Category Archives: unions

Unsolicited Advice for a Police Union

Rockwell cops I write this from the perspective of a former public sector union member and officer. I write this without rancor for other public section union members and their officials, but I write this because there is a difficult line to walk between protecting the interests of the membership and drawing lines between the members and the communities they serve.  Once those lines are drawn they are very difficult to erase.

There is always a temptation on the union side of the ledger to focus  on protecting the individual member from disciplinary actions, from demotions, involuntary transfers, dismissals, or refusals to re-employ.  That’s part of the job.  However, some disciplinary actions are both appropriate to the situation and often inevitable. Therefore, the focus of the union representatives is more productive in the long run if the philosophy is to protect the due process rights of the member, and the provisions of the master contract.  Put ever so much more bluntly, there are times when it’s necessary to tell a member, “I’m here to help you offer the best defense you can, if you can dream one up.”  

What is not helpful is to operate on the assumption that every member (or non-member in some instances) is worthy of full throated public support.  Nor is it helpful to assume that criticism of one, or a few, is necessarily criticism and vilification for all.    Yet, that seems to be the standard operation in a few high profile union/community examples.

“The St Louis Police Officers Association claimed that officers found the actions of (St. Louis Rams) Tavon Austin, Stedman Bailey, Kenny Britt, Jared Cook, Chris Givens and Tre Mason to be “tasteless, offensive and inflammatory”, and demanded that they be disciplined.

Five of the players emerged for their game against the Oakland Raiders on Sunday with their hands aloft, a gesture used by protesters who claim that Brown was surrendering when he was shot dead by officer Darren Wilson on 9 August. Last week a grand jury decided not to indict Wilson.” [Guardian] December 1, 2014

Wouldn’t it be nice if ALL police officers, firefighters, teachers, nurses, aviation employees, letter carriers, and state and municipal employees were respected for the countless hours of service they provide?  If everyone understood that first responder vocations are of paramount importance? If everyone understood that teaching and nursing are high stress occupations with long hours and little overtime?  However, respect doesn’t necessarily indicate adoration, reverence, and exaltation.   Further, demanding veneration means there will be higher standards applied to the members of the organization.  The old line applies: If you want to be respected do your job; if you want to be worshipped you have to do your job perfectly.

Mix a bit of racial tension into this toxic stew and there’s a recipe for unhelpful recrimination.  

“Pat Lynch, president of the Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association, blasted de Blasio for his inflammatory remarks, which followed Wednesday’s decision by a Staten Island grand jury not to indict cop Daniel Pantaleo in the chokehold death of Eric Garner.

“What police officers felt yesterday after that press conference was that they were thrown under the bus,” Lynch said.

De Blasio had called the Garner case “profoundly personal for me,” saying that because of “the dangers [Dante] may face, we’ve had to literally train him . . . in how to take special care in any encounter he has with the police officers who are there to protect him.” [NYPost] December 4, 2015

That a father would have The Talk with his son about interactions with police officers is common in the African American community.  I have yet to meet an African American who hasn’t been followed in a department store at least once, or hasn’t had The Talk with a son, grandson, or nephew.  Yes, The Talk implies a negative perception of the police, but an essential part of The Talk is to show respect for the officer and the directions given.  No one is getting tossed under the wheels of any imaginary bus – this is simply generational wisdom passed along regarding how to cope with some people in authority.  There are also  Talks about how to cope with cranky teachers, or how to behave in a department store.  These same talks are replicated in the white community, although without the sense of urgency and fear.  “Respect your teachers, respect police officers, keep you nose clean and mind your manners.”  Aren’t those things what we want all kids to do?

When the dust settles, let it settle. The outcome of mediation, arbitration, or litigation may not be the desired outcome for the union, but once it’s done it should probably “stay done.”  Such as in the case of the Eric Garner settlement in New York:

“Sergeants Benevolent Association head Ed Mullins, meanwhile, had a different take. In an interview with the NY Post (who else?), Mullins described the settlement as “obscene” and “shameful,” asking the tabloid’s readers, “Where is the justice for New York taxpayers? Where is the consistency in the civil system? In my view, the city has chosen to abandon its fiscal responsibility to all of its citizens and genuflect to the select few who curry favor with the city government.” [Translation: AL SHARPTON AL SHARPTON AL SHARPTON.] [Also: AL SHARPTON.]

“Mr. Garner’s family should not be rewarded simply because he repeatedly chose to break the law and resist arrest,” Mullins concluded. (Police claim Garner had been selling loose cigarettes outside a Staten Island deli when officers approached him.)” [Gothamist]  July 14, 2015

Or, in the case of Tamir Rice’s family in Cleveland:

“The head of the Cleveland rank-and-file police union says the family of 12-year-old Tamir Rice should use money from a $6 million settlement to educate children about the use of look-alike firearms.

Steve Loomis, the president of the Cleveland Police Patrolman’s Association association, was criticized on a national scale for statements he made to the media in the weeks and months after two officers in his union were involved in Tamir’s death.” [Cleveland PDealer] April 25, 2016

When enough has been said, enough has been said.  Until it happens again —

“Four off-duty Minneapolis police officers working the Minnesota Lynx game at Target Center on Saturday night walked off the job after the players held a news conference denouncing racial profiling, then wore Black Lives Matter pregame warm-up jerseys.  Lynx players did not wear T-shirts supporting the Black Lives Matter movement ahead of Tuesday’s game in San Antonio.

“The Lynx organization was made aware about the concerns of the off duty Minneapolis police officers,” the team said in a statement. “While our players message mourned the loss of life due to last week’s shootings, we respect the right of those individual officers to express their own beliefs in their own way. … We continue to urge a constructive discussion about the issues raised by these tragedies.” [MSTrib]


“Kroll (Minneapolis Police Federation) criticized Lynx players, citing the “false narratives” in the past two years in which some allegations of police misconduct in the killing of black people were refuted. “Rushing to judgment  Police sign up for off-duty jobs to work Lynx games, Kroll said. “They can start or stop a job whenever they want,” he said. “They are working on an independent contract.”

Asked about a report that seven or eight officers had walked off the job, Kroll said, “They only have four officers working the event because the Lynx have such a pathetic draw.” [MSTrib]

Here we go again.  Lt. Bob Kroll commends the officers for walking off, and then slathers on a bit of misogyny about the “pathetic draw.”  Putting distance between your union and your community doesn’t serve most positive purposes – in terms of  issues both philosophical and practical.

