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So there I found myself, maybe thirty minutes ago....Okay maybe not exactly thirty minutes ago.

I had to write and then edit this diary immediately as I got home, and that included requisite break time, so the timeline might seem off right now...hey guy has to have some modicum of facilities right? Anyway, regardless I found myself standing in line at a big box store tonight; okay it was Walmart...Ok, ok I know right already, please flog me later and just keep reading ok?

So I found myself standing in line at Walmart at 12:00am with an item along with around forty other people. There were only two lanes open, so as you can imagine the line was pretty long. The crowd was pretty standard as most middle of the night retail purveyors. That said, I am not unfamiliar with Walmart in the middle of the night so let me give a quick rundown. So you find your typical Walmart midnight customers what with a parent picking up a last minute OTC medication, the late night drunk getting that last fifth for the night, the young couple picking up groceries for the next day, and the stray person who just needed a battery for their car. Indeed Walmart at midnight is a wonderful snapshot into the heart of America.

So there I sat in line, and being the person I am...why not strike up conversation to pass the time? It should beat staring wasting time glaring into the soullessness of technology that is my smart phone right?

Join me after the  *** for my experience and perhaps a chance I lit a fire into someone tonight....or morning depending on your place of residence.

So I am standing in line and I survey my field of vision. Behind me I see a man with paper plates, solo cups (forgive me, midwest folk will get that one dead on), and various party supplies; in front of me I see a couple with various sundries and groceries including things like turkey bacon and soy milk.

It sorta struck me then.

I am standing in the middle of America, what better chance to make connections and see what happens right?

So I strike up a conversation with the man behind me, we'll call him Solo Cup. Solo is there to get items for his daughters party. He is bemoaning the line length and really just wants to get out of there. I reply to him that this happens from time to time (again I know, I know shopping at Walmart is horrible but to my defense it is sometimes my only option), and that often at times during busy times management fails to properly plan staffing for demand. We joke and laugh and find some common ground on our life stations.

Even the rest of the line joins in to some degree, the gentleman behind Solo is there for a battery. Literally standing in the midst of the express lane with nothing more than a cart and a battery. However a teaching moment arises. The man behind Solo starts to bemoan the slowness of the line which invariably leads to him bemoaning of the staff staffing the lines.

Perhaps it was the lack of sleep from the passing of my wife's family Matriarch in the last week, perhaps it was just the anonymity of the moment, perhaps it was just my inner Norma Rae screaming... to be honest I don't know, but I felt compelled to say something.

I lit into him, and looking back on it perhaps I could have been just a tad more tempered; However I could not just let such a cockamamie idea stand. I laid into him how hard Walmart works its workers and how much labor they extract from their workforce and how because of the low wages; very often you standing there with your battery in the shopping cart, subsidize their life because they are forced into government dolls like food stamps, housing assistance, etc....

By the time I finished my soliloquy, my time for check out apparently came. Actually apparently it had come some time before I finished, just no one informed me that the entirety of line 1 and line 2 including the clerks had turned to listen to me.

I felt partially embarrassed, yet silently emboldened.

I turned to the clerk while paying for the item I had and uttered "I appreciate all that you do and am sorry for that. I guess management didn't plan on this and isn't helping you through the busy time." To which she replied "Yeah, they didn't plan on this and we haven't had a break in awhile". I grabbed my debit card and uttered to her "I'm sorry, hope your night gets better...and the word Union is dirty for some reason right?"

Her response shook me.

"Especially around here"

So I drove home, quick drive..maybe fifteen minutes, thinking about that last statement. I realized that indeed for some reason the word UNION has been demonized to the point of minimization. I questioned in my heart why it has for awhile now, why or why has something as American as UNION been dismissed? I contend that we need to recapture this word.

We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence,[note 1] promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.
All of us are pretty familiar with the above. I learned this in the second grade and had it further cemented in my mind via my civics classes in middle school and high school. It's a pretty powerful opening to a powerful document. It quite literally lays the ground work for why we do what we do...even if it is misguided at times.

As I pulled into my garage, the preamble to the constitution stuck in my mind, especially the mention of the word union. And really, what is a union?

The act of uniting or the state of being united.

So it really stuck a stick in my craw when thinking of that Walmart worker this morning, or night depending on your time zone, uttering the statement "Especially around here"; with regarding to the word and talk of...Union

How can we live in a country where OUR FOUNDING DOCUMENTS literally lay out the utterance and acceptance of unions; indeed Unions fight for the working man and women. As I wrote before, my wife would not have had time to say goodbye to her grandmother had UNIONS not come before me to fight for workers rights.

It's high time we start to recapture the word of Union. Its time we start to resell the idea on the WHY unions are important, and how they protect the little person. This is ever more important in an age we find ourselves where teachers, fire fighters, police, public sector workers are under a barrage of attacks to undermine their protections.

Because honestly, I'd rather not my son's future Kindergarten teacher suffer the same working rules my cashier  from Walmart tonight suffers under.

11:18 AM PT: Came home from taking my son to see Brave (Pixar slam dunks another one btw) and found this on the spotlight and wrecking ball. Thanks to the rangers and all. Happy fourth to everyone as well, lets not forget how hard so many people before us have fought to protect, save, and create this more perfect union we work towards.

Originally posted to Hoosier Progressive on Tue Jul 03, 2012 at 11:01 PM PDT.

Also republished by In Support of Labor and Unions, ClassWarfare Newsletter: WallStreet VS Working Class Global Occupy movement, Barriers and Bridges, and Community Spotlight.

