HomeUncategorized12/14-17 MLK, Jr Holiday Weekend News Roundup and Open Thread
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jcitybone

https://www.nytimes.com/2022/01/14/business/economy/starbucks-union.html

Taking On Starbucks, Inspired by Bernie Sanders

Maggie Carter, a Starbucks barista in Knoxville, Tenn., is a warm and reassuring presence who says she is keen to “go the extra mile” for customers.

She may also be a nightmare for Starbucks executives.

As a union organizing campaign that began in Buffalo and produced the company’s only two unionized U.S. stores spreads to other cities, it is being driven by workers like Ms. Carter: young, well educated, politically liberal.

Ms. Carter, who began circulating union cards at her store not long after the results of the Buffalo elections were announced last month, studies broadcast journalism at the University of Tennessee. She is passionate about climate change, fighting racism and labor rights. And her political hero is Senator Bernie Sanders, the Vermont independent.

“Bernie Sanders is my everything,” Ms. Carter said. “I love him more than anything.”

Perhaps more disconcertingly for Starbucks as it tries to contain the union campaign, Ms. Carter appears to be representative of the kinds of people the company has hired over the years to reinforce its progressive branding.

Labor experts say that in seeking such employees Starbucks may have built a work force that is more inclined to unionize and to be energized by the Buffalo campaign.

“If you think about the kinds of employees they have, the stereotype of people that work there seems to be true — a lot of young people, Bernie supporters, D.S.A. types,” said John Logan, a labor studies professor at San Francisco State University, referring to the Democratic Socialists of America. “These are the kinds of people who can take this and run with it. It could be in Knoxville and Arizona just as easily as in San Francisco and Manhattan.”

Several Starbucks workers seeking to organize unions in Buffalo; Boston; Chicago; Seattle; Knoxville, Tenn.; Tallahassee, Fla.; and the Denver area appeared to fit this profile, saying they were either strong supporters of Mr. Sanders and other progressive politicians, had attended college or both. Most were under 30.

“I’ve been involved in political organizing, the Bernie Sanders campaign,” said Brick Zurek, a leader of a union campaign at a Starbucks in Chicago. “That gave me a lot of skill.” Mx. Zurek, who uses gender-neutral courtesy titles and pronouns, also said they had a bachelor’s degree.

Len Harris, who has helped lead a campaign at a Starbucks near Denver, said that “I admire the progressivism, the sense of community” of politicians like Mr. Sanders and Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Democrat of New York.

magsview

Perhaps more disconcertingly for Starbucks as it tries to contain the union campaign, Ms. Carter appears to be representative of the kinds of people the company has hired over the years to reinforce its progressive branding.

Lol

I found this article both amusing and encouraging.

Orl, did you find it somewhat encouraging too? Maybe there’s hope.

Thank you Jcitybone!

jcitybone

https://www.commondreams.org/news/2022/01/13/after-navient-forgives-17b-progressive-say-cancel-all-student-debt

As one of the largest U.S. educational lenders on Thursday agreed to pay $1.85 billion to 39 states to resolve predatory lending claims, progressive lawmakers and advocates renewed calls for the cancellation of all outstanding student loan debt.

“All student loans are predatory because no one should have to go into debt to get an education.”

CNBC reports that as part of the settlement, Delaware-based Navient—which split from SLM Corporation, or Sallie Mae, in 2014—will cancel $1.7 billion in private student loan debt owed by nearly 66,000 borrowers.

As part of the agreement, Navient gets to deny that it broke the law, even though the company stands accused of preying on customers it knew were unlikely to be able to repay their debts.

“At long last, the student loan borrowers who had been forced to shoulder the burden of dangerous and predatory private student loans made by Sallie Mae and owned by Navient will finally be debt-free,” Mike Pierce, executive director of the Student Borrower Protection Center, said in a statement.

orlbucfan

Hey Nina, you running for that House seat?

magsview

After the way she was treated by the party in that last election, I don’t see why she would.

But if she does run again, it might be better if she held her cards close to her chest for now, give the bastards less time to mobilize out-of-state financial support. Last time she took TPTB somewhat off guard it seemed.

What is the House seat you keep asking her about? (I’ve lost track of a lot of politics)

I saw this though, from yesterday (Friday):

Ohio’s high court overturns new congressional map saying it ‘unduly favors’ Republicans

https://www.cnn.com/2022/01/14/politics/ohio-congressional-map-overturned/index.html

orlbucfan

Nina needs to get off her azz and run. These corrupt DLCers bank on her being scared off.

