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Sunday, March 18, 2018

Four Common Myths About Women’s Pay Gap

The existence of the gender pay gap is a well-documented fact. Respected institutions from the Pew Research Center to the Senate Joint Economic Committee confirm that American women make about 77 cents to the average man’s dollar. For women of color, the disparity is even steeper.

March 14, 2018

What The Dow Jones Average Doesn’t Tell Us

Consider that the most common measurement that the media, politicians and corporations use to tell us whether our economy is zooming or sputtering is Wall Street’s index of stock prices. The media literally spews out some number every hour indicating that the Dow Jones Average of stock prices is up, down or sluggish — as though everyone is waiting breathlessly for that news.

March 11, 2018

When Only A Human Will Do

As computers continue to replace cashiers, ticket vendors and bank tellers, consumers increasingly don’t notice or care much whether they are dealing with a human or a machine. The big exception is when they do. Consumers often prefer the convenience of interacting with computers. A checkout employee who doesn’t know the price of Gala apples adds grit to the smooth functioning of an over-scheduled day.

March 11, 2018

A New Lesson Plan In West Virginia

On the brink of victory, the crowd of teachers gathered in the West Virginia Capitol started singing the state anthem. Seeing so many people, of such a mix of ages and colors, swaying together as they belt out John Denver’s 1971 hit “Take Me Home, Country Roads” can make you believe we really are making progress in this country.

March 9, 2018

Why Isn’t The Media Covering The West Virginia Teachers Strike?

The strike stems in part from the rising cost of PEIA, which is intended to provide affordable health insurance for state employees. West Virginia teachers, who already ranked 48th nationally in terms of salaries, were looking at an even deeper cut to their take-home pay by way of escalating PEIA premiums, and the pay raises previously proposed by the governor-2 percent in the first year followed by…

March 4, 2018
Trump border tax

Trump’s Steel And Aluminum Tariffs Are Absolutely Horrible For American Workers

President Donald Trump announced Thursday his decision to slap tariffs of 25 percent on foreign steel and 10 percent on foreign aluminum, a reckless move that shocked investors and caused the stock market to plunge, erasing nearly all the gains made this year.

March 3, 2018

A Majority of Uber And Lyft Drivers Earn Far Less Than Minimum Wage: Report

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology paints a grim portrait of life as an Uber or Lyft driver. According to a new study titled “The Economics of Ride-Hailing: Driver Revenue, Expenses, and Taxes,” a motorist for the ride-sharing apps makes an average of $3.37 per hour—and that’s before taxes. At least 74 percent of employees earn below minimum wage in their respective states.

March 3, 2018

Tip Thievery, Codified — By Donald Trump

Fourteen years later, I could still write that column about tip jars in too many restaurants and party centers across the country. I know this because when I see a tip jar, I almost always ask an employee who gets to keep the money in it. I am long accustomed to that soft and often nervous response: Management either skims the tips or steals all of them.

February 9, 2018
Trump, headline, Carrier

“Con Man.” Former Union Leader Rips Trump As Carrier Announces 215 More Layoffs

Chuck Jones was one of the first worker reps to call out Donald Trump for being a complete fraud when he claimed he was personally saving American jobs by striking deals with big businesses. Specifically, Jones debunked Trump’s insistence, in December 2016, that he was saving more than a thousand jobs at a Carrier plant in Indianapolis and stemming the tide of globalization.

January 12, 2018
U.S. Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump

Coal Miners Turn On Trump After They Gain Fewer Jobs Than A Local Sam’s Club

Donald Trump not only spent the 2016 campaign promising that he would resurrect America’s dying coal industry, he kept offering up that false hope in 2017. At a White House event last March, Trump announced the end to the so-called “war on coal,” and stressed “I made them this promise, we will put our miners back to work.”

January 12, 2018

Trashed: Inside The Deadly World Of Private Garbage Collection

Shortly before 5 a.m. on a recent November night, a garbage truck with a New York Yankees decal on the side sped through a red light on an empty street in the Bronx. The two workers aboard were running late. Before long, they would start getting calls from their boss.

January 7, 2018

Who Would Pay $26,000 To Work In A Chicken Plant?

Yeom, now 46, had landed in South Carolina in 2015 after researching how to immigrate to the United States. At the time, he was living in Daejeon, a technology center about 90 miles south of Seoul and worried about the future of his two young daughters in Korea’s high-pressure education system, where many children spend additional hours each day in private “cram schools.”

