Wednesday, August 10, 2016

OBAMA-CLINTONOMICS AND THE ASSAULT ON THE AMERICAN MIDDLE CLASS - PLUMMETING WAGES UNDER BARACK OBAMA - Do we really need endless hordes of Mexican flag wavers jumping our borders, jobs and welfare offices just to keep wages depressed?

Shock: Americans’ Wages Dropping Fast in 2016


Federal data released Aug. 9 shows that Americans’ wages are dropping again, seven years after President Barack Obama declared the economy had recovered from the property-bubble — and three months before the 2016 election.

The dramatic drop was buried in an Aug. 9 report by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which said that officials have radically revised their prior claim that wages grew 4.2 percent in the first quarter, from January to March.
“Real hourly compensation decreased 0.4 percent after revision, rather than the previously-published increase of 4.2 percent,” the BLS admitted. Compensation also fell another 1.4 percent in the second quarter, from April to June, the BLS admitted in the same report. That’s 2 percent drop in wages since December.

Video: Obama says U.S. unemployment down, wages up

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Pay shrank 0.3 percent in 2013, rose a mere 1.1 percent in 2014, but rose a promising 2.7 percent in 2015, according to the BLS.
The wage drop is a potential p.r. problem for Obama, who has been touting the apparent rise in wages since officials reported that wages grew 2.7 percent during 2015.
In June, Obama cited the mistaken 2016 wage-growth claim while arguing the economy was finally helping ordinary Americans. “Let’s get wages rising faster,” Obama declared ina speech at Concord Community High School, Elkhart, Indiana.
I also know that I’ve spent every single day of my presidency focused on what I can do to grow the middle class and increase jobs, and boost wages … Here’s the good news: Wages are actually growing at a rate of about 3 percent so far this year. That’s the good news. Working Americans are finally getting a little bigger piece of the pie. But we’ve got to accelerate that.
That speech was advertised as his first speech of the 2016 campaign, and he continued his wage-boosting theme during his July 27 speech at the Democratic Convention;
If you’re really concerned about pocketbook issues and seeing the economy grow, and creating more opportunity for everybody, then the choice isn’t even close. If you want someone with a lifelong track record of fighting for higher wages, and better benefits, and a fairer tax code, and a bigger voice for workers … you should vote for Hillary Clinton.
But Obama’s own political priorities have helped force wages down in the job market, even as he works to deliver more benefits via government offices to lower-paid Americans.
One huge cause of declining wages is the federal government’s decision to import roughly 2 million migrants and guest-workers each year. They compete for work against the four million young native-born Americans who begin looking for work each year. That one-for-two flood of extra labor creates a huge surplus of U.S. workers, which drives down wages.
That wage-cutting labor surplus is hidden by federal unemployment numbers which suggests that only 1 out of 20 Americans are unemployed.  But the reality is that the many Americans and immigrants who do not have a full-time job are slyly discounted in the official reports.
“In addition to the [6.9 million recognized] unemployed, 28 percent (48.5 million) of working-age (16 to 65) natives were not in the labor force … This is much higher than the 25.3 percent rate (42.1 million) in the same quarter of 2007 and the 22.9 percent rate (35.7 million) in 2000,”  said a July study from Steve Camarota, the research director at the Center for Immigration Studies, “
Overall, “55.4 million working-age, native-born Americans [were] without jobs in the first quarter of 2016, compared to 41.1 million in the same quarter of 2000,” he wrote.
In contrast, when immigration is kept low, wages tend to rise during economic growth. For example, wages rose sharply in the low-immigration decades between 1925 and 1969. Blue-collar wages also climbed in 1998 and 1999 when the fast-growing economy ran out of workers. Also, in Arizona, wages and research into labor-saving technology rose once many illegals were sent home in the mid-2000s.
Currently, U.S. agriculture companies are complaining about rising wages because many of their illegal-immigrant workers are migrating away from the farms and towards the cities. “We’re probably experiencing the most critical labor shortage” since 2002, complained Tom Nassif, president and CEO of the Western Growers Association, a trade association of agricultural companies who want illegal-immigrant farm workers to get work permits, perhaps via an amnesty deal. “Wages are going up dramatically… [the labor shortage] encourage[s] people who are farmworkers to play musical chairs by going from farmer to farmer, seeking higher wages, and the farmers are competing with each other by raising those wages,” he complained
Growing wages are a huge headache for CEOs, partly because higher wages shrink profits and slash stock values on Wall Street. 
Obama tried and failed to get a wage-cutting amnesty deal in 2013 because he’s willing to let Americans’ workplace wages stall if he can increase the Democratic Party’s power to deliver benefits via government.
Obama made that political strategy clear in 2006, when he admitted  in his autobiography that large-scale migration hurts Americans wages. “This huge influx of mostly low-skill workers provides some benefits to the economy as a whole… [but] it also threatens to depress further the wages of blue-collar Americans,” including blue-collar African-Americans, Obama wrote.
But those brown immigrants would help the Democratic Party, he wrote. “In my mind, at least, the fates of black and brown were to be perpetually intertwined, the cornerstone of a [Democratic] coalition that could help America live up to its [progressive] promise,” he wrote in “The Audacity of Hope.”
Obama’s welcome for migrants is also rooted in his progressive views that Americans’ legal rights must be shared with all foreigners, regardless of their political beliefs, cultures or impact on the Americans’ wages.
In a November 2014 speech on immigration, for example, Obama told a Chicago audience that “there have been periods where the folks who were already here suddenly say, ‘Well, I don’t want those folks,’ even though the only people who have the right to say that are some Native Americans.”
“Sometimes we get attached to our particular tribe, our particular race, our particular religion, and then we start treating other folks differently… that, sometimes, has been a bottleneck to how we think about immigration,” Obama said, shortly after he announced his Oval Office plan to award work-permits to roughly 4 million additional illegal immigrants.
Obama’s combination of progressive ideology and strategy is why he has allowed 400,000 unskilled Central American migrants into the country since 2010.
He’s also provided a quasi-amnesty to almost 800,000 illegal immigrants since 2012, tried to provide a quasi-amnesty to four million illegals in November 2014, is bringing in 65,000 unskilled Syrian migrants by October, and pushed for the 2013 immigration bill that would have added at least 33 million legal migrants to this nation of 310 million Americans by 2023. Obama has also expanded the annual inflow of temporary “guest workers” from 700,000 per year to roughly 800,000 per year.
In contrast, Donald Trump’s proposed immigration reform would reduce unemployment, drive up Americans’ wages and reducing housing costs, according to a recent Wall Street study that claimed to be critical of his policies.


