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Forum Post: Labor Day: More Sales, BBQ & Strife than We Deserve

Posted 5 years ago on Aug. 29, 2013, 8:13 p.m. EST by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR
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[-] 2 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago


Generations of working men and women that came before me fought for and won the workplace rights we all enjoy today.

On Labor Day 2013, I pledge to stand with working people everywhere against the attacks on our hard-won rights as workers and to support efforts to expand our rights as workers.

We all deserve to be treated with respect in the workplace, enjoy safe working conditions and earn a fair days wage for a days work.

I pledge to stand with organized labor and working people everywhere to fight back against new attacks on our interests like so-called "right to work" laws or rollbacks in family medical leave benefits.

And in solidarity with my fellow workers I will support pro-active efforts to enhance job security, safety in our workplace and dignity in retirement.

[Add your name using the form]



[-] 2 points by shoozTroll (17632) 5 years ago

This isn't on the agenda of the soap opera of the banned.

Not enough partisanship.

Too much power to the people stuff.

[-] 1 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

Where Labor Day Came From, and Where it's Going

Webster’s dictionary tells us that Labor Day was “set aside for special recognition of working people.”

That's nice, but “set aside” by whom? It certainly wasn’t the Wall Street corporate and political powers that be. They nearly swallowed their cigars when the idea of honoring labor’s importance to America’s economy and social well-being was first proposed in 1882. Rather, this holiday was created by the workers themselves, requiring a 12-year grassroots struggle that finally culminated with an act of Congress in 1894.

The campaign helped coalesce unions into a national movement. And its message of labor's essential role also countered the haughty insistence of the robber barons of that time. The barons insisted they were America's "makers" — the invaluable few whose monopolistic pursuits should be unfettered. For they claimed that they and their corporations were the God-ordained creators of wealth.

Despite their bloated sense of self-importance, notice that the American people do not celebrate a CEO Day. Indeed, as Abraham Lincoln put it, the real makers are the many ground-level workers who actually do the making: "Labor is prior to and independent of capital," Abe declared in his first state of the union address. "Capital is only the fruit of labor, and could never have existed if labor had not first existed. Labor is the superior of capital, and deserves much the higher consideration."

Yet on Labor Day 2013, robber barons are again ascendant, declaring that they owe nothing — not even a shared prosperity — to the workers, consumers, taxpayers, and other American people who sustain them. Quite the opposite, they and their political henchmen are blithely shredding America's social contract and again insisting that the corporate elite must be unfettered, unions eliminated, and middle-class jobs Wal-Marted.

This intentional hollowing out of our middle class is not just ignorant, but also immoral [EVIL]

Yet today's establishment economists are asking: Why are so many people so glum? The Great Recession ended in 2009, they note, and even job creation is picking up. So come on people — get happy!

Maybe Labor Day is a good time to clue them into one big reality behind this so-called "recovery:" Most Americans haven't recovered.

Not by a long shot. In June, median household income was still $3,400 less than in 2007, when Wall Street's crash started the collapse of our real economy.

Why are working people still so far down? Take a peek at those new jobs the economists are hailing. They're really "jobettes," paying only poverty-level wages, with no benefits or upward mobility. In the recession, about 60 percent of the jobs we lost were middle-wage positions, paying approximately $14 to $21 an hour. Most of those jobs have not come back. Instead, of the jobs created since the recovery began, nearly six out of 10 are low-wage, paying less than $14 an hour. A central fact of the new American economy is that working-class people are increasingly unable to make a living from their jobs.

To grasp this widening inequity, befuddled economists might bite into a burger or pizza. Seven of the 12 biggest corporations that pay their workers the least are fast-food giants. Yum! is one. It's a conglomerate that owns Pizza Hut, KFC, and Taco Bell. Workers don't find these chains so yummy; for pay averages $7.50 an hour, with no health care, pensions, etc. In contrast, Yum!'s CEO hauls off about $20 million a year, even as even as he dispatches lobbyists to oppose any hike in our nation's miserly minimum wage.

This is no way to run a business, an economy, or a society. Fast-food giants are hugely profitable. (Yum! quaffed down $1.3 billion in profits last year alone.) They are more than able to pay living wages and decent benefits, as many local, independently-owned fast-food businesses do. Deliberately and unnecessarily holding down an entire workforce by funneling rightful wages into the coffers of a few ultra-rich executives and big investors is shameful — and dangerous. After all, even a dog knows the difference between being stumbled over ... and being kicked.

At last, workers are beginning to kick back. All across the country, broad coalitions of religious leaders, unions, civil rights groups, community supporters, and others are joining thousands of fast-food workers in a rolling series of one-day strikes against particular chains, publicly shaming them for profiting through gross exploitation of employees. As one Baptist church leader said of his presence in these protests, "It's a matter of justice."

Yes — and that's what Labor Day has always been about.

Copyright Creators.com

ABOUT Jim Hightower National radio commentator, writer, public speaker, and author of the book, Swim Against The Current: Even A Dead Fish Can Go With The Flow, Jim Hightower has spent three decades battling the Powers That Be on behalf of the Powers That Ought To Be - consumers, working families, environmentalists, small businesses, and just-plain-folks.

[-] -2 points by shoozTroll (17632) 5 years ago

You post that like more than a few of us around here care about unions and labor.

Their FEAR of co-option, consumes them.

[-] 0 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

How Workers Can Get a Fair Shake -- A Labor Day Message from Robert Reich

By Nick Berning. Wednesday, August 28 2013

In this Labor Day message, Robert Reich, the former Secretary of Labor and subject of the upcoming documentary “Inequality for All,” breaks down what it’ll take for workers to get a fair share in this economy — including big, profitable corporations like McDonald’s and Walmart to pony up and finally pay fair wages.

Watch: http://front.moveon.org/how-workers-can-get-a-fair-shake-a-labor-day-message-from-robert-reich/#.UiUcY3_YROc

After you watch, as a first step toward making this vision a reality, sign Robert Reich’s petition calling on the CEOs of McDonald’s and Walmart to pay their workers fair wages: http://front.moveon.org/how-workers-can-get-a-fair-shake-a-labor-day-message-from-robert-reich/#.UiUcY3_YROc

[-] 1 points by shoozTroll (17632) 5 years ago

Let them organize!!

Union YES!

Collective bargaining!! For everyone!

[-] 0 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

We have a lot of Union, Organized Labor and Collective Bargaining reeducation to do!!

At single digit Union membership (or close to it) the vast majority of workers don't have a clue about Unions and what they do. But they do have heads full of anti-Union propaganda!