On a philosophical level, if we assume  there is already a divide between the African American community and the police – how does walking away from a potential opportunity for “constructive discussion” help anyone? What of, “I protect and defend your rights, including freedom of speech, until you say something I find offensive?” From a practical standpoint, the Lynx organization already hires private security; does it help other police officers trying to earn  extra pay if they are perceived as potential ‘walk outs’ should they be in any way offended by players’ statements?   The police chief tried to tamp down the rhetoric:

“Walking off the job and defaulting on their contractual obligation to provide a service to the Lynx does not conform to the expectations held by the public for the uniform these officers wear,” she said. “While I do not condone the actions of the officers, I realize how every member of law enforcement throughout this country, including myself, is feeling right now.” [MSTrib]

Here’s a thought: When the employer is trying to smooth the waters for the union, there’s a possible need to curtail wave making actions.  There are already calls for the privatization of police  [HuffPo] popular in some libertarian quarters, and touted as a ‘solution’ to police/community relations.  If your opponent wants to make a cudgel, refrain from handing him a tree branch.   Or a tree trunk, as in Denver:

“It’s only natural that some police departments reassess how they handle protests after the terrible shootings in Dallas last week that left five officers dead. But the demand by the Denver police union in the wake of the tragedy that local cops wear riot gear during protests was truculent and out of line.

The union has been pushing for the use of riot gear at protests for two years, ever since demonstrations in Ferguson, Mo., spread across the country. But the tone adopted by Nick Rogers, president of the Denver Police Protective Association, in a letter to Mayor Michael Hancock and police Chief Robert White, was rude and combative, while some of its factual content was questionable.

Basically, Rogers warned those two officials that if any officer not wearing riot gear is injured during a protest, the union will attempt to hold them personally liable, citing federal court decisions that “officials can be liable for the acts of third parties where those officials ‘created the danger’ that caused the harm.” Presumably he means the union will sue the mayor and chief in an effort to blame them.” [DenverPost]

There’s also something to be said for an employer who is trying to maintain the public image of police as public servants and not an armed militia out to suppress citizens, some of whom are already reluctant to give the police the benefit of the doubt.

Highly publicized emotional comments in highly volatile times, too often made from intransigent positions predicated on “us vs. them,” may garner approval from some quarters but approbation from others.   It’s best to function from the position that there are those who will always be in support no matter what the issue; however, it’s the increasing level of approbation which ought to be of primary concern.  Listening to supporters is always comforting; listening to the adversaries is always necessary.  On a more tangible level one thing the police unions would do well to avoid is the perception (now conveniently applied to public school teachers) that the union will protect the “bad apples.”

The recent devolution of respect for the teaching profession includes the argument that “schools are bad, they are bad because of bad teachers, and unions are bad because they protect those bad teachers.”  That none of this makes any sense isn’t the point. We certainly don’t need for some elements in the political spectrum to start arguing that “policing is bad, it’s bad because of bad officers, and the unions are bad because they protect those bad officers.”  Once this contamination spreads it’s more difficult to resist the privatization proponents.

If the perspective is truly to defend the due process rights of police officers, and to protect the provisions of the master contracts, then it’s much easier to defuse confrontations.  Due process and contractual elements aren’t personal.  Personalizing them adds emotion, emotion reduces discourse, and reduced discourse increases confrontations.  Negotiations are rarely improved by adding confrontation into the milieu. There is, indeed, a time for more collaboration and less conflict.

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Filed under civil liberties, conservatism, labor, Politics, privatization, public employees, racism, unions

Round Up

Wondering about the level of taxation in Nevada?  The Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council says “We’re Number Three!” (Nationally) for being all sweet and cuddly for businesses disinclined to pay taxes. [NNB] But, we are going to collect sales taxes from for Nevada customers. [NNB] And, all this while Governor Sandoval tells us we don’t need any more taxes since the last batch has been extended. [NNB] So, we don’t have enough taxation to make business owners and corporations howl — and we don’t need any more business taxes — but we’ll happily collect more sales taxes (which obviously have a greater impact on those with lower incomes) on online purchases from the Big A…  The Lesson: It’s Only A Tax Increase If A Special Interest Has To Pay It?


Washoe County, Nevada is still getting some backwash from the Housing Bubble Debacle.  Short-sales are up, wherein mortgage lenders agree to sell a piece of real estate for less than what is owed.  “In Reno, short sales have been accounting for about a third of all sales in the past couple of years, according to the Greater Reno-Tahoe Real Estate Report. Short sales accounted for 116 units sold in March — 31 percent of all home sales in the area. Foreclosures posted 123 unit sales during the same period, which was 34 percent of inventory sold.”  [RGJ]   Meanwhile, back with those Wonderful People Who Brought On The Housing Bubble With Their Insatiable Appetite For MORE Mortgages —

“In case their (derivatives traders/bankers)  lobbying falls short, the industry — largely dealer banks and commodities firms — has been pushing legislation that would pre-empt the rulemaking process and tie the agencies’ hands. So far, no fewer than 10 such derivatives bills have been introduced in the House; two have passed and several more have cleared committee.

Not satisfied with that, influential lawmakers have been not so subtly warning regulators to go easy on derivatives. This is incredibly intimidating: Congress controls the agencies’ budgets, and the increase in workload mandated by Dodd-Frank leaves them woefully short on funds.

And should a derivatives rule unpalatable to the dealers somehow survive this Beltway obstacle course, the agencies face an explicit threat of a lawsuit. This has had a chilling effect. As Bart Chilton, a CFTC commissioner, told me, regulators fear there is “litigation lurking around every corner and down every hallway.”  [Lowenstein, Bloomberg]

Thus we have bankers, who having been bailed out once, have now decided that there is NO reason for any sentient human being to advocate regulation of their shadow system and their “private placement” activities — which got us into this Mess in the first place.  The only good news is that we may have found the bottom of this market. [Bloomberg]


The bottom of the housing market may be upon us, but the litigation lingers on.   A judge has denied AIG’s motion in the Bank of America settlement. [Reuters] A federal judge denied Bank of New York Mellon’s motion to dismiss a lawsuit by investors over the bank’s role as a trustee more mortgage backed securities  in the mess made by Countrywide.  [Reuters]


Maybe the Republicans do have a “health care” plan?