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  •  Tip Jar (252+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    blueoasis, Lorikeet, dskoe, phonegery, shesaid, leftykook, hungrycoyote, Steveningen, SilverWillow, boophus, RatCitySqueaker, Villanova Rhodes, Leo in NJ, WheninRome, chimene, WakeUpNeo, worldlotus, Horace Boothroyd III, We Won, marykk, hnichols, Smoh, Wee Mama, LinSea, luckylizard, commonmass, JeffW, ozsea1, CorinaR, Dave in Northridge, tundraman, Texknight, congenitalefty, Softlanded, Melanie in IA, GeorgeXVIII, mamamorgaine, DixieDishrag, historys mysteries, rosabw, weck, xanthippe2, AnnCetera, psnyder, Karen Hedwig Backman, jk2003, 2thanks, MsGrin, nellgwen, old wobbly, codairem, Renee, HoosierDeb, SoCalSal, Gorette, lineatus, Hammerhand, tin woodswoman, Mayfly, ladybug53, OllieGarkey, MadRuth, SanFernandoValleyMom, alrdouglas, arlene, Oaktown Girl, tapestry, mofembot, Cronesense, peptabysmal, Sychotic1, howabout, buckstop, thomask, opinionated, Texdude50, JayRaye, dotdash2u, DRo, Observerinvancouver, TomP, BusyinCA, stormicats, MNGlasnant, Geenius at Wrok, cosette, greengemini, sidnora, sostos, jayden, Shockwave, madhaus, ask, cotterperson, deha, ninkasi23, deep, SolarMom, Habitat Vic, kyril, Gustogirl, Jollie Ollie Orange, DBunn, Loonesta, liberte, tcdup, Ginny in CO, wozzlecat, kathny, Son of a Cat, zedaker, jrooth, ms badger, Maverick80229, Catte Nappe, OLinda, kerflooey, askyron, HeyMikey, CoolOnion, salmo, millwood, janmtairy, dmhlt 66, sfcouple, science nerd, marleycat, ItsaMathJoke, bnasley, StrayCat, Lefty Ladig, SD Goat, Carol in San Antonio, Arahahex, fromer, Ree Zen, sngmama, marathon, sfarkash, AnnetteK, CuriousBoston, Amber6541, zukesgirl64, Joes Steven, Lorinda Pike, lissablack, SoCalJayhawk, HappyinNM, SherwoodB, scarlet slipper, Susan from 29, bkamr, SteelerGrrl, high uintas, countwebb, Matt Z, joynow, emmasnacker, wader, mollyd, yuriwho, Pluto, DSC on the Plateau, efrenzy, Steve in the Library, Louisiana 1976, joanil, mookins, cacamp, jeanette0605, Yellow Canary, smrichmond, Black Max, Neon Vincent, Naranjadia, yellow cosmic seed, pixxer, rogerdaddy, BigDuck, Simplify, Late Again, Regina in a Sears Kit House, GenXangster, jcrit, chicagoblueohio, Nina Katarina, Justus, Margd, boofdah, Heart n Mind, VexingEyes, DefendOurConstitution, bluedust, HiKa, Cinnamon, absdoggy, Oh Mary Oh, Anthony Page aka SecondComing, Russ Jarmusch, Fe, litoralis, mali muso, Lefty Coaster, PBen, theKgirls, Little Red Hen, Statusquomustgo, cybersaur, LuckyLu, FischFry, Deep Texan, edsbrooklyn, asterkitty, jfromga, Cedwyn, fiddler crabby, KVoimakas, Loudoun County Dem, Liberal Granny, elengul, Empower Ink, Gentle Giant, Debby, enufisenuf, multilee, Linda in Ohio, LibChicAZ, AnnieR, antimony, slowbutsure, Yasuragi, mconvente, oortdust, redlum jak, trumpeter, hulibow, BlackSheep1, highacidity, divineorder, wordene, confitesprit, Canaryinthecoalmine, Pescadero Bill, MKSinSA, im a plugger, CS11, northerntier, splashy, Lilith, GreyHawk, tonyahky, deltadoc

    --Enlighten the people, generally, and tyranny and oppressions of body and mind will vanish like spirits at the dawn of day. - Thomas Jefferson--

    by idbecrazyif on Tue Jul 03, 2012 at 11:01:29 PM PDT

    •  I stand with all Unions who are looking... (11+ / 0-)

      ... to better the circumstances of their constituents.

      I belong to a Union. I have always been proud to BE in a Union.

      But my Union for the past several years has been letting us down. It's not just a matter of declining benefits renegotiated becaue "times are tough for everyone." Mostly it's the co-opting of the Union officers by Management into the mind-set that the UNION is the only place where concessions can possibly be made. That, and our local membership has witnessed our local Union President throw us under the bus, mis-appropriate funds (and continue to do so after being told not to buy lunch for his wife and cronies on the Union dime -among other things)

      We are on the edge of revolt. Many are talking about leaving the Union. I'm talking about folks who have been Members for 30 + years! We have beseeched the National Union to investigate, but have heard nothing so far. I sense that the National Officers have been co-opted as well, because of the things being talked about in our newsletters.

      So, now. Where does a worker go for protection? It's only going to get worse as people have been propogandized that Unions are all corrupt and not worth it.  I'm not seeing much that would counter that viewpoint.

      "Wealthy the Spirit which knows its own flight. Stealthy the Hunter who slays his own fright. Blessed is the Traveler who journeys the length of the Light."

      by CanisMaximus on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 02:21:32 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Here's what I think went wrong: (14+ / 0-)

        Well, apart from the decision to adopt the CIO model (a contract with each employer) over the AFL  (industry wide contracts) or IWW (One Big Union) models.

        There was a time when Union officials and negotiators were chosen from the rank-and-file ... with accountants and lawyers engaged as need.

        But there came a time when it seemed that guys with better suits and better accents would (naturally) get better deals from Management -- so the elected Officials began to hire and groom Business Agents from the same law and business schools that Management got THEIR "suits" from.

        Meanwhile,  proletarian solidarity based on class consciousness pretty much died in WWII.  With the GI Bill and Levitt's suburbs EVERONE became "middle class" ... middle class taxi drivers, middle class auto workers, middle class garbage collectors ... everyone not actually on Welfare or clipping coupons for a living was a member of the One Big Middle Class.  

        Except, the White Collar workers "knew better" -- and since their superior skills and education were earning them better salaries than trade skills and union membership would have done  (or so they thought) service and office workers did not unionize.

        Who needed "militancy" when the Bosses were freely giving what the Harvard grads were negotiating for?  

        At first.

        A few decades later,  it became clear that Middle Class Workers had become as strike-adverse as were their bosses. (Easy credit and home mortgages in a consumer society saw to THAT)

        Gradually it developed that large masses of workers were no longer necessary to staff the primary industries which had either mechanized the labor or outsourced it. No one was spending a lot of time at the Union Hall, or lining up to "punch-in."

        Then Reagan broke the Air Flight Controllers union. But the coal miners, auto workers, building trades  ... "real" blue collar workers didn't see how that was THEIR problem.

        And now here we are
        and

        If you want a raise in pay here's all you gotta do
        Just go to the boss and ask for it
        He will give it to you
        He will give it to you my boys
        He will give to you
        A raise in pay
        Without delay
        He'll  Give  It  To  You

        (Oh, brother) Lay it on the ground
        Spread it all around
        Rake it with a hoe
        It'll make your roses grow.

        •  Remember that during the Air Controllers strike (6+ / 0-)

          the pilots union crossed the picket lines sure that the scab controllers were capable of doing the job. My brother is in the painters and operators union and does not believe that most workers deserve a union at all. I think you will find this common among a lot of tradesmen (but not electricians).

          When my wife was in the UFCW in Chicago none of her coworkers honored the boycott of Walmart. Even though they worked in a grocery store. They did not see what the big deal was. How many union households voted for Scott Walker?