[-] -1 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

Some of them identify "True Occupiers" as the only real "members"(?).

Somehow they leave out the 99% and our plight against the tyranny of the 1%, The Cause for all of us and The Reason for the Occupy Movement, not a members only Unicorn Club!!!

[-] 1 points by shoozTroll (17632) 5 years ago

You mean our "soap opera of the banned"??

Our anti-union troll, anti Dem gangbangers?

Think they'll notice this?

Dems and unions abounding.


[-] -1 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

This is good to hear, I fully encourage Pro-Union public opinion and, better yet, ACTION!


I believe it was a PEW report on the policies of then-POTUS Ronnie Fucking Raygun which found a substantial majority NOT IN FAVOR (abjectly against) Raygun's disastrous, nation-killing policies! But they Voted for him anyway!

Let's talk about "backfiring" when Cons get booted out of Gerrymandered districts and Union Jobs start rebounding significantly!

[-] -1 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

Whether to stupidity, delusion, ignorance or fraud, surrender is not an option!!


[-] -1 points by shoozTroll (17632) 5 years ago

Happy Labor day indeed!


Too bad so few actually care about labor.

[-] 0 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

MLK's 1963 March on Washington (was) for JOBS (labor) and Freedom (civil rights including EMPLOYMENT).

Employment is the supply line for the 99% in the Class War waged by the 1% ~ which is why they have downsized, stagnated, automated, offshored and bombed it off the face of the earth.

Employment and democracy are our top two tools, weapons and priorities in defying this 1% tyranny.

Labor and Election Days should be our most prominent celebratory and commemorative Days on the calendar.

Many of us 99%ers (professionals, employees, workers, laborers, et al) really really need to wake up and realize our neglected priorities ~ our default surrender!

[-] 0 points by shoozTroll (17632) 5 years ago

And the average worker, has fallen farther than we know.


[-] 0 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

While the wealth hoarded by the 1% soars to unseen heights, and the gap between rich and poor widens to unseeable distances.

We have to wake up, we have to use our democracy and labor to save us from unemployed and underemployed destitution ~ the actual threat to freedom ~ because waiting for Unicorns with glitter to save us is certain suicide!

[-] 0 points by shoozTroll (17632) 5 years ago


Ups and downs, of course.

Let's hope the public reacts to the ever more blatant union busting of the teabagge(R)/libe(R)tarians.

[-] -1 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

The People's outrage about Union Busting has been manipulated to jealousy: Crab Mentality!!

More tactics in the 1% Class War on the distracted and disengaged 99%: Divide and Conquer.

There is always hope, but where is the People's reaction to the blatant obstruction, sabotage and blackmail (not to mention the vile propaganda and dirty tricks) perpetrated by RepubliCons in full view on our country and our twice duly elected POTUS??

Screw hope, we have to make noise and wake people up!!

[-] -1 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

Viral Video: What pro-labor fights do you care about?

This pro-labor video is uplifting, creative, and it's gone viral!

Watch it, get inspired, and tell us which pro-labor issues YOU would help with. (After you push submit, you'll see video share options.):


[-] -1 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

Did I miss something? "Soap opera of the banned"?

Surprisingly (or not) little on Labor Day 2013

This from your woods: http://www.mlive.com/lansing-news/index.ssf/2013/08/move_over_law_ad_campaign_come.html

[-] 1 points by shoozTroll (17632) 5 years ago

They will pull you over, and I believe you get points and a fine for it.

On the plus side, Mayor Bing did get the Koch's to move their coke piles.

Into Ohio!!!!


[-] -1 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

This was big PR black eye, but a soap opera?

[-] 0 points by shoozTroll (17632) 5 years ago

Don't worry, they'll get around to attacking you too, sooner or later.

You appear to be slightly to the right of Mao.

That's enough to earn their derision.

[-] 0 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

Is that the soap opera?

Mao was VERY RW fascist, totalitarian!
You think I'm to his right?

They? Someone new or same old same old?

[-] 3 points by shoozTroll (17632) 5 years ago

Same old.

The ones that attacked VQ, and now DK.

Apparently they don't like people with caps in their usernames, but only some people.......

[-] -1 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

Too much BS & Whining.

Let's advocate for Labor Rights for Labor Day!

Maostaken identity.

[-] -1 points by shoozTroll (17632) 5 years ago

I try and do that almost ever day, but mostly I get attacked for it, or they start another thread to distract from it.

[-] -1 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

If they're after you, you must be doing something right.

but right of mao? wtf

[-] -1 points by shoozTroll (17632) 5 years ago

Here's the thread I posted that resulted in the dems against unions thread.

Notice they had NO comment here, and NO comments in their own thread that actually demonstrated anything but a passing endorsement of unions.


[-] -1 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

Sorry, I can't comb through a whole thread to see what they did to you just now. I'll get on all that when Mao tells me.

[-] -1 points by shoozTroll (17632) 5 years ago

Actually, in my case?

It's chairman meow.

[-] -2 points by TropicalDepression (-45) 5 years ago

Those god damn occupiers!!! They just wont CONFORM!!! AHAHAHHAHA

[-] 2 points by shoozTroll (17632) 5 years ago

Yet YOU conform to your gang.

You lie for them.

You lie about me and others.

You are hateful.

You were part of that attack and likely part of the ongoing attack on DK, which you and your fellow conforming gang members also lie about.

You are ultimately a conformist.

Afraid to think away from your gang.

You need that gang...........I don't.

[-] -2 points by TropicalDepression (-45) 5 years ago

Yes, I need this band of merry men on this specific website to affect change. You are quite vengeful. I'm sorry to burst your bubble, but Im really not the enemy.

I would love to meet everyone here someday, even you. We will get along just fine.

[-] 3 points by shoozTroll (17632) 5 years ago

They are not merry.

They are mean spirited and hateful and lying, just like you.

If you attack and lie about it, you most certainly have made of yourselves enemies of the forum, and by proxy OWS.

Get your lies straight.

You are getting increasingly tiresome in your shirking, lying manner.

You would not like what I would have to say right to your face. I don't like being lied about. and I don 't like being lied to.

You practice both..........a lot.

[-] -2 points by TropicalDepression (-45) 5 years ago

I would love to hear whatever you have to say.

Is this you trying to coach me:



[-] 0 points by shoozTroll (17632) 5 years ago


That's just you attempting yet another insult, as a way to avoid being truthful.

Mean spirited, through and through.

Now about following the money in N. Carolina?