Health care would be “addressed” by disabling the implementation of ObamaCare, which Mitt Romney has repeatedly said he’d do on his first day in office. Even if you believe Romney and other Republicans actually have their own agenda of “health reform,” it’s mostly just a matter of replacing today’s health care deduction for employers with a tax credit for individuals, and then passing one bill allowing interstate insurance sales; the “market” (i.e., the rush of insurers to states with little or no regulation) will take care of the rest, and besides, it’s not the federal government’s job to make sure everyone has health insurance, right? [WashMon]

Yes, and with the rush to those states with little or no restraint on health insurance corporations we can reasonably expect that those corporations will not provide insurance to individuals with pre-existing conditions, not include vaccinations under basic policies, not include wellness screening for prostate, breast, or other cancers, and not include tax breaks for small businesses which provide health care plans for their employees.  It’s the Bush System on Steriods.


Some cheese with that whine?  Presumptive nominee Mitt Romney’s saying Life’s Unfair!

“This America is fundamentally fair,” he said. “We will stop the unfairness of urban children being denied access to the good schools of their choice; we will stop the unfairness of politicians giving taxpayer money to their friends’ businesses; we will stop the unfairness of requiring union workers to contribute to politicians not of their choosing; we will stop the unfairness of government workers getting better pay and benefits than the taxpayers they serve; and we will stop the unfairness of one generation passing larger and larger debts on to the next.”  [TPM]

Translation:  We will provide vouchers for parents to subsidize private schooling for their children.  We will stop assisting manufacturing companies with research and development.  We will attack trade unions.  We will further slash pay for government employees.  We will give tax breaks to the 1% and impose austerity on the remaining 99%.  There’s a good piece about privatizing education here.   H/T to Nevada State Employee Focus, there’s another excellent article on the attacks on public employees here.


Speaking from friends in interesting places: The Soap Opera that’s become the Nevada Republican Party continues apace, and to read the gruesome details click over to The Nevada Progressive.


More dispatches from the War On Women in the Sin City Siren.   Meanwhile anti-abortion activists are urging a “personhood bill” for the state of Oklahoma, the New Hampshire Senate has 6 abortion bills on its agenda, and a move to defund Planned Parenthood in Ohio is on temporary hold, but could reappear at any time.   More restrictive bills are in process in Tennessee, Louisiana, and Iowa.


Political items worth the click and read:  “The Koch Brothers Exposed,” Rolling Stone.   “Mitt Romney’s Attack Dog,” (Larry McCarthy negative ad guru), New Yorker 2/2012. “Don’t Let Business Lobbyists Kill The Post Office,” Rolling Stone.   “Campaign Tips from Cicero,” Foreign Affairs.

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Filed under Economy, financial regulation, Health Care, Heath Insurance, housing, Politics, Sandoval, Taxation, Union busting, unions, Women's Issues, Womens' Rights

A Good Little Soldier in the Radical Army: Amodei’s Unsurprising Votes

If anyone was thinking that the newly elected Congressional Representative from Nevada’s 2nd District might have a mind of his own, Rep. Mark Amodei has  put paid to those musings by marching along lockstep with the House GOP leadership.

## Mr. Amodei became Representative Amodei on September 15, 2011 and prompting lined up with the NLRB bashing H.R. 2587:

“Protecting Jobs From Government Interference Act – Amends the National Labor Relations Act to deny the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) any power to: (1) order an employer (or seek an order against an employer) to restore or reinstate any work, product, production line, or equipment; (2) rescind any relocation, transfer, subcontracting, outsourcing, or other change regarding the location, entity, or employer who shall be engaged in production or other business operations; or (3) require any employer to make an initial or additional investment at a particular plant, facility, or location.  Applies the amendment made by this Act to any complaint for which a final adjudication by the NLRB has not been made by the date of enactment.”

Contrary to the bill’s title, this doesn’t have anything to do with protecting American jobs — in fact, the bill was exactly what Boeing Incorporated wanted.  Instead of protecting American jobs, the bill endangers them:

“Employers will be able to eliminate jobs or transfer employees or work for no purpose other than to punish employees for exercising their rights and the Board will be powerless to direct the employer to return the work regardless of the circumstances. And these employees will lose their jobs because they tried to exercise their federally protected rights.”  [AFLCIO]

Rep. Amodei voted “yea” on this union-bashing bill. [roll call 711]

## On the next major vote, September 23, 2011, Representative Amodei joined the Republican/Tea Party attack on the Environmental Protection Agency.  H.R. 2401 was introduced “To require analyses of the cumulative and incremental impacts of certain rules and actions of the Environmental Protection Agency, and for other purposes..” translation — this bill would put into statute the lovingly embraced Republican fiction that following environmental best practices costs more than it is beneficial.  We can say “fiction” because there is scant evidence that environmental regulations actually cost any real jobs, and better research indicating that the benefits outweigh the  costs.  [OMBWatch] [EPI]

Rep. Amodei voted “yea” on this legislation, near and dear to the hearts of those who inhabit corporate boardrooms. [roll call 741]

## The GOP attack on the EPA continued with H.R. 2681To provide additional time for the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency to issue achievable standards for cement manufacturing facilities, and for other purposes…”  Interesting that cement manufacturers were adamant that the EPA standards could not be met [pca pdf]  when the Lehigh Hanson cement plant at Union Bridge, Maryland announced plans to meet mercury emission standards a year early (2012).  [Bloomberg]

Living proof at Union Bridge notwithstanding, Rep. Amodei voted “yea” on this EPA attack, [roll call 764] Evidently, Rep. Amodei has bought into the concept that we cannot have both jobs and modernized cleaner production facilities.  Lehigh Hanson’s example makes a mockery of this position.

## Three so-called Free Trade Agreements came to the House floor in October.  Rep. Amodei voted in favor of the Colombian FTA [roll call 781] presumably knowing full well that no one has been indicted in Colombia for the last two years for murdering labor leaders.  He voted in favor of the Panamanian FTA [roll call 782] over the misgivings of some who felt the country had not made sufficient progress dealing with its reputation as a tax haven and money laundering locale.  He voted in favor of the Korean FTA [roll call 783] over the concerns presented by American automobile manufacturers.  No one has yet made the case that Free Trade Agreements result in a net increase in American jobs — indeed NAFTA has a well earned reputation for being an American Job Killer.

