A once in a generation investment. That`s what president Biden called his $2 billion program of infrastructure spending. Biden said it will create millions of jobs while giving roads, utilities and American industry a badly needed upgrade.
But somebody have to pay for it, but who? «We the people» of course. The corporations. And there is one simple way to do that: TAX. Minimum wages are rising. So are the taxes, and what is that suppose to mean? It means the inflation is coming.
«I`m proposing a plan for the nation that rewards work. Not just rewares wealth. It builds a fair economy that gives everybody a chance to succeed. And it`s going to create the strongest, most resilient innovative economy in the world,» Biden said in a speech a few days ago.
The Biden administration plans on modernizing 32,000 kim of highway, 500,000 charging points for electric autos, and bringing back key industries such as chip production back to the U.S. Chips are still mostly produced in Asia. (Bringing back chip industries sounds like a Trump strategy).
The project is expected to take eight years to complete, and some of the funding will come from a corporate tax hike from 21 to 28 percent. Biden`s supporters say the program will create millions of well.paid jobs, and stregthen America`s ability to compete with China.
2 trillion dollars is a lot of money and there is no doubt that this program will boost the semiconductor industry, but also the EV industry.
Biden said he is not worried about the U.S economy at all. At the same time, Janet Yellen makes a push for global minimum corporate tax. She doesn`t want a race to the bottom, and warns of dangers to the American economy if U.S acts alone in raising corporate tax rates.
When Obama hiked corporate taxes, businesses fled. One of the largest corporations in the world; Apple, ended up in Irland thanks to a great offshore plan, but Trump were bringing the company back to the U.S.
It speaks for itself. The more money corporations pay in tax, the less competetive they are on the world stage.
The time we are living in today, is similar to the 30`s, and Biden`s infrastructure plan is often comparead to Franklin D. Roosevelt`s «New deal».
The New Deal was a series of programs, public work projects, financial reforms, and regulations enacted by President Franklin D. Roosevelt in the United States between 1933 and 1939.
The programs focused on what historians refer to as the «3 Rs»; relief for the unemployed and poor, recovery of the economy back to normal levels, and reform of the financial system to prevent a repeat depression ( the stock market crached in 1929).
The first deal (1933 – 1934) dealt with the pressing banking crisis through the Emergency Banking Act and the 1933 Banking Act. The Federal Emergency Relief Administration provided $500 million ($9,88 billion today) for relieft operations by states and cities, while the short-lived CWA gave locals money to operate Make-work projects in 1933 – 1934.
The Securities Act of 1933 was enacted to prevent a repeated stock market crash.
The second New Deal in 1935 – 1936 included the National Labor Relations Act to protect labor organizing, the Works Progress Administration relief program (which made the federal government the largest employer in the nation), the the Social Security Act and new programs to aid tenant farmers and migrant workers.
The final major items of New Deal legislation were the creation of the United States Housing Authority and the FSA, which both occurred in 1937, and the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938, which set maximum hours and minimum wages for most categories of workers.
Keep in mind that all this happened a few years before the World War II occurred.
The economic downturn of 1937 – 1938 and the bitter split between the American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations labor unions led to major Republican gains in Congress in 1938.
Conservative Republicans and Democratas in Congress joined the informal conservative coalition. By 1942 – 1943, they shut down relief programs such as the WPA and the CCC and blocked major liberal proposals.
Nonetheless, Roosevelt turned his attention to the war effort and won reelection in 1940 – 1944. Furthermore, the Supreme Court declared the NRA and the first version of the Agricultural Adjustment Act unconstitutional, but the AAA was rewritten and then upheld.
Republican president Dwight.D. Eisenhower (1953 – 1961) left the New Deal largely intact, even expanding it in some areas. In the 1960`s, Lydon B. Johnson`s Great Society used the New Deal as inpiration for a dramatic expansion of liberal programs, which Republican Richard Nixon generally retained.
However, after 1974 the call for deregulation of the economy gained bipartisan support. The New Deal regulation of banking (Glass-Steagall Act) lasted until it was suspended in the 1990`s.
From 1929 to 1933 manufacturing output decreased by one third, which economist Milton Friedman called the Great Contraction. Prices fell by 20%, causing deflation that made repaying debts much harder.
Unemployment in the United States increased from 4% to 25%. additionally, one-third of all employed persons were downgraded to working part-time on much smaller paychecks. In the aggregate, almost 50% of the nation`s work-power was going unused.
Before the New Deal, deposits at banks were not insured. When thousands of banks closed, depositors lost their savings as at that time there was no national safety net, no public unemployment insurance and no Social Security.
The depression had devastated the nation. As Roosevelt took the oath of office at noon on March 4, 1933, all state governors had authorized bank holidays or restricted withdrawals. Many Americans had little or no access to their bank accounts.
Farm income had fallen by over 50% since 1929 (stock market crash). An estimated 844,000 non-farm mortgages had been foreclosed between 1930 – 1933, out of five million in all. Political and business leaders feared revolution and anarchy.
In 1935, Roosevelt called for a tax program called the Wealth Tax Act (Revenue Act of 1935) to redistribute wealth. The bill imposed an income tax of 79% on incomes over $5 million. It raised the bitterness of the rich who called Roosevelt «a traitor to his class» and the wealthy tax act a «soak the rich tax».
The Roosevelt administration was under assault during Roosevelt`s second term,which presided over a new dip in the Great Depression in the fall of 1937 that continued through most of 1938. Production and profits declined sharply.
Unemployment jumped from 14,3% in May of 1937 to 19% in June 1938. The downturn was perhaps due to nothing more than the familiar rhythms of the business cycle, but until 1937 Roosevelt had claimed responsibility for the excellent economic performance.
That backfired in the recession and the heated political atmosphere of 1937.
Keynes did not think that the New Deal under Roosevelt ended the Great Depression: «It is, it seems, politically impossible for a capitalistic democracy to organize expenditure on the scale necessary to make the grand experiments which would prove my case, except in war conditions.»
Worldwide, the Great Depression had the most profound impact in Germany and the United States. In both countries the pressure to reform and the perception of the economic crisis were strikingly similar.
When Hitler came to power he was faced with exactly the same task that faced Roosevelt, overcoming mass unemployment and the global Depression. The political responses to the crisis were essensially different; while American democracy remained strong, Germany replaced democracy with fascism, a Nazi dictatorship.
The initial perception of the New Deal was mixed. On the one hand, the eyes of the world were upon the United States because many American and European democrats saw in Roosevelt`s reform program a positive counterweight to the seductive powers of the two great alternative systems, communism and fascism.
As the historian Isaiah Berlin wrote in 1955: «The only light in the darkness was the administration of Mr. Roosevelt and the New Deal in the United States».
By contrast, enemies of the New Deal sometimes called it «fascist», but they meant very different things. Communists denounced the New Deal in 1933 and 1934 as fascist in the sence that it was under the control of big business. They deopped that line of thought when Stalin switched to the «Popular Front» plan of cooperation with liberals.
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