Working for Scrooge

As families around the world prepare to celebrate the true meaning of the holiday season, the International Labor Rights Forum has released this year’s Working for Scrooge, a report profiling the worst multinational corporations for union organizing. The companies that made our Scrooge list this year are Dole, Hershey’s, Philippine Airlines, and Wal-Mart.
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Legislation Offers Antidote for Stupidity of Shipping Tax-Dollar-Financed Jobs Overseas

by Leo Gerard

Leo Geard, USW President

Amid prolonged, painfully high unemployment, ABC News Anchor Diane Sawyer for the past year tirelessly advocated a simple solution– buy American-made products.  She clearly explained the reasoning: every American dollar spent on an American-made product helps create an American job.

Defying Sawyer’s admonition to search for “Made in America” tags, California set a record for using government money to create jobs in China. The Golden State awarded a contract for the new Bay Bridge that created 3,000 jobs in China for five years – a period during which the state’s unemployment rate persisted at two percentage points above the nation’s already high average.

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Throw the bankers in jail !

Duane Campbell

I have a a problem with the Country Wide and  the WaMU settlements.
We have to consider the externalities of the fraud.  While a $337 million dollar fine may be sufficient for the individuals defrauded by Country Wide, the cost to the nation and the state was much greater.  These could be called externalities or collateral damage.  And the costs are truly astronomic.
Remember what caused this  crisis – it wasn’t the government. First came the housing bubble and the selling of near fraudulent home mortgages by corporations such as Country Wide and WaMU– thus the settlements.  To make a profit major banks and corporations looted the economy creating an international meltdown.
Now we have cuts in parks,  in universities, in nurses, libraries.  School children did not create this crisis. 
The major bankers, finance capitalists in the U.S. robbed the bank last year  – and the federal treasury.  They took hundreds of billions of dollars  – Goldman Sachs alone took $10 Billion.

WASHINGTON - JANUARY 13:  (L-R) Lloyd Blankfei...

Image by Getty Images via @daylife

For example,  Ken Lewis of Bank of America received an $ 81 million dollar pension.  They have not even been punished.  One thing we should do is arrest the top 100 executives and CEO’s of these companies, give them a fair trial, and throw them in jail.  Until we arrest some people there will be no real changes.

Note:  House Concurrent Resolution  85. Dec. 2011.

Resolved by the House of Representatives (the Senate concurring), That it is the sense of the House of Representatives that any action taken by the Department of Justice should be consistent with the following goals:

(1) The mortgage servicers who engaged in fraudulent behavior should not be granted criminal or civil immunity for potential wrongdoing related to illegal mortgage and foreclosure practices. Continue reading

Will the NLRB Let Graduate Student Workers Down Again?

By Josh Eidelson

Josh Eidelson

Dacia Mitchell has taught dozens of students. This year, she stopped teaching because the money she was paid for it was less than the cost of childcare for her two year-old daughter. She worries about how class size and teacher workload affect the quality of teaching at New York University, where she works.

So she and her co-workers, who once had union recognition, are fighting to win it back.  But under current law, they have no right to recognition, because they’re graduate students.

As David Moberg reported, NYU graduate students in GSOC (a United Auto Workers affiliate) filed for an election to regain union recognition last year. When a regional NLRB director moved to dismiss the election petition based on precedent, Obama NLRB appointees overrode the dismissal, stating that there were “compelling reasons” for fuller consideration of graduate students’ status, and setting the stage for a new decision by the full Labor Board about the merits of the election petition.

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Occupiers join Teamsters in slamming Sotheby’s lockout

by Michael Hirsch

Tony auction house Sotheby’s had the most profitable year in its history this year, paying its top executives record bonuses. It also locked out 43 art handlers in August for refusing to accept wage and benefit cuts and the dissolution of their union as a condition of employment.

The art handlers and their union, Teamsters Local 814, were soon joined by Occupy Wall Street activists noisily picketing company offices during auctions, insinuating themselves into the bidding process and pressuring board members to intervene, including employing “truth squads” inside and outside the restaurants owned by Danny Meyer, a Sotheby’s director.

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And the Scrooge of the Year Is…

Jobs with Justice

This years Scrooge of the Year is Rob Walton!

The vote was close and went up until the last minute, but across the nation people made their voices heard – and Rob Walton is the biggest Scrooge of them all! A quick reminder of why Rob Walton was given this nomination:

Deemed a “billionaire bully” by Brave New Films, Rob Walton is the Chair of Walmart’s board of directors.  His estimated net worth is around $21 billion. As a family, the Waltons control 49% of Walmart stock, and are predicted to gain a controlling share in the next 12 months. The Waltons are the richest family in the United States, with a combined net worth is $93 billion. The Walton Family has as much wealth as the bottom 30% of American families combined – more than 35 million families. Waltons make up 4 of the 11 wealthiest people in the United States according to Forbes Magazine, and they could give more than $4,700 to every resident of New York and still have $1 billion left over. With the economy as it is, that would make a huge difference!

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Santa’s Workshop – Inside China’s Slave Labour Toy Factories