This is a busy week for actions of all sorts and I want to finish for now on Gun Control by encouraging all people to look closely at all of what is being proposed by the Obama/Hopkins policy group and think about the regressive nature and the current state of our country as regards attitudes towards government and corporate autocratic control. In Maryland, Health Care for All, an organization supposedly working to protect people is promoting these regressive policies because they are a Hopkins private non-profit!!!
I would like to discuss labor issues that show progress on the part of citizens organizing and combating ever regressive labor conditions and introduce new areas to fight in that regard. Here in Baltimore we have strong unionizing actions in a city whose pols work hard to impoverish. We see Sheraton and Hyatt staff at all levels on the streets in picket lines fighting for unionization. This week Baltimore is the site of a National Labor Board action against Hyatt for firing union organizers and look forward to favorable rulings as the case is solid. I will attend those proceedings tomorrow and give an update. This is important as US labor is now at such an impoverished level of wages as to make us almost equal to China in how labor costs effect corporate operational costs and therefor profits.
Below you'll see that the manufacturing sector that is moving back to America is doing so not because Obama and Third Way corporate democrats gave them trillions of dollars in tax breaks under the guise of job creation, they are coming back because the technology created over these few decades has eliminated the need for much of the human labor in these factories....the article below places robots as taking half of the jobs in a factory. So, your corporate pol is providing a bonanza in tax breaks for very few jobs......which is why unemployment will remain high. Now, what is an American citizen to do....we cannot hate robots? The problem and deliberate policy that makes this transition as bad as it is for unemployment is that ALL OF THE SMALL, REGIONAL BUSINESSES THAT WOULD COMPETE AND OFFER ALTERNATIVE PRODUCTS ARE BEING SIDELINED EITHER BY INABILITY TO GET SMALL BUSINESS FUNDING OR BY LAWS THAT ALLOW THESE MEGA-BUSINESSES TO FORCE SMALLER BUSINESSES TO MERGE WITH THEM, PUTTING THEM OUT OF BUSINESS. Remember, a handful of corporations own all of business interests in America and this is what is keeping unemployment high!!!! Do we have free-markets and the benefits of competition if we have a business environment that stifles competition and allows price-fixing? IT IS ALL AN ILLUSION AS WE ARE CAPTURED BY THE INTERESTS OF A HANDFUL OF CORPORATIONS. THIS IS BAD POLICY FOR A FREE AND DEMOCRATIC SOCIETY.
If your Third Way corporate democrat is not shouting loudly and strongly against these policies that are consolidating our economy and killing our ability to actively engage in personal pursuits.......THEY ARE NOT WORKING FOR THE MIDDLE/LOWER CLASS ....VOTE YOUR INCUMBENT OUT OF OFFICE!!!!! IF YOUR LABOR OR JUSTICE LEADERS ARE NOT RUNNING CANDIDATES AGAINST THESE THIRD WAY CORPORATE POLS ......THEY ARE NOT WORKING FOR YOU AND ME AND YOU NEED TO VOTE THOSE LEADERS OUT!!!
WHEN OBAMA IS TELLING US THAT MANUFACTURING RETURNING TO AMERICA WILL FUEL JOB CREATION AND WHEN YOUR THIRD WAY CORPORATE DEMOCRATS KEEP GIVING TAX BREAKS TO THESE CORPORATIONS UNDER THE GUISE OF JOB CREATION......THIS IS WHAT IS CAUSING EVER GROWING UNEMPLOYMENT FIGURES.....AND YOUR POLITICIAN KNOWS THAT.
We know that policy creating mega-corporations is bad for American labor, we know as well that policy designed to maximize corporate profits are as well because it is labor and quality of service that are that source. So corporate tax policy that is now not only free corporations from paying taxes but actually have our government handing our tax revenue to corporations for their operating costs it TOXIC for the American people and your Third Way corporate democrat is going at this like gang-busters. Obama and all of the Senate's democratic leaders are Third Way corporate and that is why we are seeing these policies getting ever deeper.
VOTE YOUR INCUMBENT OUT OF OFFICE!!!
Lastly for today I want to remind all citizens ......because you all are potential labor after all......that Third Way corporate democrats are pushing for privatizing all that is public even faster than Republicans because they are wanting government to be all about serving corporate interests and not about protecting the interests of the people. GOVERNMENT OF THE PEOPLE, FOR THE PEOPLE, BY THE PEOPLE------THAT IS OUR DEMOCRACY-----IS BEING TAKEN AWAY BY USURPERS THAT WOULD NORMALLY BE PROSECUTED FOR CRIMES AGAINST THE STATE....ONLY THE PROSECUTORS ARE WORKING FOR THE USURPERS!!!!