…..will pass right through Hillary Clinton’s 

Mansion door!

 “Our entire crony capitalist system, Democrat and Republican alike, has become a kleptocracy approaching par with third-world hell-holes.  This is the way a great country is raided by its elite.” ---- Karen McQuillan THE AMERICAN

You were wondering how many jobs went to illegals and how well Obama’s crony banksters have done???

The sputtering economic recovering under President Obama, the last to follow a major recession, has fallen way short of the average recovery and ranks as the worst since the 1930s Great Depression, according to a new report.
Had the recovery under Obama been the average of the 11 since the Depression, according to the report, family incomes would be $17,000 higher, six million fewer Americans would be in poverty, and there would be six million more jobs.



"The decline in homeownership is one sign of the deep social crisis in the United States. As rents and housing costs have soared, spurred on by financial speculation that has enriched the ruling elites, incomes and jobs for most Americans have shriveled."


Carlos Slim, center, arriving for a meeting in Nicaragua last year. More than half of his cellphone company’s sales now come from outside Mexico. CreditInti Ocon/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images
MEXICO CITY — All is not well in the kingdom of Carlos Slim.
For more than 25 years, he has dictated the terms of Mexico’s telecommunications industry and built an empire, making him one of the world’s richest men.
Mr. Slim and his family are billionaires 
50 times over. He has stood at the very 
top of the Forbes World’s Billionaires 
list — more than once. His flush years 
in Mexico enabled him to span the 
Americas with companies that touch 
nearly every facet of modern life: 
telecom, banking, construction, retail 
and media, among others.
But at home in Mexico, the game is changing. And there is not much he can do about it, analysts say.
Determined to bring his dominance to an end, leaders from Mexico’s three biggest political parties have put aside their own animosities in recent years, meeting in secret sessions to chip away at Mr. Slim’s domain.
Now, the plan they concocted to increase competition in the telecommunications industry, signed into law two years ago, is starting to bite.
Profits for Mr. Slim’s flagship company, América Móvil, are in steep decline, falling 24 percent in 2015 and almost 44 percent in the first six months of this year, compared with the year-earlier periods. A closely watched metric of profitability on Wall Street has also fallen, and the company’s stock has dropped by 39 percent in the past year.
In its quarterly report last month, the company acknowledged that increased competition was crimping profits in Mexico. Under the new law, it must submit to special rules as the dominant phone company. It cannot charge fees to its smaller competitors when their users call into its network and it must share its infrastructure, including cell towers, all of which Mr. Slim says forces him to subsidize behemoths like AT&T.
“What has changed the most and is most relevant here is the authorities, and their attitude toward this empire,” said Ernesto Piedras, the director general of the Competitive Intelligence Unit, a consulting and research firm. “This is the first time Slim does not have a copy of all the keys.”
Regulators in Mexico, sometimes against their government’s wishes, had tried for decades to rein in Mr. Slim’s dominance, finding themselves thwarted at every turn.
His monopoly was so dominant that it cost Mexicans an extra $13 billion a year between 2005 and 2009, according to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. Still, his wealth, armies of lawyers and government connections kept him a step ahead of weak regulators, former officials say.
But when the Institutional Revolutionary Party took back the presidency in 2012, it looked to reassert its power in a country where the state — not big businesses — has traditionally been king. And Mr. Slim offered a way to score political points at the same time: Mexicans were already openly scornful of what they called his expensive and often unreliable service.
Overhauling telecom was a crucial part of President Enrique Peña Nieto’s push to recast the image of Mexico and his party, which had governed the nation for seven decades before losing an election for the first time in 2000. He vowed a new Institutional Revolutionary Party, dedicated to recharging the economy. He promised a new era, declaring it “Mexico’s moment.”
The celebration was short-lived, with corruption and security scandals sinking Mr. Peña Nieto’s approval ratings to the lowest of any president in a quarter-century. But the economic overhauls continued. Mexico is inviting private companies to drill for oil. Changes to the school system are underway. And Mr. Slim is facing effective competition for the first time.
The headquarters of the telecom company Telmex, which Mr. Slim purchased from the Mexican government.CreditBernardo Montoya/Reuters
For Mexico, the telecom law offers a stark contrast to the state’s many failed promises — to end corruption, enact the rule of law and bridge inequality. That the government has managed to take on Mr. Slim, arguably the country’s most powerful citizen, is proof that where there is political will in Mexico, there is a way.
“This administration invested in the economic reforms, but they ignored the reforms in the judicial system and in the field of corruption,” said Enrique Krauze, a prominent Mexican historian who knows Mr. Slim.
Still, the changes have done little to dent Mr. Slim’s market share. He retains nearly 70 percent of the cellphone market and about 65 percent of fixed lines.
In an interview, Mr. Slim said the new law established a certainty that all businessmen appreciate. But he bristled at the notion that his company required special regulation, or that it had stalled or impeded regulation in the past.
“Look at all the regulation they have imposed on us. Look at them!” he said. “Every time they complain about something, they lobby to impose a regulation.”
Mr. Slim acknowledged that profits were down. Currency woes in Latin America have taken a heavy toll. And the recent entry of AT&T, which haspromised to spend billions to compete with his company, has helped bring down cellphone plan prices significantly, including his own. Through it all, Mr. Slim said, his customers have stayed with him.
Continue reading the main story
Overall, Mr. Slim appeared sanguine about his prospects.
“I have said it various times: Telecommunications are the nervous system of the new civilization,” he said. “You have to have a medium and long-term vision. You can’t have quarterly visions.”
Not all analysts share his view.
“The worst is not yet over,” said Andre Baggio, an analyst at J.P.Morgan.

