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From The Socialist newspaper, 31 July 2008
Whine and dine
OK, SO more than a million Americans have lost their homes in the worst housing crisis since the Great Depression and the country's unemployment rate rose at its fastest pace in more than two decades, stoking fears of recession.
But, as former Texas Senator, Phil Gramm (a top economic adviser to Republican presidential candidate John McCain) says, the real problem is: "We have sort of become a nation of whiners. You just hear this constant whining, complaining about a loss of competitiveness, America in decline."
Gramm, of course, has little to whine about. He's got a very generous pension as a former member of the House and Senate. In addition, he has found work since leaving the Senate as a lobbyist for the firms he once aided as a legislator.
Plus, his wife is helping out. Wendy Lee Gramm was Ronald Reagan's and George Bush senior's appointed head of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission. Under her stewardship the commission exempted Enron (the company involved in the largest securities fraud scandals in history) from regulation of its trading in energy derivatives.
Surprisingly, after leaving that post, Wendy Lee Gramm took a seat on the Enron board of directors!
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The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.
The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.
The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.
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In The Socialist 31 July 2008:
Voters reject Labour: Build a new workers' party
Glasgow East by-election: New Labour's support evaporates
The not so 'green' Beijing Olympics
Socialist Party campaigns
Gestures to the low paid are not enough: Fight for a living wage
Feature: End the pay gap now
Whine and dine
EDF - taking the rise
Stop the far-right
'A Workers' MP on a Worker's Wage'
Campaigners keep fighting to save local post offices
Socialist Party review
The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists
Socialist Party workplace news
Passport staff strike
Land registry in third pay walk out
Passport to profits
The Socialist 31 July 2008 |
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