This Labor Day compelling facts show that our workplaces are broken for far too many Americans and for the good of our country. Today Americans produce more than ever but get the lowest share of what they produce since 1929. See Hedrick Smith: www.nytimes.com/2012/09/03/opinion/henry-ford-when-capitalists-cared.html.
Though productivity is up 80.1% since 1973, many families must have two paychecks to earn the median income, and a single worker working two jobs to pay the bills is far from unusual. Why do so many who have jobs struggle to stay in the middle class, when productivity is roaring? Simply put, hourly compensation has barely budged--up just 10%--over the last 40 years, despite big productivity increases.
If the GDP is growing in real terms and national income is rising, but most of the increased wealth is not going to paychecks or benefits, where is it going? Part of the answer is that corporate profits now account for their biggest share of national income since 1942.
As Hedrick Smith's article describes, too often in America this Labor Day workers are seen as costs to be squeezed and not resources to be nurtured by insuring rising productivity produces higher compensation. This course ultimately undermines the national interest itself and must be changed for the good of all, including businesses and their long-term profits.