Are you really that afraid to do that?

[-] 2 points by DKAtoday (33690) from Coon Rapids, MN 5 years ago

[-] 8675309 points by DKAtoday (8675309) from Coon Rapids, MN

Those god damn occupiers!!! They just wont CONFORM!!! AHAHAHHAHA

VQ ? I suppose you could say he stayed his course in support of OWS.

You??? Do you have a course? I mean your support for OWS is kinda fuzzy to say the least.

[-] -1 points by TropicalDepression (-45) 5 years ago

Actions speak louder than words DKA 8675309... whatever the hell that is.

[-] 2 points by DKAtoday (33690) from Coon Rapids, MN 5 years ago

[-] 8675309 points by DKAtoday (8675309) from Coon Rapids, MN

[-] 0 points by TropicalDepression (384) 3 minutes ago

Actions speak louder than words DKA 8675309... whatever the hell that is.

↥twinkle ↧stinkle reply permalink

" Actions speak louder than words "

Hah funny you would know that saying - as no one can tell if you have actually made any actions. Well any positive actions. Well any positive actions in support of OWS.

8675309... whatever the hell that is.

That is me publicly laughing with every comment - laughing at a particular shill - a seriously obsessed shill that has a particular obsession with me as well as with points.

I didn't think you were that thick as not to be able to see the obvious.

[-] -2 points by TropicalDepression (-45) 5 years ago

Heres me at Move to Amend, green shirt with hat:


Wow, do I look like a rabid right winger or what!!

PS- Im the guy that set up the livestream and got over 100+ viewers that otherwise wouldnt be able to see it. I do do things, ok, whether you guys want to believe me or not.

[-] 2 points by DKAtoday (33690) from Coon Rapids, MN 5 years ago

[-] 8675309 points by DKAtoday (8675309) from Coon Rapids, MN

Funny you never advertize your live streaming - you know - that you will be at an event - streaming - and this is where you can go to catch the stream. Funny that. Nothing ever. Now this "claim " and you have nothing to back it up with - oh except for your complete silence about all of the events in your area that you were gonna be live streaming. aAHHAaha hahahaheeeehehe - sure I believe U - HoHOHohooooooheheheee

[-] -3 points by TropicalDepression (-45) 5 years ago


Guess you missed it. Pretty much spells it all out for ya. Happy now?

Good night 86753-0-Niiiiiiiiii-eeeeee-iiiiiiiine. The guy who made that song lives here, his ex wife is incredible on the guitar.

[-] 2 points by DKAtoday (33690) from Coon Rapids, MN 5 years ago

[-] 8675309 points by DKAtoday (8675309) from Coon Rapids, MN

Currently your post means nothing - nothing - as in your having anything to do with it.


[-] -1 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

Damn, where'd the "fiefdom" fascist go?

[-] -3 points by TropicalDepression (-45) 5 years ago

I'd put you at slightly to the right of Attila the Hun :)

[-] 2 points by shoozTroll (17632) 5 years ago

That's because you lie about me........:)

And yourself, for that matter.

Honesty, like issues, just isn't your thing.

[-] -2 points by TropicalDepression (-45) 5 years ago

Its easy to be a hater. Just dont actually put solutions out there.

They say in politics, never nominate a man with a plan. It gives the enemies ammo. Be vague. Just run attack ads.

Your like a real life attack ad. No solutions, just complaints and attacks.

At least Bensdad has the courage to say he's all about voting out Republicans. Its more than I can say for you.

What the fuck are your solutions anyways. I dont think Ive ever heard one.

[-] 4 points by shoozTroll (17632) 5 years ago

I didn't join a gang to attack anyone.

You did.

That's hateful.

You lie about me.

You lie about yourself.

You lie about the solutions anyone other than you gives.

In fact, any solution not already endorsed by your gang.

Who you also lie about.

So yes along with your belief that all of the 99% are asses, YOU are a hater.

[+] -4 points by TropicalDepression (-45) 5 years ago

Complaint, attack, complaint, complaint, complaint, another complaint...

At least you're consistent.

So.....shooooooz.....any solutions?

Come on there lil fella, you gotta have one in there somewhere.

You cant say kill me, ZD already took that one :^)

[-] 4 points by shoozTroll (17632) 5 years ago

I don't want to join your gang.

Why did you lie about me yet again??

Are you really so upset that you can't tell the truth??

Are you this lost in your web of deceit?

When will you come clean?

Identify the gang.

Admit the evil and damage you and they have done.

I gave you solutions.

So you lie some more.

Speaking of complaint, attack.

why do complain about being asked simple questions.

Are you so lame you really can't answer them.

As as to the attack?

Like I said. I didn't join a gang to attack people around the forum.

You and some others DID, and still do.

Why do you lie so much?

Doesn't it hurt your soul?


[-] -2 points by gnomunny (6819) from St Louis, MO 5 years ago

"I didn't join a gang to attack people around the forum."

You sure the fuck did.

[-] 4 points by shoozTroll (17632) 5 years ago

Says another admitted member of the gang.

No dip shit, I didn't., but YOU admittedly did.

And it's that reprehensible behavior that forced the need of the gang and it's members, to invent the lie of the "twinkleteam".

So have a community issue to ignore.




[+] -4 points by TropicalDepression (-45) 5 years ago

Well, you jumped on my thread with DKA, so I guess that whole premise is out the window. Took about 30 seconds to scratch that. Great job.

What on earth prompts the four of you to bash me at every turn. Every time I come on here, at least one of you is lurking and then its .....(sound of falling) down into the gutters we go.

[-] 5 points by shoozTroll (17632) 5 years ago

You constantly avoid issues.

You are part of the attack gang.

You lie constantly about other posters.

You call names and insult people.

You hate talking out State issues.

You don't prove your statements.

You don't cash the checks those statements write.

what did you expect?

Inquiring minds, want answers.

Here, This was actually a very informative site.


You can ignore it again. FEAR.

I'm going to go now.

So you and your gang have fun attacking people, and pretending you fully understand issues you are clueless about..

And don't give an inch, while accentuating the negative and insulting as much as possible..

Yeah the Worlds over..........and only you and your gang know the out. No one else should be able so say a thing, under threat of gang attack.


Which of course, never existed, but you and the gang bought that piece of propaganda, hook line and sinker, spread like the best of the Koch marketing firms.

Was it yours or VVs marketing firm that came up with that?


But that doesn't matter.....the gang goes on Right?

If the gang says it exists.....that gang is always right!!, Right?

