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Jane Blume June 3, 2014 16:07
As fire fighters battle politicians to protect their retirement plans and benefits, rich billionaires keep getting financial breaks. The Center for Media and Democracy reports the charitable wing of billionaire David Koch’s Americans for Prosperity has spent nearly $900,000 on political ads for Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker’s re-election campaign. It is not known if Koch himself or if a group of his wealthy donor friends made contributions for the ads, however, we do know whoever ... [More]


Categories: Political

Jane Blume May 30, 2014 15:53
Scott Walker promised Wisconsinites he could spur job and economic development while campaigning for the state’s top job four years ago. Wisconsinites were sold a bag of goods. Walker, an enemy to workers and public sector unions everywhere, declared his administration would create 250,000 new jobs in the state during his first term. He has not kept his promise. Wisconsin ranked 37th among states for private sector growth. For the past three years, Wisconsin has lagged behind other midwe... [More]


Categories: Political

Jane Blume March 24, 2014 11:51
We’ve all heard of the Bridge Gate scandal in New Jersey where top Chris Christie staffers closed the George Washington Bridge in alleged political retaliation from the governor. But more attention should be focused on a scandal that’s hurting New Jersey retirees’ pensions. We all know that Christie is no friend to unions and has publicly bullied public workers in efforts to gain more power. He has tried to increase the retirement age of workers, cut benefits and make employee... [More]
Jane Blume March 19, 2014 12:46
As companies continue to flee the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), the shadowy organization is searching for new sources of revenue. According to this Guardian report, ALEC plans to target city and local governments for potential new revenue streams in efforts to replicate its influence within state legislatures. The American City County Exchange (ACCE) will target policy makers from villages, towns, cities and counties. The new off-shoot will offer corporate America a direct con... [More]


Categories: Labor Issues | Political

Jane Blume February 25, 2014 14:00
If you’ve been following the Koch Brothers and their attempts to push legislation that is harmful to workers and their wages, you may know they are not alone in their efforts to shape politics and policies in their own best interests to the detriment of public workers. The biggest political fights are happening in state legislatures across the country. In Michigan, for example, how do you think right to work was passed? The effort was well coordinated, organized and financed by the wealth... [More]


Categories: Labor Issues | Labor Issues | Political | Political

Jane Blume December 4, 2013 10:59
Plenty of politicians are getting into the holiday spirit this season. Union-busting governor Scott Walker of Wisconsin is gearing up for his re-election next year and may as well be starring in the modern day version of the Grinch Who Stole Christmas. Friends of Scott Walker circulated a fundraising email that encouraged supporters during this holiday season to help save children from a future of double-digit tax increases and billion dollar budget deficits.“Instead of venturing into th... [More]


Categories: Labor Issues | Political

Barry Kasinitz November 25, 2013 15:03
Three U.S. Senators; Richard Burr (R-NC), Tom Coburn (R-OK) and Saxby Chambliss (R-GA) recently introduced a bill, the Public-Private Employee Retirement Parity Act (S. 1678) to eliminate defined benefit plans for federal fire fighters and other government employees. Contrary to the bill’s name, the legislation would clearly do nothing to create parity among public and private retirement systems, forcing federal fire fighters to rely solely on their Thrift Savings Plan (TSP), an expensive... [More]
Jane Blume November 1, 2013 09:41
Cincinnati, OH voters will have to decide this Tuesday if they will support to change the city’s pension system. A private group called Cincinnati for Pension Reform Committee gathered enough signatures to place a charter amendment on the ballot that could change the public pension plans for newly hired employees from a defined benefit plan to a defined contribution plan. Cincinnati fire fighters say Issue 4 if passed will cause more problems than good. Cincinnati Fire Fighters Local 4... [More]
Jane Blume October 31, 2013 12:43
The secret group of billionaires who tried to limit the power of labor unions in California’s Prop 32 fight last year has been unmasked. Prop 32, which would have stopped the ability of labor unions to collect political money, was resoundingly defeated by five million voters in California.Now a special investigation has revealed a list of billionaires who were connected to the campaign to thwart labor unions in the Golden State.Owners of the Gap, Charles Schwab and philanthropist Eli Bro... [More]


Categories: Political | Labor Issues | Political

Jane Blume October 29, 2013 13:57
The American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) has found another way to stick it to workers: by advocating policies that would change public pensions.The St. Louis Beacon reports that changes to state pensions is high on ALEC’s list for 2014 with the group encouraging more states to consider shifting to defined contribution plans such as 401Ks, and away from traditional “defined benefit plans.”  Missouri and Illinois could be states that ALEC tries to influence in the p... [More]


Categories: Economic Crisis | Labor Issues | Political

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