          There is no solidarity. There is no desire to strike. And without both of those things unions have no leverage in negotiation. The corruption of the Teamsters from the 60s and 70s have not been forgotten. Unions are mistrusted in this country thanks to 30 years of anti-union messaging from business and politicans. When was the last time you heard the phrase "corporate thug". But you hear that about union reps all the time.

        •  Good summary (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          CanisMaximus

          but the song/poem at the end doesn't quite make sense in that context, or maybe I'm missing something?

          "All governments lie, but disaster lies in wait for countries whose officials smoke the same hashish they give out." --I.F. Stone

          by Alice in Florida on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 05:04:48 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  union medley (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Russ Jarmusch, CanisMaximus

            woody guthrie songs

            [You Gotta Go Down And Join The Union / Put It On The Ground / Union Maid / We Shall Not Be Moved / Which Side Are You On?]

            You gotta go down and join the union
            You got to join it by yourself
            Ain't nobody here can join it for you
            You gotta go down and join the union by yourself

            [Spoken:]
            Working in the factories would kill a dog
            Working on the belt line killed your soul
            Working in the limestone and cement quarries withered your lungs
            Working in the cotton mills shot your legs and feet all to hell
            And working in the steel mills burned up your spirit
            like a gnat that lit in the melting pot
            But out of this whole mixing bowl of hell and high water
            The working folk have marched against Billy clubs,
            against machine guns
            And they sang their way through the whole dirty mess

            Now, the bank men have got their union, and the
            landlords got their union
            And the finance men got their union
            But down south and out west
            On the cotton farms and working in the orchards and fruit crops
            It's a jail house offense for a few, common everyday workers
            To form them a union and get together for higher wages
            Honest pay and fair treatment.
            [Woody Guthrie, 1941]

            You gotta go down and join the union
            You got to join it by yourself
            Ain't nobody here can join it for you
            You gotta go down and join the union by yourself

            If you want a raise in pay all you have to do
            Is go and ask the boss for it and he will give it to you
            He will give it to you, my boys, he will give it to you
            A raise in pay without delay; He will give it to you

            Oh, put it on the ground, spread it all around
            Dig it with a hoe and it will make your flowers grow

            Oh, the men who own the industries they own no bonds or stocks
            They own no yachts and limousines or gems the size of rocks
            They own no big estates with pools or silken BVD's
            Because they pay the working man such fancy salaries

            Oh, put it on the ground, spread it all around
            Dig it with a hoe and it will make your flowers grow

            There once was a union maid who never was afraid
            Of the goons and ginks and the company finks
            And the deputy sheriff who made the raid
            She went to the union hall where a meeting it was called
            And when the company boys came around
            She always stood her ground

            Oh, you can't scare me, I'm sticking to the union
            I'm sticking to the union, I'm sticking to the union
            Oh, you can't scare me, I'm sticking to the union
            I'm sticking to the union 'till the day I die

            This union maid was wise to the tricks of the company spies
            She couldn't be fooled by the company's stool
            She'd always organize the guys
            She'd always get her way when she struck for better pay
            She'd show her card to the company guard
            And this is what she'd say:

            Oh, you can't scare me, I'm sticking to the union
            I'm sticking to the union, I'm sticking to the union
            Oh, you can't scare me, I'm sticking to the union
            I'm sticking to the union 'till the day I die

            We shall not, we shall not be moved
            We shall not, we shall not be moved
            Just like a tree that's standing by the water
            We shall not be moved

            Black and white together
            We shall not be moved
            Our union is forever
            We shall not be moved
            Just like a tree that's standing by the water
            We shall not be moved

            We shall not, we shall not be moved
            We shall not, we shall not be moved
            Just like a tree that's standing by the water
            We shall not be moved

            They say in Harlan County there are no neutrals there
            You'll either be a union man or a thug for J.H. Blair

            Which side are you on, which side are you on?
            Which side are you on which side are you on?

            Don't scab for the bosses, don't you listen to their lies
            Us poor folks haven't got a chance unless we organize

            Which side are you on, which side are you on?
            Which side are you on which side are you on

            fact does not require fiction for balance (proudly a DFH)

            by mollyd on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 06:44:49 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  My point of quoting a 1950s union song was this: (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            CanisMaximus

            By the time Lay it On the Ground was written ... Organized Labor represented about a third of non-government workers and exercised enormous political clout -- directed by an at least nominally grass roots democratic process.

            So ... this was a happy song -- smug even -- snarking at reactionaries who had equated Unionism with the Communist Internationale -- AND WHO HAD LOST!

            But, with one thing and another we've returned to the situation in which each worker must "negotiate" separately with her/his employer for "what the market decides" -- take it or leave it

            As it was when this song was written

            Solidarity Forever

            When the Union's inspiration in the Workers' blood shall run
            There can be no  Power greater anywhere beneath the sun
            Yet what could be as helpless as the feeble strength of one ?
            But the Union makes us strong

            Solidarity Forever
            Solidarity Forever
            Solidarity Forever
            For the Union makes us strong.

        •  union maid (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Mnemosyne, CanisMaximus

          fact does not require fiction for balance (proudly a DFH)

          by mollyd on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 06:39:04 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  As I saw all the posts and pics of how (0+ / 0-)

      the US military made the 4th of July possible, unions were the first things that came to my mind.
      I swear, this idolizing of our military is the distant drumbeat of fascism trying to clear the horizon.

      America is so much more than the sum of her myriad parts. We need to recognize it all- the bitter, the sweet, the beauty and the ugly. And we need to preserve that which sustains her and shed or improve that which oppresses, sickens or slows her down.

      I believe in democracy, civil liberties, and the rule of law. That makes me a liberal, and I’m proud of it. - Paul Krugman

      by Gentle Giant on Thu Jul 05, 2012 at 09:06:41 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  When did it become a dirty word? How (54+ / 0-)

    did we get to this point? I've read diaries before with lists of benefits that we wouldn't have now (minimum wage, weekends, overtime ... I can't remember them all). The last time I thought about this, it occurred to me that people have become complacent. All these benefits that unions won for us have become laws in this country, and so people forget or don't even know how it was before the unions fought for all these rights we take for granted.

    And now billionaires like the Koch brothers are pouring tons of money into the campaigns of Republicans with an eye of taking away those protections that unions fought to get for the hard-working people of this country, and they're starting by weakening and breaking up the unions.

    For me, Mitt reminds me of Jeff Bridges in Starman. He's like an alien that hasn't read the entire manual. You know, he's going, "Nice to be in a place where the trees are the right size." -- Robin Williams on Letterman 26 Apr 2012

    by hungrycoyote on Tue Jul 03, 2012 at 11:29:11 PM PDT

    •  Exactly..I'd rec but I'm suffering (18+ / 0-)

      A blackberry fail at the moment

      --Enlighten the people, generally, and tyranny and oppressions of body and mind will vanish like spirits at the dawn of day. - Thomas Jefferson--

      by idbecrazyif on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 12:01:23 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Abortion also became a dirty word. (9+ / 0-)

      Now it's only voiced as choice, but always look mournful if the choice HAS to be abortion. It is such a ball and chain on the psyche, we have come to be told. Immoral. They dont come out and say that, those on the left, but it is implied in how the act is treated, tip toed around, shoved in the closet. Teen moms, otoh, get simultaneously tsked and applauded (for making the difficult but right choice). They get reality shows.