You are a conformist, and so is your entire gang.

Low life liars too.

Good evening, and may the waging of peace, someday be ours.

You have organized and ganged up to wage WAR on individuals on this forum.

Know that I know that.

Bye now.





[-] -2 points by TropicalDepression (-45) 5 years ago

I dont like it because its a proven failure, as the last 100 years have shown.


IF that was teh solution, then why dont the Democrats simply use that message and create another occupy type event?

They cant. Neither can the Republicans. People dont like either of em.

Give the people what they want.

[-] 2 points by DKAtoday (33690) from Coon Rapids, MN 5 years ago

[-] 8675309 points by DKAtoday (8675309) from Coon Rapids, MN

[-] 0 points by TropicalDepression (384) 1 minute ago

Its easy to be a hater. Just dont actually put solutions out there.

They say in politics, never nominate a man with a plan. It gives the enemies ammo. Be vague. Just run attack ads.

Your like a real life attack ad. No solutions, just complaints and attacks.

At least Bensdad has the courage to say he's all about voting out Republicans. Its more than I can say for you.

What the fuck are your solutions anyways. I dont think Ive ever heard one.

↥twinkle ↧stinkle reply permalink

Funny that - it sounds like you are looking in the mirror as you say that.

[+] -4 points by TropicalDepression (-45) 5 years ago

Here, knoch yourself out:


Cant get change if you arent willing to put yourself out there.

[-] 0 points by DKAtoday (33690) from Coon Rapids, MN 5 years ago

[-] 8675309 points by DKAtoday (8675309) from Coon Rapids, MN

Cant get change if you arent willing to put yourself out there.

Is that a self help mantra you are working on? Well good for you. Perhaps someday it will actually help you. Stick with it.

[+] -5 points by borealis (-5) 5 years ago

Why the big point total under the puny point total?

[-] 2 points by DKAtoday (33690) from Coon Rapids, MN 5 years ago

[-] 8675309 points by DKAtoday (8675309) from Coon Rapids, MN

Laughing at an obsessed shill.

[-] 0 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

It's the phone number to a phone sex service!

Sex workers need work/business, too!

Support American Labor!

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 5 years ago

thanks for the horse

[-] -2 points by Sybill (-9) 5 years ago

Power to Part time America!

[-] 2 points by shoozTroll (17632) 5 years ago


Such a poignant comment must have taken you hours to put together.

I'm sure it will take you a lifetime to explain it.

So have a nice one.

See you in 40years

[-] 1 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

Laura Ingraham Celebrates March On Washington 50th Anniversary With Gunshots And Race-Baiting

Blog ››› August 26, 2013 12:55 PM EDT ››› BRIAN POWELL

Conservative radio host and Fox News contributor Laura Ingraham attacked the speakers at the 50th anniversary of Martin Luther King, Jr.'s "I Have A Dream" speech, at one point using the sound of a gunshot to cut off a sound bite of civil rights leader Rep. John Lewis (D-GA) -- a man whose skull was infamously fractured by a state trooper on "Bloody Sunday" in Selma, AL, in 1965. Ingraham used the speech's anniversary to race-bait about black-on-white crime statistics and hosted Pat Buchanan to bemoan the idea that minorities face any higher level of adversity in America 50 years later.

CONTINUED: http://mediamatters.org/blog/2013/08/26/laura-ingraham-celebrates-march-on-washington-5/195590

[-] 1 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

Rush Limbaugh Displays Ignorance On Motivations Of Civil Rights Movement

Blog ››› August 29, 2013 1:48 PM EDT ››› ANDREW LAWRENCE

Rush Limbaugh's ignorance over the civil rights movement was on full display as he claimed that the movement was "about one thing - and that was integration."

On his radio program, Limbaugh attempted to draw distinctions between the 1963 March on Washington and the event's 50th anniversary. Limbaugh claimed he intended to ignore the anniversary celebrations but said "if you want to sum up what's really wrong with all this, Martin Luther King Jr. and the civil rights coalition of his era was about one thing - and that was integration":

Limbaugh's analysis of the civil rights movement shows a shocking disinterest in the breadth of what the activists of that era were fighting for.

The title of the 1963 march was the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom. The final manual for the march included a list of demands which included topics not limited to integration. Topics such as an increase in the minimum wage, a broadened Fair Labor Standards Act, and a federal Fair Employment Practices Act to bar discrimination by employers, both public and private, were listed among the demands of the marchers:

CONTINUED: http://mediamatters.org/blog/2013/08/29/rush-limbaugh-displays-ignorance-on-motivations/195669

[-] 1 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

A comeback for labor [?]

By E.J. Dionne Jr., Published: September 1

Could this Labor Day mark the comeback of movements for workers’ rights and a turn toward innovation and a new militancy on behalf of wage-earners?

Suggesting this is not the same as a foolish and romantic optimism that foresees an instant union revival. What’s actually happening is more interesting.

Precisely because no one in organized labor expects the proportion of private-sector workers in their ranks to rise sharply anytime soon, unions, workers themselves and others who believe that too many Americans receive low wages are finding new ways to address long-standing grievances.

At play here is “Stein’s Law,” named after the late conservative economist Herb Stein, who shrewdly declared: “If something cannot go on forever, it will stop.” The steadily declining share of our economy that goes to wages is one of those things.

As New York Times labor writer Steve Greenhouse has noted, until 1975, “wages nearly always accounted for more than 50 percent of our nation’s GDP.” But in 2012 they fell to a record low of 43.5 percent. Those who make the economic engine run are receiving less of what they produce. And it’s not because employees aren’t working harder, or smarter. From 1973 to 2011, according to the Economic Policy Institute, employee productivity grew by 80.4 percent while median hourly compensation after inflation grew by just 10.7 percent.

CONTINUED: http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/ej-dionne-jr-new-life-for-labor/2013/09/01/02401384-1199-11e3-bdf6-e4fc677d94a1_story.html

[-] 1 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

Comrade Santorum says that workers are all the same Monday, August 12, 2013 | http://www.prairie2.com/

There is no middle class in American according to former Senator Rick Santorum. "Don't use the term the other side uses. What does Barack Obama talk about all the time? The middle class," Santorum said at a fundraiser in Iowa. "Since when in America do we have classes? Since when in America are people stuck in areas or defined places called a class? That's Marxism talk."

He blathered on, "When Republicans get up and talk about middle class, we're buying into their rhetoric of dividing America. Stop it. There's no class in America. Call them on it." No word on how much this confused his middle class audience.

