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While wages for jobs may have gone up a bit, prices for groceries and household items have gone up a lot. Renting or buying an apartment or home have also increased, adding to the burden. Health, car and home insurance prices have gone up. Things that affect people every day have increased in price yet wages have not kept up, therefore no disposable income. So while the stock market looks great and corporate profits are amazing, families are having to scrimp, save and budget to make ends meet. We are not thriving, we are surviving.

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Thanks for this explanation of why there's so much dissatisfaction with the economy under Biden, Judd. The ratios of executive pay to workers' pay are outrageous. We have to do all we can to get Biden re-elected and flip the House so Democrats can take this on.

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Of course CEO compensation is an issue. That said, I put a lot of the blame our nation’s exceptional mainstream media’s economic reporting. This in primarily giving Republican politicians undeserved frameless access, focusing on red state Republican voters, and reporting on the Fed as if interest rate actions is what’s needed to bring inflation down. A huge problem with that is that the affect of interest rates on this inflationary period is minor.

Besides, the lousy -- almost malignant -- reporting gets echoed in social media.

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The increasing number of homeless begging on the streets in my hometown of Milwaukee WI reminds me this economy, this country, does not take care of its citizens. It exploits them. Exploitation is the bedrock principle. So when you think about it, the increase in homelessness proves our economy is getting even more efficient at exploitation. Squeezing out every last dime. Just about everything is privatized or heading that way. K12 education is currently being redesigned in that direction. I think K12 education may be the last public community based enterprise to fall (at least I can’t think of another that’s left--oh, maybe libraries). With my retirement benefits of Medicare and Social Security I have stability but have noticed increasing complexity in my Medicare benefits. I can see it is the insurance industry and not the law taking charge of healthcare, step by step. We are built this way. Our elected representatives think they are creating laws but they are really just puppets of the economy. With 401Ks, the great bailout, relentless lobbying by for profit industries, Citizens United and other incremental steps I think they conceded legislative power to Wall Street. The fools will never know what hit them. One need not understand this to know full well the fix is in.

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These “polls” kill me... I’m almost 50 and never have been polled except in a Democratic news letter that ultimately leads to asking for a donation. Honestly where and when and to who are these polls being given? How many people are in the poll and is it truthful? I have a ton of friends and a ton of family that would love to be a part of these polls... I don’t know one person that said I was a part of that poll .... I think it’s a media hoax just like how the big red wave was coming this last midterm..... it should be criminal to pay a full time employee under 50k a year when the top makes so so so much more. Hopefully that big blue wave will come and the much needed reform can happen and the political circus we are in everyday finally ceases with many behind bars. Will journalism ever get over its circus too? Do we really need to look at trumps plane on the tarmac or taking off for hours on end ...

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When the Securities and Exchange Commission was established by FDR in 1933, stock buybacks were made illegal. Fifty years later, President Reagan made them legal again as one of his many neoliberal efforts to deregulate private industries. Neoliberal policies have been responsible for gutting our middle class and creating the ever-expanding wealth gap that plagues us today. What was the New Deal initiated under FDR became the Raw Deal established under Reagan.

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"Another piece to the puzzle is that millions of Americans are mired in low-paying jobs, struggling to make ends meet, and watching the fruits of their labor get funneled to wealthy CEOs and investors."

As a retiree working for the first time in 40 years working in an hourly wage job, I can see this first hand for the first time since I retired. Schedules jerked around, hours jumbled up, 39 hours max to avoid overtime pay, and many of the advances made for workers now sidelined in favor of shareholder dividends which leads to executive pay incentives while leaving the people on the front lines behind. Companies basically give the workers the snub as you should be happy to even have a job. Benefit costs, to accomodate shareholder profit, have been shifted to workers taking more of their pay for their 401K and healthcare costs which high deductibles and co-pays. These actions burden the lower end workers the most and have some affect on management, but those costs are miniscule to what the hourly front end worker pays as a leaving them with less expendable income for wealth building.

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I think in addition to all of these facts, there is at least one more.

The media is largely a right wing bastion.

Thats where over and over again they yell out the Republicans lie that the economy is failing.

Also the routine tax increases by the Fed.

I think , continued long past the necessity presented by ‘inflation’. And I think it was as much a political move as it was a check on the economy.

However, in addition , price hijacking is now routine.

What I could buy in groceries for approximately 158.00

has now become approximately 200.00.

They do it ‘ because they can ‘ and the bonus, in the meantime, it works to keep up appearances on how bad the economy is.

That translates to its ‘Biden s fault’.

Because of the spectacular criminal misdeeds of Trump and his finally being held accountable, Republicans are going after Biden on the most ‘trumped up ‘ charges.

Ridiculously republican.

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I am glad to see there are proposals to encourage re-balancing the economy. Personally, I would have put the penalty at anything over 25-to-1 but I suppose we have to start _someplace_. Another obstacle to fixing this is that because of their high salaries, CEO's and others have obscenely large impacts on prices, since merchandise is aimed at those who have the money to pay more, since poorer people have more limited ability to pay and thus aren't very profitable. I think the price and size of housing is another effect. Why build a bunch of affordable homes when you can build bigger and attract more money with fewer homes and less effort?

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Exactly! And it's going to take more than getting Dems in control of the federal govt - we need a working majority, which means that for these purposes Dems who won't vote for progressive measures or set aside the filibuster to pass them are no help. That means both getting out the vote, and repeatedly telling politicians that their constituents want this.

The suggested tax on CEO pay would be a good start. Better, would be for that to be a base tax that increases by 1% for every additional 100 points of CEO-to-median-worker discrepancy.

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This is exactly the type of reporting that I love sharing to my followers on Facebook, many of whom lack the data to back up their beliefs or hunches that there’s more to the story than MSM are reporting. Thank you for this. Those ratios are obscene.

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Thanks for addressing the corporate influences on our "inflation." I remember learning how many Ceo's raised food prices "because we can." When the prices of food increase, most average people notice; same with the price of fossil fuels--gas and heating and cooling our domains; and the cost of every insurance (auto, home, healthcare)increases, we all notice. I laugh at "disposable" as an income term.

By the way, all the dollar stores around me (Central NJ) have raised tht price of items to $1.25 each! And, I'm sure it's "because we can."

I can hear Bernie Sanders pitch in the background like theme music..."when the top one percent own most of the wealth...corporate greed...the working class...."

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There is a reason for corporate profits are amazing, encapsulated in a phrase. Price-gouging!

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The corporate media say it all the time! Another thing is President Biden, the corporate media will not give out news if it’s good for hard working Americans!

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If Biden is re-elected, the Dems take back the House and the malevolent forces of Manchin, Sinema and McConnell are neutralized in the Senate, one of the first orders of business needs to be to address this problem. For far too long the benefits of the economy have been hoarded by the top .00001%, and it needs to stop. Bring back the marginal rates of the Eisenhower Era, rich people will still be rich, but the rest of us will not be squabbling over scraps.

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US companies can claim executive compensation as a business expense on their corporate income tax. If companies were only able to claim, oh let’s say $1,000,000, as a deduction, and any salary above that limit was just classed an expense, I expect that shareholders and other owners would quickly reduce corporate pay scales.

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