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It’s not quite what you imagine it to be. President Trump is right to shout to the Twitterverse about how its trade deficit with China is costing the United States trillions of dollars and millions of jobs every year.

According to a recent study by the progressive Economic Policy Institute (EPI), which is hated by the conservatives and corporate Democrats alike, “…the growing trade deficit with China…has cost the U.S. millions of jobs throughout the economy since China entered the World Trade Organization (WTO) in 2001, a finding validated by numerous studies.”

Of course, EPI did not report a few things that are important to their study, and for our interests. So, as you read through a few of the EPI highlights below, I will make comments here and there in bolded letters. However, let me state there are a few things in this report that are not mentioned, and the corporate news media do not want you to know.

  • The U.S. trade deficit with China does not really exist in the sense that it is a trade deficit between China and the United States. In reality, the trade deficit is really between US corporations that manufacture their goods and services in the U.S.A. and U.S. corporations that have exported U.S. jobs to China and then exported their-made-in-China goods and services to the USA.
  • Another thing not mentioned is that a variety of studies show the export of every 100 manufacturing jobs from the United States results in the loss of an additional 300 to 1700 U.S. jobs.
  • The difference between the old higher wage exported U.S. jobs and the new lower wage Chinese jobs goes straight into the pockets of the billionaires who control both major political parties via higher corporate earnings, rising share prices, and surging dividends. Thus, much of the income and wealth inequality of recent history is the deliberately negotiated end result desired by corporate-backed U.S. politicians and U.S. negotiators.
  • Currently, three people (Jeff Bezos, Warren Buffett, and Bill Gates) own more wealth than the bottom fifty percent of US citizens. Much of this is caused by the so-called trade deficit with China.
  • Trade treaties are negotiated so that US corporations can export jobs, as well as create them over there rather than over here, and this also helps to manufacture U.S. income and wealth inequality.
  • Pretty much 100 U.S. billionaires control both major U.S. political parties and quite naturally they have rigged the economy using the corrupted U.S. government, and especially a remarkably corrupt corporate wing of the United States Supreme Court, which includes two well-known perjurers in Brent Kavanaugh and Chief Justice John Roberts.
  • In other words, the income and wealth inequality we experience has been caused by the corruption of all three branches of the federal government, which could not have occurred without the complete corruption of the corporate news media.
  • Currently, the 1 percent steal somewhere between 22 to 38 percent of all the income produced in the United States, up from roughly 8 percent in 1980.

Here are a few of the highlights of the recent EPI report:

1. U.S. jobs lost are spread throughout the country but are concentrated in manufacturing, including in industries in which the United States has traditionally held a competitive advantage. Think Nike, Microsoft and Apple.

2. The growth of the U.S. trade deficit with China between 2001 and 2017 was responsible for the loss of 3.4 million U.S. jobs, including 1.3 million jobs lost since 2008 (the first full year of the Great Recession, which technically began at the end of 2007). Nearly three-fourths (74.4 percent) of the jobs lost between 2001 and 2017 were in manufacturing (2.5 million manufacturing jobs lost).

3. The growing trade deficit with China has cost jobs in all 50 states and in every congressional district in the United States.

4. The trade deficit in the computer and electronic parts industry grew the most: 1,209,000 jobs were lost in that industry, accounting for 36.0 percent of the 2001–2017 total jobs lost. (Think Dell Computers, Apple, Microsoft and a lot more.)

5. Surging imports of steel, aluminum, and other capital-intensive products threaten hundreds of thousands of U.S. jobs in key industries such as primary metals, machinery, and fabricated metal products as well.

6. Global trade in advanced technology products—often discussed as a source of comparative advantage for the United States—is instead dominated by China. This broad category of high-end technology products includes the more advanced elements of the computer and electronic parts industry as well as other sectors such as biotechnology, life sciences, aerospace, and nuclear technology. (This is because Dell, Apple and Microsoft, among many other US high-tech corporations, have exported millions of US jobs to China, or created them there rather than here, and then exported their Chinese made products to the USA.)

7. In 2017, the United States had a $135.4 billion trade deficit in advanced technology products with China, and this deficit was responsible for 36.1 percent of the total U.S.–China goods trade deficit that year. In contrast, the United States had a $24.5 billion trade surplus in advanced technology products with the rest of the world in 2017. (See number six in bolded letters above.)

8. Growing trade deficits are also associated with wage losses (in the USA) not just for manufacturing workers but for all workers economywide who don’t have a college degree.

