9/18/08

Cooper & Boyle Debate the Economy @ Dowling College's Presidential Forum

Martin Danenberg attended Dowling College's Presidential Candidates Impact On The Economy Forum, featuring presidential surrogates Phil Boyle (John McCain) and Jon Cooper (Barack Obama). Click here for his write-up.

El Profesor (that's professor in Spanish) was most impressed by Cooper's views on the responsibilities of American business owners to their employees.

In my opinion, Legislator John Cooper stole the show by teaching the audience that as a small businessman he has never laid off a worker in over four decades. He also pointed out that his company experienced tough times, like many companies, and he provided good salaries and incentives, keeping workers on the job and loyal to his company.
El Profesor adds that while raising the minimum wage is important--something that John McCain has systemically opposed--more is needed to ensure American workers have well-paying and sustainable jobs. He's right -- and it's a view shared by Cooper and Obama.

We complain about the flight of jobs overseas and the candidates talked about keeping jobs in the United States, jobs that pay well. Soon the minimum wage is going to be raised and this will add to the average salary of people in this country, but it has very little or nothing to do with keeping good jobs and creating good jobs for Americans.
I agree with El Profesor, we need a well thought out strategy for U.S. and hemispheric prosperity, something that the Bush administration and McCain are clueless about. Their policies have resulted in millions of jobs -- albeit, low wage jobs in places like communist China, India and Korea. Thankfully, Obama has the interest, commitment and intelligence to craft such a plan. Click here for Obama's economic prosperity plan.

We really have to see what the master plan of the winner does about good job flight overseas. John Cooper pointed out that he could easily have shipped the jobs in his company to China, but he refused to do that.
El Profesor hits on the issue of undocumented workers and offers the only honest solution available.

I have explored the outsourcing issue from my own point of view and I know that paying workers in Latin America, for example, good salaries for work will keep many or most of them from becoming undocumented workers in the United States.
Of course, such a smart, market economics-based solution requires a shift in U.S. Latin American policy away from coddling oligarchs and war lords, and towards investments in human development, fair trade and democratic institutions.

The point is that enlightened U.S. employment practices, combined with smart economic policies and a true partnership with the people of Latin American, will yield greater stability and prosperity for all.

Photo: (L-R) Dr.Ed Gulluson of Dowling College, Suffolk County Legislator Jon Cooper, Martin Cantor, Director of LIESP, Dowling Distinguished Economic Scholar Dr. Irwin Kellner, and Assemblyman Phil Boyle.
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