass support behind social justice and fair wage legislation since the 20’s, and continued to after the war. The unions took a “no-strike pledge” during WWII, but conflict between workers and capital flared as soon as it concluded. In September 1945 more than 243,000 petroleum and coal workers went on strike for higher wages, and in October about 150,000 more workers in various industries joined in. The United Auto Workers called a strike against General Motors, and tensions escalated such that in January a general-strike was called by machinists in Stamford, Connecticut, which quickly spread to other industries.

The labor unions represented a democratic mass movement that could effectively vie for political and economic power. The last thing banking and business forces wanted was an employment act that would serve to add to their strength. As such, a coalition of Democrats AND Republicans quickly formed in opposition to the bill, led by Ohio Senator Robert A. Taft. Although the bill was passed as the Employment Act of 1946; and was signed into law by President Harry Truman. It lacked any mandate that would force the Federal Government to create jobs.

Chronic unemployment, underemployment, and homelessness again became an issue in the 1970’s. The country was suffering a major recession and job creation again entered the national debate. The Comprehensive Employment and Training Act (CETA) was signed into law by Richard Nixon in 1973. CETA mandated that federal money be provided to state and local bodies which would administer the aid in the communities. The legislation had some success helping the very poor and chronically unemployed. Business and banking interest attacked it much as they do social welfare programs today, saying that it fostered laziness by teaching the poor not to work. Since many of the people CETA helped were minorities, business interests groups could use race as a way to split whites away from supporting it. The bill was slashed during the Carter administration, and came under full attack by Reagan. Reagan used social welfare programs as a way to demonize poor black people which provided justification for CETA to be eliminated.

The last major full employment legislation to be signed into law was the Humphery-Hawkins Full Employment Act. The bill started out with very strong language, but was successively weakened until its passage in 1978. Strong business resistance, and a crucial lack of support from the AFL-CIO, weakened its political appeal to legislators. Although it passed, it had little overall effect on unemployment. The bill explicitly stated that the Federal Government rely upon the private sector to create jobs. There were no mandates for job creation of any sort, and very weak language around direct spending to reduce unemployment.

The “Great Recession” and its Response

As should be clear by now, capitalism is prone to violent shifts and upheavals. Booms, busts, mass unemployment, and crisis are part of the normal “functioning” of the system. Left unregulated, the “free market” can have negative effects on the overall economy; risking the financial security of the majority of Americans. This has always been the case, and still is. You’d have to be living in a cave not to know that the U.S. (and world) entered a severe recession in 2008, and that a “recovery” has been slow at best. Beginning with the sub-prime mortgage crisis and spreading into the financial sector; the recession has filtered down into all sectors of the economy. As mentioned, economic crisis is nothing new, nor was the government’s response to it. In 2009, President Barack Obama followed the same path as FDR and signed the American Recovery and Investment Act known as “the stimulus package;” which injected government funds into public programs and services to slowdown the rate of job loss caused by the Great Recession. Unfortunately, after the implementation of “the stimulus package,” political forces shifted in the 2010 elections. This intern led to economic policies that would cut funding to vital public services such as education, fire departments, and health programs; which ultimately led to the loss of an estimated 1.6 million public sector jobs.

There are many narratives out there explaining the crisis and assigning blame. This blog is not the place to rehash all those arguments. The short form of the truth is this: since the 1950’s real wages for working people have been steadily falling. This causes a lack of spending power which in turn dampens the economy. Instead of raising wages, there has been a steady increase of consumer debt. Sub-prime mortgages are loans for houses made to people who will not be able to afford to pay them back, and often contained hidden fees and rates that went up as it matured. Paul Graig writes that this debt was “securitized,” given fraudulent investment grade ratings, and sold to unsuspecting investors at home and abroad.” That is, the packaged debt was sold, and traded like stocks, bet on in various ways each time inflating the price of the package. But when the bubble finally burst and the masses of debt holders were finally unable to pay, someone was left holding the bag. Deregulation and lack of transparency in America’s financial sector allowed the fat cats to trade in fraudulent “assets”. When the banks and investment firms began to go under, the government came to their rescue with massive injections of public cash. All in all, the Federal Reserve gave away about 16 trillion tax payer dollars, which is more that the entire U.S. public debt. So much for “fiscal responsibility”.

The bailouts had little effect on how the rest of us live, but they have enabled the fat cats to get fatter. They pocketed much of the public’s money in the form of raises and bonuses, congratulating themselves on their good fortune.  What’s even more shocking is they loaned some of the free money back to the Fed AT INTEREST!

Meanwhile the media tells us that the economy is recovering. A recovery for who? As mentioned previously, around 30% of the available workforce is unemployed or underemployed. The median income has not increased relative to inflation in 15 years. Inequality has only gotten worse. The top 10% wealthiest Americans own 80% of all financial assets and the top 1% owns about 40% the assets. The industrial base of U.S. production continues to be shipped overseas, which only adds to the shortage of jobs.

Current Work

Economic recovery starts with working people being able to have a degree of purchasing power which can drive production and put money in regular people’s pockets. This means that distributing money at the top levels of the economy will never create good jobs because it stays at the top. The solution, for working people, and for the economy at large is to create good jobs right here at home. This is something the market has not been able to do in a very long time. Most jobs created are either low paying or simply shipped off to the global south. The country needs real jobs for working people now. This will help every single American because the injection of cash at the “bottom”, and the productive capacities that will be unleashed will ripple through all sectors of the economy.

There have been recent attempts to return to the ideas enshrined in FDR’s New Deal legislation. In 2013 U.S. Congressman John Conyers Jr. introduced H.R 1000, the Humphery-Hawkins Full Employment and Training Act. The act would establish a “Full Employment Trust Fund” with two accounts; one for training and one for job creation. The act would seek to ultimately create a full employment society.

The first step in getting legislation like this passed is building a political movement around it. Anytime legislation is passed in a progressive direction, it has to be backed by well organized grass-roots movements. This was the case for FDR and it has not changed. The labor unions have been historically places where people could do this. However, there are many other organizations and avenues through which political pressure can be directed. I will be compiling a list of these with some annotation in the blogs to come. It is not hard to find them. Often they grow up around single issues. Google search “full employment” and you’ll find some valuable information. From here you will be able to network with like minded people and get involved in their work.

Achieving full employment will require an act by the federal government. That’s why we must get involved national politics and make full employment a central issue in the 2016 elections. Political candidates who support full employment have to be elected, and they must be held accountable to follow through on their promises. Politicians are motivated by the desire of winning elections. If organizations have enough people involved and raise enough money then they pass legislation, like full employment, through grassroots political action. If a politician thinks you can get them elected or un-elected, then they are far more likely to create policies and laws in your favor.

Over the past decade, the influence of money in politics has drastically increased. Wealthy corporations and individuals give millions of dollar to political candidates to advance their interests while drowning out the voices of everyday Americans. Working class and unemployed citizens can not afford to give large six figure individual contributions. But a large number of everyday Americans can combine small contribution to make a big impact. For example, if 1 million people contribute $5 to a campaign; then that is $5 million. Organizations like Green Peace raise millions of dollars using the same method, through small donations or “memberships”. Think of your public radio station. They also raise money in this way. If they can do it, so can we!

Start by signing our petition:

https://www.change.org/p/congress-pass-full-employment-legislation

To make a contribution to the Full Employment Now Political Action Committee (FEN*PAC) click the link below or contact us at

Duhon.Aron@yahoo.com

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