Workers fighting senseless layoffs is something real to be excited about.
Here’s what’s not real: "Stocks open higher after jobless claims report."
It says a lot about our society when 550,000 Americans file new unemployment claims — and traders celebrate.
The AP report continues that "the market’s gains…are somewhat muted" – nonetheless — because of "sluggish" sales.
Are our troubles over? The Obama team are right: we’re seeing the results of that $787 billion fiscal stimulus. Fewer people are losing their jobs and the economy’s shrinkage has shrunk….
But we’re not out of the woods — not yet. Remember those "sluggish" consumer sales numbers? Get used to them. The US consumer market didn’t just temporarily dry up. Over several decades of misguided economic and industrial policy — it was dredged.
From an economy based on workers with wages buying things, we became one based on workers in trouble and speculators getting rich trading on their debt.
Divert investment from manufacturing to gambling paper long enough — and this is where you end up.
Suppressing wages, shutting plants, expanding credit, and inflating assets…. It was a good way to blow up a bubble. But that bubble is burst and now Main Street America is jobless and broke.
Workers around the globe are taking matters into their own hands — and putting their bodies on the line to stop the madness. From England to Italy and South Korea, they are occupying their plants to stop them from closing. Their message should not be muted: the only thing that’s going to save most people and most economies, is living wages and productive work.
The F Word is a regular commentary by Laura Flanders, the host of GRITtv which broadcasts weekdays on satellite TV (Dish Network Ch. 9415 Free Speech TV) on cable, and online at GRITtv.org and TheNation.com. Follow GRITtv or GritLaura on Twitter.com.