Why Capitalism Thrives–and how it self-destructs

As a South Carolina representative, Mick Mulvaney didn’t “create jobs”; he reduced labor costs for corporations

Rep. Mick Mulvaney’s claims he is a “jobs creator.” Actually, he’s another Republican who does everything he can to reduce labor costs for corporations—and then reduce benefits to those workers whose jobs were lost or incomes reduced.

His impressive website reads like it was written by a public relations firm. Judging from his videos, audios, op-eds, press releases and committee assignments, you would think he is a champion of working Americans and that he believes in an economy that benefits all classes of society.

Although he has done some token things to benefit working class residents of South Carolina’s District 5, if you look at his voting record and his actual views about taxes, international trade and the role of government—you see that he’s a classic closet aristocrat.

The minimum wage for 2012 in Colombia was recently raised 5.8% to a paltry $328 a month.  In Panama, the 2012 minimum wages are within the range of $432 to $490 a month.  Possibly this isn’t bad for workers in Colombia and Panama, but it would be horrible for workers in the U.S.

Rep. Mick Mulvaney voted to approve the free trade agreements with both countriesHe wants to empower American corporations to abandon American workers and shift production to low-wage countries like Colombia and Panama.

Rep. Mick Mulvaney makes sure that working Americans get only token benefits when he gives huge tax breaks for the wealthy. Then he can claim that his actions benefitted everyone. Of course, government becomes underfunded and Republicans claim that “we can’t afford to extend unemployment benefits or to pay for programs like Social Security, Medicaid and Medicare.” (Check out the file: Republican “starve the beast” strategy worked, as planned.)

On his own website, he states that he wants to eliminate inheritance taxes and taxes on capital gains. He’s a perfect example of what Barron’s wrote about in 2004:

From Barron’s magazine (our most prestigious conservative financial publication for serious investors), Feb. 16, 2004, at the height of George Bush’s popularity:

Bush … is engineering a fundamental change in the tax system. By gradually taking capital out of the tax base through reductions in levies on dividends, capital gains and inheritances, Bush is transforming the income tax into a pure tax on wages. If Bush can finish his work, the capital gains, dividend and estate taxes may disappear entirely.

How’s that for a dictionary definition of an aristocracy? Wealth is inherited, the income from wealth is not taxed, and all taxes are placed on those who actually work for a living.

He’s also never seen a free trade bill he didn’t like, and makes the usual Republican claim that workers in District 5 will ultimately benefit because it will stimulate our exports and create jobs. Of course, our actual history of trade deals conclusively demonstrates that we lose far more jobs than we gain, and the real winners are multinational corporations and their investors.

In addition Rep. Mick Mulvaney wants to “save” entitlements like Social Security by taking away their benefits to America’s non-aristocrats—like delaying retirement for workers, even though many of them wear out their bodies even before the age of 65. According to him and his Republican colleagues, Medicaid and Medicare benefits must be reduced because this rich nation of ours can’t afford to ensure adequate medical care for the growing numbers of elderly and impoverished workers who have lost their jobs because of Mulvaney’s commitment to globalization.

Although he’s only been in office for two brief years, here’s his record for reducing working class wages by exporting jobs to countries where workers have pitiful wages and virtually no protections:


  • October 12, 2011, (HR 3078) Rep. Mick Mulvaney voted for the free trade promotion agreement with Colombia. 
  • October 12, 2011, (HR 3078) Rep. Mick Mulvaney voted for the free trade promotion agreement with Panama.


This closet aristocrat has not been content to reduce corporations’ labor costs by exporting jobs. When those jobs are lost, he votes to reduce funding that helps those who have lost their jobs, as well as workers and the middle class generally.


  • On December 13, 2011, Rep. Mick Mulvaney voted FOR HR 3630 which would reduce payroll taxes and unemployment benefits. Again, he gave breaks to corporations and cut benefits to the unemployed. 
  • November 30, 2011, Rep. Mick Mulvaney voted FOR HR 3094, the labor law amendments that would limit the authority of the National Labor Relations Board. Again, he shows a typical Republican bias against any federal program that represents the interests of workers. 
  • On May 3, 2011, Rep. Mick Mulvaney voted FOR HR 1213, to repeal funding for state health benefit exchanges. 
  • On March 29, 2011, Rep. Mick Mulvaney voted FOR HR 839, to terminate the Home Affordable Modification. 
  • On March 11, 2011 Mick Mulvaney voted FOR HR 836 to terminate the Emergency Mortgage Relief Program, which terminated the program and redirected all unspent funds previously appropriated to the program to be used instead to reduce the federal debt (and to pay for tax cuts for the rich). 
  • On March 10, 2011 Mick Mulvaney voted FOR HR 830 to terminate the Federal Housing Administration refinance program and to redirect all unspent funds to reduce the federal debt (and cut taxes for the wealthy). 
  • When Mick Mulvaney was a legislator in South Carolina, on April 2, 2008 he voted AGAINST AM1 to expand the Earned Income Tax Credit, which would have helped those making below poverty wages. Of course, the increase in the number of workers making below poverty wages was very much the result of globalization.


Although Rep. Mick Mulvaney chooses to be stingy in raising the minimum wages of poorly paid workers, he has no reservations about protecting the rights of top level corporate executives to get huge bonuses and golden parachutes under the table. On Nov. 3, 2011, he voted against H Amdt 849, which required public disclosure of Bonuses and Golden Parachute Arrangements for corporations’ millionaire executives.


Note: This file is devoted mostly to Rep. Mick Mulvaney’s votes when he was a represenative of South Cariling. His votes on so many issues are so obviously on the far-right-wing fringe, you should view his complete record at the Vote Smart website.


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