Tuesday, August 2, 2011
Workers continue to fight for economic and environmental justice. However they have taken lots of hits lately. The American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), a nonprofit corporation, continues to provide model legislation to politicians to undermine progressive efforts.
Meanwhile, at least 25 large United States corporations paid more to their CEO than they did to the US government in taxes.1 According to the AFL-CIO "In addition to handing their CEOs big dollars, 20 of the 25 corporations in the study spent more on lobbying lawmakers than they paid in corporate taxes.
Vital organizations like the US Red Cross and the US Postal Service have been downsizing--with threats of more layoffs. Verizon communication workers protested after the corporation refused to bargain in good faith--and called for drastic cuts in pay and benefits.
As for government programs, homeless prevention programs and affordable housing budgets face drastic cuts.2
In environmental news, the Obama administration has decided to table progressive ozone legislation. They also appear to have given a green light for corporations to construct the Keystone Pipeline, transporting processed tar sands from Canada, across one of the largest US aquifers. More than 1200 people have been arrested outside the White House to protest the environmental injustice.3
Sunday, July 31, 2011
American Injustice continues to gather reports showing a continuing consolidation of power by the US elites. The top 400 US families now own as much as the bottom 150,000,000 citizens.1 Meanwhile, the top 10 "banks" (Bank of America, JP Morgan Chase, Citibank, Wells Fargo, Goldman Sachs,Morgan Stanley) hold $11 trillion in assets or about 84% of all US bank assets.2 Two years ago, Bank of America and Citibank were on the verge of collapse, until they were bailed out by the US government.
Saturday, June 25, 2011
US workers have been paying the price for corporate malfeasance--to the tune of $8,000,000,000,000 in home equity from 2006 to 2010. Note that while home equity decreased precipitously, residential mortgage debt (in red) did not decrease. Workers also continue to face mass evictions, job loss, and reductions in pay and benefits, while large corporations make record profits.
US workers have faced several recent losses. In Dukes v. Walmart, the Supreme Court ruled against more than a million women workers who have faced gender discrimination at America's largest corporate employer. US Postal Service employees also lost all employer contributions to their pensions. And in the states, public service employees, including teachers, face layoffs and reductions in pensions and health benefits. Workers, however, continue the class struggle. In New Jersey, thousands of public service employees protested drastic benefit reductions. The losses were particularly discouraging given that both houses of the New Jersey Legislature are held by Democrats. Although the anti-worker bills were passed, protesters vowed they would "remember in November."
Monday, February 21, 2011
Public employees are increasingly feeling the pressure as states and municipalities face budget shortfalls--shortfalls created by neoliberal politics and economics. In Wisconsin, the Governor has used a slight budget deficit(created by tax cuts) as an excuse to declare ending collective bargaining for most public service employees. Wisconites and workers throughout the US are resisting these attacks on collective bargaining rights.