Where do you start with a guy this dumb? Saying everybody is exactly the same is MARXISM. Never mind that Santorum has always used the term 'middle class' himself. He seems to think that when Democrats use the term 'middle class' that it's some sort of lower caste designation, you know like 'untouchables' or 'the 47%' also labeled by the Republicans as 'takers'.

The question, is this classless society a new Republican meme, or just Santorum getting all frothy again? Has the 'middle class' ceased to be part of the Republican base, or do they think they can actually convince their brain dead followers that there is a country club pass waiting for them at the guard house of the gated community. The place behind high walls with armed guards that the people who aren't in the 'middle class' really do live.

The average High School graduate can hope to make close to $1 million in his lifetime. Somebody with a bachelor's degree can earn close to $2.5 million if they can find a job that still pays those wages, and they don't end up working at Best Buy. For somebody in the 'class' of people that Rick Santorum answers to, $2.5 m is the monthly expense account.

He's right in the sense that the middle class is rapidly disappearing. For millions of Americans it happened suddenly: the job goes to China, the pension gets stolen gets by a Private Equity firm, and then they borrow to pay for expensive retraining to get a job they can't make a living on, and often this repeated 4 or 5 times.

For most formerly Middle Class Americans the frog boiled slowly. Wages may have stayed the same while benefits were eliminated, but inflation has tripled the cost of everything over the past 30 years while many things that are needed to have a middle class lifestyle, like healthcare and college have gone from cheap to dearly expensive. The number of jobs per household has gone from 1.1 to close to two just to keep them at the dismal place they are at.

Median household income has declined to $45,000 per year when it should be $90,000 per year to claim the middle class share of productivity gains. This is the face of austerity, there is no middle class, everybody is poor. The 'poor folks' in the gated community just burn through a lifetime of income each month, because you know times are hard. Twitter @BruceEnberg we're all equal on twitter comrade

[+] -4 points by TropicalDepression (-45) 5 years ago

I was very happy to see that moron glitter bombed last year at this time.

[-] 1 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

That was funny, but the Unicorn Chasers thought that was horrifying waste of precious glitter.

Man-on-dog Santorum just has the religion to say what the GOP believes.

[+] -5 points by TropicalDepression (-45) 5 years ago

No, the "unicorn chasers" or occupiers as most like to call them, loved it.

I know a couple here that did it quite well.

[-] 1 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

There you go again trying to claim everything as yours like a GOPer.

[+] -6 points by TropicalDepression (-45) 5 years ago

Im not claiming its mine, Im just giving you an example of being wrong.

Last I knew you claimed I was a unicorn chaser.

Has that changed? Would you like to argue all night over unicorns?

I'm sure shooz would love to jump in, he's all riled up over there frothing at the mouth after that man on dog comment haha.

jk shooz.

[-] 0 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

That's the Twerk's nick name, see Rachel Maddow for explanation, from the Air America Radio days when she worked with... Kent Jones(?).

[-] 0 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

VIDEO: Robert Reich On Labor Day

With Labor Day weekend just past, Robert Reich, the former Secretary of Labor during the Clinton Administration, has a quick break down of what's needed in America to help workers get their fair share:


Professor Reich also wants you get involved - by signing his petition, calling on the CEOs of McDonald’s and Walmart to pay their workers fair wages.

Sign the petition - http://petitions.moveon.org/sign/mcdonalds-and-walmart - and help strengthen labor this Labor Day!

Read more: http://www.randirhodes.com/articles/headlines-393046/video-robert-reich-on-labor-day-11617132/#ixzz2e4TI7gj0

Protesting Activists' Firings, Walmart Workers Plan the Biggest Mobilization Since Black Friday http://www.thenation.com/blog/175995/protesting-activists-firings-walmart-workers-plan-biggest-mobilization-black-friday#

Low-Wage Employers Have Fought Hard to Keep Their Workers Poor — Now Workers are Fighting Back

September 4, 2013 | by Joshua Holland

After decades of seeing their incomes shrink [& jobs downsized or off-shored], those at the bottom of the economic ladder are starting to band together and fight back — and it’s one of the most important economic stories of our time.

Between 1973 and 2011, the top 10 percent of American households saw their inflation-adjusted incomes rise by almost $100,000, while the bottom 90 percent – the vast majority of us –actually saw their incomes drop by $4,425 per year, according to economists Emmanuel Saez and Thomas Piketty (XLS). During that time, pensions largely disappeared, and the costs of health care and education shot through the roof. http://billmoyers.com/2013/09/04/low-wage-employers-have-fought-hard-to-keep-their-workers-poor-now-workers-are-fighting-back/

One In Seven American Families Faces Food Insecurity http://thinkprogress.org/economy/2013/09/04/2572141/american-families-food-insecurity/

[-] 0 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

Eleven Other Things American Workers Deserve (Besides A Day Off)

By ThinkProgress on September 2, 2013 at 9:25 am

Labor Day is meant to celebrate the accomplishments of the American worker, who spends most days on an oil rig or in an office, on the assembly line or on the docks, making the American economy run. The holiday originated in 1894, after two dozen people were killed during the Pullman Strike, a railway workers’ boycott of low wages and high rent. From there, it became an American tradition, meant to honor the accomplishments of the people who make this nation run.

In observance of the holiday, ThinkProgress will be taking the day off. But while we will be celebrating the many accomplishments of laborers in this nation and around the world, we’ll also remember that the battle is not yet won. Unions are on the decline, while income inequality is on the rise. Women still aren’t earning what men make. And many employees still aren’t free from discrimination at their jobs.

Here are just eleven of the fights we’re still fighting for the American worker:

  1. Paid sick leave (CONTINUED:) http://thinkprogress.org/politics/2013/09/02/2533981/labor-day-1/
[-] 0 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

Party It Up On Labor Day—Because Your Summer Fun Is About to End

For 120 years, Labor Day has been the red-headed stepchild of holidays. As glamorous as the guy with a shovel following a mule in a parade.

August 31, 2013 | Will Durst

Hey, it’s Labor Day, everybody. Woo- hoo. Okay, we’re partying now. Throw your arms in the air and wave them like you just don’t care. Blow up some balloons. Tap a keg. Rip open a bag of chips. Because this isn’t a champagne and caviar kind of thing. This is the very definition of blue collar. If collars be worn at all.

It was 1894 when Labor Day first punched into work. Grover Cleveland signed it into law 6 days after the end of the Pullman Strike during which federal troops killed more than 30 strikers. Cynics saw it as a kind of make- up sex between the government and the American worker. Well, flowers and candy anyhow.

