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Showing posts from March, 2006

Immigration Reform

Sunday, March 26th, 2006

They are Latin American immigrants tending the manicured lawns in wealthy New York neighborhoods. They are Indian computer programmers working for major corporations. They are women, born in Mexico and Africa, who tend our children. They pay taxes and have been contributing members of our communities for years. Many have families. We rely on their labor each and every day. Yet the basic rights of these workers - to a minimum wage, a safe workplace and fair treatment - are routinely trampled upon. This exploitation hurts all of us, foreign and native-born alike. It must end, and the overhauling of our nation's broken immigration laws is essential to achieving this goal.Tragically, all immigration reform proposals currently circulating in the halls of Congress fail to protect even the most basic rights of immigrant workers and their families. Just last week, Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-Tenn.) put forth his own makeshift propos…

Steelworkers to Rally

The Fox government in Mexico has replaced Napoleon Gomez Urrutia as president of Los Mineros, the National Miners and Metallurgical Union. The Steelworkers Union has labeled Fox's actions "naked aggression" and demanded that he immediately reinstate Gomez and restore his personal assets and those of the union, all of which were frozen by the government.
"The USW views your actions as naked aggression against Los Mineros," Steelworkers President Leo W. Gerard wrote in a letter to Mexican President Vincentc Fox. The letter condemned the Mexican government's actions as "a blatant attempt to stifle the voice of workers and all progressive unions in Mexico," coming as they have a short time before the Mexican elections.
Gomez has been a leading voice in opposing changes to Mexican law sought by the Fox regime that would outlaw strikes. He has rallied support among independent unions in opposition to the legislation and is one of a growing number of Mex…

Republican boot lickers

Indiana’s Governor, Mitch Daniels and his boot licker legislators in the General Assembly have gone against the wishes of Hoosiers by leasing the Indiana Toll Road to a foreign company for 75 years. As I understand it, only the Democrats chose to follow the peoples wishes.
There’s only one way to deal with scoundrels like that…..make sure they get booted out of office at the first opportunity.

Representatives are better than so called “leaders”

My Indiana State Representative, Steve Heim, has been posting links on his blog directing people to editorials which suggest that Indiana’s legislators should be “leaders” and go ahead and lease Indiana’s toll road, disregarding the fact that the people of Indiana don’t want this to happen.
That’s exactly how arrogant the politicians were in Michigan in regards to the minimum wage. Even though the people of Michigan wanted the minimum wage to be increased, the politicians thought that they knew what was best for the people and that they would be “leaders” and do what the hell they wanted.
Then, the folks in Michigan prepared to put the issue on this Fall’s ballot as a constitutional amendment to raise the minimum wage from the disgusting $5.15 per hour to $7.40 by June of 2008 in three incremental increases. The same thing is happening in Arizona.
Well, the Republican controlled Senate in Michigan started to feel the heat and knew that workers would boot their asses out this November …

United Steelworkers Union

On Wednesday, March 1, 2006, The Steelworkers Union had their Installation of Officers and Members of their Executive Board.

Below is listed the members of the USW Executive Board:

Leo W. Gerard, International President
James D. English, International Secretary-Treasurer
Thomas M. Conway, International Vice President (Administration)
Fred Redmond, International Vice President (Human Affairs)
Ken Neumann, National Director for Canada
Richard “Dick” LaCosse, International Vice President
James E. “Jim” Pannell, Administrative Vice President
David McCall, Director, District 1
Jon Geenen, Director, District 2
Stephen Hunt, Director, District 3
Bill Pienta, Director, District 4
Michel Arsenault, Director, District 5
Wayne Fraser, Director, District 6
Jim Robinson, Director, District 7
Billy Thompson, Director, District 8
Connie Entrekin, Director, District 9
John DeFazio, Director, District 10
Robert Bratulich, Director, District 11
Terry Bonds, Director, District 12
Gary Beevers, Director, District 13
Ron Hoove…

A Sneak Attack In The Dark of Night

Six minutes before the deadline for filing amendments to all bills this legislative session, Representative Cindy Noe (R-Indianapolis) introduced an amendment which would have turned Indiana into the 23rd Right to Work state. Debate on this amendment to change a statute which has stood unchallenged for fifty plus years in Indiana began at nearly eleven p.m. Reversal of this long-standing law in Indiana would have thrust our state backward to a day when workers had no collective voice in their workplaces or the statehouse, where workers earn substantially less money, work in harsher, more unsafe conditions, have less insurance, less public education, and more infant mortality.

The amendment was passionately debated, but was destined to fail. Its introduction and the vote was likely intended to attract campaign donations from large, out-of-state, anti-union corporations for the 2006 election cycle. As a movement, we need to be prepared to counter this influx of anti-union campaign f…