NO ADVERTISING, GOVERNMENT OR CORPORATE FUNDING

  • Latest News
  • Pitch a Story
  • Work with a Journalist
  • Join the Blog Squad
  • Afghanistan
  • Africa
  • Asia
  • Baltimore
  • Canada
  • Egypt
  • Europe
  • Latin America
  • Middle East
  • Russia
  • Economy
  • Environment
  • Health Care
  • Military
  • Occupy
  • Organize This
  • Reality Asserts Itself
  • US Politics
  • Romney Will Bring Far Right to Power At All Levels of His Administration


    Jeff Faux PT4: Romney will attack unions and introduce extreme austerity -   July 22, 2012
    Members don't see ads. If you are a member, and you're seeing this appeal, click here

    Audio

    Share to Facebook Share to Twitter




    TRNN has... made its mark with amazing original reporting on the Middle East and international protest movements. - Caroline Lewis
    Log in and tell us why you support TRNN

    Bio

    Jeff Faux is the Founder and now Distinguished Fellow of the Economic Policy Institute in Washington, DC. He is an activist, economist,  and writer, and has written extensively on issues from globalization to neighborhood development. His latest book is The Servant Economy: Where America's Elite is Sending the Middle Class.

    Transcript

    Romney Will Bring Far Right to Power At All Levels of His AdministrationPAUL JAY, SENIOR EDITOR, TRNN: Welcome to The Real News Network. I'm Paul Jay in Baltimore.

    We're continuing our series of interviews about the American governing elite and where they're leading all of us. The U.S. presidential elections we're focusing in on. And in this segment, we're going to talk about Mitt Romney and the Republican Party with Jeff Faux, who now joins us from our studio in D.C. He's a distinguished fellow at the Economic Policy Institute in Washington, D.C. He's written extensively on the economy and neighborhood development and globalization. And his latest book is The Servant Economy: Where America's Elite Is Sending the Middle Class. Thanks for joining us again, Jeff.

    JEFF FAUX, AUTHOR: Good to be here, Paul.

    JAY: So, once again, if you haven't watched the other parts, you should, 'cause we're just going to pick up the discussion. In the last segment, we talked about President Obama's vision. And now—or lack thereof or lack of implementing thereof. And now we're going to talk about Mitt Romney and his economic vision. And I expect he would probably do a little better at implementing the vision he articulates then President Obama did. So kick us off with what Romney is saying and what you make of it.

    FAUX: Well, you know, Romney, like his opponent, is saying what he thinks he needs to do to be reelected, but of course his basic proposition is dissolve the New Deal, bring us back to where we were sometime in the past, which is romanticized, where business decisions determine the future. I don't think Romney is going to be quite as draconian as some of the people in the House of Representatives, but who knows?

    You know, it's not that you're voting—you're really not voting so much for a person as you're voting for a group. And in Romney's case, the death of the liberal Republicans in the Republican Party means that all the people who are going to take the jobs in a Romney administration are going to come from the extreme right. And, you know, I wouldn't be surprised if Romney turns his back on some of the most extreme cost-cutting, budget-cutting proposals of the Republican right. But it is going to be an age of super austerity. Presumably, Romney comes in with a Republican majority. It's going to be, in a way, the George Bush economic program, which was to give away what was—what's left of the government treasury to the business community. So it's pretty reactionary.

    Labor unions in particular are going to do a lot worse under Romney than they did under Obama. The Democrats are not against labor unions. They're kind of for them. But they haven't been doing much to help them, even though they depend on it. The Republicans, on the other hand, clearly are against the unions.

    JAY: Alright. So Romney's thesis is get the private—unfetter the private sector, stop all this money being tied up by governments, so the same amount of capital, supposedly, is now going to be available to the private sector to invest, and it's going to be better for workers 'cause there'll be more jobs and all of this. And so what is your sense of that? And how will ordinary workers with jobs—and also those without jobs—how will they do under all of this?

