Its a bad deal !

Duane Campbellby Duane Campbell

The Congressional  negotiators have announced a deal for the budget- a bad deal.   The proposal includes not extending the unemployment benefits for the long term unemployed.  This is an outrage. Corporate agriculture gets bailed out, the banks get bailed out, but the unemployed get pushed aside.

The crisis was caused by finance capital.  The unemployed  should not have to pay for their crisis.

From The Coalition on Human Needs.     Important issues.
Some are saying that since the unemployment rate went down in November, we don’t need any more federal unemployment insurance for those out of work more than six months.
But wait:  long-term unemployment ROSE last month.  In November, 37.3% of the jobless had been out of work for six months or more, up from 36.9% in September.  The proportion of long-term unemployed is double the rate in 2007 (before the recession hit).  (Source:  Economic Policy Institute.)
Congress has never let long-term UI benefits expire unless the long-term jobless were no more than 1.3 percent of the labor force.  Now, they are double that – 2.6 percent. Continue reading

Reject the Fiscal Cliff, Tax the Rich

Invest in Infrastructure and Services

Democratic Socialists of America logo

Democratic Socialists of America logo (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 A statement of the National Political Committee of the Democratic Socialists of America

November 20, 2012

 DSA rejects the “fiscal cliff” hysteria of the corporate establishment and the pressure for a “Grand Bargain” that would cut Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid. While unemployment remains high and economic growth slow, the government should not impose austerity measures that reduce essential programs that benefit the middle and working classes and that further shred the safety net for the most vulnerable. Rather, government policy should prioritize investments in job creation, public education and healthcare reform, while raising essential revenues by taxing the large corporations and wealthiest citizens who can afford to pay.

 

Immediately after the election, Wall Street-backed foundations such as Third Way and the Concord Coalition organized a “Campaign to Fix the Debt” to spin the election results as a mandate for a “bi-partisan” focus on reducing the deficit as the highest national priority. For decades the billionaire Pete Peterson has funded groups that claim that the universal entitlement programs Social Security and Medicare are bankrupting the nation and that their future growth must thus be drastically trimmed.  These neoliberals scored an initial success in 2011 when the Simpson-Bowles Congressional Commission put to a vote a long-term “budget compromise” that would have instituted three times as much in budget cuts than in tax increases. But despite President Obama’s evident willingness to reach such a one-sided compromise, Tea Party insistence on no tax increases, even on the wealthiest, scuttled the deal. The “resolution” of this manufactured, alleged “budget crisis” was to postpone a decision on further deficit reduction until the end of 2012, hence the contrived “fiscal cliff.” Continue reading

Unions diverge on new immigration rules

by Duane Campbell

English: Eliseo Medina, Executive Vice Preside...

Image via Wikipedia

The Obama Administration acted on Friday to permit the husbands, wives, and children of U.S. citizens to adjust their status and to allow them to gain Green Cards or permission to become a resident alien.   This is a return to the policy before the 1996  Republican sponsored Immigration Act.

The primary beneficiaries of the  Obama administration’s move are families in which some members are US citizens and some aren’t.  At present some family members must return to their home country for up to 10 years while they apply for U.S. residency as a 1996 law – approved by a Republican-led Congress – mandates.

The proposed change will undergo a review but doesn’t require congressional approval. Under the so-called “hardship waiver,” illegal immigrants who are married or otherwise related to US citizens would be able to pick up the waiver before leaving the United States and then be allowed to return almost immediately after picking up visas in their home countries.  This policy used to be known as advanced parole. Continue reading

Support unemployed workers

unemployment

Image by Sean MacEntee via Flickr

From Wall Street to Main Street to Capitol Hill, we’re taking action for America’s jobless workers this Thursday.  Find an event near you and RSVP to attend a National Day of Mobilization for the Jobless and Jobs action: [ http://local.americawantstowork.org ].

If Congress fails to act by Dec. 31, nearly 2 million job hunters will lose their emergency unemployment aid in January alone. And without action in 2012, that number will rise to 6 million.

Lawmakers need to be reminded that these aren’t statistics–they’re real people, like Mickey from Battle Creek, Mich. He told us his story: “I have worked since I was 15 years old. I’ve been laid off before but never have I had this much trouble finding employment….I have always given my best to my job and have gone the extra mile.…I am BEGGING you to extend unemployment benefits and the payroll tax and act on it soon.”

And Elizabeth from Kamuela, Hawaii, has struggled, in spite of her advanced degree: “Even with credentials as an advanced practice nurse, I went 2 and a half years without full employment. I lost my house, had a bankruptcy and would have starved had it not been for unemployment benefits.”

Stories like these illustrate why we all need to do what it takes to make sure the voices of America’s jobless workers are heard loud and clear. So Thursday, we’ll bring more than 2,000 unemployed workers and clergy to Capitol Hill. As long-term jobless workers and clergy meet with Congress, we’ll be backing them up at local congressional offices and public spaces across America.

Join the fight for emergency unemployment Thursday. Find out where and RSVP to attend now: [ http://local.americawantstowork.org ].

America has never experienced the record stretch of high unemployment and long-term joblessness that plagues our economy today–not since the data were first collected in 1948. And Congress has never cut back on federally funded unemployment insurance when unemployment was anywhere near this high for this long. (1)

It’s time to demand obstructionists in Congress put a stop to the partisan bickering and reauthorize extended unemployment insurance aid–without delays or strings attached.

Tell Congress that inaction is not an option: find an event near you: [ http://local.americawantstowork.org ].

Thanks for all the work you do.

In Solidarity,

Manny Herrmann
Online Mobilization Coordinator, AFL-CIO

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How U.S. corporations avoid paying taxes

WASHINGTON, DC - DECEMBER 01:  Senate Finance ...

Image by Getty Images via @daylife

Some of the nation’s largest corporations have amassed vast profits outside the country and are pressing Congress and the Obama administration for a tax break to bring the money home.
But Nobody Pays That : From the N.Y. Times

Billions Offshore

Articles in this series will examine efforts by businesses to lower their taxes and the debate over how to improve the tax system.

Apple has $12 billion waiting offshore, Google has $17 billion and Microsoft, $29 billion.
Under the proposal, known as a repatriation holiday, the federal income tax owed on such profits returned to the United States would fall to 5.25 percent for one year, from 35 percent. In the short term, the measure could generate tens of billions in tax revenues as companies transfer money that would otherwise remain abroad, and it could help ease the huge budget deficit.

Watch the video here:

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/06/20/business/20tax.html?_r=1

Meanwhile, working people suffer job loss, union busting, and political attacks.

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