This is my 500th column overall and my 300th for Halston Media. That I have been given the pleasure of doing this for 10-1/2 years is due to you and, of course, my employers. I hope one day to start a column saying, “This is my 1,000th…” Thank you all for your support. Now, let us talk economy.
This is what you know if you only listen to the mainstream media. These are quotes from various economic “expert” talking heads opining on President Trump and House Speaker Paul Ryan’s assertion that the new tax policy signed into law will benefit workers by increasing wages and creating more job opportunities.
• “I’ll ask you plainly: Are they living in a fantasy world?”
• “Anybody who thinks that this corporate tax cut is going to trickle down to lift wages has a staggering ignorance of how public companies function.”
• “That is—how do I say this nicely?—absolute nonsense. There are no examples anywhere of companies distributing their tax savings to their workers.”
• “Wage increases don’t follow tax cuts like this.”
• “Generally speaking, when companies get tax cuts, they keep them for themselves and distribute them to the shareholders. Will they actually increase wages? Will employees actually see the benefits of a corporate tax cut? None of them will raise a hand, because that’s simply not true.”
• “This is a clear cut for the top, and it’s a hope and a wish for anyone else.”
Finally, my favorite, from Nancy Pelosi: “The crumbs that they are giving to workers to kind of put the schmooze on is so pathetic.”
Here is what is actually happening, which has NOT been reported by the mainstream media:
• Southwest and American Airlines both announced they’re going to give thousand-dollar bonuses to employees following the tax overhaul.
• Capital One Financial confirmed it will raise the minimum wage for all U.S.-based employees at Capital One to $15 per hour.
• Wells Fargo said it would raise its minimum wage to $15 per hour.
• Boeing announced $300 million in investments for corporate giving and workplace improvements.
• AT&T announced it will invest $1 billion dollars in the U.S. in 2018. Also, it will give a $1,000 bonus to 200,000 workers.
• BB&T Corp. pledged to give bonuses of $1,200 to almost 75 percent of its workers.
• Bank of America says it’s willing to shell out $1,000 bonuses to nearly 150,000 of its employees.
• Walmart is raising its minimum wage to $11 per hour.
This is what Nancy Pelosi calls “pathetic.”
Each and every one of these companies’ CEOs have said these actions are a direct result of the new tax policy. They said not one of these actions will affect their bottom line as the monies they are using is coming from the tax savings. They are disproving the lie that what is happening with the economy is the result of Obama’s policies finally taking effect.
Unemployment applications are the lowest since 1973. Unemployment of blacks is the lowest since 1972, when the government first started recording figures. For Hispanics, unemployment is the lowest since 1989. Think of the numbers if Congress passes infrastructure improvements.
Why don’t you hear about these things? Since the tax policy was approved, the media has been focusing on: 1) Trump is a sexist; 2) Trump is a racist; 3) Trump paid a call girl for her silence; 4) the alleged Trump/Russia collusion. According to Pew research, more than 60 percent of media coverage of Trump is negative.
Appearing on David Letterman’s new talk show, former President Obama said those who watch FOX News and listen to talk radio are living in an alternate universe. I ask you, seeing reality up against what is being reported, who is living in an alternate universe?
This is what I say. What say you?
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