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Monday, September 5, 2011

Right to Work (and be fired for no reason) spreads, with backing from presidential candidates


Republican candidate Mitt Romney today on the subject of unions and dues, as reported in the New York Times:
Mr. Romney called union dues a form of political corruption and said that as president he would sign a law to forbid making union membership a prerequisite for some jobs.


Laboring Without a Job

They'd Trade Labor Day For Days Of Labor

September 4, 2010
by Scott Simon, NPR News
On this Labor Day weekend, we might give some thought to what it’s like to be without a job.
About 1 in every 10 Americans — 15 million, the population of New York, Los Angeles and Chicago combined — doesn’t have a job. The Bureau of Labor Statistics says there are 3 million more who have just stopped looking for jobs after a year because they can’t find one.
Having no job does not mean having no work. Your children must still be fed, bathed, and ferried to school, which is a lot of hard work. But you have less money for food, gas, and the new shoes your children need for school.
It means that if you have a toothache, you might pretend it will go away, until it becomes a sharp pain. Then you have to see a dentist, but may not be able to buy a new winter coat.
It means, as Halloween and the holiday season approach, that many good parents tell their children they just can’t have some small toy or trinket that every other child seems to have. Or, more likely, the parent will go without something else — again.
I talked to a man in Ohio this week who said he hadn’t bought a stitch of new clothing in more than a year; his shirts were beginning to fray. So when he got his first job interview in months, he bought a new shirt, so he wouldn’t look tattered and defeated. And when he didn’t get that job, he was ashamed that he’d bought a shirt, instead of food for his family.
Having no job means that things people talk about so these days—iPads, Android phones, 3-D movies, new music, or meeting friends over $4 coffee drinks—are just beyond reach. You worry about getting dull, having nothing to talk about, and losing friends. You worry about life leaving you behind.
You may be sure that your family loves you, but worry that they’ll start feeling sorry for you, and wonder why you have to be the one person in 10 who doesn’t have a job. You may blame politicians, brokers and bankers, but in the middle of the night, you might turn your eyes to the sky and wonder what you did, didn’t do, or should have done.
Any one of us who is lucky enough to have a job today must worry about losing it. This Labor Day, we might salute the millions of Americans who don’t have jobs, but who in many ways work harder than ever.

The WPA and Today

While we live through the Great Recession, we should think back to a time when things were far worse, brining us back to the WPA, and the Depression. The belief among those with money was that business and the economy would repair everything and that people could pull themselves up by their bootstraps. Roosevelt had to fight tooth and nail, use blind appropriations and use public pressure to get the WPA approved.

School lunch areas, rest stops, social security, Medicare, the expansion and repair of the National Park System, expanded and new airports, Medicare, social security, the National Endowment for the Arts, The National Endowment for the Humanities and other institutions owe their existence to the battle to launch the WPA and Roosevelt. Artist painted murals, actors went on tour in government sponsored plays, writers wrote uplifting or historical books, musicians composed and performed, steel workers built bridges and government buildings, and even the unskilled laborer learned how to build roads, guard rails, building and even outhouses. Boondoggle and pork barrel were coined as criticism of the WPA, and of Roosevelt’s programs. What made it work was its transitioning into the war effort, so that things did not simply come to a halt after nine years of living at the government trough.

Unlike common myth the war did not end the Great Depression, the WPA and other programs did, prior to the war effort. What the war effort did, including arming England and much of the world prior to the US official entry as a result of Pearl Harbor, was create jobs and a sense of industry. But the economy was already far on the way to recovery and people displaced or disenfranchised by the Depression were already planting new roots prior to the rebirth of the Military Industrial Complex.

In fact the Second World War nearly bankrupted us again, causing much of the same growling over the cost as our current efforts in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Maybe instead of block back biting and staged protest, we should look at supporting any effort that will put our economy back on track, provide basic services such as health care to all Americans and bring back American industry, labor and pride.

Roosevelt faced many of the same battles as President Obama, but not all at the same time or in the first months of his presidency (President Obama has been in office only 8 full months). Roosevelt was opposed by the Republicans (Hoover-crats) in Congress and from within his own party. He faced hard reelection battles and cartoon vilification. But in the end the nation backed him, resulting in our part in defeating the Great Depression, getting back to work, winning the Second World War and becoming a true world power in the second half of the 20th century.

