Voices from Russia

Wednesday, 6 August 2014

6 August 2014. Read n’ Heed on Walmart

00 Jesus was a radical.16

Our Lord Christ was “one of us”… He wasn’t a money-bags oligarch… He wasn’t a smarmy preacher… He wasn’t a greasy and corrupt official… yet, the “Evangelicals” tell us that He taught we should lie down and kowtow to the powers-that-be. That’s not so… remember, Our Lord hung on the cross for “crossing” the First Century equivalents of Sam Walton, Pat Robertson, and Chilly Hilly… fancy that.

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Editor:

The following is a good précis of what’s happened in Walmartised America. It’s all part of the Neoliberal Hell unleashed by Slobberin’ Ronnie, allowed by Bubba Bill, reinforced by Bush the Simple, and acquiesced in by Obama (Chilly Hilly is even worse… she’s a long-time partner-in-crime (literally) of the Walton family). However, take heart, it’s starting to unravel… it’s run its course for 33 years and it’s running out of steam. Yet, the Affluent Effluent won’t go quietly…

BMD

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The definitive Southern company, and the company that did the most to subject the American job to the substandard standards of the South, was Wal-Mart, which began as a single store in Rogers AR in 1962. That year, the federal government extended the minimum wage, set at $1.15 an hour, to retail workers, much to the dismay of Sam Walton, who paid the employees at his fast-growing chain half that amount. Since the law initially applied to businesses with 50 or more employees, Walton argued that each of his stores was a separate entity, a claim that the Department of Labor rejected, fining Walton for his evasion of federal law.

When a Wal-Mart opens in a new territory, it either drives out higher-wage competition or compels that competition to lower its pay. David Neumark, an economist at the University of California, Irvine, showed that eight years after Wal-Mart comes to a county, it drives down wages for all (not just retail) workers until they’re 2.5 percent to 4.8 percent below wages in comparable counties with no Wal-Mart outlets. By controlling a huge share of the US retail market, including an estimated 20 percent of the grocery trade, Wal-Mart has also been able to mandate reduced prices all along its worldwide supply chain. In response, manufacturers slashed the wages of their employees and gone abroad in search of cheaper labour… but Wal-Mart’s antipathy to unions and affinity for low wages merely reflects the South’s historic opposition to worker autonomy and employee rights. By coming north, though, Wal-Mart lowered retail-sector wages throughout the USA. One academic survey found that while just 2.3 percent of manufacturing workers in 1989 were temps, by 2004 the number had risen to 8.7 percent.

Source: 

Harold Meyerson, The 40-Year Slump

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Editor:

This is EVIL… evil incarnate, evil unashamed, evil without mercy or check upon its appetite. This is what the Republican Party blesses and advocates… it’s why I oppose those in the Church who defend Republican greedster enormities (like opposing single-payer healthcare and union protections for all workers). Bernie Sanders is in step with the social teachings of the Church… Ted Cruz, Rush Limbaugh, Chilly Hilly, John Boehner, and John Kerry are not. Do note that the list is bipartisan. It’s time to take our country back. We should emulate our forebears who stood tall in the sit-down strikes and mine closures… Let’s keep Mother Jones’ motto in our hearts:

 Pray for the dead and fight like hell for the living.

Now, that’s something to live for and fight for!

BMD

Monday, 2 September 2013

2 September 2013. Video. Celebrate Labour on Labour Day

00 Free Market Trickle Down Economics at Work. 15.05.13

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In this Labour Day message, Robert Reich, the former Secretary of Labour and subject of the upcoming documentary Inequality for All, breaks down what it’ll take for workers to get a fair share in this economy… including big profitable corporations like McDonald’s and Walmart ponying up and finally paying fair wages. McDonald’s and Walmart… pay your employees decent wages! Your typical employee is now earning 8.25 to 8.80 USD (275-293 Roubles. 8.60-9.20 CAD. 9-9.60 AUD. 6.25-6.75 Euros. 5.25-5.60 UK Pounds) an hour. Most are adults, responsible for bringing in half their family’s income. You can easily afford to pay them 15 USD (500 Roubles. 15.60 CAD. 16.40 AUD. 11.40 Euros. 9.60 UK Pounds) an hour without causing layoffs or requiring price hikes. Your shareholders and executives are doing spectacularly well.

28 August 2013

Nick Berning

Move On

http://front.moveon.org/how-workers-can-get-a-fair-shake-a-labor-day-message-from-robert-reich/#.UiTwUBttiyo

Editor’s Note:

We have to end the charade of voodoo economics brought by Margaret “Milk Snatcher” Thatcher and Slobberin’ Ronnie (and reinforced by Shrub Bush). We produce the wealth… we deserve our fair share. If that’s “Red”… so be it, I’m proud to be a Red! Those who didn’t work to produce the wealth, shouldn’t take the lion’s share… and I’m not alone in thinking that way.