The first Monday of September was specifically picked to bridge the long holiday gap between 4th of July and Thanksgiving and to get as far away from May Day as possible. In the late 19th Century, labor unions were one thing, but Communists were a horse of a different color.

For 120 years, Labor Day has been the red-headed stepchild of holidays. As glamorous as the guy with a shovel following a mule in a parade. Something you roll out to get Child Protective Services off your butt. “Look, we gave you an entire day, now give it a rest, would you? What do you want, cake?”

Goldilocks would have loved Labor Day. Not too hot. Not too cold. Less incendiary than Easter and Christmas, but with a decidedly higher thermal print than the International Talk Like a Pirate Day; fast approaching on September 19. Hard to believe its time to dig out the eye patch, wooden leg and Jolly Roger. Again. Already.

Because of Labor Day’s peculiar calendar placement, it has morphed into not so much a celebration as a seasonal signal flag. Here lies the tired, dried- up body of summer. Time to roll up the garden hose and recharge the snow blower. Bury the swimsuits and exhume the parkas. Watermelon smoothies give way to pumpkin lattes. Weenie roasts on the back deck- no. Tailgating in a dirt parking lot- yes.

The lazy hazy days are over and school and football have kicked off. And this holiday Monday is but one final chance to party in the long light. Meanwhile, the significance of what we’re commemorating has gotten lost in a last gasp blast of beer, baseball and barbecue.

Labor Day is meant to be a day we set aside to honor not the dead, but the living. Our workforce. One single day off so the real nine to five heroes that keep this country humming can hang with their families and friends before squaring their shoulders and getting back to the job of earning a living and carving out the future. And maybe one day at a theme park on someone’s 10thbirthday without having to take out a second mortgage.

It’s a day to catch our breath. To celebrate the contributions of all of America’s working folk. From the floor of the stock exchange to the stockroom of Amazon. To recognize the pistons that keep the engine of this country pumping along. And no need to bring gifts, although that whole flowers and candy thing is never a bad idea. And maybe some chips and beer and what the hell… cake. Who doesn’t like cake?

Catch 5 time Emmy nominee, Will Durst’s new one- man show “BoomeRaging: From LSD to OMG” every Tuesday until November, at the Marsh, San Francisco. Go to… themarsh.org for more info. Or willdurst.com.

Will Durst is a political comic, syndicated columnist, AM radio talk show host and defense liability. His new e- book “Elect to Laugh!” published by Hyperink is now available at Redroom.com.

[-] 0 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

This Is a Day That Belongs to You

September 02, 2013

Labor Day is a day that belongs to you, the working men and women of America. It's a day when we recommit ourselves to the idea that everyone who works hard in this country has a chance to get ahead. This Labor Day, take a moment to watch the President talk about why the celebration of this holiday is so important and how he's fighting for a better bargain for the middle class.

Labor Day

As a nation, we celebrate Labor Day to recommit ourselves each year to the idea that everyone who works hard in America has a chance to get ahead.

It's a goal that motivates President Obama every single day. It's why he's fighting for a better bargain for the middle class.

Getting ahead means a good education and a home of your own. It means health care when you get sick and a secure retirement even if you’re not rich. Above all else, it means a good job that pays a good wage.

So this Labor Day, take a moment to watch President Obama talk about why this holiday is so important, then share it with your friends:


[-] 0 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

You spend a big part of your life at work.

Don't you deserve a fair treatment and the chance to work up to your full potential?


[-] -1 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

What Should You Be Earning?

Posted August 30, 2013 at 1:56 pm by Elise Gould

In honor of Labor Day, we made a little tool—based on our project inequality.is—that shows how much you would be making if wages had kept pace with productivity, a key indicator of an economy working for all.

Labor Day is more than just a holiday for us at SEIU.

Every year we celebrate workers and acknowledge the hard fought victories of the past.

But this Labor Day, we also recognize that we are far from done. For far too many in this country, service work means living in or near poverty. Workers are more productive than ever, but aren’t getting their fair share.

What could YOU be making if wages had grown with productivity? http://www.epi.org/blog/your-pay/

The good news is that workers and organizations recognize that this needs to be fixed. Last week, thousands of fast food workers went on strike in more than 1,000 stores across the country to call for higher wages. They’re not alone; this summer also saw historic strike actions by Walmart and warehouse workers.

This Labor Day, we are strongly supporting workers who are making their voices heard. It hurts ALL of us when companies hold down wages and take away benefits. Labor Day is much more than a long weekend. It’s a reminder of solidarity and a chance to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with struggling workers.

Find out what your current salary should be and share with friends and family. http://www.epi.org/blog/your-pay/

Remember that when low-wage workers stand up, they are standing up for everyone.

In solidarity,

Mary Kay Henry


[-] 0 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

Oil & Gas Industry Has The Most Worker Deaths

Posted on August 26, 2013 by Alisha Mims • Ring of Fire

Worker deaths in the oil and gas production industry reached a record high last year, according to new, preliminary data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The number of fatalities in the oil and gas extraction category totaled 138 in 2012.

According to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), from 2003 to 2010, the oil and gas extraction industry, onshore and offshore combined, had a collective fatality rate seven times higher than that of all US workers – 27.1 compared to 3.8 deaths per 100,000 workers. During that time, all but one of 128 oil and gas industry workplace deaths occurred in the Gulf of Mexico.

This month, the Energy Information Administration reported that employment in the oil and natural gas industry increased by 40 percent from the beginning of 2007 though the end of 2012, as production increased (compared to one percent for the total private sector during the same period). But, as the 2010 BP Deepwater Horizon disaster highlights, the industry has a reputation for cutting corners and a lack of concern for safety.

In response to the increase in oil and gas workplace deaths, Labor Secretary Thomas Perez issued a statement saying, “We can and must do better. Job gains in oil and gas construction have come with more fatalities, and that is unacceptable.”

The oil and gas industry has a long history of putting profits before safety. Instances like BP’s Texas City Refinery explosion, which killed 15 workers and injured 170, and their 2010 oil spill that killed 11 workers, decreased the quality of life for Gulf Coast residents of five states, and poisoned countless marine life are well-known, severe cases, but are certainly not anomalies.

Since 2009, for example, at least 11 oilfield employees have lost their lives working for drilling companies in the Eagle Ford Shale counties in Southern Texas. According to a report by mySA, those employees “suffered horrific deaths that could have been prevented, according to OSHA investigations.”