Taking Advantage of Opportunity

Even before he became a household name in Mexico, Carlos Slim was a wealthy man. During the turmoil of the 1980s, a time of severe debt crises often called Mexico’s lost decade, he had grown rich by snapping up bankrupt firms.
As the country slid further into economic depression, Mr. Slim was the rare businessman with deep pockets. So President Carlos Salinas, under pressure in 1990 to sell off state-owned companies, dispatched a top official to gauge Mr. Slim’s interest in buying the national phone company, Teléfonos de México.
People holding masks representing Mr. Slim during a 2013 demonstration in Lima, Peru, against his telecommunications monopoly in Mexico and his expansion into other Latin American countries.CreditEnrique Castro-Mendivil/Reuters
The pitch was straightforward: Whoever bought the company would receive a temporary monopoly. In exchange, the winner would have to invest billions in a company so decrepit that Mexicans never knew whether they would get a dial tone.
Mr. Slim seemed skeptical. Still, he smelled opportunity.
“If I enter and win, it’s going to change my life,” Jacques Rogozinski, the Mexican official in charge of the sale, recalled Mr. Slim saying.
And so it did.
There are many stories of Carlos Slim’s rise: the son of Lebanese immigrants who inherited a family retail business and built an empire, piece by piece, down the long Latin American stretch of the Western Hemisphere. Those vast holdings include a significant number of shares in The New York Times.
But there is another side, officials say — of tying up regulation in countless legal knots, of befriending the rich and powerful who identified his success with their own.
This assertion enrages Mr. Slim, who denies stymying regulation. Ultimately, it comes down to customer choice, he said, in Mexico or anywhere else.
“You can’t, in a market of 110 million consumers, hold on unless people prefer to stay with you,” he said.
Shortly after winning the bid for Telmex, as the national phone company is called, Mr. Slim got to work improving service with his original partners, Southwestern Bell and France Télécom, both of which later sold their stakes in the partnership. They installed millions of phone lines, and curtailed the common practice of repairmen asking for bribes.
For years, the government left Mr. Slim to tend to the monopoly without interference. He was building something bigger than a company. As one of the first major emerging market stocks, Telmex was seen as a bellwether for an entire asset class on Wall Street. Hurt Telmex, the logic went, and you could hurt the market’s perception of Mexico.
But eventually, there was dissension in the ranks. Officials entrusted with policing competition in Mexico tried to rein him in. In 1997, the Mexican Federal Competition Commission ruled that Telmex was too powerful.
Shortly before the ruling, the head of the commission, Fernando Sánchez Ugarte, got a call from a nervous senior official.
“This will destroy the stock market,” he recalled the official telling him.
Mr. Slim’s appeals of the ruling lasted a decade, until a judge decided in his favor. The regulators — outnumbered, outspent and trying to enforce weak laws — never stood much of a chance, former officials said.
Regulators recall how Mr. Slim’s lawyers would file into a conference room, wheeling large boxes of documents for routine meetings. At least once, the phalanx of lawyers was told to wait outside because the room was too small.
Mr. Slim’s art museum in Mexico City, named after his wife, Soumaya, who died in 1999. It was derided by one critic in a review as a “grab bag of objects across endless categories.”CreditRonaldo Schemidt/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images
“The story is not about Slim,” said Robert K. Lacy, who was in charge of regulatory issues for Avantel, an early competitor to Telmex. “The government just buckled.”
Mr. Slim said he never meant to tie up the system or compete unfairly. Rather, he said, when faced with an unjust fine or restriction, he simply fought back.