    FAUX: Well, under Romney the lowering and the decline of real incomes and wages is going to be accelerated. I mean, the social safety net, which is very important to bolster workers' bargaining position, is going to be lowered drastically; if not, it's going to disappear. Unions are going to be under attack. I mean, they're already under attack. And the Obama people can be helpful in specific kinds of instances. Without that, the trade unions are going to be up against the wall. And if you have four years or eight years of this kind of reactionary Republican regime, you can kiss trade unionism in America goodbye. Now, I happen to feel like in the long run unions are inevitable. They'll come back. But it could be your grandchildren who will finally form the labor union after eight years of Romney.

    It's not like—the position of the United States is a lot more vulnerable than it was under George Bush. You know, we saw what happened under Bush. The crash of 2008, the crash of 2009 is an inevitable result of that kind of social Darwinist economics.

    JAY: And what do you make of, you know, the section of the working class that should know better? And I don't mean necessarily workers in small towns and rural areas that traditionally have, you know, been a little more Republican for various reasons, but there seems to be some inroads being made in the urban working class, which should know better and are still—there's sections seem to be considering voting for Romney. And, you know, some of these votes are so close between Obama and Romney that it kind of boggles my mind what is going through the heads of these people. As much as I'm critical of Obama, like you've mentioned, Romney will be a disaster. And what is going through the—why is Romney having some success with these people?

    FAUX: Yeah. Well, we'll see how much success he has. But I think to the degree that he has, it's, one, because people—the working class in urban areas has not seen the recovery, has not seen the improvements. Wages have declined, and we still have high unemployment among all segments of the working class, which is 80 percent of our population, so that they haven't seen that.

    I don't think, by and large, the average American spends a lot of time thinking about economic policies. What they sort of get quickly on the TV is here's one guy; and the press says, well, that's his argument: here's the other guy; the press says, that's his argument.

    Trade union workers will still vote Democratic.

    But there's something else going on, I think, in among the average American voter, and that is there's some denial. If you ask—the polls have shown, if you ask the average American, do you think the next generation is going to be worse off than this generation, you get overwhelming majorities yes. But then if you ask, do you think you personally are going to be worse off, the answer is, oh, I'm going to be okay, my kids are going to be okay. There's a disconnect that's going on, and I think in part it's because they haven't been inspired by anything political, and they're sort of coming back and internalizing all of this and hoping that whatever happens, they're going to be okay. This is a common psychological, you know, problem of denial.

    JAY: They also seem to have had some success in getting sections of private sector workers in on blaming public sector workers, and then that also has electorial implications.

    FAUX: Yes. Jay Gould, who was the robber baron of the late 19th century, once said he could pay half of the working class to kill the other half of the working class. Now, I don't think that's quite true, but there is a—the sophisticated Republican conservative program that we know has been—being operated since that famous memo of Lewis Powell to the Chamber of Commerce in the early 1970s, the propaganda about the world which pits private sector employees against public sector employees and have as—trade unionists in New York, for example, backing cuts to pensions for public workers. That's what happens. When you undercut the trade union movement, you isolate it and fragment it, you get internal conflict.

    JAY: There's another part of it, is there not, that as well, President Obama and the leading Democrats, you know, they fight somewhat in defense of this idea of government and public sector, and in the campaigns there's some of that kind of language used. But during this last four years, the Democrats—certainly under Clinton, too—they buy into some of the underlying assumptions that they actually share with the Republicans, which gives it a kind of credibility. And then what are people left with? Then it's just, okay, I like this guy or that guy, you failed, let's try him. I mean, nobody has any ideological moorings anymore.

    FAUX: Right. I think one of the great tragedies and failures of the Democratic Party is that ever since Clinton—and, quite frankly, even at the end of the Carter administration they bought into the propaganda campaign against government. And so you have Obama repeatedly saying, well, we're not for big government. You got the disaster of that health care plan, when you and I and most Americans know that the only way to deliver health care and get those insurance costs down and the prescription drug costs down is to have a single-payer program for this country. That's clear. And if Barack Obama and you and I were sitting in a bar, I believe that's what he would tell us. Instead, in order to avoid the big government issue and not confront it and not deal with it, instead they develop this sort of Clintonesque, complicated piece of legislation that no one can understand, and it becomes terribly, terribly vulnerable.

    This is a big country. We have big problems. We need big government to solve them. The idea that we could solve these problems that face the American middle class with a government the size of Honduras's is insane. And yet that is the ideology that the Democrats themselves keep reinforcing.