So every public institution is being given over to corporations and as a result the public sector which was always middle-class with benefits are now being made the most impoverished.. Maryland's O'Malley and Baltimore's Rawlings-Blake are deliberately allowing contractors to dismantle our MTA by making agreements that were to protect the unionized MTA workers and their rights when handed over to Veola and then Veola slashes all those rights and the unions are dissolved by firing and resale. YOUR THIRD WAY CORPORATE DEMOCRAT IS DOING JUST AS BAIN CAPITAL DID TO BE RID OF UNIONS AND THEIR BENEFITS.....DEFUNDING THEM BY ALLOWING MASSIVE CORPORATE FRAUD TO EMPTY GOVERNMENT COFFERS AND BY FURTHER STARVING GOVERNMENT WITH CORPORATE TAX BREAKS AND PARTNERSHIPS THAT PLACE ALL THE COST OF BUSINESS OPERATION ON THE PUBLIC.
STOP REELECTING YOUR INCUMBENT AND MAKE SURE A LABOR AND JUSTICE CANDIDATE IS RUNNING FOR OFFICES AT ALL LEVELS!!!!!
January 13, 2013 8:07 PM Are robots hurting job growth?
The following script is from "March of the Machines" which aired on Jan. 13, 2013. Steve Kroft is the correspondent. Harry Radliffe and Maria Gavrilovic, producers.
60 Minutes Overtime The robot waltz: An appreciation » One of the hallmarks of the 21st century is that we are all having more and more interactions with machines and fewer with human beings. If you've lost your white collar job to downsizing, or to a worker in India or China you're most likely a victim of what economists have called technological unemployment. There is a lot of it going around with more to come.
At the vanguard of this new wave of automation is the field of robotics. Everyone has a different idea of what a robot is and what they look like but the broad universal definition is a machine that can perform the job of a human. They can be mobile or stationary, hardware or software, and they are marching out of the realm of science fiction and into the mainstream.
The age of robots has been anticipated since the beginning of the last century. Fritz Lang fantasized about it in his 1927 film "Metropolis." In the 1940s and 50s, robots were often portrayed as household help.
And by the time "Star Wars" trilogy arrived, robots with their computerized brains and nerve systems had been fully integrated into our imagination. Now they're finally here, but instead of serving us, we found that they are competing for our jobs. And according to MIT professors, Erik Brynjolfsson and Andrew McAfee, one of the reasons for the jobless recovery.
Andrew McAfee: Our economy is bigger than it was before the start of the Great Recession. Corporate profits are back. Business investment in hardware and software is back higher than it's ever been. What's not back is the jobs.
Steve Kroft: And you think technology and increased automation is a factor in that?
Erik Brynjolfsson: Absolutely.
The percentage of Americans with jobs is at a 20-year low. Just a few years ago if you traveled by air you would have interacted with a human ticket agent. Today, those jobs are being replaced by robotic kiosks. Bank tellers have given way to ATMs, sales clerks are surrendering to e-commerce and switchboard operators and secretaries to voice recognition technology.
Erik Brynjolfsson: There are lots of examples of routine, middle-skilled jobs that involve relatively structured tasks and those are the jobs that are being eliminated the fastest. Those kinds of jobs are easier for our friends in the artificial intelligence community to design robots to handle them. They could be software robots, they could be physical robots.
Steve Kroft: What is there out there that people would be surprised to learn about? In the robotics area, let's say.
Andrew McAfee: There are heavily automated warehouses where there are either very few or no people around. That absolutely took me by surprise.
It's on display at this huge distribution center in Devens, Mass., where roughly 100 employees work alongside 69 robots that do all the heavy lifting and navigate a warehouse maze the size of two football fields -- moving 10,000 pieces of merchandise a day from storage shelf to shipping point faster and more efficiently than human workers ever could.
Bruce Welty: We think its part of the new American economy.
Bruce Welty is CEO of Quiet Logistics, which fills orders and ships merchandise for retailers in the apparel industry. This entire operation was designed around the small orange robots made by a company outside Boston called Kiva. And can now be found in warehouses all over the country.
Steve Kroft: Now this is the order that she is filling, right, on this screen.