9. Between 2001 and 2011 alone, growing trade deficits with China reduced the incomes of directly impacted workers by $37 billion per year, and in 2011 alone, growing competition with imports from China and other low wage-countries reduced the wages of all U.S. non–college graduates by a total of $180 billion. Most of that income was redistributed to corporations in the form of higher profits and to workers with college degrees at the very top of the income distribution through higher wages.

The China toll deepens–Economic Policy Institute

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When you vote November 6th for the Republican or Democratic Party candidates for the US House of Representatives and the US Senate, with few exceptions, you will be voting to increase income and wealth inequality in the United States and the world.

Below are some of the recent statistics on income and wealth inequality from Inequality.com. Wealth are the things that you own, such as homes, cars, stocks, bonds, businesses, etc…. Income is money you have coming in, such as unearned income like dividends and capital gains; while earned income is derived by actually doing something productive, like working at a job or starting and operating a business. Entrepreneurial folks are different from corporate folks inasmuch as the folks who manage corporations are often employees without clues as to how to make the businesses operate efficiently.

I should point out that control of the government via ownership of both major political parties has brought about an unceasing increase in wealth and income inequality in the USA and throughout the world. In other words, political corruption and corruption of the all major corporate news networks have been used to bring about unprecedented income and wealth inequality in the United States and the rest of the world.

Below are some of the most recent findings.

1. Three dynastic wealth families—the Waltons, the Kochs, and the Mars—have seen their wealth increase nearly 6,000 percent since 1982. Meanwhile, median household wealth over the same period went down by 3 percent. Notice they all inherited great wealth. Note that the rich have used their political power to redistribute income and wealth from the 99 percent to themselves.

2. These three wealth dynasties own a combined fortune of $348.7 billion. That’s more than four million times the median wealth of U.S. families. The dynastic wealth of the Walton family grew from $690 million in 1982 (or $1.81 billion in 2018 dollars) to $169.7 billion in 2018, a mind-numbing increase of 9,257 percent.

3. Three individuals—Jeff Bezos, Bill Gates, and Warren Buffett—still own more wealth than the bottom half of the country combined.

4. A third of the members of the Forbes 400 own fortunes derived from companies that were founded by earlier generations.

5. The 15 wealthiest multi-generational dynastic families on the Forbes 400 own a combined $618 billion. Their parents or other ancestors founded all of the companies from which their wealth is derived.

6. The Forbes 400 combined own $2.89 trillion dollars, more than the combined wealth of the bottom 64 percent of the United States. It’s also more than the GDP of Britain, the 5th-largest economy in the world. Just 45 individuals own half of this wealth.

7. The median family in the United States owns just over $80,000 in household wealth. The richest person in the United States (and the world), Jeff Bezos, has accumulated a fortune nearly 2 million times that amount.

8. The Bezos fortune expanded by $78.5 billion just in the last year to $160 billion. Even at the recently increased wage of $15/hour, a full-time Amazon worker would need to toil for 2.5 million years to generate this much money.

And so it goes. The entire Republican Party leadership has been bought by the billionaires as well as the entire Democratic Party leadership. In other words, the battle between the Democrats and the Republicans is a battle between billionaires. A few relatively honest major politicians remain in the Democratic Party, but they are not in leadership positions. Think Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders, Jeff Merkley, and a few others.

Think Elizabeth Warren for president in 2020.

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Nancy MacLean’s Democracy in Chains is a wonderfully researched and written book. It comes from a different point-of-view when it comes to Charles Koch and his war against US Democracy and the United States Constitution. MacLean views the Koch revolution. which is really a revolution of billionaires against the masses and against the US Constitution, through the eyes of Professor James Buchanan, a noted economist who developed an intellectual framework through which the Koch brothers operate.

Koch’s billions now control the Republican Party, most of the US Supreme Court, the US Senate, the US house of representatives, the Cato Institute, George Mason University, the Federalist Society, the Tea Party, as well as exercising massive influence on other universities, think tanks, FoxNews, the Wall Street Journal, judges, etc…. via his billions.

Both Buchanan and Koch see the mass of people as lesser creatures unworthy of making intelligent decisions about the role of government, their finances, how many toxins should be allowed in the air, ground and water, etc…. Therefore, only Koch and Buchanan know what is best, at least in their minds.

