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Gender: Male
Home country: USA
Member since: Thu Jul 8, 2004, 03:14 PM
Number of posts: 10,336

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Fast food strikes intensify in seven cities

The biggest walkout yet begins this morning -- and the strikes could have far-reaching implications for labor

This morning marks the start of what will likely be the largest fast food worker mobilization in U.S. history, with a New York City walkout today kicking off strikes in seven cities over four days. These work stoppages by non-union workers are the latest escalation in an embattled labor movement’s unprecedented challenge to the overwhelmingly non-union industry, whose ranks are growing and whose conditions are spreading elsewhere in the U.S. economy.

“I know you’re tired of suffering,” KFC employee Naquasia LeGrand told fellow workers gathered with clergy and politicians at a rally last Wednesday announcing that New York City worker-activists had voted to strike this week. “I don’t want to see the next generation suffering and suffering. I don’t want my kids suffering. I want to make sure they have a better future than I do.” Looking out on a crowd of about 150 at the entrance to Brooklyn’s Prospect Park, LeGrand added, “So if I want that to happen, I need you guys to stand with me just as long as I’m standing with you.”

As Salon first reported, the fast food effort went public last November, with a strike by about 200 employees of various chains in New York City. Over the past four months, that walkout has been followed by similar work stoppages in five other cities, and a second New York City strike roughly twice as large. Each of those strikes has been backed by the Service Employees International Union and local allies, and each has shared the same demands: a raise to $15 per hour, and the chance to form a union with intimidation by management. This week’s strikes will include five of those six cities – New York, Chicago, St. Louis, Detroit, and Milwaukee- and two new ones: Kansas City and Flint, Mich. (A spokesperson for the campaign in Seattle, where workers struck in May, told Salon to expect “a series of escalating direct actions” there this week.)

“I might be doing the work of three people” due to under-staffing, McDonald’s employee Kareem Starks told me after Wednesday’s rally, “but still getting paid one wage.” Starks, a 30-year-old former Parks Department employee, said it’s “been hard trying to live off the minimum wage, $7.25, and support my two kids plus pay rent.” As we spoke, a fellow fast food worker walked over to introduce himself, congratulate Starks on the speech he’d just delivered, and show him a scar on his arm. “I got burned too myself,” he told Starks. “But my manager doesn’t care.”

(much more at link: http://www.salon.com/2013/07/29/fast_food_strikes_intensify_in_seven_cities/

Tampa port chairman accused of running 'deplorable' illegal rental property

By Will Hobson and Jamal Thalji, Times Staff Writers
Tuesday, July 9, 2013 4:56pm

TAMPA — William A. "Hoe" Brown, chairman of the Tampa Port Authority and a prominent Republican fundraiser, has been running an illegal rental property that Tampa's code enforcement director calls "deplorable" and "not fit for human habitation."

"It's shocking. People shouldn't have to live like that," said Jake Slater, Tampa's director of neighborhood empowerment, who termed the squalor among the worst he's ever seen.

Slater visited the Seminole Heights property Monday, and his staff returned Tuesday to tell tenants their apartments — in five split, singlewide mobile homes Brown illegally placed last year behind his office at 106 W Stanley St. — were unfit for habitation.

Code staff offered to connect the tenants with social service agencies. But Brown decided to reimburse the seven tenants — who range in age from 4 to the upper 60s — hundreds of dollars in back rent in exchange for accepting short-notice evictions.

More from the Tampa Bay Times: http://www.tampabay.com/news/politics/city-tampa-port-chairman-running-deplorable-illegal-rental-property/2130674


My comments: More Republican family values on display.

"This is the lowest of the low"-Louise Slaughter, D, on the failure of the farm bill. nt

Masao Yoshida Dead: Former Chief Of Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant Dies At 58

Source: Huffington Post

TOKYO -- Tokyo Electric Power Co. says the former chief of Japan's crippled nuclear power plant, Masao Yoshida, has died of cancer of the esophagus. He was 58.

TEPCO officials said Yoshida's illness was not related to radioactive exposure.

Yoshida led efforts to stabilize the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant after it was hit by the March 11, 2011, earthquake and tsunami.

TEPCO spokesman Yoshimi Hitosugi said Yoshida died Tuesday morning at a Tokyo hospital.

Read more: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/07/09/masao-yoshida-dead_n_3565387.html

a little more at link. "TEPCO officials said Yoshida's illness was not related to radioactive exposure.". How would they know this, again?

This is now Sunday evening. 10 to 1 says this week will be all about

that plane crash, and they will use it to totally re-set the public's attention.
Posted by silvershadow | Sun Jul 7, 2013, 06:42 PM (0 replies)

Waiter, there is a fly in my soup.

(pick your own favorite punch line, there are many).

Once was a time at DU and elsewhere when Democrats were gnashing teeth about the Patriot Act, FISA courts, etc. Heck, DU practically single-handedly funneled the outrage and angst that people felt about GWB and all his, shall we just call them antics? It was not only a welcome place to be, but it also elevated the discussion to the national stage, really. I honestly believe that. I was here in the first days, and all throughout.

While we Democrats didn't always win on the issues, we at least got our voices heard and in fact ridiculed relentlessly as the Faux noise machine kicked into high gear in support of the wars, the spending, etc. There was a time when this place was crawling with those who disagreed with the way things were going. Kucinich lovers. (He's maybe the only one who ended up voting against it). When GWB was pretzel-nut, it was palpable. We couldn't wait until he was replaced. Kerry campaigned on it. Obama campaigned on it. And DU was giddy at the prospects. We were gonna fix it. You just wait.

