John Edwards has written a short commentary for the Wall Street Journal on what he intends to do to stop corporate abuses.
That’s right, abuses. All of us are familiar with the examples of corporate abuse, such as Enron and the loss of hundreds of pension by hard working people. The average CEO makes 400 times what the average worker makes. Is that the problem? Yes and no, it has more to do with the fact that less families can make ends meet. We have more debt as a nation than ever before in it’s history and so many worry that their children can’t have a better life than the generations before them. This is the problem, it’s not about redistributing wealth, but ensuring that we all can prosper from a strong economy rather than just the majority of us suffering so the very few can prosper at our expense.
Rather than focus on his usual pitch, the very true fact that many American families are having a harder time to make ends meet, I want to get to the meat, the three things he says he will do in order to stop corporate abuses.
The first thing we need to do is to make affordable, high-quality health care a part of the social compact. Not only are health-care costs putting a huge strain on American families and our competitiveness in the global economy, but a system that leaves 47 million Americans without health care is a moral disgrace. As president, universal health care will be my number one domestic priority.
Second, we also need to adapt retirement savings to the modern work environment. In the past, it was common for people to stay with the same company their entire career, and so it made sense for pensions to be connected to employers. Today, the average worker will probably hold jobs with multiple companies.
We can’t allow fundamentally healthy companies to go into bankruptcy just to avoid keeping their promises to employees, or to emerge from bankruptcy with millions for executives and nothing for workers. As president, I will ensure that corporations honor the pension promises they’ve made to workers, by giving workers a claim for lost pensions, just like lost wages.
Third, our companies should be run for the benefit of workers and shareholders as well as insiders. Today, too many companies in America are putting far too much of their earnings into excessive CEO and executive pay, when this money could be going to increased worker salaries, better benefits and investments in plants and equipment.
“Third, our companies should be run for the benefit of workers and shareholders as well as insiders.” Crazy thought isn’t it? It’s about bringing back some balance to the system and putting more power into the hands of those who make what America is today possible. That is why Unions are so important to the entire Country, they set the standard, they can pull workers voices together and they can insure that workers are fairly compensated, not only by wages, but benefits and the promise of a comfortable retirement after years of hard work.
Edwards is not anti-business, he’s basically anti-monopoly. So few have monopolized the power to control the system that so few also benefit from the profits. It has to stop and it benefits all of us to fight for those below us in the economic ladder, to bring everyone up a rung or two.
But for me it’s the ending, it’s the final words that put this all into perspective.
In order to fulfill our obligation to future generations of Americans, we must restore balance between America’s corporations and America’s working families. Only then will we be able to guarantee that anyone who is willing to work hard and do the right thing has the opportunity to share in our nation’s prosperity.
John Edwards’ ad “Time to Tell the Truth”
This message is so important and Edwards makes the strongest argument for “electability” than all the Democratic candidates. Everyone, despite their political leanings, are facing the same challenges from health care to education. I’ve read from other candidates supporters that Edwards is too “angry”, but a lot of us, from Republicans to Democrats, Independents to Libertarians, we are angry, but it’s the right kind of anger that unites the people, those who vote, together Edwards asks us to make this change possible. This is the kind of uniting we need.
Howard Dean was ‘too angry’ and this was used against him at the peril of our party. Please consider the fact that anger is not a bad thing, it’s a strong feeling of displeasure. I say, if you are not displeased, than you aren’t paying attention.
“To get real change, we need a president who will stand up against the big corporations and powerful interests who control Washington,” Edwards said today at his “Countdown to Caucus” event in Boone. “We need somebody who is going to fight this fight and win this fight. But I’m not talking about going to Washington as president and fighting politicians.
“I want to be absolutely clear that the corporate greed that is destroying the middle class of this country and stealing your children’s future, it is stealing the future of Democrats’ children, Independents’ children, Republicans’ children, ” Edwards continued. “I’m telling you, this is a message and a cause we can unite America around.”