## On October 13, 2011 House Republicans, Representative Amodei included, voted to pass one of the most radical assaults on women’s rights imaginable, in H.R 358.  The bill was the infamous Stupak Amendment on steroids.  Under the provisions of this bill a hospital could “choose” to allow a woman to die from pregnancy complications rather than abort the fetus to save the mother’s life.  [TPM] It does require a radical mindset to allow a woman to die, and orphan her surviving children, rather than require an emergency center to perform a medical procedure to save her life — but, Tea Party Toe The Line Representative Amodei was pleased to go along with this medieval thinking. [roll call 789]

## Also on October 13th, the House GOP was back to attacking the EPA with H.R. 2250, “To provide additional time for the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency to issue achievable standards for industrial, commercial, and institutional boilers, process heaters, and incinerators, and for other purposes...”  A manufacturers laundry list of industrial standards corporations don’t want to have to follow.  Rep. Amodei was pleased to vote “yea” to all the corporate wishes. [roll call 791]

##  H.R. 2273 concerned the disposal of coal ash and “H.R. 2273 subverts public support of the EPA’s proposed federal coal ash rules by leaving coal ash pollution in the hands of states with weak or non-existent regulations. ” [AppV] There’s a reason individuals in coal mining states are concerning with coal ash disposal, “Coal ash is the nation’s second-largest waste stream after municipal garbage. Coal ash slurry — a by-product of coal-fired power plants — is highly toxic. People living near an unlined coal ash pond are at a 1-in-50 risk of cancer from arsenic, a rate that is 2,000 times greater than the acceptable level of risk.”  [AppV] (emphasis added)  High cancer rates?  No inspections for mercury, arsenic, chromium, and lead?  And no inspections to see if any of this toxic sludge is getting into the local groundwater?  All perfectly acceptable to House Republicans — and to Representative Amodei. [roll call 800]

Thus far, Representative Amodei’s been the perfect little Corporate Warrior for banking, polluting, and radical anti-choice interests.

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Filed under abortion, Amodei, ecology, employment, Nevada politics, Union busting, unions, Women's Issues, Womens' Rights

House GOP Goes Union Busting: H.R. 2153 Introduced

The Nevada Rural Democratic Caucus sums up the situation in the House of Representatives as it pertains to Republican legislative interest in job creation: “They’re more interested in pillaging and waging cultural war on women, children and organized labor.  So instead of proposing bills addressing issues that would generate jobs, well, they’re going after their pet peeves instead.”

Perhaps it is time to return for a reminder about what creates JOBS.  Unless one subscribes to the Trickle-Down-Supply-Side-Hoax of the century, 5000 years of economic history says that DEMAND for goods and services creates economic growth.  It’s been stated countless times herein, in a variety of ways, that the business which bases its hiring decisions on marginal tax rates and the reduction of  regulatory oversight isn’t long for this economic world.  There is one, and only one, sane reason for hiring more employees — the company has more work to do than can be accomplished by the current work force.

Policies which exacerbate the hyper-concentration of wealth in the upper reaches of income earners is counter-productive to the stated goal of overall economic growth.  The Republican rising tide works only for the yachts,  the rowboats find themselves beached. What’s draining the water from underneath the average Americans in their row boats?

Republican War on Organized Labor:  While there are economic impacts, the GOP perspective is entirely political, GOP guru Grover Norquist has made this abundantly clear: “We plan to pick up another five seats in the Senate and hold the House through redistricting through 2012. And rather than negotiate with the teachers’ unions’ and the trial lawyers and the various leftist interest groups, we intend to break them.” [PRB]

Those “various leftist interest groups” are unions, consumer organizations, environmental advocates, and public interest groups who do not believe that allowing corporations free rein to extract maximized profits at minimal expense is the cogent way to grow an economy.  It ought to be obvious to anyone who has made it through high school economics that the less money average Americans have in their pockets, the less demand is created for goods and services.  Breaking unions which seek better wages and working conditions  for the short-term benefit of corporate America, while politically expedient is economically counter-productive.

All this is obviously lost on the Republicans in the House of Representatives.  H.R. 2153 (see more at NRDC)  “would amend the National Labor Relations Act to protect employer rights by allowing them the right to refuse to hire workers who would be sympathetic to organizing efforts.”  That’s right — a person could be refused employment based on a prospective employer’s impression that the person might hold positive views about unions.

The “findings” section of the bill is particularly unsettling for anyone who believes in individual liberty and freedom of thought and expression:

(1) An atmosphere of trust and civility in labor-management relationships is essential to a productive workplace and a healthy economy.

 (2) The tactic of using professional union organizers and agents to infiltrate a targeted employer’s workplace, a practice commonly referred to as `salting’ has evolved into an aggressive form of harassment not contemplated when the National Labor Relations Act was enacted and threatens the balance of rights which is fundamental to our system of collective bargaining.

(3) Increasingly, union organizers are seeking employment with nonunion employers not because of a desire to work for such employers but primarily to organize the employees of such employers or to inflict economic harm specifically designed to put nonunion competitors out of business, or to do both.

(4) While no employer may discriminate against employees based upon the views of employees concerning collective bargaining, an employer should have the right to expect job applicants to be primarily interested in utilizing the skills of the applicants to further the goals of the business of the employer.”

If there were ever a more blatant anti-worker anti-union statement in the annals of Congressional legislation it would be difficult to imagine what it might have been.  Civility, in the GOP context, means a nice quiet non-union workplace wherein the little drones carry out their tasks with equanimity never having the temerity to pull an Oliver Twist and say “Please, sir, more?”

Heaven forfend that someone might seek to organize the employees in these little corporate corners of paradise for the purpose of addressing problems of unpaid required overtime, discriminatory promotion practices, substandard wages, and unsafe working conditions.  In case this isn’t crystal clear, the GOP equates “trust and civility” with the early 19th century management style associated with the New England textile mills.  It doesn’t take much to turn a trusting and civil environment as imagined by the Republicans into what we would more quickly recognize as a sweat shop.

Nor do the Republicans even bother to hide their perspective in this matter, the bill states very simply: “SEC. 3. PROTECTION OF EMPLOYER RIGHTS. Nothing in this subsection shall be construed as requiring an employer to employ any person who seeks or has sought employment with the employer in furtherance of other employment or agency status.”