    JAY: Which opens up a whole 'nother line of questioning on the democratization of this government, 'cause if it's going to be big government that plays a role and government at all kinds of levels that is a big piece of the answer to all of this, then, of course, so is democratization of all of this, because right now big government can also mean big bailouts for banks—it may not mean anything good for ordinary people.

    Anyway, we're going to continue this discussion. There—not right away, but Jeff is going to come back soon, and we're going to pick up another series of talks. We're also going to, if Jeff agrees—and I think if I do this while we're live, he's going to agree—he'll come back for maybe some live Q&A with viewers.

    FAUX: Ah. Sure. I'd love to do that.

    JAY: Okay. So we'll—maybe the next time you come in, we'll let everybody know, and we'll take people's questions, and we'll make that part of format.

    At any rate, if you want us to keep doing this, don't forget there's a "Donate" button somewhere around this video player. And if you don't click on that "Donate" button, we can't keep doing this. Thanks again for joining us on The Real News Network.

    End

    DISCLAIMER: Please note that transcripts for The Real News Network are typed from a recording of the program. TRNN cannot guarantee their complete accuracy.


    Comments

    Our automatic spam filter blocks comments with multiple links and multiple users using the same IP address. Please make thoughtful comments with minimal links using only one user name. If you think your comment has been mistakenly removed please email us at contact@therealnews.com

