by Lawrence Davidson, To the Point Analyses
Part I – Job Satisfaction at the Heart of Capitalism
We have just celebrated Labor Day weekend (September 2, 3, 4) in the United States, the very heartland of capitalism. Apropos of the holiday, I happened to have run across a July 2016 survey with the original paradoxical title, “Job Satisfaction Hits a 10-Year High – But It’s Still Below 50%.” What the survey reports is that “just under half (49.6%) of U.S. workers surveyed reported they are satisfied with their jobs.” These are workers in “traditional jobs,” which are typically eight-hour-a-day employment at conventional job sites. The report then compares this “just under half” rate to the reported job satisfaction of “independent” workers – those self-employed or working in an autonomous or semi-autonomous way. The reported satisfaction level of these “independent” workers was 65%.
The first number is downright depressing and the second is not very impressive. Also, consider what the report attributed the improvement (compared to say, 40% satisfaction in 2010 for traditional jobs) of the low satisfaction numbers to: “a decline in layoffs, stronger wage growth and expanding job opportunities [expanding labor market].” None of these factors addresses what ought to be one of the major, and obvious, goals of work – the fulfillment, as far as possible, of individual human potential. Or, to state it another way, providing avenues for the individual to “be all he or she can be.”…
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email from Bernie Sanders, 4/21/16
Sisters and Brothers,
The CEO of Verizon makes almost $20 million a year in compensation. He leads one of the most profitable companies in the country.
Yet Verizon wants to take away employees’ health benefits. Verizon wants to outsource decent-paying jobs. Verizon wants to avoid paying federal income tax. And right now, Verizon is refusing to sit down and negotiate a fair contract with its employees.
In other words, Verizon is just another major American corporation trying to destroy the lives of working Americans. But this time, Verizon’s employees are fighting back.
Thousands of very brave employees of Verizon and Verizon Wireless are on strike until they can get a fair contract. They made a very difficult decision that puts their families at risk — but it’s a choice they made to stand up for justice against corporate greed.
I’m asking you today to stand up and tell the CEO of Verizon that you think Verizon employees deserve a fair contract that protects health benefits, guarantees fair pay, and stops outsourcing. Click here to add your name in support of Verizon employees.
Add Your Name »
Twice last week in New York City I stood with Verizon workers in the streets. I did so because they’re doing something very brave: they’re standing up not just for themselves, but for the millions of Americans who don’t have a union. Continue reading
By Michael Arria / AlterNet, April 13, 2016
Approximately 39,000 Verizon landline and cable workers on the East Coast walked off the job Wednesday morning after working without a contract since August.
Approximately 39,000 Verizon landline and cable workers on the East Coast walked off the job Wednesday morning after working without a contract since August. An agreement was not reached with the Verizon (NYSE:VZ), largest U.S. wireless communications service provider. It is the biggest U.S work stoppage since 2011, when a Verizon strike lasted two weeks.
Bernie Sanders joined the picket line with workers on Wednesday morning in Brooklyn. The Vermont senator and Democratic presidential candidate said that Verizon was one of the richest and most powerful corporations in this country, “but they refuse to sit down and negotiate a fair contract.” Sanders told the energized group of picketers:
“They want to take away the health benefits that you have earned. They want to outsource decent paying jobs. They want to give their CEO $20 million a year in compensation. They want to avoid paying federal income taxes. In other words, this is just another major American corporation trying to destroy the lives of working Americans. Today you are standing up not just for justice for Verizon workers, you’re standing up for millions of Americans who don’t have a union….”
continue reading and see video at AlterNet
by Sean Kitchen, Raging Chicken Press, March 15, 2016
With the start of the 2016 budget season underway, raising the minimum wage has taken center stage. Governor Wolf touched raising the minimum wage during his blistering budget address to the General Assembly. He then signed an executive order raising the minimum wage for all state workers to $10.15 an hour, and then went on a statewide tour advocating for minimum wage increases. These gestures raised wages for roughly 450 state employees and sparked dialogue on an issue it that has not received a lot of legislative action.
A number of bills calling for increasing the wage were introduced in the House and Senate at the beginning of the 2015-2016 legislative session, but the issue has seen little action since the Senate Labor and Industry Committee hearing held last May. After Governor Wolf announced the wage increases for all state workers, Steven Miskin, top spokesman for House Republican leadership, told the Post Gazette that the “minimum wage is and was intended as a ‘starting’ wage or ‘training’ wage.” and that “it is and was never meant to serve as a ‘living’ wage.”
One of the main organizations opposing a minimum wage increase is the Pennsylvania Restaurant and Lodging Association, a trade organization that lobbies for the hospitality and tourism industry. The PRLA held their 28th annual lobby day on the hill, and hundreds of lobbyists and members from the organization descended onto the capitol….
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