REPOST in POLITIX (August 1, 2008)
michael duby in Arguments & Analyses Edwardian HDQ Site
from 12/22/2007 at 9:14 PM EST
Fmr. Senator John Edwards continues to be an Advocate of Transformation
The American people must rise up and seize the historical opportunity to impact the direction of our country. Domestically, the three major difficulties confronting working families are lack of universal health care, income disparity and unfair trade policies.
Above and beyond the statements of progressive policies, John Edwards is the candidate committed to truly and steadfastly advocate and "fight" for the nation's (mostly working) people of low-income and the 47 million Americans who desperately need health insurance. The big insurance and drug companies will need serious persuasion to allow the implementation of universal health care that is a fundamental right recognized in all other advanced economies and societies. Our present system is a structural hindrance to the well-being of the American labor force.
In a country of 300 million, 300,000 at the top make more income that the bottom 150 million of America's earning taxpayers. The Bush administration provided additional tax cuts for these super wealthy in an amount that would essentially pay for universal health care. Over the past 20 years, 40 percent of income growth has gone to the top one percent while wages for the bottom 90 percent have remained stagnant. This represents the greatest income inequality in this country since 1928.
This reality is due to the combination of unfair tax practices, ill effects of unbalanced globalization and trade policies that mostly enrich multinational corporations, but certainly not workers. It is well known and recognized that John Edwards is for strong labor and environmental standards and against illegal subsidies and currency manipulation. He is also for rigorous enforcement of trade agreements, not just negotiation.
The third major obstacle to American working families is unfair so-called "free trade" agreements. Edwards has the most specific proposals of any candidate to restore tax fairness, to enhance competitiveness and job growth, and to re-negotiate trade agreements so they are once again fair. In the breadth and detail of his proposals, John Edwards differs substantially from the other candidates. Only Edwards has advocated a fundamental standard for "Smart Trade" deals: Will the agreements benefit working families, not just multinational corporations?
The Economic Policy Institute ("EPI") recently underlined the concern about the growing impact of unfair trade agreements and practices on America's working families. EPI concluded that 25 to 30 million American jobs - about one in five American jobs in states all across the nation - are at risk for being offshored over the next decade. These are not just manufacturing jobs; EPI reports jobs most at risk are those requiring at least a four-year college degree. Those workers and their families will be substantially more secure with Edwards as chief executive.
The lobbyist-dominated system and practical realpolitics of Washington contribute to lack of universal health care, disadvantageous trade deals, cheap foreign labor, illegal foreign subsidies and foreign currency manipulation. American workers are being incrementally devastated. The American middle class is being pushed down and they know it. "It's time we honored work in this country, not just wealth." - John Edwards ////