A Nov. 1 New York Times/Sienna College poll revealed the massive disconnect between reality and fantasy in Americans’ assessment of our economy.

          Despite the national economic turnaround that Bidenomics has wrought from the Trumpian disaster he inherited, more voters in five key swing states (Nevada, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Georgia and Arizona) think Trump would do a better job with the economy (59% to 37%).

          Much of this misconception comes from the collusion of corporate price gougers, who have made arbitrary and exorbitant price hikes part of their marketing strategy. The big guys benefit from the improved economy. The rest of us do not.

          Nor are consumers educated to this condition by corporate media outlets that use “rising prices” to scare their audience without explaining origins of those price increases. Gosh, I wonder who some no-talent influencer (shill) is dating these days!

          The latest example of corporate price hikes to boost the bottom line comes from McDonald’s, which announced in late October that it would slow down its recent price increases after a fall off in customer visits. At the same, it also reported higher than expected revenue increase for the third quarter. Its higher prices offset the drop in traffic.

          And, while the company’s net income rose 17% to $2.3 billion, CEO Chris Kempczinski also announced opposition to recent labor rulings that might make it easier for McDonald’s workers to unionize toward a fairer share of the profits they produce.

          Many companies are experiencing higher costs due to the calculated price gouging of Big Oil, whose tactics are reflected in higher transportation costs. But, then those victims adopt the same strategy against their own customers.

          Biden himself addressed Americans’ faulty economic perceptions with a Nov. 1 speech at Northfield, MN.

          ” Over the past 40 years or so, we’ve had a practice in America — an economic practice called trickle-down economics, and it hit rural America especially hard. It hollowed out main street, telling farmers the only path to success was to get big or get out. 
          “Tax cuts for big corporations encouraged companies to grow bigger and bigger, move jobs and production overseas for cheaper labor and undercut local small businesses. 
          “Meat-producing companies and the retail grocery chains consolidated, leaving farmers and ranchers with few choices about where to sell their products, reducing their bargaining power. 

          “Corporations that sell seed, fertilizer, and even farm equipment used their outsized market power to charge farmers and ranchers unfair prices. 
          “You know, in part because of these conditions, over the past four decades, we’ve lost over 400,000 farms in America — 400,000 — over 140 million acres of farmland.  And that’s an area roughly equal to the size of Minnesota, North and South Dakota combined.”

          He cited his Bidenomics for “growing an economy from the middle out and bottom up, instead of the top down.”

          “And, folks, there’s a practical reason for that.  When the middle class does well, the poor have a way up, and the wealthy still do very well.”

          Every time I hear the notion of “trickle-down economics,” I envision one of my dad’s favorite expressions about the mess made from “a cow pissing on a flat rock.” And, those of us outside the corporate and hedge fund board rooms are definitely in the splatter zone of Republican economics.

          Biden’s Northfield speech dealt largely with agriculture: “Folks, look, there’s something wrong when just 7 percent of the American farms get nearly 90 percent — 7 percent get 90 percent of the farm income, and most farmers rely on jobs off the farm to be able to make ends meet on the farm.”

          But he also pointed out the success of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. Remember how President Trump promised infrastructure emphases every month or so? And delivered nothing?

          Biden engineered the rebuilding of ”America’s bridges, roads, highways, et cetera — we’re making the most substantial investment since President Eisenhower’s rural American — since — in rural America since Eisenhower’s highway plan — roads, bridges, inland waterways, ports, regional airports, clean water, high-speed Internet.”
          He also announced the continuation of this effort with “$1 billion to fix aging critical rural infrastructure, like electric water — like electricity, water, waste water systems that haven’t been replaced in decades.”

          Biden also chided “experts” who said “a recession was almost guaranteed,” pointing out that the economy grew by about 5% in the third quarter, and that, “We created more jobs in two years than any president has done in a four-year term.”

          The “basic fairness” that Biden insists upon in his economic policies contrasts sharply with the “rich get richer” policies of Republicans.

          Many Americans seem unable to make the connection up the price-hike pipeline to see that the source of their tighter budgets rests in multi-national board rooms and not the White House.

          (Gary Edmondson is chair of the Stephens County Democratic Party.)

Economy grows with Bidenomics

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