And, how might an employer discern that a person might be seeking employment so as to promote unionization?  Good question, because the proposed statute doesn’t specify this aspect.  If previous membership in a union is considered suspect, then what is to prevent the re-imposition of good old fashioned Black Lists?  Is the applicant “suspicious” because her parents were union members?  Or, because he has siblings who are union members or leaders?  Perhaps the applicant can be refused employment because he or she personally admits to pro-union sentiments? Has participated in public discussions in which the benefits of union organizing have been debated?

The bill, for all intents and purposes, is purely and simply a license for union busting, and we already know that concern for the workers, or even concern for that “trust and civility” in the workplace isn’t the point.  Grover Norquist has already made the point for the Republicans in the U.S. Congress:

“And rather than negotiate with the teachers’ unions’ and the trial lawyers and the various leftist interest groups, we intend to break them.”

*H.R. 2153 was introduced by Representative Steve King (R-IA) with five co-sponsors:  Rep Burton, Dan [IN-5] – 6/13/2011 Rep Duncan, John J., Jr. [TN-2] – 6/13/2011 Rep Jenkins, Lynn [KS-2] – 6/13/2011 Rep Miller, Gary G. [CA-42] – 6/13/2011  Rep Ross, Dennis [FL-12] – 6/13/2011   It has been referred to the House Committee on Education and Labor.

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Filed under House of Representatives, Union busting, unions

The Great American Squeeze on the Middle Class

Eventually someone had to notice:  American consumers are getting hammered from all sides.  Now, Reuters is reporting that consumers who drive approximately 2/3rds of the U.S. economy are being told to (1) cut back on their indebtedness, (2) buy more stuff, and (3) while they are about it, do both of these things while their net worth is declining.   In short, the American middle class is being told by the “major economists” to perform the impossible.

No matter what happens it will be the “consumers’ fault” if we slide back into a double dip recession.  It’s high time someone told the Wall Street Wizards, their analysts, and their economists to own up to some hard sad facts of life. The first of which is that the Great American Middle Class Wallet is just about empty, and if the Wizards of Wall Street had a lick of sense they’d stop pursuing policies that would empty it still further.

Old News

Middle Class Wealth Is Going Elsewhere:  Corporate talking points notwithstanding, the statistics on the bind in which the American middle class finds itself are reasonably clear.  For the last 40 years there has been a hyper-concentration of wealth in the upper tiers of income earners.  Middle class Americans own only 6% of the nation’s financial assets, and the bottom of the economic ladder holds only 1% of the financial assets.  [Business Insider]  But while the concentration was accruing to the top echelons of income earners, middle class Americans were encouraged to borrow heavily to make purchases.  We can probably all remember the days during which the mail box was replete with offers of new credit cards, home equity loans, and other financial inducements to indebtedness.  Indebtedness not only was encouraged, but for many American families it was necessary to sustain a middle income life-style, i.e. a single family home, at least one family automobile, health care insurance, educational expenses for the offspring, and a retirement savings account of some kind. [See also CBPP]

These trends didn’t stop the Wall Street Wizards and their enablers from perpetuating the myth that if only the ultra-wealthy had more money the wealth would trickle down and this rising tide would raise all boats.   More jobs would be created if there were no Federal Estate Tax.  There is, for all practical purposes, not much of a federal estate tax now — and yet the jobs haven’t materialized.  There would be more jobs, the Wizards proclaimed, if corporate taxes were reduced.  Taxes were reduced, tax breaks were attached to the Stimulus Bill (ARRA), and some major corporations paid little if any corporate income taxes.   And, still the jobs were not to be found.   If only, the Wall Street Wizards lamented, the rich could keep more of their earnings the economy would grow, the jobs would be listed, and the American people would be happy.

President George W. Bush told us, “Tax relief will create new jobs. Tax relief will generate new wealth. And tax relief will open new opportunities.” [Slate]  We’ve not seen the new jobs, the new wealth has moved to the top, and what those “new opportunities might have been remains a mystery.

The drum beat of No New Taxes resounded and culminated in the Bush Tax Cuts of 2001 and 2003.  Ten years later, this philosophy has been a complete bust.   The economy did grow, but at the slowest rate in the post World War II era.   Did all the boats rise with the tide, simply put — no.  “Then there’s wealth. Put simply, the aughts were a decade of income stagnation: The tax cuts failed to bolster most taxpayers’ earnings, even before the recession hit. Median real wages actually dropped from 2003 to 2007.”  [Slate] And, speaking to those “new opportunities,” if new business startups were what the former President meant — those didn’t happen either.  [BLS pdf]

There are all manner of right wing talking points about the sanctity of private property, about the need to reward success, and the imperative to preserve the free market.  However, when these talking points are translated into legislation the intent becomes far more clear.  Our current business policies have meant that (1) it is easier to concentrate wealth in the upper reaches of the income categories, (2) the middle class is being asked to subsidize this hyper-concentration, and (3) the middle class has less capacity to recover from recessions.   Recovery has been made all the more difficult because of the next factor associated with the Wall Street agenda for the American public.

Wage growth has stagnated.  “Dubbed “median wage stagnation” by economists, the annual incomes of the bottom 90 per cent of US families have been essentially flat since 1973 – having risen by only 10 per cent in real terms over the past 37 years. That means most Americans have been treading water for more than a generation. Over the same period the incomes of the top 1 per cent have tripled. In 1973, chief executives were on average paid 26 times the median income. Now the ­multiple is above 300. The trend has only been getting stronger. Most economists see the Great Stagnation as a structural problem – meaning it is immune to the business cycle. In the last expansion, which started in January 2002 and ended in December 2007, the median US household income dropped by $2,000 – the first ever instance where most Americans were worse off at the end of a cycle than at the start.”  [TBP] (emphasis added)

And, those with the Median U.S. household incomes were expected to carry the load for 2/3rds of the American economy.  Not very likely.

New Talking Points

Alas, the Wall Street community cries, if only we didn’t have such incapacitating government interference we could generate more wealth.  Yes, they probably could, only it would only serve in the present context to continue the concentration of wealth in the upper reaches.

Oh, alack and alas, bank regulators are requiring that commercial banks maintain rational percentages of leveraging and this supposedly means that credit will be tighter for home mortgages and other consumer loans.  Yes, but weren’t these the self same institutions which loudly lambasted the Liars Who Got Loans, those undeserving miscreants who took out mortgages they couldn’t afford?  Whose defaults “caused” the credit meltdown?  There’s nothing like blaming the victims.