      Look to your left, not just your right, for the source of the problem, as to how unions, abortions, gun control... all became dirty words.

      The Obama administration has done a lot of damage to unions related to public education, along with the go-along Democrats. They embraced Wall Street and individual billionaires' ideology (and money), Democrats for Education Reform, et al... from which the criteria for Obama's Race to the Top has been taken.

      The emperor had no clothes and Obama had no comfortable shoes when it came to joining the Wisconsin (and other) pro union resistance to the onslaught by the right.

      Well, after all, just like his healthcare was rightwing birthed, so too was his race to the top. How else could he have gotten 34 states to change their laws so quickly in order to meet that criteria? Hint: The Democrats surge met its level in a Republican party that was already there. And waiting.

      Should a "progressive" Dem blog dwell in the safe zones of a lame party, or should it drive a lame party to break out? If it cant, should it break out?

      by NYCee on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 10:30:48 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Yes, Republicans, in support of wealthy donors (13+ / 0-)

      have bashed unions ti smithereens.

      I believe it's because they hate higher wages cutting into their profits.

      They want the owner/shareholders to take the max home.

      They want the workers to take the minimum home.

      The workers do all the work.

      The owners sit and collect the profits. Speaking of Walmart here.

      Walmart heirs, four of them, are among the top ten most wealthy on the Fortune wealthiest individuals. They each own something like 22 to 25 billion $$ --yes, that is EACH.

      But they cannot raise wages---------because-----and here is the rub, the LIE:

      Higher Wages Would Mean They HAVE to Raise Prices!!

      Because heaven forbid they take it from their very, very handsome profits. Why that would be against GOD's LAW of Corporations maximizing profit at all cost!!

      It's a screwy system which real people seem to have accepted because they actually believe the corporate line about higher wages meaning higher prices.

      "extreme concentration of income is incompatible with real democracy.... the truth is that the whole nature of our society is at stake." Paul Krugman

      by Gorette on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 11:16:57 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  When I worked in offices and retail, whenever a (8+ / 0-)

        directive came down to reign in costs, it was always payroll that was targeted first. Managers were under the gun to make sure that there was absolutely no overtime, and people were expected to do more work in less time.

        For me, Mitt reminds me of Jeff Bridges in Starman. He's like an alien that hasn't read the entire manual. You know, he's going, "Nice to be in a place where the trees are the right size." -- Robin Williams on Letterman 26 Apr 2012

        by hungrycoyote on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 01:12:05 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Happening everywhere. The impossible (5+ / 0-)

          expectation of continued growth in a business is often attempted by trying to increase employee productivity. Computer technology, upgrades or new programs can only do so much. Despite everything, American workers have continued to keep the productivity line going up over the years, while the wage line falls.

          The number of people who take at least two hours of desk work home is growing. Sure, you can log on at home and access your computer at work! Work harder, not smarter. Eat lunch at your desk. Don't take movement breaks hourly to stretch muscles and promote circulation. No water cooler conversations that used to be the best way to foster continuing OJT for newbies and oldies. Don't go out of your way to do anything that is not in your job description or duties. They have cut off all their noses.

          Remember when the manager in a call center interfered with employees trying to give first aid to an unresponsive coworker slumped at her desk? Apparently the management agreed after the fact (a dead employee) the coworkers should have continued until the paramedics arrived. Oh, well.

          "People, even more than things, have to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed and redeemed; never throw out anyone. " Audrey Hepburn "A Beautiful Woman"

          by Ginny in CO on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 01:56:51 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  small change... (4+ / 0-)
            expectation of continued growth of profits in a business is often attempted by trying to increase employee productivity.
            •  That is their end goal. Doesn't highlight how (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              askyron, Gorette

              it affects workers and how middle managers push the employee work loads to achieve it.  More sales, more customers, more widgets per hour...  

              In health care it is how fast you can admit, treat and discharge the patient, given the diagnoses, if any. That takes the care out of health care. Which makes it a far less valuable product in both outcome and satisfaction.

              Years ago tribal witch doctors were studied to find out how they managed to heal so many of their patients without even rudimentary diagnostic and treatment methods. The researchers found that the patients trusted the doctors, who they knew, and received caring attention during the illness. Actually reinforced something I had said about a lot of medical care: it relies very heavily on good nursing care. If you take away the high tech, keep the person fed, clean, moved, and feeling cared for, most of the time the body will heal itself. Take's longer, tribal societies have less of an issue there than industrialized ones. ;)

              Health care management still does not structure their business model on the primary source  and basis of income: nursing care. In hospitals it is usually included in the room/bed fee. Not only would the doctors be unable to get paid for most their services without us, a lot of other paid services hinge on the patient being in house with nursing care.

              After hospitals/ins co sped up the length of stay (LOS) too much, Medicare noted such an increase in hospital readmissions in short time periods, they stopped paying for a readmission for the same diagnosis in 30 days. The docs began factoring that into discharges after the hospitals started seeing those denials.

              The comment I replied to cited the management emphasis on payroll when they needed to 'reign in costs'. The jobs I've had in health care certainly never emphasized the idea of increasing profits. Be sure you charge for all the stock you use or the annual bonus raises won't be as high. Come to think of it, they added a measurement on our annual evals that had to do with fiscal responsibility. Charging items, taking care of equip, etc.

              When it suits their situation, the top brass will even brag about how many more employees they have added.

               

              "People, even more than things, have to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed and redeemed; never throw out anyone. " Audrey Hepburn "A Beautiful Woman"

              by Ginny in CO on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 05:37:02 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

          •  Oh, a diary on this, today! (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            CuriousBoston, Gorette

            "People, even more than things, have to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed and redeemed; never throw out anyone. " Audrey Hepburn "A Beautiful Woman"

            by Ginny in CO on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 04:52:35 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

        •  Plus, we have (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          hnichols, CuriousBoston

          limpballs screaming to the masses about how bad they are.
          Now you go on any conservative site and see his words parrotted back.
          Teacher will bebthe downfall of this Nation cuz of their Unions. Same with Puplic employers, police, fire ect.
          I too alwaysvremind them what Unions have done forbthem, but it sounds likecCharlie Brown's teachers voice to them.

