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From the NYT:

A Small Increase in Inflation Squeezes U.S. Workers
JUNE 17, 2014
Neil Irwin

… Consumer prices rose 0.4 percent in May, such that inflation over the last year is now 2.1 percent, about in line with what the Federal Reserve aims for.

But that inflation news carried with it a depressing side note. Now that the Consumer Price Index for May has been published, it is possible to determine inflation-adjusted hourly earnings for the month. And the number is not good.

Average hourly earnings for private sector American workers rose about 49 cents an hour over the last year, to $24.38 in May. But that wasn’t enough to cover inflation over the year, so in real or inflation-adjusted terms, hourly worker pay fell 0.1 percent over the last 12 months. Weekly pay shows the same story, also falling 0.1 percent in the year ended in May.

Pause for just a second to consider that. Five years after the economic recovery began, American workers have gone the last 12 months without any real increase in what they are paid.

Some of that is perhaps a few long term unemployed finally getting poorly paid jobs, thus nudging down the average pay. But still …

… But for right now, the evidence points to more of what we’ve seen for most of the last six years: Employees have little negotiating power to demand higher pay.

Thank goodness that Mark Zuckerberg and Eric Cantor have a plan to address the crisis of soaring salaries among American workers by increasing H-1B visas. And kudos to the Obama Administration for having the foresight to invite in so many Central American adolescents to bolster America’s thinly stretched strategic supply of child labor.

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  1. countenance says: • Website

    And far be it from the Carlos Slim-owned NYT to give us a clue.

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  2. WhatEvvs [AKA "Cookies"] says:

    Hillary says send ‘em back:

    I told ya a few days ago she would run as an immigration restrictionist, America first gal. She is a clever pol, give her that. (Or is it Bill?)

    BB (Before Brat) this would have been unthinkable. If Hillary advocates sending them back, it shows that the truth is beginning to penetrate the thick skulls of the power elite.

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  3. Cmb says:

    Cookies, if Hillary tries that shes smart.

    If voters buy that bs then they’re mentally retarded.

    Read More
  4. Hunsdon says:

    This country has forced me to reevaluate some of my deeply held beliefs about capitalism. My belief that we’re a fundamentally unserious people, however, has been doubly redoubled.

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  5. Trumped says:

    Inflation is only 2 percent as long as you don’t eat food from the grocery store or restaurants.

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  6. Wilkey says:

    “If Hillary advocates sending them back, it shows that the truth is beginning to penetrate the thick skulls of the power elite.”

    When my current state senator was in a primary in 2006, he sent out a campaign mailer claiming he was against illegal immigration. The moment he was elected to the state senate, he switched to being pro-amnesty.

    Marco Rubio claimed to be opposed to amnesty. Jeff Flake claimed to be opposed to amnesty.
    Orrin Hatch claimed to be opposed to amnesty. John McCain claimed to be opposed to amnesty.

    Every damn one of them voted for amnesty,

    Politicians haven’t learned anything, except how to lie.

    You really think HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON doesn’t know how to lie?

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  7. there you go with that populism, steve. Gosh, steve, what about the free market and our wonderful job creators? Shouldn’t we just be glad to have any job our job creators provide us with? It’s the free market, steve! And as a conservative you know you cannot knock our wonderful free market and our Most Sacred Job Creators!

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  8. Flip says:

    My drycleaner has raised his prices for the third time in two years. Haircuts are up, parking is up, restaurants are way up, clothing is up, groceries are up, rents are up. It is starting to be noticeable.

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  9. WhatEvvs [AKA "Cookies"] says:

    “Cookies, if Hillary tries that shes smart.

    If voters buy that bs then they’re mentally retarded.”

    CMB: I totally agree w/you. Hillary’s a prize BS artist, whose insincerity is shocking, even for a pol. Of course the Power Elite is not going to do anything genuine or legitimate about immigration – legal and illegal. Of course they are out to screw us! Hillary is a bought & paid for shill for the corpocracy.

    I only brought it to Steve’s attention because her words illustrate that the Power Elite is noticing that the natives are restless and that they’ve got to say a few emollient words, while they continue to screw us.