Aint Supposed to Die A Natural Death
Aint Supposed to Die A Natural Death

Here’s your girl Nina, obf. I’d say she’s running.

orlbucfan

I sure hope so, Aint…. We desperately need her and many, many more like her!

jcitybone

orlbucfan

Yeah, but SloMoJoe isn’t using it.

jcitybone

jcitybone

polarbear4
polarbear4

about time. geez and he can do it alone!

magsview

lol – it’s true!

polarbear4
polarbear4

msm has to join in

wi64

No way will that happen, the congresscritteres wouldn’t make it a hour even with wearing depends

magsview

then, Depends it shall be!

(Is what I wish would happen)

jcitybone

https://twitter.com/metzgov/status/1482024631129317387?s=20

A ban on stock trading by members of Congress is “sensible” and would “restore faith in our institutions,” says Brian Deese, a top economic advisor to President Joe Biden and head of the National Economic Council.

The comments were in response to CNBC’s “Squawk Box” host Andrew Sorkin asking Deese what he thought about banning members from trading individual stocks after House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said lawmakers should be allowed to do so in comments to Insider last month. Deese began by noting that executive branch employees are barred from trading individual stocks.

“I can tell you, the restrictions on the executive branch are quite significant,” said Deese. “There’s no engagement on individual stock transactions.”

He went on to praise the idea more broadly. “I think that’s certainly sensible. It’s a rule that we all operate by and live by in the executive branch, and [it] doesn’t put any real practical burden on our ability to do our jobs,” he said.

magsview

I’m glad this topic is still being discussed at least.

If a real ban on member stock trading was enacted, by Democrats, that could just be the thing to tip 2022 elections. It’s a real sore spot for a LOT of voters.

polarbear4

Aint Supposed to Die A Natural Death
Aint Supposed to Die A Natural Death

Scary, but looks like they’re trying to protect their businesses from Walmart.

orlbucfan

Which chain and where is it?

polarbear4
polarbear4
polarbear4
polarbear4

maybe. are they a lot better, tho? whole foods was considering buying.

Stop & Shop is a large Northeastern supermarket chain now owned by the European conglomerate Ahold Delhaize

In 2012, a golf driving range in Eastham called T-Time shut down, leaving a supermarket-sized parcel of land for sale. There were reports that Whole Foods was thinking of coming in.

More from Robert Kuttner

At that point, in 2013, Stop & Shop swooped in and bought the 11-acre land for $1.3 million, adding a restrictive covenant to the deed that is shamelessly brazen in its intent and its detail. The covenant is worth quoting in all its richness:

No portion of or premises on the Property shall be used, leased, occupied or licensed for a food supermarket, a food superstore, a food warehouse store, a specialty food store (e.g. a butcher shop, fish market, fruit and/or vegetable market or stand), a wholesale club store operation or a convenience store, or for the sale of food or food products for off-premises consumption (whether by humans or animals).

This parcel of land was only a few miles up the road from one of Stop & Shop’s existing stores. So they did not buy the land in order to build another supermarket, just to prevent anyone else from building one. Credit goes to the feisty Provincetown Independent for unearthing this nasty little story.

Once the restrictive covenant was in place, Stop & Shop had no need to tie up that capital in land it did not intend to use. It ended up selling the land to the Town of Eastham for $1.6 million, for a mixed-use redevelopment of affordable housing and retail. But the town, to its frustration, found that retail could not include a morsel of food.

https://prospect.org/power/rollups-all-monopolies-are-local/

Aint Supposed to Die A Natural Death
Aint Supposed to Die A Natural Death

Wow.

orlbucfan

T and R, and thanks, Ms. Benny!! 🙂 I just got an email notification that the People’s Party is now able to put candidates on the ballot in VA. That’s the second state after FL to officially recognize them. I’m keeping an eye on it cos we all know how hard it is to get more choice in candidates in this broken down country. As far as the MICC goes, what a long time, corrupt, sickening joke they are! Supposedly, they’ve got their tentacles in every congressional district in this country in terms of being a jawbs program. Looks like they’re failing at it if less people are enlisting.

Aint Supposed to Die A Natural Death
Aint Supposed to Die A Natural Death

Happy MLK Day, y’all.

orlbucfan

Right back at ya, sister! 🙂

polarbear4
polarbear4

thank you, ain’t. this excellent. sharing

jcitybone

https://www.al.com/news/2022/01/bernie-sanders-elizabeth-warren-others-call-for-end-to-alabama-coal-strike.html

Three U.S. senators are calling for the largest shareholder in Warrior Met Coal to bring an end to the ongoing 10-month-old miners strike in Alabama.

