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ABC Blames 'Decline of Organized Labor' for Income Stagnation

In liberal reporters’ minds, the “more perfect union” referenced in the Preamble to the Constitution is a more perfect labor union.


In an August 6 ABCNews.com story about pay raises for the middle class, reporter Ray Sanchez found a few reasons for “median wage stagnation” including the decline of organized labor. He also cited a common liberal talking point -- the “erosion” of the minimum wage.


“But a common thread is the choking of America’s besieged middle class,” Sanchez said before quoting Stephen Lerner of the left-wing Service Employees International Union (SEIU). Lerner said average workers are faced with “despair” and “hopelessness.”


Sanchez also interviewed SEIU member Teresa Law and cited data from the liberal Economic Policy Institute (EPI) showing slight average wage decreases for high school and college graduates from 2000-2009. Law affirmed Sanchez’ pro-union piece saying, “Working people have been left without a voice.”


Essentially, Sanchez used the data to slyly attack the economy during President George W. Bush. “The long period of wage stagnation predated the recession,” Sanchez said.


The story noted that fewer than ten percent of American private sector workers currently belong to a union, a point Sanchez portrayed as a problem. Throughout the story, Sanchez portrayed the middle class as victims, with a “bleak” future.


Sanchez failed to interview anyone remotely critical of unions. Yet, according to a Heritage Foundation report, while union members earn more than nonunion members, unions amount to a 33 percentage point corporate tax increase on businesses.


“Unions effectively tax these investments by negotiating higher wages for their members, thus lowering profits.” James Sherk, senior policy analyst in labor economics at The Heritage Foundation, wrote in the report. “Unionized companies respond to this union tax by reducing investment. Less investment makes unionized companies less competitive.”


Sanchez didn’t mention the negative effects labor unions had on the auto industry and public education.


ABC has a habit of promoting income inequality and victimizing the middle class.