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Trans Pacific Trickle-Down Economics


Trans Pacific Trickle-Down Economics

Robert Reich

Have we learned nothing from thirty years of failed trickle-down economics?

By now we should know that when big corporations, Wall Street, and the wealthy get special goodies, the rest of us get shafted.

The Reagan and George W. Bush tax cuts of 1981, 2001, and 2003, respectively, were sold to America as ways to boost the economy and create jobs.

They ended up boosting the take-home pay of those at the top. Most Americans saw no gains.


I (obviously) have not seen the deal, but suspect that it would require all transactions to be made in US dollars, thereby supporting the dollar (Federal Reserve Note) as the world’s reserve currency. The fish rots from the head…


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Reich mentions 1981, 2001 and 2003 tax cuts while failing to mention the most regressive tax cut in history…1986 when corporations got boatloads of tax cuts while taxes increased dramatically for the 99%.

The Democrats continue to tout 1986 as a bipartisan success story upon which Obama will base his upcoming “tax reform”.


You laid out a few interesting thoughts, some of which I agree with.

You left out that apart from human labor and Mother Nature’s often unpaid stolen labors, today there are robots and high-tech machines doing work that formerly was done by human beings.

You also push a major idea consistent with basic economics–that demand is key to what is supplied. In reality, desires are cultivated and tastes marketed into existence so that much that people don’t need is what they are taught–by advertisers, if not seduced–to think they want and need.

Some people have come up with the ultimate egalitarian form of sharing: a Time Bank where regardless of the species of one’s skill, product, or service–the labor they put into it is their actual time and everyone’s contributed hour is regarded as equal in value.

And as to what’s so hard to understand? Justice, decency, fairness, integrity and compassion belong to–and guide many persons. A top-down system based on powerful controls does not often reward these traits. And since power is what’s calling the shots and writing the agendas–in most instances using National Security or State’s Secrets or some corporate version of proprietary secrets to HIDE what they are engineering–the policies put into practice have little to do with these higher stances.


What a shill! I hope some foreign corp. fracks in your neighborhood; and when your faucet runs filthy water… let’s see if you still cling to this apologia to corporate malfeasance. Your views are a disgrace as is your attempt to invert the TRUTH about this agreement and what is means. Just disgusting.

Oh, and it’s spelled non sequitur… your wrote non sequitor.


What one says when one is receiving a paycheck is often different from what one says when independent of an employer.

I didn’t follow politics enough when he was Secretary of Labor, but everything I have seen of him in the past decade makes me feel that he is genuine n his views and desire to make th country a better place.


I read the Yves Smith article and the last paragraph says that if Robert is against the TPP that he could redeem himself. You should stop your demagoguery of him IMHO.


Please! why does everyone refuse to see the wood in the trees?
There is one, and only one, cause of all our economic woes. During the
early 1900’s our stupid/corrupt politicians signed away our Sovereign
“rights” , that allowed us to print and issue our own interest free,
debt free money; and since then we have all become “debt slaves”. Our
rights to print and issue our own money out of thin air were ceded to
private banking Corporations, thus now, we borrow all our money from
them, and they simply print it out of thin air, and charge us interest
for the privilege. Given the nature of our economic cycles, the booms
and busts, it is virtually impossible for us ever to repay all such
debts, especially since, when they print our borrowings, they do not
also print the money to cover the interest repayments. This particular
economic consequence was recorded centuries ago in the well known fable
about the boy who possessed a goose that laid “golden” eggs; he sold the
goose for a paltry sum and forever thereafter he was destitute.

The remedy for our problems is simple; we abrogate any agreement
previously made, reclaim our Sovereign “rights” to print and issue our
own debt free interest free money.

This will enable us to stop income-taxing of individuals; we may pay
everyone that needs it a social wage, based on a break even computation,
this will eliminate poverty and deprivation; those in receipt of the
Social wage will be encouraged into employment, without loss of this
Social wage, and to work for any employer for additional income,
mutually agreed between them. this gives control of work and income to
the “workman”. Employers will gain a workforce of people willing to
accept much lower wages than previously paid, thus making the employer
production cost significantly lower; plus, the employer no longer
collects taxes for the Government. The employer Corporation/business
will pay tax annually as usual. The collection of V.A.T. or G.S.T.,
consumer taxes will cease.

All Government expenditures will be provided by the planned issue of our
own debt free interest free money using legislation approved by
Parliament. Health, Education, University courses, Infrastructure of all
kinds, etc. etc.

Provided that all of these expenditures are actually “spent” into
circulation they will not create inflation; inflation will occur, for
instance, when too much money chases too few “goods”. The Government
must own and run it’s own Bank, just like the original Commonwealth
Bank. No Private Bank or Corporation will be permitted to create money,
under any guise; our financial system will revert to one of "sound "
money. Sound money is that which turns around sound borrowing and
lending, controlled by being liquid cash, backed by the ownership of
assets, and strict criteria keeping them in balance; borrowing and
lending outside of these criteria, characterised as “high risk”, will be
permitted between parties willing to accept such risk, and then, only
when it involves their own wholly owned assets.

Interest rates in the private sector will be set by the private sector.
The floating exchange rate will be converted into “fixed” rates decided
by Government, and as decided between Sovereign Nations and embodied in
trade agreements. Our currency will not be traded on “Exchanges”, our
Nation will be immunised against the manipulated predations of the “Market”.

The foregoing explains the broad brush strokes involved, but in summary
we would have a Nation with little or no foreign debt, a Nation whose
domestic economy sits on a solid unshakeable base, a Nation better able
to compete in the wider World, a Nation without poverty whose peoples
are empowered to think and work for themselves, a Nation rescued from
the avarice of the “Money Lenders”, and above all, a Government able to
be free and Independent, instead of being owned by Corporate money and
influence. This is named “The Universal Economy” because it will operate

For those who doubt the efficacy of this proposal, I suggest they study
the United States example. The clever banking Corporations engineered
the U.S. dollar to be the Worlds reserve currency. Ever since the U.S.
has been printing money out of thin air, the only Nation to do so, now
they have military bases in more than one hundred and seven Nations,
they have engineered regime change and wars in countless Nations, and
recently have printed trillions of dollars, called quantitative easing,
and poured it into foreign banks and financial Institutions trying to
prevent the next meltdown; but it is not working because their printed
money was not spent into circulation, instead it inflated the prices of
shares and real estate, the bust cometh.