In a letter dated Thursday, U.S. Sens. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.) call on Laurence Fink, CEO and Chairman of BlackRock, the largest shareholder in Warrior Met, to reach “an immediate and fair settlement” with the striking miners.

About 1,100 miners with the United Mine Workers of America began a strike against Warrior Met Coal last April 1. The current agreement with the union was negotiated as Warrior Met emerged from the bankruptcy proceedings of the former Walter Energy, which declared bankruptcy in 2016.

Union members say they made numerous concessions in pay, benefits, holidays, overtime and in other areas to keep the company going and get it out of bankruptcy.

The picket lines at Brookwood in Tuscaloosa County over the last year have seen strife between strikers and the company over workers bused in to fill jobs, resulting in court action that effectively shutdown the picket line.

In a two-page letter, the three senators say it’s time for the company to “do the right thing.”

“Mr. Fink: Our request to you is simple,” the letter reads. “BlackRock’s Board must publicly demand that Warrior Met negotiate in good faith and agree to a reasonable contract that treats workers with dignity and respect.”

jcitybone

Charles Pierce

https://www.esquire.com/news-politics/politics/a38768714/supreme-court-vaccine-mandate-decision/

I miss the days when the Supreme Court had an element of suspense and mystery to it. There would be the oral arguments and then six months of silence until Decision Day, when there occasionally would be a surprise twist ending to our Very Special Episode. As should be obvious to everyone who paid attention during the oral arguments over the president’s vaccine mandates, Thursday’s predictably idiotic decision was a foregone conclusion based on predictably insulting assaults on reason and common sense from the carefully constructed conservative majority.

Look, for example, at this tattered rag of an argument that is central to the majority’s opinion.

The Solicitor General does not dispute that OSHA is limited to regulating “work-related dangers.” Response Brief for OSHA in No. 21A244 etc., p. 45 (OSHA Response). She instead argues that the risk of contracting COVID–19 qualifies as such a danger. We cannot agree. Although COVID– 19 is a risk that occurs in many workplaces, it is not an occupational hazard in most. COVID–19 can and does spread at home, in schools, during sporting events, and everywhere else that people gather.

This is an open-ended invitation to deny OSHA’s authority to regulate anything. Killed when an unregulated fertilizer plant exploded? Well, your car could have blown up on the way home. And the idea that OSHA is empowered only to regulate against threats that existed at the time of its creation—which, essentially, is what the majority apparently believes—is so spectacularly crazy that it might distract you from these amazing goddamn sentences.

But a vaccine mandate is strikingly unlike the workplace regulations that OSHA has typically imposed. A vaccination, after all, “cannot be undone at the end of the workday.”

That’s the point, you hacks. That’s the motherfcking point. That’s why you have as many restrictions as you do in your own workplace. Do these obvious space aliens believe that, once an employee leaves the workplace, the employee will turn into a two-headed zombie monster? Wait, don’t answer that.

You will note that the majority opinion is unsigned. Perhaps the second-graders who actually wrote this mess are still unclear as to how to spell their last names. As for the actual justices who declined to attach their names? Well, you get what you pay for.

Step aside from the cheap irony of a Supreme Court with strict COVID precautions in place ruling that public health is not a workplace issue. Step aside from the cheap irony of the winning side’s having been represented by lawyers who appeared virtually because they were carriers. Step aside even from Justice Neil Gorsuch’s sitting maskless next to Justice Sonia Sotomayor, who is a diabetic. This was more than an attack on the public health. This was the opening shot against the whole idea of a federal regulatory interest in practically everything.

orlbucfan

Somehow, I can’t rev up any outrage. This total prehistoric, greedball stupidity has been planned and carefully executed for around 57 years, if not longer. I will be 70 this fall. Hubster and I have no kids to answer to. So, whatever disaster goes down, so be it. Long live human stupidity and the vicious POS who have feasted off it for centuries.

polarbear4
polarbear4
magsview

She was supposedly trolling Manchin and Sinema, and this article framed it as ‘cheeky’.

Meanwhile, she and all the other Dem centrists are probably secretly thrilled that things have gotten pushed so far right that now Manchin and Sinema are being held up as the white moderates that MLK was referring to. Next thing you know she’ll be calling herself progressive.

orlbucfan

She can go do us all a favor and DROP DEAD!

polarbear4
polarbear4

polarbear4
polarbear4

the more i look at this, the Chart does not seem to go with the news.

magsview

I read into this a bit this morning and I think Scott’s tweet may be misleading.

From what I read the deaths will still be reported, just not by hospitals (in some cases).

polarbear4
polarbear4

ty @magsview