Monday, July 24, 2017

Chuck Shumer's big idea for the Democratic Party (and its explicit attention to rural America)

Chuck Schumer, Senate Minority Leader, has an op-ed in today's New York Times, and it makes several references to rural America.  The title is "A Better Deal for American Workers."  Here's an excerpt about the over-arching plan Schumer says Democrats have for the country:
First, we’re going to increase people’s pay. Second, we’re going to reduce their everyday expenses. And third, we’re going to provide workers with the tools they need for the 21st-century economy. 
Over the next several months, Democrats will lay out a series of policies that, if enacted, will make these three things a reality. We’ve already proposed creating jobs with a $1 trillion infrastructure plan; increasing workers’ incomes by lifting the minimum wage to $15; and lowering household costs by providing paid family and sick leave.
Here's an excerpt that acknowledges the economic needs of rural people and places:
Right now millions of unemployed or underemployed people, particularly those without a college degree, could be brought back into the labor force or retrained to secure full-time, higher-paying work. We propose giving employers, particularly small businesses, a large tax credit to train workers for unfilled jobs. This will have particular resonance in smaller cities and rural areas, which have experienced an exodus of young people who aren’t trained for the jobs in those areas
In the coming months, we’ll offer additional ideas, from rebuilding rural America to fundamentally changing our trade laws to benefit workers, not multinational corporations.
A couple of thoughts:  (1) I wonder what "rebuilding rural America" means.  (2)  I have become a skeptic of public-private partnerships, which seem to enrich the private at the expense of the commonwealth.   I also wonder about what sorts of small businesses in truly rural or very rural places might be available to engage in these partnerships.  (3) I doubt Schumer is going to reach many rural voters by publishing this piece in the New York Times.  But at least he can say he mentioned them--twice!


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RodFleck said...

LOL, spot on with the reference to where he published his article.

I also say that the "retraining" presumes that there are jobs readily available in those rural towns that are going to be "rebuilt." It's painful how much I suspect my urban Dem colleagues thinks that this will speak so well to "us rural folk."

Tell me what tools to strengthen our existing rural economies or rebuilt those that the anyone, Dems or Repubs, will be pursuing in DC and then, regardless of where it is published, I would love to sit and listen.

Anonymous said...

1) "rebuilding rural America" means - paving over farms and ranches with urban sprawl which is 70 times more harmful to the environment according to Frank Mitloehner of UC Davis.

2)"skeptic of public-private partnerships, which seem to enrich the private at the expense of the commonwealth"

-- that describes the collusion of enviro non-profits with federal agencies like EPA, NWS and BLM made possible through the Equal Access to Justice Act, sue and settle, taxpayers pay attorney fees, plaintiff then cherry-picks new regulations for agencies to create and enforce, at the expense of farmers and ranchers.

Often these lawsuits are often over missed deadlines that the federal agencies make no effort to meet -- which leads one to wonder if plaintiff and defendant are splitting up the taxpayer funded settlements and attorney fees.

Tracking and accountability requirements were lifted a few years ago, resulting in a sharp uptick enviro lawsuits and now there's missing info of how much money federal agencies paid and to who they paid it to.

Hurt the most was farmers and ranchers who get fined, jailed, and killed for plowing their fields and grazing their cattle, due to the increase restrictions resulting from these lawsuits.