Hometown: Seattle, WA
Member since: Mon Dec 13, 2004, 01:55 AM
Number of posts: 8,132
Hometown: Seattle, WA
Member since: Mon Dec 13, 2004, 01:55 AM
Number of posts: 8,132
Some other key points from the Democracy Now article:
AMY GOODMAN: What about the role of unions? And do you think there is a role being played here, and the push for privatization?
CHUCK ZLATKIN: Well, the unions are an important factor, because part of the reason that it looks so good to privatize is, as they see this business and they’re saying, "Look at this, we’re paying close to 600,000 workers a living wage, benefits and retirement package. Well, if we could break the union and eliminate that, we could bring in people, at-will workers for an hourly wage with no benefits, and that money could go to, not the American people or costs in government, that would go to profits. This is another situation where working-class people and poor people are being asked to suffer and sacrifice to benefit the rich.
AMY GOODMAN: Very quickly, if the Post Office goes the route of privatization, will the—private companies will be asking for subsidies to deal with, for example, rural areas in this country. And in the end, the U.S. taxpayers will continue to foot the bill, but this will be for private gain.
CHUCK ZLATKIN: Well, yeah, they’ll either ask for subsidies, or they’ll refuse to do it. Universal service will be doomed. They’ll pick and choose the profitable areas to service, and the rest of the people will have to fend for themselves. And I would just ask the people who are concerned about this to come out today to rally in every congressional district in the country. You can go to "Save America’s Postal Service," saveamericaspostalservice.org and find out the location near you. This is about saving an institution for the people who depend upon it.
The info about Donahoe's predecessor, John E.Potter, receiving a huge golden parachute at retirement is also very important, especially in contrast with the cuts the workers are facing and in contrast with the claims about lack of performance of the USPS, given that would have occurred under his leadership.
Add to that, it looks like the changes that were made that led to the enormous pay and retirement package for him (and likely any "CEO of the USPS coming after him) was part of the same onerous 2006 legislation that is crippling the USPS now. And that is a pattern similar to the outsized, unfair and ever increasing corporate differential between CEOs and workers that has been increasing for years now.
See the paragraph about Potter in the Democracy Now piece and then read this article - more at link:
Postmaster General John E. Potter could earn about $5.5 million in deferred compensation, retirement benefits and accrued annual leave for the rest of his life when he leaves the U.S. Postal Service next month, according to financial statements.
A 2006 postal reform law permitted the Postal Service to compensate top executives with more generous pay and benefits packages to help recruit talented outsiders.
But critics note that Potter and other postal executives are career insiders who have seen their salaries rise through the years despite the Postal Service's poor financial performance.
Postal unions also argue that workers are being unfairly asked to make financial concessions while top executives earn six-figure salaries and retirement payouts.
Posted by suffragette | Sat Feb 25, 2012, 03:29 PM (1 replies)
Again, great job pulling this together.
Posted by suffragette | Sat Feb 25, 2012, 02:38 PM (1 replies)
privatizing public services.
A greedy 3-fer, if you will.
Great job of pulling the pertinent pieces together in your OP and this post.
Posted by suffragette | Sat Feb 25, 2012, 01:54 PM (1 replies)
BELLINGHAM, Wash. - A city bus driver from Vancouver, B.C., who tried to enter the U.S. at the Blaine crossing was arrested and thrown into jail after border officials mistook him for an international fugitive with the same name.
Several days later, the case against the bus driver was dismissed - but not before he spent a "horrendous" night in jail at Bellingham and spent thousands of dollars posting bail and on lawyer's fees to get out of the Kafkaesque jam.
Bus driver Richard Brandow's ordeal began on a trip with a friend to scope out motor homes for sale in Washington state for his pending early retirement.
When he drove up to the checkpoint at Blaine on Feb. 11, he was arrested on a 20-year-old warrant when border officials took him for a man with the same name who is more than a decade his junior.
Much more at link, including info about the computer virus the alleged hacker (the other Richard Brandow) made 20 years ago. Apparently it placed a "peace symbol or peace message" and the hacker's name on the screen - and for that there was a 20 year warrant?