BMD

2 September 2013. It’s LABOUR Day… NOT “Management” Day!

00a IWW logo. 02.09.13

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00a1 IWW logo. 02.09.13

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00a2 IWW logo. 02.09.13

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00a3 IWW logo. 02.09.13

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00a4 IWW logo. 02.09.13

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The globe indicates that Labour (like Capital) is international. Subservient journalists such as Rod Dreher and Ann Coulter often call Unions “un-American” and “foreign-influenced”, but Capital receives praise from the Corporate Media and its running-dog Prostitute Press for exploiting poor countries and exporting jobs internationally to the lowest bidder. That’s interesting, it makes multinational Corporations scofflaws… they profit from wages that are illegal under the laws of developed countries and from regulatory climates abroad similar to that of the so-called “Gilded Age” (again, in obvious and deliberate flouting of laws in their home countries). That’s to say, most Republicans (and their analogues abroad) are criminal gangsters at heart… they advocate a business environment that does its damnedest to break every labour, safety, and regulatory standard on the statute books. They have NO part in Labour Day… it isn’t “Executives’ Day”, after all.

The Stars on the logo stand for:

  • Education
  • Agitation
  • Emancipation

At one time, in some areas of the USA, these words were considered “subversive” and illegal; the bosses used them as a pretext to jail union organisers. Indeed, today, the Southern USA is known for its hostility to organised labour (and coddling of mendacious business enterprises… Wal-Mart’s not in Bentonville AR for no reason, after all)… the Sectarian Evangelicals there teach that labour must grovel before Capital (for, you see, if you’re rich, you have God’s favour… if you’re not, you aren’t in God’s good graces, dontcha know). The letters IWW (besides the obvious!), have another coded meaning:

I WILL WIN!

Labour Day is for us to remember that the goodness that workers enjoyed in North America and Europe was FOUGHT FOR… the Affluent Effluent bosses didn’t give us anything without a bitter fight. All you have to do is to look at Wal-Mart… their reaction to the revelations of massive scheming on their part (which they call “outsourcing” and “right to work”) was an expensive ad campaign on TV… not an effort to put things right. The Golden Age of Labour was between 1933 and 1981… we’ve lived in a rapacious Dark Age since then. However, it looks as though things are looking up. We’ve tried voodoo economics for thirty-odd years… and they’ve failed. I only hope that its end won’t be overly bloody.

Again, this is LABOUR DAY… not BOSSES DAY. Let’s not dishonour our ancestors by forgetting that (that’s especially salient for us Russian Orthodox people, by the way). Keep it focused.

BMD barbara-drezhlo2 September 2013

Barbara-Marie Drezhlo

Labour Day

Albany NY

Friday, 11 January 2013

Former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords Launches Gun Control Campaign in USA

00 Gabrielle Giffords. 11.01.13

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On Tuesday, on the second anniversary of the mass shooting in Tucson AZ that left her critically injured and six people dead, former US Representative Gabrielle Giffords (D-AZ) launched a high-profile campaign against gun violence in America by taking aim at her former colleagues in Congress. Giffords and her husband, retired astronaut Mark Kelly, in a USA Today op-ed published Tuesday said, “In response to a horrific series of shootings that has sown terror in our communities, victimised tens of thousands of Americans, and left one of its own bleeding and near death in a Tucson parking lot, Congress has done something quite extraordinary… nothing at all. Special interests purporting to represent gun owners, but really advancing the interests of an ideological fringe, have used big money and influence to cow Congress into submission… as a result, we’re more vulnerable to gun violence”.

With that, the husband-and-wife team announced their new Americans for Responsible Solutions initiative, which aims to raise enough money to balance the influence of the powerful pro-gun lobbying group the National Rifle Association (NRA) and others in the gun industry. The announcement comes just days after Giffords and Kelly had an emotional meeting with family members of those killed in the December shooting massacre that claimed the lives of 20 young children and six adults at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut. They said, “We can’t just hope that the last shooting tragedy will prevent the next. Achieving reforms to reduce gun violence and prevent mass shootings will mean matching gun lobbyists in their reach and resources”.

The couple is pushing for comprehensive background checks for anyone purchasing private firearms, and advocate more effective treatment for those who are mentally ill. Kelly said in an interview with ABC News, “I bought a gun at Wal-Mart recently and I went through a background check. It’s not a difficult thing to do. Why can’t we just do that and make it more difficult for criminals and the mentally ill to get guns?”

The man who shot Giffords was deemed incompetent to stand trial and was sentenced in November to seven life terms plus 140 years in prison without parole. Giffords wrote, “America has seen an astounding 11 mass shootings since a madman used a semiautomatic pistol with an extended ammunition clip to shoot me and kill six others. This country is known for using its determination and ingenuity to solve problems, big and small… but when it comes to protecting our communities from gun violence, we’re not even trying… and for the worst of reasons”.

The new initiative launches as the national debate over gun control heats up with a series of White House meetings this week on how best to curb gun violence in America. The administration invited gun owners, victims’ groups, educators, mental health experts, and video-game industry figures for high-level discussions on possible changes in policy. A task force on gun control led by Vice President Joe Biden is set to submit recommendations to President Barack Obama by the end of the month.

8 January 2013

RIA-Novosti

http://en.rian.ru/world/20130108/178648626/Injured_Former_Congresswoman_Launches.html

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