Both Buchanan and Koch push for economic freedom, which can be defined as anything any billionaire and or corporation wants to do in the name of profits. Democracy is an impediment to profits because those lesser creatures use democratic means, i.e. their right to vote, to curb the economic freedoms of corporations and their billionaire owners to give the masses such things as breast cancer; polluted rivers, air and groundwater; cause their babies to be born without brains and other deformities, rob them of their Constitutional rights, etc…

In other words, democracy stops the billionaires from doing everything they want to do in the name of economic freedom. Koch really wants the golden rule; he who has the gold makes the rules. Among other underhanded tactics, Koch engaged in a campaign of lies and fraud to convince citizens that big time voter fraud was occurring when it is not. Thus, Koch developed a rationale to push his Republican Party to curb voting rights, with such things as voter ID laws. Professor James Buchanan developed that idea in the name of economic freedom, and Charles Koch adopted it.

And so the Republican Party war against democracy continues as they push unnecessary voter I.D. laws, and pack US courts at all levels with judges who have benefited from Koch money in one way or another. Bret Kavanaugh is the latest example. John Roberts was an earlier example. Neil Gorsuch is a more recent example.

As NPR commented, “The Federalist Society is a hugely powerful, nationwide organization of conservative lawyers which will be instrumental in helping President Trump pick the next Supreme Court nominee.” Koch has poured millions into the Federalist Society. The result is Kavanaugh.

What does Kavanaugh support? He believes that corporations are people although nothing in the US Constitution nor in the writings of any of the founding fathers even remotely suggests that. Kavanaugh believes corporations spending money is free speech, and must be protected at all costs, even though nothing can be found suggesting this in the US Constitution or in any of the writings of the founding fathers.

In other words, Kavanaugh has been nominated by President Trump and Charles Koch to alter the meaning of the United States Constitution in a way completely abhorrent to the founding fathers. And yet, Kavanaugh claims he is an original intent jurist, which means he decides legal issues based on what the founding fathers thought, and nothing could be further from the truth. That, of course, is a lie.

Kavanaugh has been picked by Charles Koch and Donald Trump so he will alter the meaning of the US Constitution in favor of the billionaires and at the expense of the vast majority of US citizens. He intends to curtail the constitutional rights of the masses by extending greater rights to the corporations owned by billionaires.

This is precisely what Charles Koch wants. He wants government for the billionaires and against the common good.

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Charles Koch wants economic freedom. He has spent hundreds of millions of dollars to reach that end. Hundreds of millions of dollars have gone to universities, politicians, think tanks, political action committees, the Federalist Society, and on and on in order to influence public debate on issues dear to himself and his business, Koch Industries. The money has also gone to elect politicians true to his cause. But what does economic freedom mean?

Economic freedom means Koch wants billionaires and their corporations to be able to take people’s property by using the power of government to force property owners to sell their land so that the Koch pipeline, otherwise known as the KXL pipeline, can be laid.

So what if you develop breast or other cancers because of industrial toxins Koch Industries puts in the air, land and water? Let economic freedom ring by letting the market decide the issue.

Child labor laws are an impediment to economic freedom and must be done away with.

Health and safety laws impede the economic freedom of billionaire investors and must be eliminated.

Rivers that are so polluted they catch fire with a match clearly demonstrate economic freedom. Policies must be enacted to ensure this economic freedom, which corporations once had, and which included the rivers and lakes of fires.

Not being able to pollute lakes so badly with industrial waste you can smell them for thirty miles impedes the economic freedom of billionaire investors.

Workers who combine their primary asset (their labor) into labor unions in order to bargain for higher compensation and better working conditions are impediments to economic freedom, but billionaires who combine their primary asset (their billions) into unions (corporations) ensuring they have less competition and greater profit are the most important of economic freedoms.

Koch’s actions demonstrate that he believes billionaires who control the mechanisms of government and both major political parties know what is best for everyone else, especially if their name is Charles Koch while the collective political actions of the woefully ignorant and lesser humans of the 99 percent to have their democratically elected government enact laws governing issues such as the above is frightfully silly.

Koch wants the market, which is regulated by billionaires and their corporations, to determine how polluted our air and water should be rather than allowing the people within a democracy to decide that issue with their votes.

Our current weak Wall Street regulations curb corporate profits and are therefore an impingement on economic freedom according to Koch’s logic. The real logic is that Koch wants Wall Street to have the legal rights to rip off everybody in the 99 percent and redistribute massive amounts of income and wealth from the 99 percent to themselves. And let the market (Wall Street decides the market rules) decide who the winners and losers will be. The reverse of this, of course, is to have freedom from Wall Street manipulation, and that freedom is something Charles Koch does not want the 99 percent to have.

Income inequality has grown as Koch’s vision as grown. The top 1 percent once received about 8 percent of the total income produced in the USA in 1980, and now they steal anywhere from 24 to 37 percent. That’s what Koch’s economic freedom has brought us. His economic freedom has only been achieved by turning our democracy into a plutocracy, which is a government of, by and for the rich only.