          OBAMA'S GUIDING PRINCIPLES: HOLD NO ONE ACCOUNTABLE. LOOK FORWARD.

          by snoopydawg on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 02:18:14 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  My father buys into all those rants. My best (5+ / 0-)

            friend is a teach in Texas. So last year when I was visiting my father, and he was on one of his rants, I went to his computer and pulled up this page:

            "Hogs At The Trough"

            I scrolled down to my friends name. My friend is one of the ones earning under $50,000 per year on that list. This friend is somebody my father is extremely fond of.

            My father's response: "Well, in California, they're paid a lot more."

            For me, Mitt reminds me of Jeff Bridges in Starman. He's like an alien that hasn't read the entire manual. You know, he's going, "Nice to be in a place where the trees are the right size." -- Robin Williams on Letterman 26 Apr 2012

            by hungrycoyote on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 03:09:53 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  Things that are conjoined are stronger (17+ / 0-)

    than isolates.  This is true of people, other organisms and inorganic matter. Atoms united have more power than one alone.
    Predators, human or non-human, sense that. People in a union are harder to exploit.  That's why marriage of any kind is opposed by predators intent on exploiting isolates.
    A binary relationship is not necessarily a union.  A binary relationship -- i.e. between two people or two quantities (water and oil) -- can be abusive or antagonistic.  But, where one against one is easy, one against two is hard, if not impossible. Indeed, one against two is only possible, if one of the two stands aside.  Which is why, when authority stands silent in the face of abuse, it becomes complicit.

    A + B > C by the value of +

    Outliers are easy pickings for the predator.  Independence (isolation, separation, segregation) is a scam.

    Willard's forte = "catch 'n' cage"

    People to Wall Street, "let our money go."

    by hannah on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 05:22:43 AM PDT

  •  No reason to flog you for Walmart (18+ / 0-)

    You're absolutely right -- it has become a dirty word by the agency of all kinds of people (education deformers, for example, and that's an intentional rendering).  Family members in my grandparents' generation were in at the founding of the needleworkers' unions, and I'm a union member myself (of TWO teacher's unions, which I suppose makes me Satan).

    Thanks for unloading, and I'm glad the response was what you said it was.

    -7.75, -8.10; All it takes is security in your own civil rights to make you complacent.

    by Dave in Northridge on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 10:08:41 AM PDT

  •  IBEW Local 715 Agrees... (32+ / 0-)

    I helped organize my workplace.  It was scary, and so very, very worth it.  We now have the highest wages and best workplace conditions in the market.  Other stations (I work in tv) actually raised their wages after our victory.

    The list of what Unions have achieved for the working man and woman is stunning.  We can't afford to backslide into a return of the robber-baron age that the GOP espouses.

    While you're at it, look for that label...

    "What is being noticed is only an indication of what is being done." Albert Einstein 1954

    by tundraman on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 10:19:29 AM PDT

  •  Here's to a More Perfect Union (14+ / 0-)

    Brilliant diary. Thank you.

    "For what profit a man, if he gain the world, but has to pay taxes on it?" -ontheleftcoast, The Book of Paul

    by MsGrin on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 10:57:05 AM PDT

  •  thanks for that (20+ / 0-)

    i haven't been in a walmart in 11 years.  since i moved away from a small college town that had been taken over by one and all other means of shopping shut down.  now i live in an area where there are options so i use them instead.
    i am also a loudmouth so when my neighbor says she is going to run to walmart to pick somethin up i say "while you are there tell them to pay a living wage"
    she gets uncomfortable about it and now i am known as the neighborhood liberal.  
    if wanting people who work hard to get paid a decent wage is a liberal cause, how could there ever be shame in being called a liberal?  
    so many words have been sullied by the right noise machine that there will be a generational fight to get them back.  
    i said yesterday and i'll say again today - we have a lot of work to do.
    happy independence day to all!  hope you get to spend it with friends and family.

    We are raised to honor all the wrong explorers and discoverers - thieves planting flags, murderers carrying crosses. Let us at last praise the colonizers of dreams. - Peter S. Beagle

    by jk2003 on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 10:59:47 AM PDT

  •  If anyone needs to unionize, its Walmart workers (13+ / 0-)

    That place is a hole.

  •  I've been thinking for a while about Ivan's goat. (22+ / 0-)

    Boris, a Russian peasant, constantly moans to God about how unfair it is that his neighbor Ivan has a goat and he, Boris, does not.  God finally gets pissed off with Boris and tells him he's going to answer his prayers.

    "You're going to kill Ivan's goat?" Boris asks in incredulous delight.

    That seems to me what all the anti-union, right to work thugs are offering to the American work force.  Instead of giving all American workers the benefits of belonging to a union, they want to bring unionized workers down the level of non-unionized workers.

    And some of the non-unionized workers seem to think that will make them happy.  Arrrrgh!!!!

    We must, indeed, all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately. B. Franklin

    by Observerinvancouver on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 12:13:55 PM PDT

  •  Target love Walmart (9+ / 0-)

    for drawing all the bad employer fire away from them. I hear it's just as bad for Target employees. I have no love for Walmart, but we really should spread the love to all the big box stores who deserve it.

    Which big box stores, grocery chains, etc are union? Who do we look to when we need a good deal? (I rarely go to any of these places, but I'm betting most everyone ends up there at least once in a great while).

  •  Maybe we should all go to Walmart in the middle of (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jayden, kyril, JayRaye, Catte Nappe, Oh Mary Oh

    the night and "strike up a convo" with other shoppers in the checkout lines.
    ;)
    I haven't been to one in ages but might try it. If I do say so myself,  I have an innate ability to chit-chat with almost anyone and not get threatened (well, maybe a couple of times).
    In a long check-out line you've got your captive audience of huddled masses yearning to hear the truth.

    •  cosette (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Catte Nappe, cosette, Oh Mary Oh

      Me thinks you've got some of that Rebel Girl IWW spirit inside of you.

      Just the sort of tactic that a Wobbly would dream up.

      Brilliant! and sign me up.

      And we should each buy something that cost only 25 cents.

      TABBY GETS THE CREAM

      WE NEVER FORGET Our Labor Martyrs: a project to honor the men, women and children who lost their lives in Freedom's Cause. For May: Martyrs of the San Diego Free Speech Fight, Spring 1912.

      by JayRaye on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 01:39:51 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Now that's an *Occupy* kind of project (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cosette, smrichmond

      Non Wal-Mart employees "invading" WalMarts all over the country on the same day; standing in check out lines and chatting with their fellow customers about WalMart personnel practices and the virtues of unions. And on the night shift there aren't going to be a bunch of management types hanging around to break it up, either.

      from a bright young conservative: “I’m watching my first GOP debate…and WE SOUND LIKE CRAZY PEOPLE!!!!”

      by Catte Nappe on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 02:09:25 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  You're reading my mind. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Catte Nappe

        I think this would be perfect for Occupy.

