Robert B. Reich, a co-founder of The American Prospect, is a Professor of Public Policy at the Goldman School of Public Policy at the University of California at Berkeley. His website can be found here and his blog can be found here.
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. -- Linda Chavez, George W. Bush's pick for labor secretary, withdrew as the nominee Tuesday after facing a blizzard of questions concerning Marta Mercado, a Guatemalan woman who, as an undocumented alien, lived in Chavez's home during the early 1990s and did some work for the family. Chavez didn't pay Social Security taxes on Mercado's labors.
The old industrial struggle was between companies and workers. The new struggle is between ... companies and workers. But the issue isn't exactly the same as it used to be. The new battle is over who's going to keep spending, and thereby keep the American economy going.
The central reality of our age is that globalisation and technological change
have increased the demand for people with the right education, skills, and
connections - and reduced the demand for those without them.
The bottom third of our citizens are either paid less or have fewer job
opportunities than before. The top third are doing fine. The middle third are
just getting by.
You may remember old Scrooge wasn't happy he had to give
his clerk in the counting house time off for Christmas. "A
poor excuse for picking a man s pocket every twenty-fifth of
December! But I suppose you must have the whole day," he
said. "Be here all the earlier next morning."
Well, we've progressed a bit since those days, maybe.
Most working Americans have a three-day weekend coming up.
About 1 in 4 will have four days. And a fortunate few will
take all of next week.