A Reach Far Beyond Mexico

Mr. Slim is often likened to Warren Buffett for his relatively low-key, avuncular style. He still lives in the modest home where he raised his children and drives himself around town, unlike many in Mexico’s minted class.
Years ago, on a visit to one of his ubiquitous Sanborns department stores, Mr. Slim spotted one of Mexico’s most renowned poets, Homero Aridjis, reading a newspaper for sale in the store.
Mr. Slim insisted he buy it.
“He doesn’t believe anything should be for free,” said Mr. Aridjis, adding that Mr. Slim eventually backed down.
Rather than hosting lavish spreads for meetings, Mr. Slim sometimes just orders in from Sanborns, whose aesthetic is reminiscent of an older generation of American diners.
His reach extends far beyond Mexico, gained with an ability to time investments well and then exploit every opportunity to bolster them.
He swept into Brazil in 2000, buying up cellphone companies to create a national one. He then fought a nearly decade-long lawsuit by the investment arm of Brazil’s state-owned development bank, and waited patiently for lawmakers to let foreigners increase their control over pay television.
It was classic Slim. Today, Brazil is América Móvil’s largest subscriber market — larger even than Mexico.
His strategy included building a close relationship with the president at the time, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, who now faces obstruction charges in an enormous corruption probe. Mr. Slim has not been accused of any wrongdoing.
It was not the first time Mr. Slim befriended a president. In Panama, he made fast friends with Martín Torrijos, flying down for meetings, sharing dinners and even lending him a jet to attend the funeral of Pope John Paul II.
Panama represented an opening, and Mr. Slim wanted in. After years of stagnation under the dictatorship of Manuel Noriega, Panama pinned its hopes on investment. Mr. Slim, in turn, saw a chance to expand his cellphone empire and win contracts for the expansion of the Panama Canal.
The dining room at a Sanborns department store, a chain owned by Mr. Slim, in the historic House of Tiles in Mexico City. Rather than hosting lavish spreads for meetings, Mr. Slim sometimes just orders in from Sanborns.CreditGetty Images
He managed both, but Mr. Slim wanted more: a concession to build and operate a hydroelectric power station. There was one problem. The rights belonged to someone else, an entrepreneur named Julio César Lisac, who had acquired 50-year concessions for two dams in 2005.
Then, one day, a Mexican engineer paid Mr. Lisac a visit.
The engineer worked for the Mexican state electric utility, whose chief executive was the brother of Mr. Slim’s son-in-law. It was an odd visit. The Mexican state utility cannot build or finance projects outside Mexico. Mr. Lisac said it became clear that the real suitor was Mr. Slim.
Eventually, representatives of an infrastructure company Mr. Slim controls made an offer. Mr. Lisac refused.
“Slim’s no fool,” he said. “He knew we had good dams in a good location.”
Mr. Slim wound up with the project anyway. After missing a deadline, Mr. Lisac had the concession stripped from him in 2006. Less than two years later, it was awarded to Mr. Slim’s company.
Mr. Lisac fought in Panama’s Supreme Court — and won — but regulators refused to enforce the order. By that time, 2010, Mr. Slim had already built the power station and was operating it.
Mr. Lisac suspected that Mr. Slim’s growing relationship with President Ricardo Martinelli, a supermarket magnate elected in 2009, could be at play. Mr. Slim and Mr. Martinelli maintained friendly relations, including attending the final New York Yankees game of the great Panamanian pitcher Mariano Rivera together.
Refusing to give up, Mr. Lisac went before a World Bank court in 2013, but it rebuffed his challenge this June, calling it a domestic Panamanian dispute.
Mr. Slim denied foul play, noting that he and his company had won the concession in a government auction.
“The government of Panama has won this lawsuit; it’s closed,” Mr. Slim said.