      •  I was involved with Occupy vs. Wells Fargo events. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Catte Nappe, joynow

        They had a really darling street theater event where a 'bride' and 'groom' divested their bank accounts from WF...with a great minister, to boot.  
        Props were right on target and simple: a bridal veil for the for the bride and a top hat for the groom.
        Good, short, to-the-point script.

        When a private guard attempted to kick us out of one of the banks (inside a Randall's grocery store) one of the customers said, 'let them finish. It's free speech.'
        I wanted to kiss him.
        I was honored to be the self-appointed matron-of-honor for the bride.

        (The Houston police let us in... not without some discussion and tweeking of signs and masks, but the private guard was antsy.
        In his defense these banks inside groceries here are robbed on a fairly regular basis.)

    •  I'm not a huddled mass. When the community (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cosette

      resource person arranges a bus trip to Walmart, I go. With my unit pricing and coupon envelope for food and household needs. There are always 5 or 6 things that are equivalent and cheaper than the stores I can get to. A very large percentage of the people at Walmart cannot get transportation to go anywhere else.

      B1G1 coupons. Free coupons that I write away for. Writing gets you more coupons. A note from your PCP stating the product is good for you gets a blizzard of coupons.
      A large part of the population buying clothes there cannot afford to save the money to buy better quality clothes or shoes that will last longer. Please read that again.

      My father started a union, I got a regular bed, with a box spring, not an army cot. Private dentist and opthalmologist, not the school ones. Health insurance.

      Two of my brothers, and my mother started a union at a seven person company. Send a lawyer, sign here. NO?
      We'll be back when you sign. Did the owner change his attitude? Heh.

      Only the two daughters were not members of a union. I did almost get my ass fired when corporate came to fight unionization of two sets of "front line" workers. Gathered us managers/supervisors into a room. We were inherently prettier, handsomer, smarter than the line workers. Dumb*holes did not bother to find out that about half of the people were married to or related to the floor workers, or promoted from the production lines.

      My boss sat in back of me, begging me to keep quiet. Corporate from Deerfield IL talking to Cambridge, MA.

      Don't be alone with your workers. Don't be friendly with your workers. Don't blah, blah, blah. Geebus. I told my group vote however you want, you might be fired, then all of us will go to another company.

      I had already been sent to a "training course" at corporate, with the executive dining room, a speech by the bigwig personel guy, 'I found a petition about salaries and other things. I put it away, it is private, so nobody will be in trouble." Half the "trainees" turned green. I didn't. Bribe be with a plane trip and lunch in the executive dining room?

      If you start a conversation with me, be prepared to take me to the stores where I want to shop.

      Social Security is an INSURANCE PROGRAM. FICA FEDERAL INSURANCE CONTRIBUTIONS ACT

      by CuriousBoston on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 05:15:15 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I didn't intend to deride all Walmart shoppers (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        CuriousBoston, jayden

        ...with my poetic license.
        I was referring to any captive audience that needs to shop late at night at a 24/7 store.
        Trust me; I know what Walmart shoppers are going through with limited choice of stores that fit their needs.
        You have a rich history and I appreciate it.
        Friends?

        •  OK. I admit, you hit a sensitive spot. I tend to (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          cosette

          be a tad aggressive. Ah, maybe more than a tad. Friends.

          Social Security is an INSURANCE PROGRAM. FICA FEDERAL INSURANCE CONTRIBUTIONS ACT

          by CuriousBoston on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 05:48:01 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  :) (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            CuriousBoston

            That's why I'd be better in the line, conversing with the other shoppers. lol.
            I've been in the  Walmart checkout line at midnight myself....not in the recent past since I'm boycotting them...
            But, I've got no young children, right now, that NEED OTC meds in the middle of the night ...and no other stores are open.
            That's where I was coming from with my comment.
            You should write up a diary on your union history.
            I will rec it,
            Your friend,
            cosette

  •  Yes! (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    kyril, JayRaye

    I am in full agreement that we must confront the stupidity whenever and wherever it rears its ugly misinformed head.


    Not this mind and not this heart, I won't rot • Mumford & Sons

    by jayden on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 12:46:05 PM PDT

    •  Excuse me, am I stupid, ugly, and misinformed? (0+ / 0-)

      This disabled person wants to know. I paid Social Security insurance "contributions" to receive the money I live on now.

      Social Security is an INSURANCE PROGRAM. FICA FEDERAL INSURANCE CONTRIBUTIONS ACT

      by CuriousBoston on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 05:21:34 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  My comment is to the diarist. (0+ / 0-)

        I am in support of his self-described soliloquy directed at the grumpy WalMart battery-buyer waiting in line behind him. I am clearly referring to people like the complaining customer when I used the terms stupid, ugly, and misinformed. Construing that into a comment directed to you personally is your doing, not mine.


        Not this mind and not this heart, I won't rot • Mumford & Sons

        by jayden on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 05:57:09 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Previous union chair (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    kyril, JayRaye

    here (back in Norway - many years ago). I am with you. T & R.

    Paranoia strikes deep. Into your life it will creep. It starts when you're always afraid. You step out of line, the man come and take you away. - S. Stills

    by ask on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 12:57:12 PM PDT

  •  Thank You for your loud boisterous defense of (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Maverick80229, joynow

    Our Fellow Workers at walmart.

    Don't apologize, you did good.

    Tip, rec, & repub to In Support of Unions.

    (Looks like this post didn't take, if shows up later, plz excuse the double post.)

    SOLIDARITY FOREVER

    WE NEVER FORGET Our Labor Martyrs: a project to honor the men, women and children who lost their lives in Freedom's Cause. For May: Martyrs of the San Diego Free Speech Fight, Spring 1912.

    by JayRaye on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 01:15:51 PM PDT

  •  Then vote with your dollars (3+ / 0-)

    and don't shop at Walmart!

    I'm sorry, the "I had no choice" line  doesn't cut it.  You have choices.  Some might take time and planning, some might cost more, but you have choices.

    As long as the $$$$$ keep rolling in, management won't change a thing.  What they care about is EPS and stock price, period.

    You want to make a change - start with where you shop

  •  a couple of quibbles though (0+ / 0-)

    My guess is that the "Open 24 hours so people can come in and shop when they need to" stores did not come about because of unions, rather in spite of, or in a workplace with a lack of a union.

    My guess is that if their were a store that ran itself based on what a union thought was in the best interest of the employees that it represented in that store, the store would not be open 24 hours, and the resulting attitude of the union and the employees would be that the rest of us are hurting America by choosing to shop at odd hours, and to wait for people to change their mind or something.

    The second thing I would like to suggest is that unions in and of themselves are not great. Motivated employees who understand their shared interest and are willing to support one another are great, and in turn can make a union effective, but not always necessary.

