Joe Biden doesn’t need more time. He needs progressives to demand an ambitious agenda
“Give Joe Biden some time.”
“He just arrived.
“Trump left him a hell of a mess. It is unreasonable to expect him to change things in a month or two. “
“Now is not the time to criticize him or criticize Democrats. What would be a good time? I don’t know, but certainly not now. Later.”
These are talking points used by Biden and his supporters against progressive critics – progressives who, for the most part, voted for him – who attack the president for doing too little on the COVID-19 revival, caring for health, minimum wage, student debt cancellation. and other important issues.
Although phrased in such a reasonable tone, “giving the man more time” does not make sense.
Asking the left to be patient would be reasonable if President Biden had an ambitious agenda. But he doesn’t. Like other incrementalists Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, Joe Biden doesn’t come up with big fixes or programs. His ideas are pinches and folds ranging from the symbolic to a bandage on a giant open wound. That’s why none of them will work.
Instead of actually trying to fix the problem, Biden is proposing a watered-down $ 1.9 trillion bill that would look impressive if not for the fact that the US economy is on the verge of collapse. It’s a weak proposition that contains what was originally promised at $ 2,000 one time, then reduced to $ 1,400 one time, and now – after consultations with right-wing DINOs like West Virginia’s Joe Manchin – will be drastically reduced by even less generous resource conditions than those used by the Trump administration. Even if passed as is, which is unlikely in a 50-50 split Senate, Biden’s so-called stimulus will fail. It can’t work.
It’s just too small.
So why should progressives be silent until the indefinite future before raising their voice? For progressives and anyone with half a brain, the problem isn’t that the stimulus takes too long. The problem is that there not enough stimulus. We can see it now. The passage of time will not help. Rather than waste time waiting for a shady solution to fail, leftists should take to the streets now to demand the grand solution necessary to save the unemployed and the working class from ruin.
No one can say that the working class has been anything but patient when it comes to minimum wage. Full-time workers in some of the country’s toughest jobs still earn $ 7.25 an hour, the same as 2009, the year Apple introduced the iPhone 3GS. If the minimum wage had kept pace with inflation since 1968, it would be well over $ 25 an hour.
In large part to woo the progressives who backed Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren during the primaries, Biden pledged to support a minimum wage of $ 15 an hour. He denied. Under his proposed rider to his stimulus bill, wages would only increase to $ 9.50 an hour, gradually rising to $ 15 an hour by 2025, with no allowance for an increase in cost. of life. Moreover, the House Parliamentarian deemed the pilot inappropriate – something Biden, who worked in the Capitol Hill trenches for more than four decades, surely expected.
Why should workers and their allies quell their outrage? Oppressed workers need more income now, not at an unspecified future point in time. It’s not like Biden is going big ($ 30 an hour would be about okay), or going nothing at all, on minimum wage, and needs our consent to present a united front against the bosses. reactionaries. At this point, he’s literally not offering anything. Waiting for Biden to start caring about workers is an obviously doomed exercise in frustration that will only increase poverty. So this concerns almost all other issues. Biden continued Trump’s policy of violently returning political refugees from Central America at the border with Mexico. He owns continued Trump’s brutal drone bombings. The Guantánamo Bay torture camp is still open, still torturing. The average American graduate student with over $ 30,000 in loan debt; Biden won’t forgive more than $ 10,0bi00.
Waiting to expose Biden’s crimes of action and inaction accomplishes only one thing. It plays into the hands of the Democrats who do nothing until their next excuse to tell us to shut up: next year’s midterm elections.