Actions speak louder than words. According to Nancy MacLean, in her book Democracy In Chains, Koch’s well funded proxy army used the threat of “…well-funded primary challenges” to force Republican Party elected officials to do his “…bidding or Lose their seats.” Koch’s well-financed proxy “was pushing out radical right laws ready to bring to the floor in every state through the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC). It was selling those laws through the seemingly independent but centrally funded (by Koch) and operationally linked groups of the State Policy Network. it was leveraging the anger of local Tea Party groups (founded with Koch money) to move the legislative agenda of Americans for Prosperity (funded by Koch) and Freedom Works (funded by Koch). Its state affiliates were energizing voter turnout with deceitful direct mail campaigns. Its elected allies were shutting down the federal government; in effect, using its employees and the millions who rely on it as hostages to get what they otherwise could not-and much, much more.”

Former US Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis, himself a wealthy man, once remarked, “We must make our choice. We may have democracy, or we may have wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can’t have both.”

Our democracy is in shambles with both major political parties being controlled by concentrated wealth. We’ve been attacked by the Koch brothers, by the major news organizations, and by the billionaires who control the Democratic Party. They are winning this class war because of their financial clout to control politicians, such as Mitch McConnell and Ron Wyden, and their financial clout to determine the information we receive from the corporate news media, public and private universities, think tanks, and other sources of information.

The Koch brothers, however, are in the vanguard in waging both class warfare, and war against our United States democracy. The idea that people can limit his economic freedom, and Wall Street’s freedom to plunder and rape the 99 percent, is a horror to him. He does not know that the US government has been created for the common good,” as former President John Adams once wrote, “and not for the profit, honor, or private interest of any one man, family, or class of men.”

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Well, here we go again. A viciously anti-Democracy, anti-US Constitution Supreme Court nominee named Brett Kavanaugh can easily be stopped from wreaking more havoc to the US Constitution by the outnumbered Senate Democrats. And they will not do it.

The Democrats simply do not need to show up for the full Senate vote on Kavanaugh’s confirmation, now that US Senator John McCain has died. Article I, section 5 of the Constitution requires that a quorum (51 senators) be present for the Senate to conduct business.

The Republicans hold 50 Senate seats, and the Democrats plus their independent allies, such as Senator Bernie Sanders, hold forty-nine. If all the Democrats show solidarity and simply do not show up for business, as usual, Kavanaugh cannot be confirmed to sit as a justice on the Supreme Court.

However, it is highly unlikely the Wall Street controlled Democratic National Committee will allow this because Wall Street executives want Kavanaugh on the court. Kavanaugh says he is an original intent jurist. That means as a judge, Kavanaugh claims to rule on issues as the founding fathers intended. Nothing could be further from the truth. He is a liar.

The billionaires who control both major political parties want a supreme court justice who is dishonest enough to say that the founding fathers of the United States believed corporations are people, trade treaties are not trade agreements, and money is free speech.

None of our founding fathers uttered such a thing in any of their writings. So all of the conservative supreme court justices (John Roberts, Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito, and Neil Gorsuch) are simply lying in order to alter the meaning of the US Constitution.

This fundamental alteration based on lies gives the billionaires via their corporations’ significantly more constitutional rights while simultaneously diminishing the Constitutional rights of the vast majority of United States citizens, the 99.5 percent.

In the meantime, the US corporate news media, on behalf of their corporate and billionaire advertisers and owners, are keeping the eyes of the 99 percent on the abortion issue rather than the increase of constitutional rights the billionaires will achieve with the successful nomination of Kavanaugh and his lies, and the lies of the other conservative justices.

So do not expect the billionaires who control the Democratic Party to do the right thing, stopping a quorum and stopping Kavanaugh in the process, by uniting 49 US senators behind a common cause to prevent the US Constitution from the further perversion that Kavanaugh will insist upon with lies.

Expect income and wealth inequality to continue to grow as the billionaires continue to control the United States Supreme Court.

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Nowadays, United States middle-class families are making less money in almost every state. Since 1999, median incomes have dropped nationwide and, in states like Indiana, they’ve shrunk by more than 9 percent. This is because trillions of dollars of yearly income have been redistributed from the 99 to the 1 percent by the billionaire controlled US government.

The folks at the financial website GOBankingRates used Pew Research Center and United States Census Bureau data, as well as data from real-estate site Zillow, to find the change in median household income in every state. The incomes are adjusted for inflation and the percentages reflect the increase in incomes from 1999 to 2014.

