Donald Trump rode to victory promising “the forgotten men and women” that he was going to reinvigorate heavy industry and manufacturing. This was the essence of his American Carnage speech, (the one that George W. Bush characterized as “some pretty strange shit.”) He was going to take all those rusted hulks of factories and get them cherried up and shining. However, it’s November and even his core supporters in the rust belt states are waiting and they’re getting dismayed, to say the least. Newsweek:
— Business Insider (@businessinsider) October 10, 2017
Workers are changing their minds about Trump because they’re “seeing things that President Trump promised that he’s not following through with,” [Cindy] Estrada [V.P. United Auto Workers Union] says. “He hasn’t followed through on bringing jobs back. He has not followed through on protecting workers’ rights. He has not followed through on healthcare—he’s done the opposite.”
Trump keeps going on about “record unemployment,” which is first of all a statistic that exists because of the Obama’s administration’s efforts. Secondly, unemployment is an illusory factor when the jobs are low wage jobs which don’t afford a basic living. Just because people are working doesn’t mean they’re actually earning a living. The working poor know that $11.50 is the “point where you fall off the cliff,” and become ineligible for federal aid. Unemployment in Michigan is 5% but people are starving. Trump apparently doesn’t know this, because he keeps on about how wonderful the American worker suddenly has it, overnight since his election:
Trump keeps pointing to the highs the U.S. stock market has achieved during his presidency as a way of showing how good workers have it. However, those numbers are disconnected from workers’ wages and the reality on the ground, [Phil] Knight, [Executive Director of the Food Bank Council of Michigan,] says.
“We have not had an administration in my lifetime that’s willing to define the reality about poverty,” he continues. The official poverty measure is some 60 years old and only measures what a person needs for food—not housing, utilities, transportation or childcare.
“We would like to see this administration be the first to define reality and the number of people who are in need in this county,” he says, because “what we have in Michigan is a lot of families who are above the poverty line but they’re nowhere close to self-sufficient.”
If these people are waiting for this administration to be the “first to define reality,” when Jared Kushner is in charge of peace in the middle east and restructuring the government, (all the while being sued for his slumlord ways, his building mortgage soon to go in default and his Trump Russia issues);and Melania is now in charge of the opoid epidemic; while Jeff Sessions is running as fast as he can to keep up with Trump Russia and perjury charges; and the entire Trump administration is shot through with scandals and corruption being revealed almost daily — all we can say is rotsa ruck.