Earlier: Goodbye, Gompers—If Webb Can’t Focus Democrats On White Working Class, Nobody Can
Last week, the Economic Policy Institute [Tweet them] posted Low-wage workers have seen historically fast real wage growth in the pandemic business cycle, by Elise Gould and Katherine DeCourcy [March 23, 2023].
Between 2019 and 2022, low-wage workers experienced historically fast real wage growth. The 10th percentile real hourly wage grew 9.0% over the three-year period. This tremendous real wage growth at the lower end of the wage distribution was exceptional, significantly faster than in any other business cycle peak since 1979…
VDARE.com prefers longtitudinal charts to bar charts, because bar charts can cherry-pick individual years and not show underlying trends. That seems to be what EPI has done here, arbitarily starting with 2019, thus omitting evidence that real low-income wage growth began in 2017; and also that real wage growth may now subsequently be stalling.
Reason: EPI wants to attribute this low-income growth to the plethora of income redistribution measures put in place during the legislative pork orgy which started in mid-2020 under cover of COVID. But it does quietly concede:
…from 2017 to 2019… the labor market was tightening…
Interestingly, the EPI also had to concede:
Low-wage workers experienced fast wage growth in all states, regardless of changes to their minimum wage.
Glaringly omitted here is the effect of President Trump’s immigration activities. These drastically cut the saturation of America’s labor market by newcomers. This was graphically demonstrated for us on November 8, 2020 NATIONAL DATA: October Jobs—Trump’s Immigration Triumph Continues. Farewell To That Too?
After losing upward momentum in Trump’s first years, the immigrant share of U.S. employment plunged from mid 2019.
Immigrant work force population stopped rising in in the first quarter of 2015 (quite possibly because of fears about a Trump victory) and plunged into contraction from March 2018.
Also in November 2020 in his broader discussion A Long Farewell To Donald Trump, Immigration Patriot. And Thanks, Peter Brimelow noted:
Even the columnist Michael Barone, a long-time immigration enthusiast whom VDARE.com has repeatedly criticized, acknowledges this:
“[Trump] can claim that his new trade agreements and economic policies have produced income and wealth gains disproportionately favoring low-wage workers—something administrations of both parties have failed to achieve for a generation.”
[Both candidates’ risky strategies, by Michael Barone, Northern Virginia Daily, October 24, 2020] (Emphasis added.)
In fact, the EPI study itself points out a clear impact zone of immigration:
…the Hispanic–white wage gap also saw no improvements, holding steady between 2019 and 2022.
However, the Black–white wage gap did narrow across all metrics
The two groups have different employment patterns—Blacks, overwhelmingly native-born, in government and other sheltered employment, Hispanics at the Sharp End: stoop labor, construction and restaurant jobs. More Hispanics = lower wages in these sectors. See NATIONAL DATA: Unprecedented Real Wages Surge Under Trump Collapses Under Biden—Border Treason A Cause.
I have long had some liking for the Economic Policy Institute, which had seemed a genuinely Workerist outfit, unlike the nouveau Plutocrat and Racial spoils-gatherers who currently control the Democrats.
I particularly admired their hostility to the parasitic relationship with China that the Beltway has allowed to develop:
But posting an essay about wage trends without considering the impact of the biggest swing in U.S. immigration management in two generations is not much short of dishonest.
Perhaps I am out of date. Their Director of Immigration Law and Policy, Research Daniel Costa [Email him] seems mainly interested in extending benefits to immigrants. Nothing about restraint.
And ominously, a new objective has crept into the EPI mission statement:
Our research exposes the forces that seek to exclude and diminish the power of people of color and women—particularly Black, Brown, and indigenous people—to the benefit of white supremacy and wealthy elites. We recognize the economic legacy of anti-Blackness; slavery; colonialization; oppressive policies, practices, and institutions; and the persistence of structural racism, sexism, and xenophobia today. Therefore, our vision elevates the importance of racial, gender, and worker justice as central to the world we want to see.
Blacks uber alles!
Nobody in the modern Democrat left leadership cares about the working class as such—especially not the white working class.
Email Patrick Cleburne.