Greet the American worker |

This Monday was Labor Day, a national holiday. Most of us took the extra day off to spend time with family and friends, enjoying the last barbecue of the summer. Others played a round of golf or boating in Tygart or Stonewall Lake. A few “poor souls” have spent the day rushing around a final DIY project around the house.

But very few of us spent the holidays doing the one thing Labor Day was supposed to do – greet the American worker.

I’m sure President Biden will put a positive spin on the number of jobs created this year as COVID-19 eased this spring and into early summer. Sadly, millions of workers have chosen to stay at home and live on government assistance. This has hampered the economic recovery due to the lack of workers to meet demand.

It also happened globally, leading to shortages of goods and parts (especially microchips) that were made here in the United States by American workers.

The Biden administration must explain how it is fighting to send manufacturing jobs back to America by forcing China to renegotiate trade to turn the tide on more than four decades of unfair trade deals that have robbed us of our manufacturing jobs and killed the world. American steel, textile and automotive industry.

America must produce its own steel, manufacture automobiles, computers, cellphones, pharmaceuticals, and more to maintain national security and grow the American economy. There is no one better to do it than the American worker.

The recent closure of Mylan / Viatris in Morgantown, which cost 3,000 jobs for local families, is a shame. As American consumers use these pharmaceuticals more and pay a higher price for them, America should demand that they be made by American workers.

The last year has seen West Virginia’s unemployment rate drop and tax revenues rise to unprecedented levels. This is in part due to the increased demand for steel (made overseas) and the metallurgical coal found here in West Virginia needed to produce it.

Unfortunately, construction of the Atlantic Coast pipeline has been halted and construction of the Mountain Valley pipeline has been put on hold due to some environmental activists who have been successful in shutting down these projects. As a result, tens of thousands of construction workers have been made redundant as court delays determine the impact on certain species of bees, bats and a mollusk.

All of this delayed the benefit of cleaner air by switching many power plants from coal to natural gas, and hampered the development of a petrochemical industry based on the Marcellus shale, including several cracking plants. , an underground ethane storage facility, hundreds of downstream manufacturing facilities, all of which can create tens of thousands of well-paying jobs.

In this era of globalization, the American middle class has seen its standard of living drop steadily. We have lost most of our defined pension benefits. We are seeing a continued decrease in our medical benefits. We are experiencing a decline in the value of our overall salaries.

Blame it on Asian workers who will work for a few dollars a day to produce $ 150 Nike sneakers.

Blame it on illegal immigrants who come to this country to do work that big business claims American workers won’t do.

Blame it on high tech workers in India who are increasingly contracting overseas in the areas of software, engineering and scientific work.

Blame it on robots and “artificial intelligence” which are rapidly evolving so that fewer and fewer jobs will require human capital.

The truth is, “Corporate America” encourages the use of cheap labor as a means of strengthening its own profit margins. All the while, the American worker suffers a loss of disposable income as a result.

Ironically, the stock market continues to make many Wall Street folks the “elite” 1% of Americans who profit almost exclusively from our new economy.

However, on Main Street, most American workers are struggling to earn a “living wage.” On top of that, the rapidly rising cost of health care has led many employers to abandon health care benefits altogether.

But that’s not enough. America’s middle class is under attack and in danger of extinction. Our elected leaders must find ways to turn the tide. We need to find ways to stop the loss of jobs overseas.

The promise of a new economy in America has not resulted in the quality of life for our children and grandchildren that we enjoyed or that our parents appreciated.

Political leaders claim that our country has experienced solid economic growth in almost all monetary indicators. But let me ask you: do you feel it? Has your family benefited from it? Has our state’s economy or our local economy benefited from some of the growth? The answer in most cases is a strong “no”.

Don’t take Labor Day for granted. We must salute the American worker. We must fight for our jobs and our quality of life. It doesn’t matter whether you are a union member or not. Competition for jobs in our global economy concerns us all.

I would like to sincerely thank every WV News employee for their dedication and commitment and the hard work they do 365 days a year, especially during a pandemic.

It is through their efforts that your local newspaper is thriving during a time when most mainstream media are not. We are increasing our print and digital audience. This allows our local ownership to continue to reinvest in your local newspaper and expand to serve other communities across the region.

Over the past seven years we have added The State Journal, Blue & Gold News, Preston News & Journal, The Weston Democrat, Your Bulletin Board and our first out-of-state property, Garrett County Republican, which is located just over an hour from our centralized hub in Clarksburg.

Our success is directly attributable to our employees. If we don’t tell them enough, we really appreciate everything they do to help us be successful. These are truly our great people.

Together, we strive to serve our readers, advertisers and the communities in which we work and live.

We all really depend on each other: the butcher, the baker and the candlestick maker.

Have a good week and don’t forget to say hello to the American worker.

Andy Kniceley is the publisher of print and digital platforms for WV News. He can be contacted at [email protected] or (304) 626-1468.

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