Posted by suffragette | Sun Feb 19, 2012, 03:59 PM (5 replies)
Spain's conservative government faced its first mass protests on Sunday as hundreds of thousands took to the streets to demonstrate against austerity, spending cuts and radical changes to labour rights.
Madrid's central Puerta del Sol square filled for the first time since the "indignant" protesters camped there last May, as people gathered to protest against reforms introduced by prime minister Mariano Rajoy's government.
Unions complained that labour reform would lead to a fresh surge in lay-offs. Rajoy himself has said he expects them to call a general strike soon.
"There has to be a general strike," said Alberto Carrillo, a teacher who protested in Madrid. "They've cut rights, but not said how they plan to create jobs."
Posted by suffragette | Sun Feb 19, 2012, 02:18 PM (1 replies)
Still, it's unlikely that the President has cuts to benefits in mind because he has always stressed that he will protect benefits and that Social Security doesn't contribute to the deficit.
Yet here (I have bolded the sentences for ease of viewing):
June 27, 2010
Remarks by President Obama at G-20 Press Conference in Toronto, Canada
And we have set up this fiscal commission who will provide reports starting in November -- and one of the encouraging things, although there was resistance, ironically, on the part of some of the Republicans who originally had been co-sponsors of legislation to create the fiscal commission and they, in fact, ended up voting against it -- what’s been encouraging, based on what I’m hearing both from Democrats and Republicans, is that there’s been a serious conversation there. People are looking at a whole spectrum of issues to get at what is basically a structural deficit that preceded this financial crisis.
Even if -- the financial crisis made it much worse, but even if we had not gone through this financial crisis, we’d still have to be dealing with these long-term deficit problems. They have to do with Medicaid; they have to do with Medicare; they have to do with Social Security. They have to do with a series of structural problems that are not unique to America. Some of it has to do with an aging population. And we’ve got to look at a tax system that is messy and unfair in a whole range of ways.
Posted by suffragette | Fri Jan 27, 2012, 02:33 AM (0 replies)
AT&T ended its effort to buy T-Mobile USA on Monday, acknowledging that it could not overcome stiff opposition by the Obama administration to form the nation's biggest cellphone service provider.
The Justice Department took the aggressive step of suing to block the deal in late August, while the Federal Communications Commission had signaled its intent to fight the merger as well.
"People in this town didn't think that the department was willing to take the risk to litigate big, complex cases," said a senior Justice Department official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because officials were not authorized to go beyond the department's public statement. "But this puts down a very firm marker that we are taking antitrust enforcement very seriously."
"Consumers won today," Sharis Pozen, the Justice Department's acting assistant attorney general for antitrust, said in a statement. "Had AT&T acquired T-Mobile, consumers in the wireless marketplace would have faced higher prices and reduced innovation."
Credit where credit is due. It's good to see the DOJ taking this stance in this are. I hope we see more in this direction.
Posted by suffragette | Tue Dec 20, 2011, 12:28 PM (8 replies)
Center for Reproductive Rights Prepares New Legal Challenge to Lift FDA Restrictions on Emergency Contraception
Center will reopen its 2005 lawsuit against FDA and add HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius as a defendant in the case
12.13.11 - (PRESS RELEASE) The Center for Reproductive Rights announced today it will reopen its 2005 lawsuit against the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for imposing unnecessary age restrictions on emergency contraceptives, and seek immediate relief to allow broader access to available drugs. The Center also plans to add U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius as a defendant in the reopened case for her role in overruling the FDA’s approval of Plan B One-Step last week.
“This fight is far from over. We intend to take every legal step necessary to hold the FDA and this administration accountable for its extraordinary actions to block women from safe, effective emergency contraception,” said Nancy Northup, president and CEP for the Center for Reproductive Rights. “It has been ten years of battling to bring emergency contraception out from behind the pharmacy counter. The FDA cannot simply continue moving the goal posts down the field for women’s reproductive health care.”
While U.S. District Court Judge Edward Korman found the contempt motion moot because late last night, the FDA decided to deny the 2001 Citizen Petition to lift age restrictions on emergency contraceptives— two years after the judge had ordered the agency to fairly reconsider the petition— he proceeded to invite the Center to reopen its 2005 lawsuit and agreed that the Center could add Secretary Sebelius as a defendant.