    Comments


    Latest Stories


    The Resegregation of American Schools
    University Sit-In Targets World's Largest Private Coal Company
    The Modern History of Venezuela and the Need for a Post-Oil Economy - Edgardo Lander on RAI (6/9)
    Can Johns Hopkins Afford to Pay A Living Wage? (1/2)
    One Percent of Environmentalists Killings Lead to Convictions
    Investigation Finds Former Ukraine President Not Responsible For Sniper Attack on Protestors
    The Modern History of Venezuela from 1973 to the Caracazo Massacre - Edgardo Lander on Reality Asserts Itself (3/9)
    Ukraine Transitional Gov't Moves Militarily To Reclaim Seized Buildings
    IPCC Report Flawed By Narrow Focus on Carbon Emissions
    The Modern History of Venezuela: The Bolivarian Revolution - Edgardo Lander on Reality Asserts Itself (5/9)
    Obama Signs Directives to Reduce the Gender Wage Gap
    Eastern Ukraine Lacks Political Representation in Kiev
    Demystifying the Role of Mitigation in the Most Recent IPCC Report
    Hypersurveillance State Won't Prevent Another Boston Marathon Bombing
    The Modern History of Venezuela from 1973 to the Caracazo Massacre - Edgardo Lander on Reality Asserts Itself (3/9)
    Univ. of Maine Faculty Reinstated After Students Protest Against Cuts
    The Modern History of Venezuela from 1908 to 1973 - Edgardo Lander on Reality Asserts Itself (2/9)
    IMF Will Address Global Inequality, Says Managing Director Christine Lagarde
    Raising Big Banks' Leverage Ratio Good, But Not Nearly Enough
    TRNN Replay: Austerity Road to 19th Century
    Has Palestinian Maneuvering Revived Peace Talks?
    Late Jackson Mayor Lumumba's Son Wins Primary to Replace His Father, Runoff Election Ahead
    Quebecers Reject PQ and Elect a Liberal Government Representing Big Business
    TRNN Debate: Decriminalization vs. Legalization
    The Beginning of the Chavez Era - Edgardo Lander on Reality Asserts Itself (4/9)
    "Off With His Head": Court Upholds Obama's Power to Kill
    Workers at Nation's Top Hospital Strike For Fair Wages
    From Exile to Radicalization in Venezuela - Edgardo Lander on Reality Asserts Itself (1/9)
    Rwanda 20 Years Later: Genocide, Western Plunder of Congo, and President Kagame
    Ukrainian Protesters in the East Demand More Autonomy From Kiev Government
    Hunger Strikers Demand President Obama Halt His Record 2 Million Deportations
    Indian Parliamentary Elections - A Primer With Vijay Prashad
    West Looks to Carve Up Ukraine & Privatize Industries Held by Kleptocrats
    Where Are Israeli-Palestinian Peace Negotiations Headed?
    The Multiple Kingdoms of Saudi Arabia (5/5)
    Do the Afghan Presidential Elections Signify Progress?
    Republican Presidential Hopefuls Pay Homage to Billionaire Casino Tycoon Sheldon Adelson
    Will Extremist Lieberman Become Israel's Next Prime Minister?
    Why do the Saudis Want the US to Attack Iran? (4/5)
    Immigrant Advocates and Families Tell President Obama 'Not One More'
    Elections, Pipelines, and Protests - The Canada Panel
    Chris Hedges on "Israel's War on American Universities"
    Baltimore Residents Decry Lack of Affordable Housing
    Yellen Talks the Talk But Will She Walk the Walk?
    Hopkins Hospital Workers Speak Out against "Poverty Wages"
    Will Venezuela's New Floating Exchange Rate Curb Inflation?
    The European Central Bank's War on Wages is Pushing Europe's Economy to the Brink
    Supreme Court Decision Opens Floodgates for More Campaign Cash
    Charles Keating, the Financier Behind the Savings and Loan Scandal, Dies at 90
    Saudi Arabia and the al-Qaeda Monster (3/5)
    Maryland Residents Voice Opposition to Natural Gas Fracking Export Facility
    Supreme Court Ruling Gives Wealthy Individuals More Influence Over Elections
    What are the Saudis Afraid Of? - Madawi Al-Rasheed (2/5)
    Baltimore's MICA Adjunct Professors Set to Vote on Unionization
    Boycott of Israel Moving to Next Level?
    Hypocrisy Dressed Up as "Realism" Justifies American Alliance with Saudi Dictatorship
    Immigration Reform in the Shadows of Cesar Chavez's Legacy
    Leaked Senate Report Shows Use of Torture As "Ineffective"
    UN Report Says Climate Change Will Threaten Food Production Worldwide
    The Hypocrisy of US Calling for Enforcement of International Law
    How the Ecuadorian Economy Grew in a Global Recession
    'Shadows of Liberty' Trailer
    Kristina Borjesson on Why CBS Shut Down Her investigation into Flight 800 (2/8)
    Glen Ford on Racism in the American Media (3/8)
    Paul Jay on What Drives Corporate Media and What Drive The Real News (4/8)
    Creating a New Media Paradigm After Citizens United (5/8)
    Should The Left Engage with the Mainstream Media? (6/8)
    What Is the Financial Backing For The Real News? (7/8)
    Standing up to Character Assassination (8/8)
    Oligarchs, Fascists and the People's Protest in Ukraine
    TRNN Debate: Is Obamacare In the Interest of Workers?