January 2, 2018

Trump’s Phony Postcard Tax Return

That’s not really true, because the bill that emerged from Congress this week does little to simplify the tax code and in some ways makes it even more complicated. The tax return on a postcard, originally a symbol of radical reform, has become a gimmick aimed at distracting the public from a revenue collection system that is just as confusing, frustrating, intrusive and manipulative as ever.

December 26, 2017

Republicans Just Made It A Lot Harder For Restaurant Workers To Fight Big Chains

On Thursday, the National Labor Relations Board, led by Trump appointee Philip A. Miscimarra, undid an Obama-era ruling that protected workers, including subcontractors, from labor law violations. In an unsurprising move, all three Republicans on the Board voted together to undo the rule, while the two Democrats opposed them.

December 16, 2017
Trump tax returns

GOP Goes For Win On Taxes, Consequences Be Damned

Their promised Affordable Care Act repeal failed – again and again and again. Their Muslim ban was, well, banned by the courts. And now, in the waning days of November, their infrastructure bill, big beautiful border wall and brand new NAFTA are all missing.

November 30, 2017

How GOP Tax Bill Would Screw Gig Economy Workforce

The Republican tax bill now in Congress would imperil many of the last century’s hardest-won labor rights for workers by building a new legal wall between businesses and so-called gig economy workers that absolves management of many obligations owed to employees, according to law school professors tracking the bill.

November 16, 2017
Environmental, EPA, Environment

Pure Delusion: Coal Miners Are Refusing To Learn New Job Skills Because Of Their Faith In Trump

“We’re going to bring the coal industry back 100 percent,” Donald Trump told a Virginia audience of campaign supporters in 2016. At another rally in West Virginia, Trump announced, “Miners, get ready, because you’re going to be working your asses off.” Among the many lies Trump told on the campaign trail, the promise of a rejuvenated coal industry was among the most obvious.

November 3, 2017

Why Does Amazon Get Corporate Welfare?

Jeffrey Preston Bezos is the man of unbounded ambition who founded Amazon, the online retailing colossus that trumpets itself as “Earth’s most customer-centric company.” He’s considered a model of tech wizardry for having totally reinvented retail marketing for our smart-phone, globally-linked age.

November 2, 2017

Are You Ready For Corporate America’s Robot Economy?

One big reason is that corporate boards and CEOs have their heads stuck in a dreamy future. Nearly every economic sector is actually spending vast sums of money on workers — just not human workers. While few Americans are aware of it, bosses are quietly investing in hordes of sophisticated autonomous robots powered by a cognitive technology called artificial intelligence.

October 22, 2017

The Tech Revolution May Take Your Job Next

Today’s proliferation of industrial robots is an advanced generation of powerful, autonomous machines driven by artificial intelligence. The profiteers and techies propelling us into the deep unknown of a robot economy concede that the fast-evolving machines will be radically disruptive, not just in the workplace, but throughout society.

October 14, 2017

Will Trump Betray Workers Again By Naming Kevin Warsh As Fed Chair?

A consistent drumbeat in Donald Trump’s campaign for the presidency was a promise that he would stand up for the American working class against financial elites who had rigged policy to enrich themselves, a message that clearly resonated with some voters.

October 9, 2017

Think Your Job Is Safe From The Robot Invasion?

If you think your family’s future is safe because you don’t rely on factory work, think again. Rapid advances in AI have already turned yesterday’s science fiction into today’s brave new “creative destruction” — the constant churn of economic and cultural innovations that destroy existing ways of doing things.

October 7, 2017
Ivanka Trump

Ivanka Trump’s Latest Admission Proves She’s Just As Shameless As Her Father

In what is likely to be hailed as a brave admission, Ivanka Trump told talk show host Mehmet Oz that she had suffered from postpartum depression in an interview set to air Thursday. A clip released ahead of the episode’s broadcast shows the first daughter briefly discussing the emotional difficulties she faced after the birth of each of her three children.

September 22, 2017
local shop

7 Good Things That Happen Every Time You Decide To Buy Local

In times like these (Donald Trump, the climate crisis, environmental degradation, police brutality, etc.), it’s natural to feel a need to do something. But what? It’s easy to donate online to any one of hundreds of organizations. Heck, even making an Amazon purchase online or an in-store Whole Foods purchase is accompanied by an opportunity to donate to an organization that needs your spare change. But where does that money go? And really, do you know what effect it is having?

September 18, 2017

Where Are The Monuments To Real American Heroes?

In May, the New Orleans City Council declared monuments of Lee, Confederate President Jefferson Davis and Confederate Gen. PGT Beauregard public nuisances and had them removed. In August, Baltimore Mayor Catherine Pugh ordered Confederate monuments removed from the city’s public spaces.

September 18, 2017