Wednesday, July 26, 2006
Something you probably thought happened decades ago (if you live on the coasts): Foreign car manufacturers are now selling more than half the cars and trucks bought by U.S. consumers. That includes SUVs. ... Detroit's Big Three manufacturers account for more than half (54.9%) of sales only if you add in sales to fleets. ... Predictable-yet-accurate kf spin: Another milestone for organized labor--"Big Three" is roughly synonymous with "UAW-made." ... [via Autoblog ] 1:19 P.M.
Tuesday, July 25, 2006
I try to explain, somewhat unconvincingly, why I find investment banker, Pinchbuddy, and NYT Sacred Cow Steven Rattner so annoying.** Rattner's recent WSJ op-ed on income inequality offers a good example of one reason. Rattner calls growing income inequality the "mother of all electoral issues," especially because
[f]rom 2000 to 2005, for example, average weekly wages for the bottom 10% dropped by 2.7% (after adjustment for inflation),
Rattner acknowledges that a cause of the erosion of wages at the bottom is the increased supply of unskilled immigrant workers. ("At the least, immigration certainly puts further pressure on wages of lower-income workers whose jobs the new arrivals compete for.") But he doesn't dare draw the logical conclusion--that maybe immigration should be controlled in order to raise incomes at the lower end of the labor market. That wouldn't be Democratically Correct and might inhibit Rattner's chances to one day ... I don't know, be Treasury secretary. Instead, he pontificates smugly
But giving in to politically expedient demands, such as barricading our borders, would be a mistake.
Covering up an obvious logical implication of your argument is a form of intellectual dishonesty, no? Who needs it? ...
P.S.: See this LAT article (on the economic polarization of Los Angeles neigborhoods) for a similar PC avoidance of even mentioning the effect of immigration on wages at the bottom. ...
P.P.S.: Did I miss the meeting at which the Dem-MSM steering committee decided to make income inequality a big issue in time for the midterms? ... It's certainly a legitimate effort, but at some point the Dems are going to have to see that it leads directly to a contradiction with their Latino base: if we're really serious about raising wages at the bottom we'll want to get control of the inflow of the unskilled before rewarding with citizenship the illegals who make up so much of that inflow. ...