However, I should point out that the US government has been accused, and probably rightfully so, of deliberately understating inflation. In which case, real median incomes have dropped even further than the study shows.

You need to earn an annual household income of “two-thirds to double the national median, after incomes have been adjusted for household size,” to be considered middle class, according to Pew. The most recent national household median income estimate was $59,039, according to the U.S. Census.

“Although the middle class is shrinking,” the GOBankingRates report says, in some places “middle-income families continue to thrive.” Here’s where the numbers have gone up instead of down:

South Dakota

Median household income of middle-class families : $77,176

Median household income change of middle class : 1.7 percent

“South Dakota has the fifth-highest median household income for middle-class families, and it’s where middle-class incomes increased the most between 1999 and 2014,” according to GOBankingRates. It’s “one of only two states where middle-class incomes actually increased over those years, and it’s one of only four states where the proportion of middle income households has increased from 2010 to 2015.”

Vermont

Median household income of middle-class families : $75,540

Median household income change of middle class : 0.2 percent

Vermont is the only other state where middle-class incomes have risen; however, it’s also “one of the costliest states for an in-state college education,” the report finds, with the second-highest in-state tuition and fees in the country behind New Hampshire.

Middle Class Families Earning Less–Yahoo News

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Why have US wages and salaries remained stagnate or even in decline during this economic boom? For one thing, there is the massive exporting of US white collar jobs to poverty wage nations. Then, of course, there is the outsourcing of US white collar jobs. Then again, there is the H1-B Visa program, among other issues. All of the above redistribute income and wealth from the 99 to the 1 percent of US citizens.

According to Bloomberg News, the United States Department of Labor’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs determined tech giant Cisco Systems secured visas for foreign workers instead of hiring U.S. citizens for certain jobs and paid the visa holders at a lower rate than their American counterparts. Indian corporations are the conduit whereby cheaper Indian workers use the H1-B visa to displace higher paid US workers. Indian corporations provide Cisco with the low wage contract workers who replace higher paid US workers.

The probe is one of several ongoing investigations into possible discrimination by federal contractors against visa holders. It is stunning there is a federal probe going on about how the billionaires who control US corporations routinely displace US workers with lower-paid Indian workers since this has been a common practice for over three decades, and is a primary conduit for redistributing income from the 99 to the 1 percent.

This is because the difference between the old higher US salaries and compensation and the new lower with no other H1-B visa compensation goes straight into the pockets of the rich via higher corporate share prices and profits that would otherwise not be so high.

“The usual punishment is a fine and disbarment from the H-1B program for a while,” said John Miano, an immigration lawyer and a former computer programmer, who is now working at the Immigration Reform Law Institute. “Want a bet that Cisco does not get barred from the H-1B program?” he added.

The leak comes as voters recognize that salaries for college-grads remain flat, despite the high-pressure economy, amid large-scale white-collar outsourcing and immigration. In contrast, blue-collar wages are rising slowly.

The anti-American discrimination at Cisco is also a political problem for GOP Rep. Kevin Yoder.

On July 25, Yoder used his political clout to get initial approval in the United States House of Representatives for legislation that would put roughly 300,000 Indian visa-workers on a fast-track to green-cards and citizenship.

Yoder’s H.R. 392 legislation is a gamble for him because it puts visa-worker Indians in his Kansas district ahead of the many young Americans who are losing jobs to the huge population of foreign visa-workers in the United States. Many polls show that Americans strongly oppose legislation which helps foreign companies displace Americans.

The population of foreign college-graduate visa-workers adds up to roughly 1.5 million — each of whom is holding a job that would otherwise have gone to the roughly 800,000 young men and women who graduate each year with skilled college-degrees in business, healthcare, science, software, math or design.

Yoder’s legislation will also allow Americans and Indian companies to annually award up to 140,000 fast-track green cards to Indian workers if they take Americans’ jobs at low wages by using H-1B or L-1 visas.

GOP leaders — including President Donald Trump — will decide in the next few months of Yoder’s pro-outsourcing measure becomes law.

Like many other Internet companies, Cisco employs many cheap-labor visa-workers. In 2017, for example, the company asked for 713 three-year visas to hire foreign college graduates from overseas. Roughly one-third of those applications were approved via a lottery.

The company also asked for 249 L-1 visas to transfer foreign employees to jobs in the United States. The approval rate for L-1s is unknown, but that large number suggests that the company may have imported more workers via L-1 visas than H-1B visas.

Nearly all of Cisco’s H-1Bs are from India.

Tech Giant Cisco Discriminated Against US Citizens Using H1-B Visa Workers — Bloomberg News

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