Archive for January, 2009

The Waltons are Doing Fine

Saturday, January 31st, 2009

Richest Americans’ Income Doubled as Tax Rate Slashed The average tax rate paid by the richest 400 Americans fell by a third to 17.2 percent through the first six years of the Bush administration and their average income doubled to $263.3 million, new IRS data show. … “The big explosion in income for this group […]

PHISHERS TARGET WALMART CUSTOMERS…

Saturday, January 31st, 2009

Phishers are shifting their attention from bank customers to retailers and if you’re going to play the odds, you go after the single largest customer base in the world: Walmart shoppers. Walmart is not the bad actor here. It’s the immediate victim; but becoming the target of phishing is just one more facet of being […]

RING AROUND THE COLLAR…

Saturday, January 31st, 2009

When I was a budding environmentalist in my teens, my father told me of a chemical engineer working on the problem of phosphates in laundry detergent. As he told it, the engineer developed a detergent that did a good job of generally getting clothes clean. But there was a snag when you got to the […]

TOO BIG TO FAIL…?

Saturday, January 31st, 2009

Jonathan first brought this graphic to our attention back in July of last year (I particularly like it because it allows you to zoom in on your community) but I want to use it this morning to high-light what is rapidly becoming an economic mantra: It’s too big to fail. As we as a nation […]

EMPHASIS ON THE WORD BOX

Saturday, January 31st, 2009

When I was in high school I thought I might become an engineer; I was a serious space nut and had dreams of becoming part of the post-Apollo world at NASA. That didn’t happen, but I still retain a bit of my engineer’s mind. And that’s why I’ve always wondered about Big Box stores. From […]

I forgive you, Bruce.

Friday, January 30th, 2009

From this Sunday’s NYT Arts and Leisure section: He made another promotional deal he now bluntly calls a mistake. On Jan. 13 a $10 collection of Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band’s “Greatest Hits” — 11 songs from a 1995 hits anthology, as well as “Radio Nowhere” from “Magic” — went on sale exclusively […]

Level the Playing Field

Friday, January 30th, 2009

Obama signs executive orders making things easier for unions: The orders will: Require federal contractors to offer jobs to current workers when contracts change. Reverse a Bush administration order requiring federal contractors to post notice that workers can limit financial support of unions serving as their exclusive bargaining representatives. Prevent federal contractors from being reimbursed […]

If they were honest…

Thursday, January 29th, 2009

Via the AFL-CIO Blog, I see that former Labor Secretary Robert Reich had a very nice editorial on the Employee Free Choice Act in the LA Times a few days ago. It debunks the usual lies, but it’s also got all the statistics in it that only an expert like him would have handy: Although […]

Labor on the Rise

Thursday, January 29th, 2009

Obama has kept his promise and signed the Lily Ledbetter Act which expands the time period that people who have been discriminated against in terms of wages can file a court case. Now each paycheck where the person has suffered a loss will be counted as a new instance. Only the super rightwing Supreme Court […]

WALMART WEDNESDAY: OPEN THREAD…

Wednesday, January 28th, 2009

How do you really feel about Walmart? Here’s your chance to express your true feelings — pro and con — about the world’s largest retailer. Write whatever you like in the comments section and engage your fellow readers in the conversation. Jeff Hess: Have Coffee Will Write.

Watch the whole thing, then try to defend Walmart. I dare you.

Wednesday, January 28th, 2009

Dangerous radical that I am, I’ve convinced some students groups and other donors to bring Charles Kernaghan of the National Labor Committee to our campus in April. After watching their introductory films, I wanted to share them. That’s when I discovered that they have their own YouTube channel. The following is a few years old […]

Starbucks promises stale coffee

Wednesday, January 28th, 2009

I like picking on Starbucks because they have adopted the slash and burn tactics of Walmart to expand their reach. The way this has operated in the past was for them to open many stores in a region and drive out local coffee shops. Starbucks would open stores until the new ones were actually draining […]

Perhaps Walmart isn’t going to save the world with light bulbs.

Tuesday, January 27th, 2009

Via Kevin Drum, here’s Michael Siminovitch of the California Lighting Technology Center at UC-Davis: Consumers have an expectation that compact fluorescents will last a very long time — significantly longer than the incandescents that they’re replacing. This is technically achievable. Compact fluorescents can last a very long time. Unfortunately, I think we’ve compromised greatly on […]

A little Kos business…

Tuesday, January 27th, 2009

There’s a diary up this morning that purports to be a birdseye view from inside one of Walmart’s anti-EFCA, anti-Obama meetings from last year. I’ll go further than commentator TocqueDeville does. I actually think this story is a complete fabrication. [Indeed, I was thinking this way long before I read the comments.] Here’s why: 1. […]

What exactly do they think union members fear?

Monday, January 26th, 2009

I guess I’ve failed at my goal of all Employee Free Choice Act blogging, all the time. That doesn’t mean, however, that I can’t go back to it since I’m so moved. My motivation is, once again, a post by Jane Hamsher at Firedoglake. Her subject is a rather strange business-sponsored poll which claims that […]