Letters

Many have low-wage jobs; stock market favors rich

Posted: Oct. 7, 2018 12:01 am

To The Herald-Whig:

"Jeff Bezos walks into a bar ..." This is the beginning of an explanation needed to understand how Republicans try to fool working Americans. Republicans mimic the Trump administration's bravado on how well we are doing in this economy by saying the unemployment rate is low, the stock market is high and the average wage is rising.

The reason we don't feel flush with economic security is that more of the employed are in low-wage jobs, the stock market favors the people with the highest incomes, and the term "average" wage is misleading.

Hence, this example: Mr. Bezos, the richest person in the U.S., walks into a bar, suddenly the average wealth of the bar's patrons would be in the billions, but nobody is richer.

Using the term median wage (those who are in the middle of the distribution of wage earners) instead of average wage and after considering inflation, the weekly earnings dropped 1.9 percent for the typical working American in the first 18 months of the Trump administration.

And what must be the most galling to Republicans, this drop in weekly earnings follows a healthy 4.5 percent rise in weekly earnings the last 18 months of the Obama administration according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Republicans always talk a good game, but it's the Democrats who deliver.

Steve Miller

Nauvoo, Ill.

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