Perhaps if there were tighter constraints on mortgage marketing those NINJA loans would not have been manufactured in the first instance, and then they could not have been magically transformed into CDOs and  synthetic CDOs — and bought by the same banks that benefited from allowing the process to turn into one big messy casino operation in the derivatives market.

If only, whine the Wall Street bankers, we could regulate ourselves!  We could do so much better than the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.  We tried self-regulation.  The result included the debacles of Magnetar, Countrywide, Ownit Mortgage Solutions, Lehman Brothers, AIG, and the Banking Crisis of 2008.

What’s Good for the Middle Class?

While the Wall Street minions continue to bemoan the lack of a competitive business environment (translation: there are still some unions which make demands concerning wages and benefits) what would help the middle class residents of Main Street would be a healthy environment for organized labor.   The Republicans were even upset that an individual sympathetic to labor was nominated to serve on the National LABOR Relations Board.

What would be good for middle income finances would be a taxation system in which there really was some “shared sacrifice,” and rather than having the American middle class foot the bill for two wars, income tax breaks for the rich, and subsidies for major oil companies — it would be well if taxes on capital gains, extremely wealthy estates, and exceedingly wealthy people were in the mix.

What would be good for the middle class would be some Consumer Financial protections that actually protect someone other than the Wall Street Wizards.  “The goal of the CFPB is to make prices clearer and comparisons easier for consumers, which will help Americans determine what they can afford, said Warren. The agency also will reduce the “regulatory tangle” and apply “rules that give the middle class a chance,” Warren said.” [Bloomberg]  This is probably why Jamie Dimond (JPMorganChase) and others are afraid of the nominee to head the new bureau.

What would help the middle class would be a stronger emphasis on infrastructure maintenance and improvements — especially in the construction sector.   Far from being an untenable expense, infrastructure facilitates commerce (and has done so since the canal building era of the early 19th century), adds tangible assets to the public domain, and creates jobs in the process.

The American middle class could benefit immediately from a manufacturing policy which doesn’t serve already established commercial enterprises  but which incorporates a vision of developing sources of energy, and newer technologies, and the applications of those new technologies.  Why are we so willing to support energy industries associated with 19th century technology (petroleum) and so eager to believe that it is “just too expensive” to provide public support for newer, cleaner, and ultimately profitable sources?

Middle class Americans could also benefit from the re-evaluation of free trade agreements which facilitate the flow of both capital and jobs out of the country.  It doesn’t do to announce that NAFTA, for example, was a success because it created jobs in Mexico.

What is interesting about this list is that everything on it is opposed by the Republican Party.  They despise organized labor, they want flat-tax and fair-tax schemes that place more of the total burden on the middle class, they deplore the regulation of the very institutions that created the Great Recession, they think infrastructure is “too expensive,” they are pleased to support 19th century companies which obstruct efforts to function in the 21st, and they want more free trade agreements with fewer restrictions in terms of labor and capital.

We have know this at least since the publication of What’s The Matter With Kansas?, if not long before.  We need to pay attention before the machinations of Wall Street and its allies in the Republican Party render this “What’s The Matter With Main Street?”

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Filed under Economy, Uncategorized, unions

>Chart of the Day: Comparing Public and Private Sector Wages


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Filed under Economy, public employees, unions

>Locked and Loaded Republican Family Values


## – Republican Family Values: Now, we know that everything is AOK, because Senator John Ensign (R-NV) says he has repented for his conduct toward his wife and with another man’s wife and cuckolded husband and the unseemly hiring of various and sundry and getting checks cut from the family coffers to cover up the aforementioned cuckolding. DB’s nomination for Line Of The Month: “The question elicited gasps and startled “ohs” from an audience of mostly senior citizens.” [RGJ]  It’s not that forgiveness should be a lost art.

However, it is one thing to forgive moral transgressions on a personal basis, but quite another to believe that an individual so quick to assert his “family values” and equally so fast to act without them should be an appropriate representative in the Senate of the United States.  There’s a very good chance the game is over for Senator Ensign anyway, “So if it’s Heller-Ensign, it’s game over for the incumbent, barring anything cataclysmic befalling the congressman or Ensign hypnotizing the Nevada electorate to believe it was all a case of mistaken identity.” [LVSun]

Senator Ensign isn’t the only GOP pol being reminded of his “family values.” Former House Speaker and perpetual potential presidential candidate Newt Gingrich got a question during a speech in Philadelphia about his rendition of family values. From the Department Of Major Understatements, Gingrich responds: “I’ve had a life which, on occasion, has had problems,” he added. “I believe in a forgiving God, and the American people will have to decide whether that’s their primary concern.” [AJC] As a commenter astutely pointed out, children tend to use the passive voice (“My toy got lost.”) when attempting to run for cover.

## – It’s 1892 and the GOP is in control. Tea Party posters on “The Free Republic” are asking RTC (right to carry…guns) followers to show up at an SEIU rally in Georgia. [AJC]  There’s no strike involved here, but this is reminiscent of Henry C. Frick’s hiring of 300 armed Pinkerton agents to break the strike at Homestead, PA in 1892. Or, the use of federal troops to crush the American Railway Union’s Pullman Strike in 1894. Or, the use of the National Guard to break strikes in Colorado mines in 1903. The Bergoff Brothers made a family business out of armed strikebreaking, one memorable moment being the importation of strikebreakers into McKeesport, PA in 1909 from the Bowery neighborhood of New York City. These proclivities got a 21st century echo from another quarter in Indiana.

Indiana Deputy Attorney General Jeff Cox offered his suggestion about what to do with pro-union protesters in his capital, tweeting:  “Use live ammunition RT @MotherJones Sources in Madison say riot police have been ordered to clear protesters from capitol at 2 am #wiunion.” This tweet isn’t the first time Deputy AG Cox has let his commentary run into questionable territory.  [MoJo][TP]

The Koch Brothers, annual revenue $100 billion, estimated net worth approximately $21.5 billion each, [Forbes]  are ratcheting up their efforts on behalf of the astro-turf front group Americans for Prosperity. [TP] The brothers were major funders of Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker’s campaign  The AFP’s agenda is clear: “…his group is already working with activists and state officials in Indiana, Ohio and Pennsylvania to urge them to take similar steps to curtail union benefits or give public employees the power to opt out of unions entirely.” [NYT] Nor have the Koch Brothers and the AFP confined themselves to Wisconsin: “Republican talk of balancing budgets is cover for the real purpose of gutting the political force of middle-class state workers, who are steady supporters of Democrats and pose a threat to a growing conservative agenda.” [NYT] More at the Sausage Factory.

