Voices from Russia

Sunday, 19 January 2014

VOR Best of the Blogs. 16 January 2014

00 inflatable rat moneybags

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Editor’s Note:

I must admit that I dislike most people who call themselves “progressives”. I’m a no-holds-barred leftist. I’ve walked a picket line or two, I’ve been on public assistance (no longer, but I was on it due to America‘s nasty-ass parsimonious UIB laws), I’m proud that I belonged to the CWA, and I’ve worked in unregulated non-union shops. Therefore, I know a thing or two about the pressures facing most ordinary folk first-hand. I’ll be blunt… I hate “limousine liberals” and their cockamamie notions. They’re going to tell us what to do as they know so much better than we do, dontcha know, their oh-so-“caring” condescension just oozes out all over the place. Please, do spare me. It’s also why I have no respect for the so-called “Pro-Life” movement. They wave placards and support the most feral GOP politicians of the lot… those who favour perpetual warmongering and brutal union-busting. No way for this gal! I won’t support a movement that supports the most vicious members of Congress. That’s that.

We need a real discussion between the various classes in America… we don’t need nostrums from the Upper Middles (who see themselves as Saviours, whether from the right or from the “left”). I don’t see that happening. Until it does, we’re heading for a train wreck. I don’t want to see that, but that’s what I see. Shall we avert it? God alone knows…

BMD

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Unemployment Insurance Fails In the US Senate

Arthur Delaney and Sam Stein wrote on the Huffington Post that legislation to bring back unemployment insurance for over a million long-term jobless Americans failed to clear the US Senate. Benefits lapsed for 1.3 million workers on 28 December due to congressional inaction. Each week since the lapse, another 70,000 laid off workers reach the end of their state benefits, which in most cases last six months, and find that the federal benefits that previously helped millions of workers won’t help them. Lawmakers knew about the looming deadline for a whole year but did nothing until it was too late. Marcia Carroll, 43, of Staunton VA, one the people whose benefits stopped last month, said, “None of them care about the working person”.

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”Worse than Bush”: Green Groups Sound Alarm over Obama’s Trade Deal

Citing a report by WikiLeaks, Jacob Chamberlain, writing for Common Dreams, reported that the draft environmental chapter of the upcoming Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal renders any potential environmental protections “toothless”, as it lacks enforcement mechanisms between countries, such as penalties or criminal sanctions, and is largely “a public relations exercise”. A joint statement issued by the Sierra Club, the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), and the Natural Resources Defense Council, who analysed the document, stated, “Instead of committing TPP countries to ‘adopt, maintain, and implement’ the laws, regulations, and all other measures to fulfil its obligations under [Multilateral Environmental Agreements] and subject those obligations to dispute settlement, each TPP country is merely committed to ‘affirm its commitment’ to implement the MEAs to which it is a party”.

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Congressman’s New Jobs Plan: Deny Women Access to Abortion So They Can Make More Babies

According to Tara Culp-Ressler writing on ThinkProgress, US Representative Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) suggested that Republicans support restricting access to abortion because it’d ultimately benefit the economy if women have more children. During a debate over an anti-abortion bill currently advancing in Congress, he said, referring to the bill that he’s promoting, that carrying pregnancies to term “very much promotes job creation. It very much promotes job creation for all the care, and services, and so on that need to be provided by a lot of people to raise children”. The No Taxpayer Funding For Abortion Act would dramatically restrict women’s access to affordable abortion care by imposing restrictions on insurance coverage and tax credits for the procedure.

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Leaked Walmart Documents Reveal Propaganda Campaign to Fight Workers Attempting to Organise

According to Aaron Cantú writing on AlterNet, Walmart is attempting to win the hearts and minds of its employees by scaring them out of joining OUR Walmart, a Walmart workers’ collective that has organised strikes on behalf of all the company’s most vulnerable employees. The propaganda campaign is aimed at Walmart’s managerial staff, the corporation’s last line of defence in barring its low-wage workers from organizing for higher pay and better conditions. Walmart, the largest employer in the country, racked up 447 billion USD (15 billion Roubles. 490 million CAD. 590 million AUD. 330 million Euros. 272 million UK Pounds) in revenue in 2011, yet its workers’ wages are so low the taxpayers actually have to pay a significant amount each year for workers’ public assistance.

16 January 2014

Voice of Russia World Service

http://voiceofrussia.com/news/2014_01_16/Blog-digest-January-16-Jobless-Deal-with-it-says-US-Congress-1944/

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