There’s a reason more and more people feel like the economy is failing them. Debt is rising. Wages are low and stagnant. Corporations use tax loopholes to avoid paying billions.
Now, a new study by the Canadian Centre for the Study of Living Standards shows beyond any doubt that Canadian Workers are getting screwed by the system.
Workers are more productive, but not getting any of the benefits
The study showed that between 1976 and 2014, Canadian worker’s productivity went up by an average of 1 per cent every single year. So, pay should be up around 40 per cent for that time right?
Wages went up only 1 tenth of 1 percent ever year. So, Canadian workers productivity gains were ten times their increased compensation.
As the authors of the study note, “Canadian labour is more productive than ever before. But there is a pervasive sense among Canadians that the living standards of the ‘middle class’ have been stagnating.”
There are two key factors here:
A key problem is globalism – policies that benefit the elites around the world while taking money and power from working people and the middle class – has continued to grow. Political elites with the same ideas and attitudes have built a system that benefits themselves and the big corporations who own them.
It’s no wonder that fewer and fewer people listen to the politicians, corporations, or media when they talk about how great our economy is supposedly doing. The economy may be getting more efficient and productive, but if almost all the benefit is going to a tiny group of people, the economy is not doing well. Prosperity must be broadly shared and benefit a wide-range of society.
The Middle Class is getting crushed
There is a sustained assault on the Canadian middle class. In the past, “working class” and “middle class” were often interchangeable. Now, the middle class is being crushed out of existence.
As the study noted:
“Between 1976 and 2014, labour’s share of aggregate income declined from 59.9 per cent to 53.3 per cent. This decline was accompanied by a corresponding increase in capital’s share of income.”
So, the banks, big investors, and corporations are getting richer, while the middle class and working people get poorer.
This must not continue.
That’s why we must lower the tax and debt burden of working and middle-income Canadians. Combined with massive infrastructure investment to stimulate job growth and boost the economy, income-security programs, access to debt-free education and job training, and a crackdown on corrupt trade deals and corporate tax loopholes, we can put the system back on the side of the majority.
Innovation cannot and should not be blocked. But the government must stand with working and middle class people and make that innovation work for all of us, not just those at the top of the power structure.
If things don’t change, Canada’s working class will keep getting screwed. Millions will be robbed of the opportunity to achieve their dreams. People will keep working harder and harder well seeing all the benefit of their work go to the rich and well-connected. Elitist politicians will spew out their lines while people struggle and suffer.
That’s not the future we want. That’s not the future we are doomed to have. Change is possible, but it requires being clear-eyed about the corrupt attitudes that have kept things the way they are.
Photo – Corinne