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Business and Wall Street Agree: Republicans Are Killing the Economy

In philosophy, the natural order is the moral source from which natural law derives its authority and encompasses natural relations of beings to one another, in the absence of law, which natural law attempts to reinforce. According to Republicans and their Koch brother masters, the natural order encompasses bestowing the entirety of America’s substantial wealth on the richest one percent at the expense of the rest of the population. Indeed, there is nothing that will ever convince Republicans that a nation of peasants existing to enrich the wealthy elite is inherently detrimental to the country or its economy. Now, after over five years of economists’ warnings, banks, Wall Street, and the preponderance of retailers have joined Democrats in calling for quick and complete implementation of President Obama’s economic policies to save America.

Although Republicans work tirelessly to perpetuate, and truly love, increasing the income inequality that is killing the economy, America’s retailers and bankers joined Democrats in agreeing the government must “constrict the abyss between America’s struggling 99 percent and the one percent.” According to recently released reports, both “Wall Street and Main Street (retailers) have endorsed the President’s economic principals to reduce inequality for the sake of the economy, and support Democrats as the solution to a robust economic revival.

Even though Republicans depict themselves as the party for business and banks, it turns out that the GOP’s economic policy is detrimental to their bottom lines and continued existence; particularly rising costs and stagnant wages since the Bush-Republican Great Recession. What both bankers and retailers really want instead of tax cuts, deregulation, and more Republican austerity and budget cuts are better incomes for all Americans that will lead to increased consumer confidence and greater purchasing power to trigger higher business profits. What they have learned after thirty years of “trickle-down” is that the trillions of dollars taken by the 1%, especially since 2009, have failed miserably to stimulate the economy. Instead, they demand more buying by the masses that Wall Street firms and analysis of 65 of the nation’s top retailers claim will only happen with, as President Obama preaches, growing the economy from the middle-out.

For example, in a report last month titled Inequality and Consumption, Morgan Stanley economists said, “Despite the roughly $25 trillion increase in wealth since the recovery from the financial crisis began, consumer spending remains anemic. Top income earners have benefited from wealth increases but middle and low income consumers continue facing structural liquidity constraints and unimpressive wage growth. To lift all boats, further increases in residential wealth and accelerating wage growth are needed.” Republicans completely disagree and either resist consideration of raising the minimum wage or promote abolishing it altogether. According to the Republicans, increasing income inequality must continue and it is crucial that they convince the population that no wage is too low. It is a belief the Koch brothers espouse but it is rapidly losing favor in circles whose survival depends on a population of consumers.

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Standard and Poor’s (S&P) rating agency concurred with Morgan Stanley’s economists in their August report, How Increasing Income Inequality Is Dampening U.S. Economic Growth, And Possible Ways To Change The Tide, and strongly advised the federal government to create “a path toward more sustainable growth, that in our view, will pull more Americans out of poverty and bolster the purchasing power of the middle class. A rising tide lifts all boats…but a lifeboat carrying a few, surrounded by many treading water, risks capsizing.” To “lift all boats,” S&P suggests a “high degree of rebalancing” that includes increased “spending in the areas of education, health care, and infrastructure to help control the income gap that, at its current level, threatens the stability of an economy still struggling to recover.” Contrary to wisdom of real economists concerned with America’s economic survival, Republicans across the country have been laser-focused on their austerity crusade to cut spending on education, infrastructure, and healthcare including the cruel heartlessness of refusing free Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act.

Despite the call from both banks and businesses to increase the minimum wage and spending on essentials for a robust recovery, congressional Republicans have obstructed and outright blocked each and every attempt by the President and Democrats to stimulate the economy. Despite trailing every developed nation on Earth in infrastructure, Republicans consistently refuse the President’s calls to increase spending on desperately-needed infrastructure repairs including roads, bridges, public buildings, and sewers that numerous economists, including some highly respected conservatives, say is crucial for job-creation, increased consumer spending, and a vibrant recovery. Increased consumer confidence, and spending, is something all economists agree is for the good of the country’s economy but can only happen if incomes rise for the majority with higher wages and more well-paying jobs.

In yet another report released earlier this month titled “Retailer Revelations: Why America’s Struggling Middle Class Has Businesses Scared,” retailers believe that declining and stagnant wages, not taxes or regulations, are damaging their businesses; 88% of all businesses said weak spending is imperiling their stock prices, and 68% said that consumers’ perpetually falling incomes is a direct threat to business profits and their companies’ survival.

One CEO Said, “Consistent with so many of our fellow retailers, we are experiencing a retail funk” because our “fortunes and the middle class are inherently linked. When family incomes fail to rise, when the cost of living increases, or when workers cannot find jobs, retailers’ sales decline.” It is why some retailers, such as Costco, bucked the trend and instead of cutting wages when Bush-Republicans crashed the economy, they increased wages at the outset of the recession and gave new workers a starting wage of $11.50 an hour; subsequently Costco’s stock prices have tripled since the 2009 recession.

As CEO Craig Jelinek said “people need to make a living wage with health benefits to both put more money into the economy and create a healthier country. It’s really that simple.” Contrary to Republican economic sophistry and to punctuate a point savvy economists and President Obama have made ad nauseum, when the middle-class has more income, they will spend and as spending increases, businesses create jobs and the economy will thrive.

It is an incredibly damning indictment of Republican economic policy when businesses, banks, and Wall Street, groups Republicans claim depend on their economic prowess to survive and thrive, openly call for implementation of economic policies championed for over five years by President Obama and Democrats. For dog’s sake, even the wording S&P, Wall Street giant Morgan Stanley, and most businesses used to plea for “growing the economy from the middle out” was lifted directly from any one of President Obama’s economic speeches pleading with congressional Republicans to pass legislation to create “a path toward more sustainable growth and pull more Americans out of poverty and bolster the purchasing power of the middle class. Instead, Republicans have went in the opposite direction to guarantee the wealthy got all of the “$25 trillion increase in wealth since the recovery from the financial crisis began,” and make sure the middle and low income consumers continue facing structural liquidity constraints and unimpressive wage growth” regardless the damage to private enterprise.

Even though the main stream media is never going to report that businesses, banks, and Wall Street have endorsed President Obama and Democrats’ economic policies, even if it is for their self-preservation, there is no reason Democrats running for office should stay silent. American voters have heard President Obama say things like “a rising tide lifts all boats,” “the income gap is threatening the stability of the economy,” and the nation desperately needs a “high degree of rebalancing, increases in residential wealth, and accelerated wage growth.” However, if they heard it from Wall Street, banks, and the business sector, it may finally sink in that a vote for Republicans is a vote to destroy America’s economy and by extension, their own well-being.

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