## – Planned Parenthood Support. The Sin City Siren posts notice of a Walk For Choice rally in Las Vegas on February 26th, no actual parading required. There’s good news from Capitol Hill, Senate Democrats have presented a united front to the House Republican bid to cut Title X, and Senate Republican measures that would increase taxes by dis-allowing private insurance plans which cover abortion procedures from the terms of health insurance legislation. [The Hill]  Best Sign Yet in Wisconsin: “If you want a Republican to care about you, remain a fetus.

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Filed under AFP, Ensign, koch brothers, unions

>Nevada Senator: It’s a privilege, not a right


Nevada State Senator Greg Brower (R-Reno) has a message for all tax paying Nevada public employees. In essence he’s telling them: You can beg, but you can’t bargain.
“… Republicans in the Legislature don’t appear cowed by the possibility, however remote, that their actions might spur similar unrest in Nevada. If anything, they seemed inspired to push harder. “I frankly question whether collective bargaining for any government employee makes sense,” state Sen. Greg Brower, R-Reno, said. “Some people in our state seem to think it’s a right. It’s not. It’s a privilege.” [LVSun]

How perfectly 19th century! The sentiments seem straight from Henry C. Frick in 1892. 19th century employers exchanged lists of union organizers, to exclude them from employment, engaging strike breakers and calling out the National Guard to prevent rallies and strikes was common. All this stemmed from the same philosophy: That workers should be grateful to the corporations which hired them. They should be SO grateful, in fact, that no matter what the wages, no matter what the working conditions, no matter how long the hours — workers should still remain grateful just to have a job.However, gratitude will not pay the grocery bill, and it should be noted that gratitude won’t pay your state and local taxes either. There are some myths and legends floating around and it’s high time some of the hoary old canards were put to rest.

Myth: It’s time for public employees to give back, just like private sector workers.
Fact: Nevada public employees have been giving back. In 2009 state workers took a 4% pay cut in the form of furloughs each month, and teachers took a 4% cut. [LVSun] Note, state workers in Nevada do not have union representation. Clark County teachers proposed taking a 1.5% pay cut to ease budget problems in 2010. [LVRJ] The union accepted a one year pay freeze. [Exam]  In Washoe County teachers’ salaries were frozen last year. Now, they could be looking at a 5% reduction. [KUNR] In July 2010 Washoe County employees took a 3.4% wage reduction, nurses agreed to pay into their own health care package, members of the Sheriff’s Department agreed to suspend their uniform allowances, their safety allowance, and their physical fitness pay, in addition to contributing more into their health benefit plan. Employees of the Juvenile Dept., Law Library, District and Justice Courts took a 3.2% wage reduction. [Washoe] Elko County cut staff from its middle school tutoring program; cut overtime from janitors, central office clerical staff, school police at night events, and school secretaries. And, that was just for starters.  [ECSD pdf] In the current proposal from Governor Sandoval teachers in Nevada are looking at a 5% pay cut, in addition to cuts in schedule advancement. [RGJ]

Myth: Local budgets are constrained by negotiated contracts, thus creating budget deficits. 
Fact: When Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels was asked, not once but twice, how public employee collective bargaining elimination would reduce his state’s deficit — he couldn’t explain it. [TP] Nor, can Governor Walker: “Contrary to Walker’s assertion, there is no direct correlation between public-sector collective bargaining and yawning state budget deficits. According to data gathered by the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities, while Wisconsin projects a state budget deficit of 12.8 percent for FY 2012, North Carolina, which does not allow government workers to bargain, faces a significantly higher deficit: 20 percent.” [TMC] (with stats)  There’s more: “In truth, states with and without collective bargaining rights faced similar budget deficits in 2010. States with no collective bargaining rights for any public employees saw an average budget shortfall of 24.8 percent in 2010 while states (including the District of Columbia) with collective bargaining for all public employees had an average budget shortfall of 24.1 percent. For the 42 states (and the District of Columbia) with some (or all) collective bargaining rights for some (or all) public workers, the 2010 budget deficit averaged 23 percent. These numbers are all very close. The right of public workers to unionize is not driving the state revenue or fiscal crisis.” [pdf OhioPM]

Once more: This controversy isn’t about budgets, or deficits, or spending, or salaries, or wages or benefits — it’s about the fact that  Republicans have decided that it is more important to preserve corporate subsidies and low taxes for the ultra-wealthy than it is to provide public services.

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Filed under Nevada budget, nevada taxation, unions

>Under the radar: Ten reasons to read the papers today


1. J. Patrick Coolican reports on Nevada Republican efforts to be competitive in the 2008 legislative races.

2. “The two unions representing Reno’s two largest hospitals in contract negotiations with nurses are working on bills for the 2009 legislature that would mandate nurse to patient ratios at Nevada hospitals.” Reno Gazette Journal

3. According to the Las Vegas Review Journal’s report, an initial inspection of the Shadow Mountain Surgical Center revealed 24 health violations, and a subsequent inspection revealed 32. “Further surgical procedures at the center have now been banned.”

4. Sands Corp. magnate, and Freedom’s Watch sugar-daddy, Sheldon Adelson, is appealing Secretary of State Ross Miller’s decision that his petitions lacked a required statement of the number of signatures and the requisite statement that the signer had had a chance to read the full text of the plan before signing.

5. Those ‘holdouts’ in FEMA trailer parks illustrate the shallowness of the assistance provided by those who promised help, and highlight the difficulty in addressing long standing needs in a short term setting. New York Times

6. Intel revealed Friday that it is the subject of an FTC probe into whether it illegally discouraged PC manufacturers from using chips made by rival Advanced Micro Devices. San Jose Mercury News

7. The Boston Globe has a multi-page interactive test separating fact from fiction regarding commonly held beliefs about gas mileage. It’s well worth the 10 minutes or so required to check on the validity of some the most prevalent facts/myths.

8. On the other side of the immigration issue, Colorado Governor Bill Ritter has just signed a bill to expedite visas for seasonal farm workers. Rocky Mountain News

9. United Airlines and its flight attendants have agreed to a buy-out plan allowing 600 attendants to leave the company voluntarily. Denver Post In national business news, CNN reports “Nation’s economic pain deepens.”

