In President Barack Obama’s last State of the Union address, he extolled the country’s economic recovery, but noted that some Americans are still feeling the brunt of a quickly changing, global economy. It’s an economy, he noted, that increasingly profits the wealthiest.
“Today, technology doesn’t just replace jobs on the assembly line, but any job where work can be automated. Companies in a global economy can locate anywhere, and face tougher competition. As a result, workers have less leverage for a raise. Companies have less loyalty to their communities. And more and more wealth and income is concentrated at the very top.
“All these trends have squeezed workers, even when they have jobs; even when the economy is growing. It’s made it harder for a hardworking family to pull itself out of poverty, harder for young people to start on their careers and tougher for workers to retire when they want to. And although none of these trends are unique to us, they do offend our uniquely American belief that everybody who works hard should get a fair shot.”