    Too-Big-To-Fail Advantage Remains Intact For Big Banks
    Obama and the Saudi Agenda
    TRNN Replay: Investigating the Saudi Government's 9/11 Connection and the Path to Disilliusionment - Sen. Graham on Reality Asserts Itself pt 1
    The Iraq War's Real Legacy
    Petitions with 100,000+ Signatures Call for Snowden's Passport to be Reinstated
    We Need to Harness People Power - Andy Shallal on Reality Asserts Itself (4/4)
    BC Pipeline Fight and Quebec Elections - The Canada Panel
    Jonathan Schell - 1943-2014: Board Member of TRNN on Why We Need The Real News
    Teachers on Strike from the UK to Argentina
    Connecticut Poised to Become First State with $10.10 Minimum Wage
    Oil Spill Threatens Wildlife and Local Economy
    DC School Test Scores Up, But Poor Black Kids Are Doing Worse - Andy Shallal on RAI (3/4)
    Obama's Proposal To End NSA Bulk Data Collection Won't Protect Privacy
    How Google, Apple & The Biggest Tech Companies Colluded to Fix Workers' Wages
    An American Should be One that Questions Their Government - Andy Shallal on RAI (2/4)
    What's Driving Putin & Obama's Posturing on Ukraine?
    Hundreds of Students & Faculty Occupy College Campus to Fight Cuts to Public Higher Ed
    Due Process 'Impossible' In Harsh Death Sentencing Of Over 500 Muslim Brotherhood Members
    Has Anglo-American Capitalism Run Out of Steam?
    Being the "Other" in America - Andy Shallal on Reality Asserts Itself (1/4)
    TRNN Debate: Should Baltimore 'Ban The Box'?
    How Fallujah Became the Iraqi Government's New Battleground
    Why I Decided to Blow the Whistle on the NSA
    NASA Climate Predictions Show Serious Threat To Humanity
    Professor Who Teaches Israel-Palestine Conflict Accuses College of Violating His Academic Freedom
    CIA and NSA Wrongdoing Requires Independent Investigation, Says Former Church Committee Staff
    Are Tuition Breaks Enough To Combat High Student Debt And Low Graduation Rates?
    Industries Across the U.S. Are Stealing Wages From Their Lowest Paid Workers
    Who In Ukraine Will Benefit From An IMF Bailout?
    NSA Recording All International Calls From U.S.
    Israel "Making Lives Miserable" for Africans, Hoping They 'Self-Deport' (2/2)
    BP Gets Green Light to Drill in Gulf, But Has Safety Improved?
    Residents Still Not Drinking Tap Water Two Months After West Virginia Spill (1/2)
    Libya's Descent Into Turmoil Three Years After NATO Intervention
    From Pipelines to Peladeau - Canadian Report
    Israel "Making Lives Miserable" for Africans, Hoping They 'Self-Deport' (1/2)
    Congressional Progressive Caucus Budget Strikes Back Against Austerity
    Libya Three Years Later - Chaos and Partition
    Why Was Gaddafi Overthrown?
    Should Ukraine and West Accept De Facto Crimea Joining Russia? (2/2)
    Tony Benn Saw Socialism as the Culmination of Democratization
    Why Didn't Bush/Cheney Attack Iran and Can Obama Make and Sell a Deal? - Gareth Porter on Reality Asserts Itself (3/3)
    After Late Mayor Lumumba is Laid to Rest, What's Next for Jackson, Mississippi? (2/2)
    Crimea Referendum: Self Determination or Big Power Manipulation? (1/2)
    Sen. Graham: President Must Side with Openness About CIA and 9/11
    Manufacturing a Narrative for War - Gareth Porter on Reality Asserts Itself (2/3)
    Protesters Hit the Streets of Brooklyn to Demand $15 Minimum Wage
    Hammer: 'Moral Bankruptcy' Behind Massive GM Recall
    White House Withholds Thousands of Documents from Senate CIA Probe
    I Grew Up Believing in Time Magazine's Version of America - Gareth Porter on RAI (1/3)
    Western European Banks Vulnerable to Ukrainian Sovereign Debt Crisis
    TRNN Debate: What's Driving Inflation in Venezuela? (2/2)
    CIA vs. Senate: Who Is Obama Protecting?
    Will Tipped Workers Get Excluded Again From Minimum Wage Hike?
    TRNN Debate: What's Driving Inflation in Venezuela? (1/2)
    After Late Mayor Lumumba is Laid to Rest, What's Next for Jackson, Mississippi?(1/2)
    TRNN Replay: A Look at Who's Poised to Become No.2 at the Fed
    How Right-Wing Nationalism Rose to Influence in Ukraine (2/2)
    Netanyahu Attacks Boycott As Campaign Enters New Phase
    Moving Towards a Police State - Michael Ratner on Reality Asserts Itself (7/7)
    Fighting Reagan's Secret, Illegal Wars - Michael Ratner on Reality Asserts Itself (6/7)
    Puerto Rican Independence Movement and Cuba Further Radicalized Me - Michael Ratner on RAI (5/7)
    The Butcher of Attica - Michael Ratner on Reality Asserts Itself (4/7)
    MLK and a Radicalizing Moment in American History - Michael Ratner on Reality Asserts Itself (3/7)

    RealNewsNetwork.com, Real News Network, Real News, Real News For Real People, IWT are trademarks and service marks of IWT.TV inc. "The Real News" is the flagship show of IWT and Real News Network.

    All original content on this site is copyright of The Real News Network.  Click here for more

    Problems with this site? Please let us know

    Linux VPS Hosting by Star Dot Hosting