[News] Marco Rubio introduces a law, to lower the Puerto Rico minimum wage to $5 an hour!

Anti-Imperialist News news at freedomarchives.org
Thu Dec 15 16:52:01 EST 2016


  Marco Rubio introduces a law, to lower the Puerto Rico minimum wage to
  $5 an hour!

  December 15, 2016

Under the banner of “economic assistance” for Puerto Rico, Marco Rubio 
has introduced a bill in the US Senate that would lower the minimum wage 
to $5.

It is called the EMPLEO Act (“Economic Mobility for Productive 
Livelihoods and Expanding Opportunity). According to Rubio, EMPLEO will 
“jump start” the island’s economy and create “new employment 

EMPLEO is a very dangerous bill.

With a GOP president and congress, it could get fast-tracked and passed 
within few weeks.

Here is the text of the entire bill, which is designated as S. 3503…


The bill accomplishes two things:


It sets a minimum wage floor of $5 for /everyone /on the island, 
regardless of age. This goes further than the PROMESA bill, which also 
contemplated a minimum wage reduction …but only for workers aged 25 and 

*#2 *

It creates a US federal wage subsidy of up to $2.50 an hour, for those 
employers who pay between $5 and $7.50 an hour.

According to Rubio, this will “reduce the cost of hiring new workers” 
and “make it easier to find a job.”

Oren Cass, a Manhattan Institute Fellow who helped to craft Rubio’s law, 
said that “reducing the minimum wage should create many more entry-level 
job openings.”

Cass also proclaimed that it will “mark a starting point for meaningful 
in mainland economic policy.”

Cass also called Rubio’s bill a “compassionate tool 
for addressing Puerto Rico’s challenges.”


There’s no other way to put this…Rubio and Cass are victimizing poor 
people in order to enhance their own careers, and possibly their bank 

Their alleged “rationale” is that, even though the Puerto Rico median 
is only $9.42 (compared to the US median wage 
of $16.70), Puerto Ricans are being paid *too much*…and this is stalling 
the island’s economy. Therefore, say Rubio and Cass, a minimum wage 
*cut* will lift the economy…and benefit the people of Puerto Rico.

This is the same tortured logic that Dracula offers his victims, when he 
sucks their blood but makes them immortal.**


The numbers are quite simple. Thanks to the Jones Act, the cost of 
living in Puerto Rico is artificially inflated…with all the excess 
profits going to US auto manufacturers, food suppliers, and consumer 
goods companies.

A recent study compared the cost of living 
in Puerto Rico to that of 325 US urban areas. Here is what they found:


In general 
supermarket items in Puerto Rico were *21% more expensive* than the US, 
and the overall cost of living was *13% higher* than in the 325 US urban 

Electricity alone costs *300%* *more* in Puerto Rico (25 cents per 
kilowatt hour) than in New York City…and next year, in 2017, the rates 
_will rise another 22%_ 


The same car costs $6,000 more in Puerto Rico than in Miami. Since there 
are more than 3 million cars in Puerto Rico, this amounts to an excess 
profit – mostly to US auto manufacturers – of *18 BILLION DOLLARS*.

According to the US Dept. of Transportation, the average life expectancy 
<http://blog.popular.com/en/life-expectancy-car/2061> of a car is 13 
years…so roughly *$1.38 billion per year* (18 billion *÷ *13) is leaving 
Puerto Rico for *excess* profits on cars.

The US share of this is over $1 billion annually…in *excess *profits.

And that’s for cars alone!


The per capita income of Puerto Rican 
is roughly $16,000 a year…about /half /that of Mississippi, the poorest 
state in the US.

So if Puerto Ricans are *twice as poor* as the poorest state in the US, 
but their cost of living is *13% higher* than the US, then how will 
*lowering* *the minimum wage* *to $5* be a benefit to Puerto Rico?

The answer is…it won’t.

It will turn Puerto Rico into a land of beggars and billionaires…a 
playground for the world’s elite, and the broken human beings who serve 


Rather than strengthen Puerto Rico, EMPLEO will increase their 
dependence on US congress.

It will force US taxpayers to subsidize billionaires like John Paulson – 
who will pay only $5 to his hotel and beach resort workers. Then 
Paulson/himself/ will turn around – and pay *_no_* taxes on interest, 
dividend or capital gains – thanks to Acts 20 and 22_._ 

The greatest disaster will arrive when congress “forgets” to include the 
employer subsidy of $2.50 in future federal budgets…and then Puerto 
Ricans will be paid $5 an hour, *period*.

If anyone doubts the likelihood of congressional “forgetfulness,” they 
can consider how congress “forgot” that Law 53 (the Gag Law 
violated the first amendment… then “forgot” to include Puerto Rico in 
the 1984 bankruptcy law…and “forgot” to amend the Jones Act, every year, 
for the past 96 years.


If Marco Rubio really wanted to “reform” the economy of Puerto Rico, he 
would join Congressman Gary Palmer and Senator John McCain, in their 
efforts to reform the Jones Act.

Rep. Palmer even tried to add a Jones Act exemption 
as part of the PROMESA bill – and was immediately shut down by Rep. Rob 
Bishop, the chair of the Natural Resources Committee.

But /real/ reform is not on Rubio’s agenda. Rubio will do nothing about 
Jones Act reform…he will even /oppose/ it, in order to protect the jobs, 
unions, and *campaign donors* in Jacksonville, FL.

Rubio also has a well-known record as a “Senator for Sale,” specifically 
with regard to Puerto Rico.

In his own home state, the Florida newspapers reported that after 
receiving campaign donations from six hedge funds 
holding Puerto Rican debt, Rubio became the */only/ *U.S. presidential 
candidate to openly oppose bankruptcy reform for Puerto Rico.

Right now, thanks to Citizens United, Rubio may be on several payrolls:

  * John Paulson payroll
    – six hotels, multiple beach resorts, the AIG building, and 8.6% of
    Banco Popular…all in Puerto Rico
  * _Nicholas Prouty payroll_
    – the largest marina in the Caribbean
  * _Monsanto payroll_
    – with thousands of agricultural employees
  * _Goldman Sachs payroll_
    – with 50-year leases on PR-22 and PR-5 valued at $4 billion
  * _Act 20 and 22 payroll_ <http://puertoricotaxincentives.com/> –
    hundreds of US millionaires & billionaires paying no taxes for 20
    years, and $5 an hour to their Puerto Rican servants
  * _Hedge fund payroll_
    – as dozens of “P3s” (public-private partnerships) blanket the
    island, as collateral for an unpaid $72 billion “debt”
  * _Don Q payroll_
    – the Serallés family in Ponce received a sweetheart lease on 34,500
    acres of public land to plant…sugar cane fields!
  * All the above will need workers…the */cheapest /*possible workers…to
    keep the profits flowing.


They give Puerto Rico PROMESA.

Now they send EMPLEO.

In 1917, they sent CIUDADANO.

The US has been lying to Puerto Rico for over a century.

Next year, 2017, will mark the 100^th anniversary of Puerto Ricans as US 

And what will we get?

A $5 dollar minimum wage, and a plane ticket to Orlando.

-- Freedom Archives 522 Valencia Street San Francisco, CA 94110 415 
863.9977 www.freedomarchives.org
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