Suspending Investment

Mr. Slim has not always prevailed. In 2011, he paid a visit to regulators who had just won a decision in Mexico’s Supreme Court that was about to cost him a lot of money.
The ruling cut into an important income stream for Mr. Slim, forcing him to accept vastly reduced fees from other cellphone carriers for calls into his networks. He had fought the cuts for years, and told regulators they were making a mistake.
But public opinion was turning against him.
While Mr. Slim invested heavily in Mexico’s phone service in the early years, the pace slackened significantly by the 2000s. Service suffered, but not profits. In 2008, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development report found, América Móvil’s profit margin was nearly 70 percent higher than the average in other member countries.
Mexico also lagged its Latin American peers in expanding mobile broadband service to all its citizens, falling behind Brazil, Argentina, Colombia and even Venezuela, according to 2014 figures from the Broadband Commission for Sustainable Development, a United Nations initiative.
The historic district that Mr. Slim has helped to restore in Mexico City. CreditJaime Puebla/Associated Press
Mr. Slim is one of the commission’s co-chairmen. Asked why rural stretches of his country have no cellphone reception, he cited regulators.
“They began to insist that we have a lot of market share and that it was a reason to regulate us,” he said. “We suspended investment in places where we would have 100 percent of the market” because it would invite more regulation.
Many Mexicans felt they were paying more for less, creating an opening for the new government. As Mr. Peña Nieto took office in 2012, a plan was hatched.
The government and Mexico’s three major parties met secretly, choosing different locations around Mexico City, often late at night, to avoid word leaking out until the legislation was almost ready.
They also took aim at Mexico’s two dominant television companies, which had been equally aggressive in protecting their market shares.
Once a deal was reached, lawmakers enshrined the law in the Constitution to head off Mr. Slim’s legal challenges, and set up special courts to rule on them.

‘Planning Three Moves Ahead’

Those who know Mr. Slim say he has long anticipated the day when his control of Mexican telecom would diminish.
“He knew this was coming,” said James R. Jones, a former American ambassador to Mexico during the 1990s. “And I suspect he was planning three moves ahead.”
While Mr. Slim’s dominance — and profits — may be under threat in Mexico, his wealth no longer depends on it.
“He began to invest in other things,” said Juan Molinar, a former communications minister, in an interview before he died last year. “Follow the money.”
And for years, the money has flowed elsewhere.
In the United States, the results have been mixed. An investment in the retailer CompUSA was a failure, while a repaid $250 million loan to The New York Times made a handsome investment. He is now the company’s largest shareholder (Mr. Slim holds Class A shares, which have limited voting rights).
His companies build and lease offshore rigs, drill wells, operate dams in Panama and build gas pipelines in Mexico and the United States. He is even doing business with Halliburton’s most famous alumnus, Dick Cheney, investing alongside the former vice president in WellAware, a Texas oil services software start-up.
Mexico’s $13 billion airport project has his fingerprints on it, too, including a son-in-law in partnership with the chief architect and another relative by marriage who served on the design committee.
Though the committee member recused himself, the local news media saw what it often sees: “The New Mexico City Airport Will Have the Stamp of Carlos Slim,” as one headline put it.