    Unions used to be the embodiment of a motivated collective group of informed people who understood their shared interests. Unions would not have developed due to the uncalloused hands of millions of people who shop where their brothers are treated like slaves and only reluctantly buy products made by their sisters in their own country.

    The fact is, we in America today are soft generally, and willing to sell our brother or sister out for a dollar. This is a habit the vast majority of us share. The domestic auto industry almost failed because plenty of liberal minded people didn't mind so much that a shlub in the midwest who "worked with his hands" couldn't "build a decent car", UNION BE DAMNED.   We don't have the people that are going to fight much for one another (anymore or yet, take your pick), so unions have not been as effective, plain and simple.

    Unions have about as much effect as a political party, if you really think about it, which is to say they are obsolete and mainly there as a prostitute giving out mental massages for a populace only interested in mind viagra for our continued civic impotence.

    •  I think you are wrong. A union would not stand (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      joynow, Oh Mary Oh, divineorder

      in the way of a 24 hour store, it would only insure that the employees were treated fairly.

      My guess is that if their were a store that ran itself based on what a union thought was in the best interest of the employees that it represented in that store, the store would not be open 24 hours, and the resulting attitude of the union and the employees would be that the rest of us are hurting America by choosing to shop at odd hours, and to wait for people to change their mind or something.
      Don't understand the reasoning behind this at all.  The "hurting America" meme is one used almost exclusively by the right.  

      "I cannot live without books" -- Thomas Jefferson, 1815

      by Susan Grigsby on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 05:37:12 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  you are very wrong, but in places (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Oh Mary Oh, divineorder

      you are also very correct.
      Wrong...

      My guess is that if their were a store that ran itself based on what a union thought was in the best interest of the employees that it represented in that store, the store would not be open 24 hours, and the resulting attitude of the union and the employees would be that the rest of us are hurting America by choosing to shop at odd hours, and to wait for people to change their mind or something.
      Unions work all shifts and have no problem with "odd hours".

      Correct...

      Unions used to be the embodiment of a motivated collective group of informed people who understood their shared interests. Unions would not have developed due to the uncalloused hands of millions of people who shop where their brothers are treated like slaves and only reluctantly buy products made by their sisters in their own country.
      Union are still the embodiment of what you discribe. If not for todays unions the Rmoneys of the nation would be in total control.

      So wrong it's insulting...

      Unions have about as much effect as a political party, if you really think about it, which is to say they are obsolete and mainly there as a prostitute giving out mental massages for a populace only interested in mind viagra for our continued civic impotence.
      this is so dumb even the GOP knows it which is why they're so hard at work to distroy what is left of the union movement.

      America could have chosen to be the worlds doctor, or grocer. We choose instead to be her policeman. pity

      by cacamp on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 08:13:20 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I almost hr'd the comment for this (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        cacamp

        they are obsolete and mainly there as a prostitute giving

        out mental massages for a populace only interested in mind viagra for our continued civic impotence.
        This reads like its written by a troll.

        How did the Supreme Court decision on ACA help the 23 million still uncovered? Ask the 18,000 Doctors of http://www.pnhp.org ... they're not waiting, but working now to pass H.R. 676, the “Expanded and Improved Medicare for All Act .

        by divineorder on Thu Jul 05, 2012 at 10:27:54 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Until Wal-Mart is unionized it is a dirty word (3+ / 0-)

    to me,  that only benefits the dumbing down of America and more enrichment of the filthy rich who promote more for their own.     We need a unionized Wal Mart that can not be outsourced and that begins to create diverse widespread political strength.  

    Instead we have created a stratified country of a rich ruling caste that expects a Harvard or Yale graduate degree paid by mommy and daddy (no debt) contrasted with a working class that has less influence and net worth with every passing year.

    The filthy rich promote their private wars fought by average Americans instead of them serving and becoming intimately involved and sacrificing their own.  Google military demographics.  The financial caste counts their money while the working class hopes not to bury their kids.  

    Examine the ethnic demographics of our military and you will find that those most overrepresented as media talking heads and those in policy making positions are least represented in the military that is forced to die for policymakers.  

    We have allowed a topsy-turvy country to be created where most have less of everything including money and influence and the few have more of everything.

    Victims of bigotry are the poorest, least influential members of society.......never the wealthiest, most educated, most overrepresented in high levels, and most influential. Bigotry hurts the least influential. To claim or say otherwise is absurd.

    by dailykozzer on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 05:12:47 PM PDT

    •  Military Demographics and Ethnicity (0+ / 0-)

      Googling military demographics does not support the statements in the preceding comment. The author of that comment is either giving vent to a popular prejudice/misconception, or simply talking through his/her hat.

      The DoD does not publish statistics on ethnicity, but only on race (Whites, Blacks, Asian/Pacific Islanders, Native Americans) and Hispanics.  Whites and Blacks are overrepresented, Hispanics underrepresented.

      The DoD does not provide data on family income of military personnel; efforts to deduce such data from census tracts where personnel originated are too crude to identify subgroups above a household income of $100,000 (a group which is overrepresented in the military).

      The most overrepresented groups in the military are southerners. Judging by statistics on chaplains, non-traditional Protestants are heavily overrepresented and all other religious groups are underrepresented.

      But it is always a mistake to view the world through the lens of ethnic stereotyping. The result is distortion if not blindness. Individuals are individuals, and if members of a particular ethnic group are found in greater or lesser numbers in particular social niches, the explanations are more complex than ethnicity alone.

      Since the author of the previous comment evidently believes that ethnic stereotypes are informative, and since the topic of this diary is the labor movement, he/she might like to investigate which group(s) were overrepresented in the development of the American labor movement and are still overrepresented among labor activists today. One might start by googling the history of the AFL, the ILGWU, the UFT, the ACWU and the CIO.

      •  I appreciate your reply (0+ / 0-)

        We sometimes disagree but each know where the other is coming from.   I come from a belief that democracy demands appropriate representative balance and demands equal representation, and you from a belief that to question the current biased  arrangement is somehow wrong.    

        Our media and political wonks tout and claim daily that we live in the greatest democracy on Earth.   Frankly I see that as BS.   Our middle class has lost numbers and ground while the elite few (Hollywood types,  Wall St, lobbyists, CEOs,  entertainers,  university CEOs, sports stars, owners and promoters, etc  have all gained enormously.   The few gain big time while the many lose big time.

        Democracy means equality.  It means every ethnic and demographic group should participate and sacrifice equally and defend the USA equally.  It should mean that we never tolerate certain groups or tribes within our democracy as having more or less influence than others.     Most importantly it should mean every citizen regardless of their creed should have the unfettered right to freely discuss this relationship (or lack of) without ever being artificially accused of bigotry.