The key word here is other contractor. This is our public transportation system and we do not want any of it to fall to private contractors because, as you see, there is no stability for the employees attached to these contractors.....which is the point says Mayor Rawlings-Blake and Baltimore City Council. These are employees that should be working for the MTA making a middle-class salary with strong public sector benefits. What Baltimore politicians are doing is privatizing public transportation a little at a time and throwing these employees into a private hiring situation that impoverishes them, takes their benefits, and now we see they are losing their jobs and seniority. When Veola took jobs from the MTA there were contract protections for the workers. The idea was that the employees would remain unionized just as they were with MTA but, as is the plan with all these public-private partnerships, they are brought down to poverty and then if unionized, a reason is found to dismiss. Now, when/if these employees are rehired or moved to yet another private contractor will they be unionized? You can bet that won't happen in Baltimore with this City Council and mayor.....they seek to make you as poor as possible!!
Veolia Transportation warns that it will lay off 78 Most could be hired by a competitor, company tells state
By Jamie Smith Hopkins, The Baltimore Sun 1:02 p.m. EST, January 15, 2013
Veolia Transportation warned state officials that it will be laying off 78 employees in Baltimore as it stops servicing a portion of an unspecified contract, but added that most could be hired by the new contractor.
The cuts are expected March 3.
Veolia's notice to the state Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation said the workers are based at a Huntingdon Ave. location. Veolia's services in Baltimore include paratransit.
State labor officials said the company hopes that employees who don't switch to the new contractor will find other jobs at Veolia. The company is based in Illinois and has operations across the country.
THERE ARE SO MANY POLICIES COMING FROM BALTIMORE CITY COUNCIL AND MAYOR RAWLINGS-BLAKE THAT DELIBERATELY IMPOVERISH CITY WORKERS THAT WE NEED ALL OF THE FEDERAL HELP WE CAN GET. THE NATIONAL LABOR BOARD IS SO WEAKENED BY DEFUNDING THAT IT TAKES VERY FEW CASES TO COURT......WHICH IS THE REASON IT IS DEFUNDED BY THIRD WAY CORPORATE DEMOCRATS.
Labor-practices case against Hyatt Regency begins National Labor Relations Board attorneys call it a 'classic nip-in-the-bud case'
By Jamie Smith Hopkins, The Baltimore Sun 8:31 p.m. EST, January 14, 2013
A hearing into allegations of unfair labor practices filed against the Hyatt Regency Baltimore began late Monday after hours of ultimately fruitless discussion about settling the complaint.
National Labor Relations Board attorneys began their case against the hotel by describing the situation as a "predictable pattern" of "unlawful" management responses to unionizing efforts by employees working with Unite Here, a union that represents employees in fields such as hospitality.
"It's a classic nip-in-the-bud case," said Sean R. Marshall, a senior trial attorney for the board.
In a November complaint, the board's general counsel alleged that Hyatt Regency managers who "interrogated employees about their union activities" suddenly began "invoking harsh discipline" when employees arrived late to work and fired four people last year as part of the reaction to unionizing.
Since then, one of the workers has been rehired, Unite Here says. Eric M. Fine, an administrative law judge for the board, will decide whether to reinstate the other three and whether to order the Hyatt to give them back pay. The government's case also alleges other unfair labor practices against workers who were not fired.
Hyatt Regency's general manager, Gail Smith-Howard, said in a statement that she believes the hotel will prevail. She said in an earlier interview that the hotel hasn't tried to stop workers from unionizing.
"Because of our disagreement with UniteHere over its organizing tactics, the union has said and done anything to advance its cause, including making false accusations about Hyatt's workplace environment in Baltimore and elsewhere," she said in the statement.
Unite Here, which said Hyatt Regency managers disciplined workers for arriving as little as one minute late after union activities came to light, expects the government to call at least a dozen witnesses. The case will likely continue past this week.
"I think it's really significant that this many workers are coming forward to testify," said Tracy Lingo, an organizer with Unite Here Local 7 in Baltimore.
The National Labor Relations Board says about 90 percent of its cases settle. Attorneys on both sides of the Hyatt case tried for most of Monday to do so, with updates to the judge suggesting the parties were getting close, but they couldn't reach an agreement.
After that, there was only time for Marshall's opening statement — the Hyatt's attorneys will make theirs when their part of the case begins — and a single witness.
Barthold Philippeaux, who worked in the Hyatt Regency's kitchen for two stretches, most recently from April 2011 to last June, was part of the union organizing committee. He testified that he received a text message from a supervisor that asked about union activities after word got back to managers.
The next day, workers went public. Philippeaux and others passed out union leaflets to co-workers. Soon after, he said, the same supervisor called him into an office.
"He said, 'That right there is a f— — up way of trying to get fired,'" said Philippeaux, who now works in Atlanta.
Brian Deller, a Hyatt bartender who is also active in the unionizing effort, said before the hearing that the case is encouraging workers to press on.
"In this country, you have the right to organize a union, you have the right to join a union and you cannot be fired for that," he said.