THE HUFFINGTON POST
Author of ‘Obama’s America: A Transformative Vision of Our National Identity’
WHY WE PROPOSE TO DO THIS:
This bold plan will restore equality of opportunity in our country. It enshrines the central value of the American Dream, that every American child should have an equal chance at achieving the good life: a job that allows him or her to support a family, and eventually enjoy a safe, secure retirement.
Our plan is fiscally responsible. First of all, increasing the minimum wage will directly save our government money by leaving fewer working people in need of government support. Today, millions of people who work full-time still need Medicaid, food stamps, and other aid because the minimum wage is too low to bring them out of poverty. McDonald’s is even telling its employees to seek out government assistance.
Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Hedrick Smith, author of the new book Who Stole the American Dream, joined Hardball Friday to explain the hidden causes of inequality in the U.S. economy. The public, Smith said, has been led to believe that the middle class squeeze in this country has been caused by globalization, technology and market forces.
Not so, argues Smith, who points to a political/corporate power shift in the late 1970′s as the culprit of the widening wealth gap.
” There was a political rebellion. [The corporate interests] absolutely stuffed labor, they stuffed the consumer movement, they got deregulation, they got tax cuts, they got all kinds of things so the power shift tilted the policy towards business, towards the wealthy,” Smith told Chris Matthews.