During the hearing, Judge Korman repeatedly noted the striking similarities between recent events —including last night’s denial of the Citizen Petition and Secretary Sebelius’ unprecedented decision to intervene and block the unrestricted sale of the drug—and the findings in 2009 that the FDA under the Bush Administration had “acted in bad faith and in response to political pressure.”
Here's an article from 2009 about the outcome of the previous case:
Judge: FDA Overstepped Bounds in Restricting ‘Plan B’ Contraceptive
In setting special requirements for the controversial contraceptive, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration "departed in significant ways from the agency's normal procedures regarding similar applications to switch a drug from prescription to non-prescription use," says U.S. District Judge Edward Korman in a 52-page written opinion today.
The FDA has been requiring teens less than 18 years old to get a prescription, in order to use the over-the-counter Barr Pharmaceutical Inc. medication. As a result, pharmacies must keep it behind the counter, effectively requiring women 18 and older to ask a pharmacist to purchase it.
In his order today, however, Korman tells the FDA to make Plan B available to women age 17 and older within 30 days and to reconsider whether to require a prescription for teens of any age who seek access to the drug, according to Reuters and the Washington Post.
The Center for Reproductive Rights sued the FDA in U.S. District Court in Manhattan in January 2005, and the FDA subsequently approved Plan B for over-the-counter use in 2006. However, the center continued on with the lawsuit, challenging the manner in which the FDA handled the matter, reports the Wall Street Journal (sub. req.).
Note: there are embedded links in the articles on their original sites which lead to more information
Posted by suffragette | Tue Dec 13, 2011, 06:27 PM (0 replies)
So by creating the post with your journal link or mine, as so:
then adding it to journal creates the link for the old journal within the new.
Took me a moment.
This is a great fix for now.
Posted by suffragette | Sun Dec 11, 2011, 08:04 PM (0 replies)
Sen. Patty Murray talks about Foster Friess’ contraception comments and the lack of a female presence at a Congressional meeting on women’s health saying it’s like “waking up on the set of Mad Men.”
if it was a joke, it was an insulting joke to women . if he was being real, that is frightening. as we watch what is happening here on capitol hill from a panel of men talking about health care choices for women and the comment on your show yesterday about using aspirin between your knees for contraception, i feel like i'm waking up on a set of the "madmen" going back centuries here, it's astonishing but this is what is going on, we are seeing the republicans coming out and talking about the deficit and the other things they care about, but the policies they are putting forward here are frightening for women and their health care choices. we will not sit back and be silent. we will take them on.
There's video and a rushed transcript at link.
Also includes statement from the young woman who was not allowed to testify.
Adding link to Murray's website with more information:
(Washington, D.C.) – Today, U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) spoke on the Senate floor about the continued attacks by Congressional Republicans on women’s health care. She highlighted the House Oversight Committee hearing yesterday on contraception, which included only male witnesses to discuss this critical women’s issue.
Key excerpts from the speech today:“
"The Chairman of the House Oversight Committee decided that he wouldn’t allow a young woman who had been asked by the minority to testify to tell her story…So this 19 year old woman was left to watch – just like all of the rest of us – as five men addressed the committee about how they supported efforts to restrict access to care.”
“I’m sure by now many of my colleagues here have seen the picture of this all-male hearing. It’s a picture that says a thousand words. And it’s one that most women thought they left behind when pictures only came in black and white.”
“There is nothing new about the Republicans’ attacks on our family planning decisions. In fact from the moment they came into power Republicans in the House of Representatives have been waging a war on women’s health.”
“But Republicans have made clear from the start that this isn’t about what’s best for women, men, and their family planning decisions. This is about their political calculations. This is about their constituency. And it’s about their continued push to do whatever it takes to push their extreme agenda.”
As I watch this, I keep thinking back to the conformity films made after WWII and in the 1950s, especially this one:
Are You Popular? (1947)
One of the best examples of post-World War II social guidance films, with examples of "good" and "bad" girls, proper and improper dating etiquette, courtesy to parents, and an analysis of what makes some people popular and others not. A scream and a sobering document of postwar conformity.
Posted by suffragette | Fri Feb 17, 2012, 03:19 PM (8 replies)