The U.S. economy is not suffering from ‘too high’ corporate taxes

From the Economic Policy Institute

In the recent tax debate, proponents of corporate tax cuts once again trotted out the myth that taxes on American corporations are excessive and are responsible for recent slow economic growth. These proponents claim that cutting corporate tax rates will encourage companies to make productivity-boosting investments that would increase wages. We’ve noted the many ways this claim fails when tested against real-world evidence.

But the simplest rebuttal to this claim is this graph, which shows that corporate taxes as a share of the U.S. economy have been extraordinarily low in recent years, even as corporate profits have been historically high. At a time when ginned-up hysteria over federal budget deficits is used to attack crucial social insurance and income support programs like Social Security, Medicare, and nutrition assistance, it is odd that we’d ask even less of corporations when it comes to collecting taxes.

Posted In: Allied Approaches

Union Matters

Uber Drivers Deserve Legal Rights and Protections

By Kathleen Mackey
USW Intern

In an advisory memo released May 14, the U.S. labor board general counsel’s office stated that Uber drivers are not employees for the purposes of federal labor laws.

Their stance holds that workers for companies like Uber are not included in federal protections for workplace organizing activities, which means the labor board is effectively denying Uber drivers the benefits of forming or joining unions.

Simply stating that Uber drivers are just gig workers does not suddenly undo the unjust working conditions that all workers potentially face, such as wage theft, dangerous working conditions and  job insecurity. These challenges are ever-present, only now Uber drivers are facing them without the protection or resources they deserve. 

The labor board’s May statement even seems to contradict an Obama-era National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) ruling that couriers for Postmates, a job very similar to Uber drivers’, are legal employees.

However, the Department of Labor has now stated that such gig workers are simply independent contractors, meaning that they are not entitled to minimum wages or overtime pay.

While being unable to unionize limits these workers’ ability to fight for improved pay and working conditions, independent contractors can still make strides forward by organizing, explained executive director of New York Taxi Workers Alliance Bhairavi Desai.

“We can’t depend solely on the law or the courts to stop worker exploitation. We can only rely on the steadfast militancy of workers who are rising up everywhere,” Desai said in a statement. 

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Make Father's Day Union Made!

Make Father's Day Union Made!