The Spark

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.” — Karl Marx

September 11:
Used once again as an excuse to cut workers' pay

Dec 9, 2002

While Congress proposed a 4.1% pay increase for federal workers for next year – equal to the pay raise for military employees – Bush knocked it down for civilian workers by a full percentage point to 3.1%. He also eliminated the subsidies going to workers in areas where the cost of living is much higher than average. Bush's excuse, as we keep hearing from his lips ad nauseam, is that "a national emergency has existed since September 11." Well Mr. Bush, you bet something nasty has been going on since September 11. In fact it started the very next day, September 12. Bosses and management, private and government, have used September 11 as a pretext to demand big sacrifices from workers, cutting back on wages and benefits or eliminating jobs altogether. While at the same time, big subsidies are granted to corporations in defense and military-related contracts.

September 11 and its aftermath has become a milestone in more ways than one.