    However, I still maintain the shred of faith in the system that the natives can hold the Power Elite’s miserable feet to the fire, not only on this but on several fronts: WWG, WWT, and WWI (World War Immigration). How? By electing more guys like Brat – by forcing every one of the weasels in Congress to declare “which side are you on?” (Old union song.)

    This actually can be done. Courage is infectious. Yeah, I know – it probably won’t happen. But it could.

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  10. Anonymous says: • Disclaimer

    Real Median Household Income is adjusted for inflation:

    “In real dollar terms, the median annual income is 7.6% lower (about $4,383) than its interim high in January 2008.”

    Wages are down because of globalization. We were warned. Nobody listened… ( 5 parts )

    These American IT workers had to train their H-1B replacements…

    Canada is doing the same…

    According to the latest BLS stats:

    April 2000:
    5.48 million Americans were unemployed
    69.27 million Americans were “not in the labor force”
    Total of 74.75 million working age Americans without a job.

    April 2014:
    9.75 million Americans are “unemployed”
    92.02 million Americans that are “not in the labor force”
    Total of 101.77 million working age ( Age 16-64 ) Americans without a job.
    A rise of 27 million since 2000.

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  11. Mr. Anon says:

    “Pause for just a second to consider that. Five years after the economic recovery began, American workers have gone the last 12 months without any real increase in what they are paid.”

    There never was any economic recovery, unless “The Economy” has now been redefined to mean “that which only benefits the wealthy. Well, I suppose it has been redefined that way.

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  12. 5371 says:

    Those wages after inflation are lower now than they were in 1973.

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  13. anonymous says: • Disclaimer

    I posted a link to a story on the effect of H-1B’s on American computer workers by Patrick Thibodeau a few days ago (“This IT worker had to train an H-1B replacement”) and noticed someone reposted the link here a few times. The story really wasn’t that exceptional in the modern tech world. Thibodeau, who’s stories have become progressively more objective on the topic (given the hard pro-H-1B position of his employer, it’s hard to know his real opinion), is back with a follow-up that notes “More than 3,400 people commented on the story, and many sent in emails as well.”:

    “Readers rant about IT worker who trained H1-B replacement: Readers question the need for the H-1B program; we answer some questions about the visa”, Computerworld, Patrick Thibodeau ,June 17, 2014.

    From the responses, he draws up a sort of FAQ that summarized readers points and his response, as he understands the situation. Here’s his 4 main FAQ points:

    * One: “There was never actually a rule that they (an employer) had to prove there was no qualified American.” Aging Hipster.

    Aging Hipster is correct. There is no requirement that companies try to find a qualified U.S. worker before filling a position with an H-1B visa holder.

    * Two: “Sadly, this is all too common.” JPRZ.

    JPRZ is correct. Offshore outsourcing firms are taking more than 50% of the annual base H-1B visa cap of 65,000… The two largest H-1B users in 2013 were both Indian-based — Infosys and Tata Consultancy Services.

    * Three: “I want these visas eliminated.” Email.

    …The Florida woman’s frustration, and Rubio’s boilerplate response, says something about the political disconnect on this issue. …

    * Four: “This is nothing new. Your article is laughably behind the times.” Cletus.

    Cletus is correct. The H-1B visa turns 25 next year. The growth of offshore outsourcing as a threat to U.S. IT jobs began in earnest in the late 1990s.

    H-1B visa use by IT services companies continues to grow, and visa holders are increasingly used for state and federal government work. A U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services inspector general recently reported that 11 state Medicaid agencies allow offshore outsourcing of administrative functions. H-1B visa workers are being used in government funded health care programs.

    … Cognizant, a U.S.-based IT services firm, a large user of H-1B visas, reported that its revenue in 2013 grew to $8.84 billion, up more than 20% from 2012.”

    Up over 20%. Good work if you can get it, with something left over for the politicians.

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  14. War for Blair Mountain [AKA "Bill Blizzard and his Men"] says:

    A severe labor scarcity should never be used as an excuse to import nonwhite legal immigrants who go on to form powerfull highly racialized fifth columns such as The India Policy Group that owns every member of the “US” Congress.

    There is no economic case for race-replacing The Historic Native Born White American Majority.

    If only Pat Buchannan had made this point in his last book.

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  15. outsider says:

    As social creatures humans want to feel superior to the majority, which explains why the wealthy are importing so many tens of millions of third worlders.

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