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Though it was uttered 76 years ago, it remains just as apt today. In fact, if one merely changes the date mentioned, the statement would work just as well for the 44th president as it did for the 32nd.

“You would think, to hear some people talk, that those good people who live at the top of our economic pyramid are being taxed into rags and tatters. What is the fact? The fact is that they are much farther away from the poorhouse than they were in 1932.” – FDR, address at Worcester, MA, October 21, 1936.”

 

 

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Steve Harrison highlighted a fascinating article in Bloomberg Businessweek yesterday over at Blue NC . The article is entitled “Democrats Party in Charlotte’s Republican-Backed Public Projects,” and it includes some rather startling quotes from GOP standard-bearer Pat McCrory that appear to be diametrically opposed to the currently accepted ideological orthodoxy in the state’s conservative power structure.

Here is an excerpt:

“McCrory’s willingness to spend public money on major construction projects runs counter to the rhetoric from national Republicans, who say government needs to be smaller and spend less money. Read More

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If we updated FDR’s statement at left it might go like this:

“Do not let any calamity-howling executive with an income of $40,000 a day,…tell you…that a wage of $392 a week is going to have a disastrous effect on all American industry.”

And a new study released today by the Economic Policy Institute provides lots of hard numbers that demonstrate just how beneficial a hike in the federal minimum wage from $7.25 to $9.80 would be (both to average families and the economy as a whole).

Key findings include:

-Increasing the federal minimum wage to $9.80 by July 1, 2014, would raise the wages of about 28 million workers, who would receive nearly $40 billion in additional wages over the phase-in period. Read More

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Today is a day to be celebrated: the 77th anniversary of the day, August 14 1935,  on which President Franklin Roosevelt signed Social Security into law. 

Appropriately, the good people at the Roosevelt Institute are out with a pair of worth-your-time essays on the subject.

Mark Schmitt has a nice piece on the  program’s enduring adaptability:

“The point of this history is a reminder that Social Security is not a fixed, unchanging thing, a jewel of the New Deal to be worshipped. Read More

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Our good friends at Think Progress are annoyed that NBC and the GOP are accusing President Obama of making a “class warfare” argument.

Here’s another take on the matter: If only that were true!

In truth, President Obama has been a model of middle-of-the-road civility, repeatedly bending over backwards to try and negotiate deals with right-wing ideologues who have zero interest in masking their commitment to class warfare (i.e. the kind that occurs when the wealthy attack and marginalize the middle class and the poor).

As many progressives have noted in recent years, one of the highpoints of Franklin Roosevelt’s presidency occurred when he delivered his famous retort to the nation’s plutocrats: “I welcome their hatred.”

In the final year of his first term, the President would actually do the country a great service if he would actually live up to this accusation by bringing a health measure of combative FDR-like populism to his governance and campaigning. He might even listen again to the following:

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