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Who's Better off Than Four Years Ago?

Guest Columnist | , Askia Muhammad | 9/26/2012, 2:11 p.m.

Even as average worker productivity - the amount of "widgets" workers produce in a standard period of time - even as worker productivity has increased exponentially over the last 30 or so years by a whopping 725 percent, worker pay has only increased a meager 5.7 percent. The gap between CEO pay and worker pay has grown from 18-to-1 in 1965, to 237-to-1 in 2011, this according to a report released Sept. 11 this year by the Economic Policy Institute.

So in reality, the "are you better off" question cannot be fairly answered yes by average voters for more than a generation, because wages have frozen, not even keeping up with inflation. But Gov. Romney continues to frame the question in the four-year time frame, in the same way President Ronald Reagan did in his contest against incumbent Democrat Jimmy Carter.

But for the crowd, who like Gov. Romney are in the top 1 percent of the population, rather than the bottom 47 percent as he sees them, the folks who like Romney who have wives who help the domestic economy by driving "a couple of Cadillacs;" the crowd who have elevators for their many cars, while the rest of us get the shaft, for that crowd, they are much better off, but unfortunately we'll not hear the question asked that way.

Framing the question about how are the CEOs doing would, in Gov. Romney's view, amount to "class warfare," while blaming 47 percent of the population as moochers and freeloaders is not class warfare. Go figure.