- AFL-CIO: Social Security Is Not A “Disgrace”, Doesn’t Need McCain’s Privatization
- Were Fannie And Freddie Mugged By Incompetent Mortgage Loan Managers?
- UK Workers Flex One-Day Strike Muscle Protesting Below-Inflation Raises
- It’s No Longer Just “Men At Work” On Atlanta Road Signs
- Economic Report: U.S. Inflation Hits 26-Year High
The U.S. has set a new record. Inflation hit a 26-year high in June with consumer prices jumping by 1.1 percent. The Labor Department revealed those numbers as Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke testified for a second day on Wednesday in front of Congress. Accelerating inflation puts the Reserve in a complicated position by making it difficult to cut interest rates that would normally be used to boost the floundering economy.
Female road construction workers are now receiving equal acknowledgement in Atlanta work zones. The City of Atlanta has long used the iconic “Men At Work” signs in roadway construction zones, even though it isn’t only men who are at work. Following a formal complaint made by the editor of PINK Magazine that the signs are discriminatory, the city has made the decision to put up gender neutral signs that say “Workers Ahead.”
The United Kingdom saw a bit of chaos on Wednesday as hundreds of thousands of workers walked off the job. Jesse Russell reports:
Anywhere from 300,000 to 500,000 civil servants walked off the job in the UK as part of a one-day strike. The walk out disrupted libraries, schools, garbage collection, sports centers and more as workers protested a plan to only raise wages by 2.45 percent, a plan that is below the rate of inflation. The workers are represented by the trade union Unison, and General Secretary Dave Prentis said the workers who walked off the job are some of the lowest paid in the
By Doug Cunningham
The Center for Economic and Policy Research says while shoring up mortgage giant Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae is necessary, they should not be given unlimited tax dollars without strings attached. The economic think tank says the incompetence of their management has made this government rescue necessary. The housing bubble collapse means the values of homes aren’t as high as the mortgages, triggering the crisis of loan defaults. The Center for Economic and Policy research says Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac contributed to the housing bubble by continuing to issue loans based on false bubble prices.
By Doug Cunningham
Senator John McCain calls Social Security a “disgrace”, but the AFL-CIO says it’s an American success story, it’s not broken and it’s NOT a disgrace. The labor federation says Social Security is the cornerstone of American retirement security and McCain wants to gamble it away with risky privatization and diversion schemes that will only weaken it. McCain, the AFL-CIO note, has used every opportunity to vote to replace Social Security with private accounts that will undermine the system. What millions of Americans who depend on Social Security need, the AFL-CIO says, is a president who will strengthen the system, protect it and bring it into long-range balance.
Union volunteers around the country are getting involved and making a difference in this election in a number of ways. One of the most important is through worksite leafleting.
Member-to-member contact is at the heart of the AFL-CIO Labor 2008 political program, and this outreach is key to our unprecedented national mobilization to elect Sen. Barack Obama and a working family-friendly Congress this fall.
The nation’s talking heads still are debating whether the country is in a recession. Such noise is a distraction from the real issue: The short- and long-term decline in living standards experienced by the vast majority of us is real. (The long list of short-term trends includes word today that annual retail prices shot up 5 percent in June, the biggest 12-month change since May 1991, a time when high gas prices from the Gulf War skewed the annual figure.)
Two studies out this week show the far-reaching consequences of two trends that preceded the current economic mess—the ongoing decline in wages and the widening income gap between the extremely wealthy and everyone else.
The first study finds that rising economic inequality can be correlated to life expectancy. While life expectancy has increased across the United States between 1980 and 2000, the degree to which people live longer has become increasingly connected to their socio-economic status, according to the nonprofit Economic Policy Institute (EPI).
Two new reports by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) show the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division, especially under the Bush administration, is conducting fewer and less thorough investigations in allegations of employer wage theft.
Over the past decade, the number of investigations into employers’ refusal to pay minimum wage, overtime or even any wages at all, has dropped from 47,000 in 1997 to just 30,000 last year. And when investigations are launched, sometimes investigators drop their probes simply because an employer hangs up on them or asserts, without proof, they can’t afford to pay the workers what they are owed.