10. Glenn Greenwald dices the hypocrisy of Washington pundits like David Broder who maintain the fiction that somehow Bill Clinton’s prevarication about sex in the Oval Office is worse than George W. Bush’s lies about WMD, the connections between Saddam Hussein and the attacks on 9/11, and outing of a CIA agent.

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Filed under Adelson, Bush Administration, Economy, Health Care, Nevada politics, unions

>Overnight Express: News Roundup

>It’s this kind of story from Las Vegas, NV, that should make a person wonder about the school system, not the current fad for standardized testing. Prediction: The Las Vegas Review Journal will help publicize the canards about immigrants swamping our schools, jails, and health care systems in its so-called “In Depth” feature stories. Republican presidential candidate Tom Tancredo was in Ames, Iowa, to open his campaign office, and to tell anyone who’d listen that he dislikes immigrants more than any other GOP candidate. [Des Moines Reg]

Label, but no Union: College of Southern Nevada’s Richard Carpenter apparently wanted the Unions to provide their proprietary trades curriculum, and their money to deliver it, while allowing CSN to offer the curriculum to non-union groups. [LVSun] Yet another example of a “community college” that doesn’t want to be one? Or, possibly another example of those who like to whine about unionization, and then take the benefits without paying the dues? The Lancaster Intelligencer Journal has some advice for those trying to find ways to pay for a college education, providing explanations for some programs available. (Series)

Read this and eat? [Chicago Tribune] Then, sit back and wait for the PR campaign sponsored by the Chinese government (that “worker’s paradise?”) to tell you that “it’s all good.” That contaminated tooth paste has turned up in six states, and Canada. [CTrib] “The Orient Express” Editor and Publisher describes how hard it is to avoid products from China.

Remember the federal mandate that groceries are supposed to be labeling imported meat? The food manufacturers and meatpackers had the clout to keep the Cheney-Bush administration from enforcing the law — but change looks to be coming now that a Democrat is in charge of the committee of jurisdiction in the House. [NYT]

The current occupant of the White House is seeking “wisdom?” [WaPo] And, seems fixated on Iraq. Good thing, perhaps, because most of the country is “fixated” on that intractable morass created by the Cheney-Bush administration too? It seems that the President wanted to be like Churchill — but he comes out looking more like the scorned Neville Chamberlain. [WaPo] Steve Kornacki offers an interesting analysis, “The First Bush Mistake: Choosing Cheney over Danforth,” in the New York Observer. Speaking of mistakes, eWeek asks if the “CIA’s dark past foretell current data abuse?

“Vice President Dick Cheney has regularly claimed that he is above the law, but until recently he has not offered any explanation of why. In fact, it is becoming increasingly difficult to find a law that Cheney believes does apply to him, whether that law be major or minor.” That’s John W. Dean’s argument, and the logic in his column is hard to dispute.

Cultured Corruption: “GOP links to vote-fraud push: Two non-profits had a major role in Republican electoral strategy that included lobbying U.S. attorneys over alleged fraud in voter rolls” [Miami Herald] Follow the money: To the now defunct American Center for Voting Rights Legislative Fund, from the Republican National Lawyers’ Association, with connections to the Republican National Committee. Think Progress highlights the article. See also: “Wash campaigning against voter fraud a Republican ploy? [McClatchy] The corruption trial of former Alaska state representative Tom Anderson uncovers an FBI “mole,” who later got a job running a prison in Iraq. [ADN]

Small efforts but large steps in the Big Easy: “Largely alone, pioneers reclaim New Orleans”, the New York Times chronicles the efforts of residents to rebuild their battered city; residents who aren’t waiting for the fellow who stood in the floodlights in Jackson Square with promises of assistance. [CNN]

Promises to keep: In 1999 Congress told every federal agency it should award 3% of their contracts to businesses owned by service disabled veterans. The result: ” The Department of Defense, which accounts for more than half of all contracts issued by the federal government, spent nearly $220 billion on contracts in 2005, the latest year that data was available. But just half of 1 percent of Pentagon contracts went to businesses run by service-disabled veterans, records show.” [McClatchy] (emphasis added)

Politics: The Hartford Courant takes a look at the increasing power of the hedge fund managers on the political scene. Presidential candidates are “relentlessly” calling Nevada Assembly Democrats for endorsements. [RGJ] None of those mentioned in the article have made endorsements. Assemblywoman Sheila Leslie may “endorse” later this month; Assemblyman Bernie Anderson may wait until September or October.

Live Earth: The American Prairie Reserve has a “A sweeping plan to protect the last vestiges of unbroken mixed-grass prairie is taking shape acre-by-acre in northeastern Montana.” And, so far it’s working. [Great Falls Trib] The Guest columnist for the Missoulian offers evidence of politics trumping science in the Cheney-Bush Department of the Interior, including this: “This spring, Interior Secretary Dirk Kempthorne requested zero funding in the president’s 2008 budget for two important voluntary landowner conservation programs: the Private Stewardship Grants Program (PSGP) and the Landowner Incentive Program (LIP). Both provide millions in matching federal dollars for landowners, conservation groups and state wildlife agencies cooperating to restore habitat for fish and wildlife on the brink of extinction.”

“Slow Death, Slower Justice: How pesticides poisoned South Mission (TX), but no one is responsible.” A cautionary tale from the Texas Observer.

Sicko? “Dimensions Healthcare, the manager of the cash-strapped Prince George’s hospital system, has issued an ultimatum of its own to County Executive Jack B. Johnson, calling for the county to pledge $26 million to the hospital to avoid the possibility of legal action.” [Md Gazette] Maryland Politics has an opinion piece of interest on the matter. Perhaps somewhere between miserable management, poor levels of local support, and expected state action the health care needs might be addressed?

The Jim Crow Court: One powerful paragraph destructs the Resegregation Decision from the Roberts’ Court: “Significantly, and this is at the heart of the Strom Thurmond/George Bush/John Roberts understanding of Brown, the instances in which government admits using race and, thus, is held to an extraordinary high burden of proof, are almost always instances when government action is designed to benefit persons of color. The instances in which government denies using race and, thus, requires litigants to meet an extraordinary high burden of proof, are almost always instances where government action is severely burdening persons of color.” [Balkinization]
Second in the “Missed Opportunities” series, AB 125 in the Nevada Legislature at Blue Sage Views

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Filed under Cheney, consumers, corruption, ec, Immigration, New Orleans, unions