Now, here we are, 13 years on, and this place looks like it has been infiltrated by inter-lopers. I don't know how else to phrase it. I know there are some trolls and disruptors around regularly, and I'm not talking about them. I'm talking about those that still don't get that it's not about Snowden. It's about the Constitution and the rule of law. You and I would go to jail for stealing $50. They steal $50 Billion with impunity. You and I would go to jail for wiretapping our neighbors. They do it with impunity. You and I would go to jail for lying to Congress. Just another's day's work in Washington.

So, please forgive me if I take offense to some of the un-critical thinking that gets bandied about. You see, I haven't budged one millimeter in 13 years. I am still waiting for this patently unconstitutional construct that has been foisted upon us, by the same critters that foisted GWB on us, (under whose leadership virtually every disastrous change to America occurred), to be fixed. To so casually dismiss it on the pretense that Snowden committed crimes is preposterous. I am not dismissing Snowden's actions, either...if he committed crimes, he will eventually face the piper. But to focus on him is so distantly secondary to the real issue just boggles my mind.

The Patriot Act was supposed to sunset at least twice, but it remains, 13 years later. Ok, if it needed to be, fine. We got Bin Laden. Great. We needed to. But we didn't get him by building a gargantuan database that would make Hoover look like Helen Keller without fingers- by storing this massive database in perpetuity. I hate to say it, but I don't think the United States of America will ever get back to the way it was before GWB- not in my lifetime. There's a fly in my soup, and that's not the only bug I'm concerned with.

So Did Nudging Work? And would you know if you’ve been nudged?

Cass Sunstein, nudge inventor and former White House official, explains how his nudges have helped Americans save for retirement and eat better. He co-wrote the best-selling 2008 book Nudge: Improving Decisions about Health, Wealth, and Happiness with Richard Thaler. His latest book Simpler: The Future of Government is about using behavioral science to transform government.

When you published Nudge in 2008, did you expect it to have so much influence?
No. We were trying to write the best book we could. I was surprised and gratified that it got such attention.
You went on to head up the White House Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs. What was the most effective nudge that you implemented?

Automatic enrollment in retirement savings plans has had a major effect. If you have to sign up, it's a bit of a bother. People procrastinate or go about other business. Then they have less money in retirement. With automatic enrollment, you're more likely to be comfortable when you retire.

How many U.S. citizens have been nudged that way—and do they know it?
A very large number. Automatic enrollment is a common practice now; many millions of people have benefited from it. People recognize they've been automatically enrolled—there's nothing secret about it, and it's explained by employers. But they wouldn't think, "I've been nudged."

more at link: http://www.slate.com/articles/health_and_science/new_scientist/2013/06/nudge_policy_cass_sunstein_on_automatic_enrollment_and_food_choices.html
Posted by silvershadow | Fri Jul 5, 2013, 05:30 PM (3 replies)

Another Kucinich gem, pulled from FB and The Other 98%:

The Other 98%

Journalist: "Congressman Kucinich, I believe you're the only [representative] here who voted against the PATRIOT act right away after 9/11. Why is that?"

Dennis Kucinich: "Because I read it.”
Posted by silvershadow | Fri Jul 5, 2013, 01:35 AM (0 replies)

Too Many Tentacles.

Too many fires to put out. It is unraveling. Right now it seems slow speed, but I'd bet my bottom dollar that behind the scenes people in every agency are shitting their pants right now. Once enough pressure points are chewed on, across the world, by differing constituencies, then the wheels will come off somewhere. I'm just sitting in amazement right now at things. Hate to say it, but it's not gonna be good on any of us, party wise. Those of us on the right side of most of the issues are the most likely to have been ignored. Trust me, I know. I am one. We are usually the ones with the most practical ideas, the ones with the clearest heads it seems on what the constitution says and what it means, whether or not we have a law degree, because often our lives teach us these lessons- sometimes, repeatedly. I hate to say it, but a few Democrats might get caught up in this as it goes along- if so, expect DU to get uuuuugly. Hope I'm wrong, but bet I'm no so much. (Don't be too quick to judge the time frame for any fallout...This thing hasn't really started yet). :/

Did congress give up their authority with the Patriot Act? I think not. They can't give up their

authority. They need to re-claim it if they think they aren't being told enough. That's just my opinion. They pass the laws, which the the administration (any administration) must follow. It doesn't get much simpler than that. If the secret body of law was so secret that congress doesn't know every detail, then they either don't know enough or are, (what's the phrase?), "disingenuous". So I would say we need to start asking some very tough questions of our reps. I just keep coming back to "secret body of law". Tell me, really, what could be so sensitive as to require a secret body of law, anyway? Most of the cat is apparently out of the bag now, anyway. So they are spying on us. All of us. They are storing it all for the indefinite future (read forever). So they are scanning every piece of mail. So they are storing every single phone call. They have computers and programs of all shapes and sizes to learn what size underwear we wear and what brands we prefer. So they know we are xx-somthing with x kids and x dogs and are divorced. So they know we have hemorrhoids and acid reflux. So they know that we have had 3 prior surgeries, including what kind and who the doctors were. Turns out, paranoia isn't an actual treatable disease any more.
Posted by silvershadow | Thu Jul 4, 2013, 03:35 PM (0 replies)
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