        Regarding the USA military, of which I once participated honorably but un-heroically 67-73.    The DoD should provide public statistical analysis of ethnic backgrounds of all armed forces members,   as well as their demographic and economic backgrounds to ensure an appropriate balance of sacrifice to country,   as this balance is again fundamental to equality and democracy.     An Ivy League grad should not get an exemption for a job at Wall St.,  while a Podunk HS grad should mean enlisted with  AIT.   Every American should be required to serve the country instead of their ambitions,  as Charles Rangel said.

        The most significant element of national influence comes from the media.   Representation needs balanced.     The FCC (or Media Matters) have a role to keep an ethnic balance and unbiased cultural point of view provided by all media mouthpieces.   The message from media talking heads, pundits, reporters,  publishers  who control the message that the huddled masses will hear from our supposed democratically provided MSM should be apolitical and non-ethnic.   We require ethnic balance in the media and it needs closely tracked because an egalitarian message is important.    Every astute American should become tuned directly into the media and origination of the message.

        We need to wholly support organized labor, but the union leadership needs a positive image and to become underpaid and benevolent to society and to the organization,   instead of allowing hacks to portray them as thugs as hoods.    Unions need an image makeover.

        Victims of bigotry are the poorest, least influential members of society.......never the wealthiest, most educated, most overrepresented in high levels, and most influential. Bigotry hurts the least influential. To claim or say otherwise is absurd.

        by dailykozzer on Thu Jul 05, 2012 at 05:37:38 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  How many Kossacks (0+ / 0-)

    learned the Preamble this way?

    Mitt Romney: the Etch-A-Sketch candidate in the era of YouTube

    by Cali Scribe on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 05:34:30 PM PDT

  •  buying from wal-mart is anti-union (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Domestic Elf, divineorder

    They sell for less by exploiting their workers and preventing them from organizing. They make billions off American workers who don't care about their fellow workers. Rich people don't enable wal-mart but all those people standing in line with you sure did. I hope you explained that as you educated them about working conditions.

    America could have chosen to be the worlds doctor, or grocer. We choose instead to be her policeman. pity

    by cacamp on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 08:00:47 PM PDT

  •  university (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Oh Mary Oh, LibChicAZ, divineorder

    My son was accepted into university years back.
    When he was leaving I said to him. Remember when you walk in those doors, the ones who opened them up for you where your great grandfather, grandfather and your father. If they hadn't fought the good fight for better wages and conditions.
    They went through some hard times.
    When you are feeling a little uppity, remember what I have told you. Today he celebrated 4th. of July, in your country. Las Vegas before heading to Vancouver for his Conference.
    He still votes Labour in our country.
    The Unions have diminished in our Country also, but not to the extent that they have in America.
    I think of all that hard work, on the part of the past generations
    gone to waste. It makes me sad.

    •  Its your son's turn to do whatever it takes to (0+ / 0-)

      come together for better pay and working conditions worldwide?

      How did the Supreme Court decision on ACA help the 23 million still uncovered? Ask the 18,000 Doctors of [url] http://www.pnhp.org [/url] -- they're not waiting, but working now to pass H.R. 676, the “Expanded and Improved Medicare for All Act .

      by divineorder on Thu Jul 05, 2012 at 10:41:14 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Damn good diary. Thanks. /nt (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    divineorder
  •  Great diary, (0+ / 0-)

    excellent conversation.  I hope everyone on those lines began to think about what you were talking about.

    Being originally from a small town in Iowa, I understand how Walmart is sometimes the only option.  This was a great opportunity to start this discussion.

    Thanks for posting about it!

    (And we loved Brave too.)

  •  It's not only WalMart's workers (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    LibChicAZ, divineorder

    who are not unionized, but their suppliers.  The more devastating effect WalMart has had on unions is their massive influence on their suppliers.  Because of their unmatched footprint and buying power, WalMart can squeeze their suppliers for lower and lower prices, and get them by any means necessary.  For many manufacturers, if you aren't at WalMart, you aren't in business, so they almost always succumb to WalMart's pressure to wring out a few more pennies per unit.  This has been a major driver in consumer goods manufacturing going overseas, and the resulting hollowing out of the middle class.

    A great Frontline episode which highlights how WalMart pushes its suppliers to move manufacturing overseas in order to meet their price demands:  Link

    You're right -- check those labels - there is next to nothing "Made in USA" at WalMart.

  •  Unions in the Confederacy? (0+ / 0-)

     I live near a place called Union City, a nice place in the suburban Bay Area.  
      About every 20 years or so, an issue comes up -- how to change the name of the city.  
      Originally, it was named after a ship called the "Union" which was named to honor the union of states -- a Civil war era concept.   Once that gets explained to the new populace, they are a little more accepting of the name, although the real estate people keep mentioning how off putting "Union City"  is to some potential residents.  

      Anyhow, I am wondering how people in the South may have conflated the word "Union" with "Northern States" as opposed to 'Confederacy' and Southern States.   "Union" naturally links to Northern sensibilities, the New England Industrialists and the Golden Age Robber Barons controlling the railroads and high costs of transport for farm goods?  

      Maybe it would behoove people trying to organize workers in the south to use "Confederation" or some such more neutral term than 'Union.'  

      Just a thought.  Maybe somebody here has some connections with Civil War reinactors with opinions?  
     

  •  Not Just WalMart - BJs is Another example (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    divineorder

    The practices WalMart uses are in affect at BJs too.  Workers there are turned over (or forced out) if there is any semblance of looking at a Union.  Out of fear, Corporate sends in forces and does a dog and pony show to discourage any thought of Unionization.  The discrimination that goes on at some stores is disgraceful.

    It's about time more Retail workers are protected from the underhanded dealings of gutter management.

    I'm completely in favor of the separation of Church and State. My idea is that these two institutions screw us up enough on their own, so both of them together is certain death.

    by cobaltbay on Thu Jul 05, 2012 at 09:58:33 AM PDT

  •  "Union" is a firable offense (0+ / 0-)

    I live in AZ (oxymoronic right-to-work state).  Every job that I have worked at we are told that to even say the word "union" is almost like saying the word "bomb" in an airport.  You will get escorted to the door immediately.

    I try to tell people how bad it is to work for these companies -- they do so many things that a union would never allow.  (Schedule a worker for two hours or 7.75 hours to save money on not having to pay for that break; setting up incentive systems and then bailing on actual payouts; bad healthcare coverage; years of being a part-time worker without benefits such as sick days even when they schedule overtime; no seniority whatsoever when scheduling choices come up; low, low pay; last minute schedule changes without warning; etc etc.)

    I have republican relatives that live in states where unions are strong (PA, MD, OH) and they badmouth the unions continuously.  However, because the union jobs pay a lot, the non-union jobs pay a lot.  In other words, as contractors, they can charge higher prices there than in AZ because there are unions in those states.   It doesn't get through to them.  They still vote against their own interests every time.  

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