Last year, drilling permits in the Eagle Ford Shale region surged to over 4,100. OSHA has completed 35 fatality investigations in Texas for the oil and gas industry since 2009, but the report states that the total number of worker deaths is likely higher due to the fact that OSHA’s recent investigations are not available to the public.

MySA reports that 40 oil and gas workers were killed in transportation accidents on public roads in Texas from 2009 to 2011; however, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) does not investigate transportation accidents on public roads.

According to Michael Rivera, area director for OSHA’s Corpus Christi office, many employers frequently cut safety corners. “There are those who kind of hurry, maybe take a shortcut. Not to hurt or kill anybody. But time is money, right?” Rivera told mySA.

OSHA has been known to cut fines for safety violations. Initial fines against all the companies responsible for the 11 Eagle Ford Shale fatalities amounted to an average of $10,900 per worker death. OSHA eventually cut the penalties by nearly 45 percent, to $6,100. But you can’t put a price on life, and certainly, to many large corporations like oil and gas companies, fines are unsubstantial in relation to revenue.

“Is it a deterrent?” Rivera asked, referring to OSHA-imposed fines for safety violations. “I would say, if the penalty is not a deterrent, sometimes the violations themselves could be a deterrent to a lot of employers,” he told mySA.

Alisha is a writer and researcher with Ring of Fire. Follow her on Twitter @childoftheearth.

[-] -1 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago
[-] -1 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

Higher wages can save America’s economy — and its democracy

Wage increases improve living standards and ensure a political system whose monied interests are kept in check ~ AHEM!!!

By Robert Reich | Tuesday, Sep 3, 2013 11:12 AM PST

Congress will reconvene shortly. That means more battles over taxes and spending, regulations and safety nets, and how to get the economy out of first gear. Which means more gridlock and continual showdowns over budget resolutions and the debt ceiling.

But before the hostilities start again and we all get lost in puerile politics and petty tactics, it’s useful to consider what’s really at stake for our economy and democracy.

For much of the past century, the basic bargain at the heart of America was that employers paid their workers enough to buy what American employers were selling. Government’s role was to encourage and enforce this bargain. We thereby created a virtuous cycle of higher living standards, more jobs, and better wages. And a democracy that worked reasonably well.

But the bargain has been broken. And until it’s remade, the economy can’t mend and our democracy won’t be responsive to the majority.

First, a bit of history. Back in 1914, Henry Ford announced he was paying workers on his Model T assembly line $5 a day – three times what the typical factory employee earned at the time. The Wall Street Journal termed his action “an economic crime.”

But Ford knew it was a cunning business move. The higher wage turned Ford’s auto workers into customers who could afford to buy Model T’s. In two years Ford’s profits more than doubled.

Yet in the years leading up to the Great Crash of 1929, employers forgot Henry Ford’s example. The wages of most American workers stagnated even as the economy surged. Gains went mainly into corporate profits and into the pockets of the very rich. American families maintained their standard of living by going deeper into debt, and the rich gambled with their gigantic winnings. In 1929 the debt bubble popped.

Sound familiar? It should. The same thing happened in the years leading up to the crash of 2008. The lesson should be obvious. When the economy becomes too lopsided – disproportionately benefiting corporate owners and top executives rather than average workers – it tips over.

It’s still lopsided. We’re emerging from the depths of the worst downturn since the Great Depression but nothing fundamentally has changed. Corporate profits are up largely because payrolls are down. Even Ford Motor Company is now paying its new hires half what it paid new employees a few years ago.

Employee pay is now down to the smallest share of the economy since the government began collecting wage and salary data sixty years ago; and corporate profits, the largest share.

CONTINUED: http://www.salon.com/2013/09/03/higher_wages_can_save_americas_economy_and_its_democracy_partner/?source=newsletter

[-] -1 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

U.S. Workers Still Haven't Shaken the Job Worries of 2009

Worry about being laid off has increased most for the low-income

by Lydia Saad | Gallup | September 2, 2013

PRINCETON, NJ -- Nearly five years since the start of the global financial crisis that spurred up to 10% unemployment in 2009 and an associated spike in job worries among U.S. workers, employed Americans continue to express elevated concerns about their job security. Workers' worries about having their benefits and wages reduced, their hours cut back, and being laid off surged between 2008 and 2009, and time has not alleviated these concerns.

CONTINUED: http://www.gallup.com/poll/164222/workers-haven-shaken-job-worries-2009.aspx

[-] -1 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

The Audacity of the Fight for Higher Wages

By JARED BERNSTEIN | August 30, 2013, 2:35 pm

I was struck Thursday by the juxtaposition of two stories in the news (two and half, really).

First, the banks had another banner quarter in terms of profits, up $42 billion, or 23 percent from last year. News reports emphasized lower loan losses, meaning the banks had to mark down or charge off fewer nonperforming loans. That increases the share of their capital that they can put to work spinning off profits, something they are very good at.

A classic case of it takes money to make money.

At the other end of the economy were the striking fast-food workers, calling for an increase in their pay to $15 an hour (the average for these workers is around $9, up from $8.66 in 2009).

I also noted — this is the half-a-report I mentioned above — that in the upward revision to second-quarter gross domestic product that came out on Thursday, corporate profits were again up near record highs as a share of national income while compensation fell again and is now at the lowest share it has been since the year I was born (1955 — ancient history, I know). CONTINUED: http://economix.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/08/30/the-audacity-of-the-fight-for-higher-wages/?_r=0

[-] -1 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

The Magical World Where McDonald's Pays $15 an Hour? It's Australia

Even in countries with a high minimum wage, the golden arches manage to turn a profit. Here's how.

Jordan Weissmann Aug 5 2013, 2:26 PM ET

Last week, fast-food workers around the United States yet again walked off the job to protest their low pay and demand a wage hike to $15 an hour, about double what many of them earn today. In doing so, they added another symbolic chapter to an eight-month-old campaign of one-day strikes that, so far, has yielded lots of news coverage, but not much in terms of tangible results.

So there's a certain irony that in Australia, where the minimum wage for full-time adult workers already comes out to about $14.50 an hour, McDonald's staffers were busy scoring an actual raise. On July 24, the country's Fair Work Commission approved a new labor agreement between the company and its employees guaranteeing them up to a 15 percent pay increase by 2017.

And here's the kicker: Many Australian McDonald's workers were already making more than the minimum to begin with.

CONTINUED: http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2013/08/the-magical-world-where-mcdonalds-pays-15-an-hour-its-australia/278313/

[-] -1 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

Massive Nationwide Walkout By Fast-Food Workers Signals Growing Backlash Against Low-Wage Employers

The corporate mainstays of the industry have a rebellion in their kitchens and dining rooms that’s not going away.

