Bernie Sanders Tears Jeb Bush A New One: Americans Already Work Long Enough Hours (VIDEO)
The out-of-touch GOP presidential front-runner who is not Donald Trump just gave his rivals a heaping helping of gaffe fodder, as well as an ideal teaching moment for Sen. Bernie Sanders. On Tuesday, Jeb Bush told reporters in New Hampshire the still-sluggish economy’s our own danged fault because we’re not working hard enough.
“My aspiration for the country and I believe we can achieve it, is 4 percent growth as far as the eye can see. Which means we have to be a lot more productive, workforce participation has to rise from its all-time modern lows. It means that people need to work longer hours and, through their productivity, gain more income for their families. That’s the only way we’re going to get out of this rut that we’re in.”
And of course Bush blames President Barack Obama, instead of the cheap, greedy, slave-driving rich people who own America’s corporations and refuse to create the good-paying jobs they’re supposed to in exchange for their huge taxpayer-funded welfare payments and subsidies.
Really? That sounds even more out of touch than that time when Daddy Bush couldn’t make head or tails out of a grocery scanner back in 1992. And Sanders pounced on that immediately, when MSNBC’s Ed Schultz so kindly asked what he thought of Bush’s statements. For starters, Sanders took exception to Bush for blaming President Barack Obama for our stalled economic “recovery” even though his brother George is the one whose policies and wars tanked our economy.
“Well, I don’t think much of Mr. Bush’s comments. And criticizing Obama after his brother left us an economy in which we were hemorrhaging 800,000 jobs a month when President Obama took office, does not make a lot of sense to me.”
Sanders also points out that just because many Americans work part-time jobs, that doesn’t mean they’re only working part time. In fact, many are patching two or more crappy-paying part- or full-time jobs together and still can’t make ends meet. On average, people in the U.S. work longer hours than in any other first-world nation.
“The truth is that Governor Bush is wrong on a number of counts. First of all, the American people already work the longest hours of any people in a major country on earth.”
Seriously, most Americans in the workforce are working well over the standard 40 hours a week, on top of long commutes, caring for children and aging parents, and balancing a host of other obligations.
“Ironically, today, we have 85 percent of male workers working more than 40 hours a week, 66 percent of women workers are working more than 40 hours a week, I’m not quite sure how much more Governor Bush wants our people to be working.”
And there’s the rub. “How much more” would former Gov. Bush want “our people to be working?” And the answer is: As many damned hours as it takes. Because no amount of sweat, blood, skills, training, experience or hard work is ever good enough to pry a living wage out of our greedy corporations’ coffers. But since slavery has officially been illegal in the U.S. since the North officially won the Civil War, our nation’s oligarchs need other ways to create and exploit slave labor.
That’s the only way to explain why Bush and the GOP reject any measures that would actually help working people in the U.S. — meaning most of us — and grow our economy. And sure enough, Sanders calls Bush out on that.
“Needless to say, he is opposed to the overtime rule that would allow millions of workers who are working long hours to finally get time-and-a-half, I’ve not heard him support raising the minimum wage to a living wage or pay equity for women workers.
So it sounds to me like it’s the same old, same old trickle down economics which benefits the wealthy and large corporations.”