Raise the Minimum Wage? What Are You, a Nazi?

“Because if you go back to 1933, with different words, this is what Hitler was saying in Germany.  You don’t survive as a society if you encourage and thrive on envy or jealousy.”

Ken Langone, billionaire founder of Home Depot and huge Republican donor, on income inequality.

So if you hate carried interest and want to raise the minimum wage and extend unemployment benefits, well, heil to you, you despicable Nazi.

We’re going to give the Senate back to these people in November?  Really?  But of course they’re emboldened — they brought down our whole economy and no one went to jail.

Quote of the Day

“But it is both a relief and a disappointment that the new [job] numbers offer some assurance that the long-reliable pattern of adding a bit more than two million jobs a year continues apace.  The 175,000 net jobs added in February extrapolate to a pace of 2.1 million jobs a year…. The jobs recovery in the United States is astonishingly consistent, astonishingly resilient and astonishingly underwhelming.”

Neil Irwin, NYT

Not So Fast!

As promised, President Obama signed an executive order today raising the minimum wage for employees of federal government contractors from $7.25 to $10.10 an hour.

But that increase won’t show up in actual paychecks any time soon.  First, the increase doesn’t even take effect until January 1, 2015.  Second, it will take three to five years to be fully implemented as contracts get renewed.

Debt Ceiling Done

The Senate passed the debt ceiling bill, 55-43.

The procedural vote to move the bill forward took an hour as they were having trouble getting to 60.  Eventually, 12 Republicans joined with all 55 Dems, so that there were 67 votes to end the filibuster.  Despite the primary challenges they face, both Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky and John Cornyn of Texas were among the 12..

Don’t Gloat

GOP House Speaker John Boehner is going to bring a “clean” debt ceiling bill up for a vote tonight.  He’s counting on almost all Dem support to pass it, with maybe 16-20 Republicans.

Meanwhile, Heritage Action and Club for Growth are telling members to vote no and promising to “score” the vote, which means it will count against them in their final grade if they vote yes.  The Senate Conservatives Fund (an outside Tea Party group, not an official Senate group) is calling for Boehner to be replaced as Speaker.  I guess they’d rather have the world financial system collapse.  It does feel as if we now have three major parties — Democrats, Republicans, and Anarchists.

Nancy Pelosi told House Dems “don’t gloat.”  With the complete impasse on minimum wage, unemployment benefits, tweaking Obamacare, equal pay for women, job equality for gays, immigration, etc., there’s really nothing to gloat over.

Quote of the Day

“I believe it’s immoral for this country to have as a policy extending long-term unemployment to people rather than us working on creation of jobs.”

Congressman Pete Sessions (R-Texas)

Um, Pete, this isn’t a case of “rather than” — you can, and should, do both. Because while you’re “working on” creating those jobs, people need to eat and pay their rent.

But the thing is, the GOP has shown no interest whatsoever in creating jobs because that might make the anti-Christ Obama look good and help the demon Dems in 2014.  Your party is interested only in making the economy as stalled and sluggish as possible, which means making as many American families as possible suffer.

There’s a word for that.  I believe it’s immoral.

Unemployment Extension, RIP

The Senate defeated two proposals to extend unemployment benefits for the long-term unemployed in states with high unemployment rates.

A plan to extend benefits through November, paid for by extending the sequester, lost 52-48.

Another plan to extend benefits for just three months, without paying for it, lost 55-45.

It’s not just heartless, it’s makes no sense economically.  Aside from the families most directly affected, the whole country will suffer from reduced GDP and fewer jobs created this year.

With the need for 60 votes, the GOP might as well control the Senate as well as the House.