August 29, 2013 | AlterNet / By Steven Rosenfeld, Jodie Gummow

Thousands of fast-food workers in 60 cities from coast to coast walked off their jobs Thursday in an escalating nationwide protest. Strikers are seeking raises to $15 an hour, paid sick leave and the right to unionize America’s second-biggest employer, the restaurant industry, which is predicting its 2013 profits will “reach a record high of $660.5 billion.”

“This is not a cause, this is a movement,” said Letitia James, Working Families Party elected member of the City Council and a candidate for Public Advocate, speaking at a Union Square rally. “This is about economic justice... They [owners] would like you to believe that fast-food workers are primarily teenagers. They are not. They are primarily women with children who are struggling to make ends met. So this is about economic justice. We are here to honor the legacy of Dr. King to stand with fast-food workers who are only demanding $15 and a union.”

“We organized the strike,” said Shantelle Walker, a McDonald’s employee who walked out in New York. “We want to let America know that we need a union and we need $15 an hour.”

The corporate mainstays of the industry, from fast-food giants like McDonald’s to full-service chains such as Olive Garden and Red Lobster, have a rebellion in their kitchens and dining rooms that’s not going away. Thursday’s walkouts—which were joined by poorly paid workers at retail and drug chains—represent a new strategy of publicly shaming low-wage, low-benefit employers.

CONTINUED: http://www.alternet.org/labor/massive-nationwide-walkout-fast-food-workers-signals-growing-backlash-against-low-wage?paging=off

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 5 years ago

that's good news

[-] -1 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

Hoyer Statement on Labor Day

WASHINGTON, DC – House Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer (MD) released the following statement today in recognition of Labor Day:

“As our recovery continues, let us never forget that the strength of our economy depends on the skill and dedication of our workers, who remain the most productive in the world. American workers’ determination and innovation add value to our businesses and make our economy more competitive around the world.

“In marking this Labor Day, we ought to remember that American workers did not always have the protections that have ensured that hard work leads to opportunity. The movement for workers’ rights and workplace safety, which led to laws against child labor, instituted a minimum wage, and brought about protections against unsafe work practices, has made our nation stronger and helped us make the promise of the American Dream a reality for more of our people. But there is still much work ahead. The minimum wage ought to be raised, and Congress ought to take additional steps to make sure a woman does not earn less than a man for performing the same job.

“House Democrats’ Make It In America plan for jobs and competitiveness, which focuses on growing our manufacturing sector and putting more Americans back to work, will invest in training and securing a twenty-first century workforce. By helping our students prepare for college and careers, and by helping those out of work – including veterans with important skills – get the training they need to re-enter the workforce, we can help more of our people access the middle-class opportunities that a good job provides. I will continue to push for Make It In America legislation in Congress, and I will continue to stand up in defense of workers and the protections they have earned.”

[-] -1 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

It is the Fault of Congress People Can’t Find Jobs

Posted on August 27, 2013 by Guest Blogger • Ring of Fire

By: Richard Andrew

Most people would say that the country’s jobless rate started improving around the beginning of 2010, in spite of Congress’s obstructionism. A recent Huffington Post article, Unemployment Rate Falls To 7.4 Percent Thanks Partly To Low-Wage Jobs, reported than, “The unemployment rate fell to 7.4 percent as 162,000 more Americans had jobs in July, the U.S. Labor Department announced Friday.” That statistic seems very promising, but what about all those people who have become the long-term employed, looking for a job for more than six months?

According to Bryce Covert, in his article, It’s Not The Fault Of The Long-Term Unemployed That They Can’t Find Jobs, “More than four million people have been unemployed for 27 weeks or longer, putting them in the category of the long-term unemployed, and they make up nearly 40 percent of all people who are out of work but seeking a new job.”

Corvert goes on to say, “Perhaps the biggest difference, however, is that those who have been looking for a job for more than six months are typically much older than those who just lost their jobs. About 15 percent of the long-term unemployed are ages 56 to 65, but just 8 percent of those who have been out of work for under five weeks are that age.”

However, the report notes that given how similar the long-term unemployed look to all other workers, what they really need is an improved job market and policies that would lower the unemployment rate overall.

Niraj Chokshi’s article, 6 Ways to Get the Long-Term Unemployed Back to Work, seems to have some solutions. It’s more than what our “just say not” Congress has given. Here are five:

Economic growth: It may seem surprising , but the surest way to supply jobs to those out of work whether it long-term or not, is to improve the economy.

Tax incentives: One way to encourage reluctant employers to hire those who have been out of work the longest is to give them a tax incentive to do it. Something similar already exists. In January, President Obama signed into law an extension of the Returning Heroes Tax Credit, which included an up to $5,600 incentive for hiring veterans who have been out of work six months or longer. In his 2011 American Jobs Act, President Obama proposed a similar credit of up to $4,000 for employers who hire the long-term unemployed broadly.

Trial employment programs: Hiring someone, anyone, is a risk. A trial employment program can eliminate that risk by funding a short stint with a local employer for a jobless individual. If the employer likes the work, they can hire the person full-time.

Direct hiring into government jobs: If the government wants to reduce the number of long-term unemployed, it could simply prioritize hiring them, as Hassett suggested.

Focus on skills training and education: “Good jobs with a solid future are growing,” Johnson said, “but they often require the jobseeker to take a risk and change careers. To lessen the risk, we have had great success in providing month-long pre-vocational ‘Career Academies’ for adults who are looking to move into Health Care, Advanced Manufacturing or Alternative Energy.” “Good jobs with a solid future are growing,” Johnson said.

If we understand a problem and have solutions to solve the problem, it seems to the average citizen that we should be able to fix the problem. The last election, so many politicians, from both sides of the isle, promised “The most important thing I will do if elected, is solve the jobs issue and bring the unemployment rate below five percent.”

There was a clear mandate by the voters to do just that. Then, as soon as the election was over everything was done by the Republican backed Tea Party, to make sure jobs were not Congress’s main priority. What do we have to do to make jobs the number one priority when this Congress gets back from their “much needed “ recess? We can’t expect anything before the midterm elections from this do nothing obstructionist group of Republicans.

Richard Andrew is a guest blogger for Ring of Fire.



[-] -1 points by WSmith (2698) from Cornelius, OR 5 years ago

Let's petition Greeting Card companies to make a Labor Day card!! A variety!