Shouldn’t we give Obama the same chance?

Frist published September 5, 2008

Brought to you by unions: The Weekends

How unions, church, synagogs and and anti-union industrialist brought us weekends.

Worth a listen this Labor Day weekend.

At this time of high stakes for all workers,  ten percent unemployment nationally, top heavy home mortgages and sharp political divides in Congress, it may be good to step back and think about the bigger picture of who we are as we do out jobs and go to work.

Consider the role performed by the American Labor Movement.

As you enjoy a three day weekend, most Americans will not even give a thought to what the day represents or the weekend that precedes it.

H istory of Labor Day

And remember those who died in Haymarket Square

Plus actions you can take today....

First published 9-7-2009

‎"You know how to whistle, don't you, Steve? You just put your lips together and blow."

'To Have and Have Not' (1944)

There can be no Middle Class without Unions

Very Importent that you scan down, and continue on previous "pages" or the archive. Look for material that works for the course you are taking or for your interests areas.

Movies reflecting life?

So far "The Help" has beaten "The Debt" at the box office on Labor Day Weekend.

Think about it.

Companies use 'eye-tracking' to see what sells

Originally developed for British fighter pilots, a system called 'eye-tracking' allows companies and brands to see what consumers by, and why.

Labor Day

New Address, Phone Number and Logo for 2012 Dam Short Film Festival

Dam Short Film Festival

1022 Nevada Highway


Boulder City, NV 89005


The rich get richer and our society poorer

The middle class doesn’t have enough purchasing power to keep the economy going without sinking ever more deeply into debt .
When so much income goes to the top, the middle class doesn’t have enough purchasing power to keep the economy going without sinking ever more deeply into debt.

Digital Divide: 21 Percent of adult Americans remain off-line

Just over one in five, 21%, of Americans do not have access to a computer at work, home or do not choose to use a computer at all. This does not include cell phones. - source Pew 

Looking for Interns, film and communication students 

We are looking for film students or people interested in film that are interested in interning at very successful webseries! We cover many red carpet events and interview many A-list celebrities. We have locations all over the country! You must have a great personality and be very responsible! You will learn a lot and get great exposure! If you are interested in learning more information, please e-mail us your resume and the type of equipment you have. We look forward to hearing from you! 

NOTE: This is a blind box through Craigslist, so take appropriate precautions.

Labor Day: For Families, Education, Living Wages and Those who suffered to bring us the American Labor Movement

Labor Day is annually held on the first Monday of September. It was originally organized to celebrate various labor associations' strengths of and contributions to the United States economy. It is largely a day of rest in modern times. Many people mark Labor Day as the end of the summer season and a last chance to make trips or hold outdoor events.

Labor Day is a day of rest for many people. © Allegra Williams

What do people do?

Labor Day is a day of rest or the last chance for many people to go on trips before the summer ends. For students, it is the last chance to organize parties before school starts again. In some neighborhoods, people organize fireworks displays, barbecues and public arts or sports events. The football season starts on or around Labor Day and many teams play their first game of the year during Labor Day weekend.
Traditionally, people did not wear white clothes, particularly shoes, after Labor day. However, this custom is slowly dying out. More and more people now wear white all year round, rather than just in the summer. Similarly, it is the custom to wear a straw cowboy hat from Memorial Day until Labor Day, then a felt one until Memorial Day comes around again.

Public life

Labor Day is a federal holiday. All Government offices, schools and organizations and many businesses are closed. Some public celebrations, such as fireworks displays, picnics and barbecues, are organized, but they are usually low key events. For many teams, it is the start of the football season. As it is the last chance for many people to take summer trips, there may be some congestion on highways and at airports. Public transit systems do not usually operate on their regular timetables.


The first Labor Day was held in 1882. Its origins stem from the desire of the Central Labor Union to create a holiday for workers. It became a federal holiday in 1894. It was originally intended that the day would be filled with a street parade to allow the public to appreciate the work of the trade and labor organizations. After the parade, a festival was to be held to amuse local workers and their families. In later years, prominent men and women held speeches. This is less common now, but is sometimes seen in election years. One of the reasons for choosing to celebrate this on the first Monday in September was to add a holiday in the long gap between Independence Day and Thanksgiving.

About Labor Day in other countries

Read more about Labor Day.